Whirlwind of a ride pretty much sums up our trip, although looking at the words now, I see that I am putting it to you mildly.
To kick off our two-week motorcycle road trip from California to Colorado, brother-in-law’s bike wouldn’t start. It was a few expletives and a slammed tool box lid later before the hubbies found the culprit causing the stall — a loose battery wire that required disassembling the entire midsection of the bike to find. The mechanical glitch was soon fixed and we were on our way. (As we rumbled out of the driveway, my sister and I looked at one another and mouthed, “Should we take this as a sign?”)
Within the first hour from home, our fire for the ride turned cold — literally. The entire group began to question whether we should view the buckets of hail falling from the ominous sky as a sign to turn back. Ping, ping, STING went the pea-sized pests as they assaulted our helmets and snot-smeared faces. Worried about being on two wheels while traversing an icy road, we newbie motorcycle tourists pulled the bikes to the shoulder and found shelter under the pines. As my sister recorded the storm on her iPhone, the rest of us watched in wonder as miniature balls of ice gathered on the seats where our rumps would soon need to settle.
After a large group of motorcyclists passed by seemingly effortlessly, we realized that stopping was a bad idea, that it would have been better to plow through. Once we resolved to buck nature’s authority and make it to our destination come hell or high water, we ran to our bikes, brushed the hail pebbles from our seats and took off like racing turtles.
For two days we rode through atypical summer weather, at times climbing passes covered in snow — Hello! Did someone forget to tell Jack Frost he was free to take a holiday?
On the third day, we rumbled into Moab, UT with the sun at our backs and warm wind in our faces. Vino anybody?
For the next week, we toured Colorado’s Western Slope, winding our way along green rivers sandwiched between red stone canyon walls. We climbed to mesa tops where spectacular vistas filled with picturesque farms and grasslands made me want to cry (who am I kidding, I did cry … like a baby). We lounged in hot springs in Ouray, ate good food, drank margaritas, and visited with friends and family in Hotchkiss and Paonia.
It was a good thing we had a glorious time in Colorado, for the ride home was one that is best forgotten. Wind gusts of 60-65 mph made us feel like pumpkins on a fence in a hurricane. Our patience with Mother Nature, and with one another was pushed to the limits. Somehow we made it through, but it wasn’t a pretty process. I will spare you all the unpleasantries and instead, share more photos.
Happy and safe travels!