Monday, July 20, 2015

Day 8 of The 131 Motorcycle Tour.. off to Utah!AmNo

Dear Family & Friends,

Today we are leaving Colorado so I was reflecting on our time there. Sometimes there are moments of magic or clarity.. Nothing terribly important but fun… One afternoon we were riding over a Rocky Mountain Pass so I thought it would be nice to listen to John Denver singing Colorado Rocky Mountain High…. don’t you think that would be appropriate?? So off we went with John Denver singing in my ear. I have listened to this song many times in the last 40 years and have always enjoyed it, but the words went in one ear and out the other without any great meaning.  This time when he sang about “Fire and rain in the Sky” it really struck a cord as I looked out over the Rocky Mountains, the sky dark with rain and lightening all around me.. Wow! I was living the song and suddenly the words really touched me.. Nothing earth shattering but none the less an enjoyable experience to feel it.. I am not an artsy guy so I have to get it when I can,,,,,’

So today Duane has given up on his motorcycle and is trucking it home.. Brian and I after reviewing the map realize that Telluride is just to far out of the way for us to fit in on this trip so we decide to head west into Utah. There is lots to see there and some great roads too.
Within an hour of leaving this morning we were out of Colorado and into Utah with a completely different landscape. Barren and dramatic with geological marvels all around us. Most of Utah was a vast sea or lake millions of years ago and the dramatic views all around reflect it. This place would be a geologist dream.  Many layers of earth and sediment exposed everywhere. Great sculptures formed by time and weather..  You would see towering formations with huge rocks balanced on the top that look like they are about to fall. I am sure another ten to twenty thousand years and they will fall.
Road side sites featuring dinosaurs are as common here as Taco Bell is in California….

At one site the rocks were so dramatic that we stopped to photograph and look at them… Brian pointed out one dramatic tower of rocks with a very distinctive formation on top. Like it had been carved by man.. Brian asked me what I thought it looked like.. Immediately I said it looked like a gigantic phallic symbol….. Brian looked a bit shocked at me and said to him it looked like an old woman wrapped in a shawl..  I think Brian was right and I am beginning to worry about me…am I becoming a dirty old man or have I always been this way??

Anyways we kept riding, the morning had beautiful weather, clear and mid 80s. Great for riding a motorcycle… We were not riding any freeways, just two lane back roads which are so fun on a motorcycle. We decided to head a bit south to Bryce Canyon National park and ride around that area. As we continued the mountains ahead started to appear very dark.. What was going on??? We stopped about noon at a small road side store to have a drink and asked the local shop keeper what he thought the weather was going to do since it looked so dark.. Without missing a beat  he immediately answered us… “Looks like it is going to get you wet”…. Concise and to the point and 100% accurate.. That is country wisdom..
The next two hours we wound our way through pouring rain in a lush forest area of the local mountains. I am sure it would have been beautiful if we could have seen anything…
From there we started our decent back to the valley. The road was very dramatic. Most mountain roads are cut into the side of the mountain but this road went right along the top ridge of the mountain so it was a very dramatic drop off on each side but the views were amazing.. As we descended the rain let up and the temperature started to rise again which felt great. Around 3pm we were back in the valley around Bryson National park. We stopped and took a few photos.. From there we went to the next very small town and stopped for lunch. 
The cafe was inviting and warm and it felt good to be out of the elements for a while.. The waitress came over and I asked her what she recommend. She said “Get the JalapeƱo chili, bacon, BBQ hamburger.. it is a very memorable meal”. So I had to ask her “memorable” in a good way or bad way?? She replied good and she was right.. It was one of the best hamburgers I have ever had. IT was good but by the time we go there I was so cold and tired a well cooked shoe would have been good.
Tonight we finish up Pangutich (SEC??) a small town in Utah. Tomorrow we head to Nevada and we should be back in SLO Wednesday. So far it has been a very memorable trip.


Amazing how quickly the landscape changes from Colorado to Utah...

No traffic, no turns., warm weather.. about as easy as motorcycle riding gets..

This cut of went off road and cut about 200 miles off our route.. I would have taken it but the get was tied shut with a double knot rope and that is just to complicated to deal with... :)

Is it just me or does that look like a phallic symbol?? I may be losing it... :(

This cute cabin was available for less than $100K. I wonder if Bonnie would like to move to Utah???

Entrance to Bryce Canyon National Park

Tonight we are staying in a cute motel with pink doors. Very warm and cozy..

Uh Oh,,,, this does not look good. Where did our warm weather go???

Two hours of pouring rain!!

Coming out of the mountains along this ridge road.

Sometimes even the simplest things need instructions....

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