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Author Topic: Summer Mountain Trip  (Read 6565 times)

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #25 on: June 25, 2016, 10:57:17 PM »

Last report before I head down to Denver tomorrow...this trip is almost done:

-  Headed out early in the morning and beat the construction crews to the maintenance point near Hooper on CO 17...they were setting up at 5:30 AM though.  US 285 and US 50 were a breeze to Royal Gorge, I actually got there at about 7:50 AM.  I had a chance to walk across the bridge before any cars showed up but there was an SUV crossing when I was midway walking back.  I actually forgot the bridge is rated for vehicles and the bridge swaying withe wind surprised the hell out of me right on the center span.  :-D  That's not exactly a fun feeling with a 955 foot drop directly below you which you can see plain as day through the wooden planks.  I'd recommend the bridge if you're looking for a scare...it's the only thing on this trip that got me a little bit startled.
-  I took US 50, CO 115, briefly I-25 and US 24 to Pikes Peak.  I beat the rush and the race teams coming into the highway for the Saturday...it definitely made things WAY easier going uphill.  No issues going uphill but coming down really REALLY left me wanting for four wheel vented disc brakes.  I overheated the brakes coming down twice despite being in 1st gear the entire time....the last time I did Pikes was about 10 years ago when it was dirt in a Z71 Silverado.  That truck was much more equipped for the challenge of 7%-13% grades than the rental Corolla S was.  Great handler for a rental with a neutral chassis but it sure wasn't up to the task today...made me really miss the Challenger.  I would HIGHLY recommend Pikes Peak over Mount Evans if you know what you're doing and want a more edgy road.  Mount Evans is mostly 2%-5% and is definitely way easier than Pikes Peak. 
-  I took US 24 up to Fossil Beds National Monument and checked out the petrified redwood forest.  Definitely strange to see redwoods outside California but hell just goes to show that even Colorado was warmer than it is now at some point  I stayed on US 24 to Leadville and checked out the mining hall of fame.  Leadville is definitely worth a look if you are into mining, old buildings or machinery.  I ended up taking CO 91 over Fremont Pass to I-70....  For whatever reason I decided to check out Frisco to see if it had any nice mining era buildings....sadly it did not.  They have plenty of refurb jobs and new buildings meant to look like mining era structures but they are fake as all hell.  That's just plain sad that a town that opened up in 1880 would stoop to trying to please the Starbucks and Wholefoods crowd...plenty of yuppies about thinking they were getting an authentic experience.  :meh:  That's really a huge pet peeve of mine when a town sells out it's soul and character to please the yuppie crowd...but hey it's pretty and I wouldn't mind staying there on a ski trip.  Ended up in Silverthorne for the night....I'll be heading down to Denver tomorrow via the long way.   I'll get working on some sort of account to show photos of this trip since I can't attach them directly.

Photo update:

Royal Gorge Bridge






Pikes Peak Highway







Fossil Beds National Monument



Leadville, CO



« Last Edit: June 27, 2016, 06:26:11 PM by Max Rockatansky »
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #26 on: June 26, 2016, 08:18:04 PM »

Final road day:

-  Took the scenic route over US 6/Loveland Pass rather than using the Eisenhower Tunnel.  Given the amount of people biking up and the people taking pictures on top it seems that Loveland has gained some infamy for tourists.
-  Speaking of US 6 I stopped in Silver Plume, Georgetown and Idaho Falls to check out some older alignments along with old mining buildings.  Idaho Falls would have included US 40 also since it's a couple miles east of the split with Empire, the question is did it always run down Colorado or did it ever run on Miner Street?  I'm also wondering if US 6 ever ran on Main Street in Silver Plume which is still dirt or did it always run on Water Street given that it didn't get extended through to California until 1937?
-  I-70 was basically every man for himself heading down into the Denver area....pretty much what I expected for a Sunday.  I had to make a stop at my bank so I took US 6 to I-25 just south of downtown Denver....and pretty much stayed where I'm at.  My flight home is on Tuesday so basically I'll be looking possibly finding a way to get some trip photos loaded on here tomorrow or maybe going to see how bad this new Independence Day really is.

Photo update

Loveland Pass US 6



Silver Plume, CO



Georgetown, CO



Idaho Springs, CO

« Last Edit: June 27, 2016, 06:36:31 PM by Max Rockatansky »
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #27 on: June 27, 2016, 04:12:04 PM »

One last trip report before I try for photos:

-  Spent the day traversing Aurora and most of I-225 near DIA.  Holy crap what is up with Aurora and being the NO-FUN zone?  They have all sorts of VMS signs saying no fireworks, no right on red photo radar cameras and narry a speed limit over 40 MPH on a surface street to be found.  I'm kind of gathering reading the income demographics that this might be one of these cities over saturated with self-important yuppies who think their $#!+ doesn't stink?  I remember when I owned a house in Scottsdale the city started making crap moves like this....really good way to make people feel unwelcome.  Sure not deterring the Interstate side panhandlers though...
-  Grabbed a good 11 mile run this morning and hit a local gym before going to see the new Independence day.  I'm actually fairly impressed by the number of urban trials which are available for runners and people on bikes.  Got a nice higher look at the Rockies a high hill in north Denver, you could see Pikes Peak this morning.  Man...that Independence Day movie is really bad....but also bad in a good way...full of Sharknado levels of cheese.  If the original movie wasn't your cup of tea this one will surely offend your senses with it's astronomical levels of stupidity that only Roland Emmerich can provide.  At least Roland Emmerich movie stupid is usually enjoyable as opposed to the grating variation of someone like Michael Bay.  There is one particular scene that is worth the $7 dollar price of admission...otherwise I'd say wait for DVD or digital download.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #28 on: June 27, 2016, 06:37:32 PM »

Alright went back and did an edit on the daily reports from this trip and added photos.  Lots of good pics from high passes, Pikes Peak was probably the coolest.

allniter89

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #29 on: June 28, 2016, 12:20:21 AM »

Thanks for sharing Max! Great photos & narrative  :clap:
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #30 on: June 28, 2016, 10:39:59 AM »

Thanks for sharing Max! Great photos & narrative  :clap:

Thanks, that got me up to 44 of the 47 national parks in the continental United States.  I have a trip planned to Maine to knock out 45 later this year possibly...but I'm thinking of shifting it to the first week of November to get a fall tinge to it...possibly some snow.  Either that or I might take the long way round to see my brother in Prescott, AZ...  It's going to be tough getting used to not being on the road for weeks on end, I might have to take a trip to Mineral King this Saturday to ease out of the mode.

Max Rockatansky

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Re: Summer Mountain Trip
« Reply #31 on: June 29, 2016, 11:41:37 PM »

Really no reason to post this now that I'm home but I found some light viewing on Pikes Peak Peak:


Amazing how much the character of the race has really changed over the years from cars and then from dirt to pavement.

 


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