Colorado is famous for its scenic roads, but did you also know it’s a mecca for motorcycle riders looking to take in the beauty as they navigate our curvy, skyscraping, mountainous landscape? I’ve collected a few resources for motorcycle enthusiasts looking to take in the colors this fall. Remember, though: always check the weather before you head out. Colorado weather is moody and unpredictable. Bring your cold-weather gear and be prepared to turn around if things suddenly turn nasty.
Ken Bingenheimer, whose MotorcycleColorado.com website is one of a rider’s best resources for route and travel-planning information, names the following as the “must-ride Colorado roads:”
S. 550 (also known as the Million Dollar Highway) from Durango to Ouray
S. 34 up the Big Thompson Canyon to Estes Park and over Trail Ridge Road inside Rocky Mountain National Park (This road closes early in the fall. Check to see if it’s open.)
CO 82 between Aspen and Twin Lakes over Independence Pass. (This road closes early in the fall. Check to see if it’s open.)
CO 145 between Dolores and Telluride over Lizard Head Pass
CO 131 between Wolcott and Steamboat Springs
S. 160 between South Fork and Pagosa Springs via Wolf Creek Pass
CO 114 between Saguache and Gunnison via North Cochetopa Pass
And, because I’m sort of a safety nut (You know what I do for a living, right? You should see the things I’ve seen!), I want to share some great resources for keeping you safe on your gorgeous fall rides.
First, check out UltimateMotorcycling.com’s article on winter riding. Here’s an excerpt from the author who shares a cautionary tale and then his tips for staying safe:
“I realized I made a stupid decision, and wondered how those 60+ mph winds didn’t launch me off the side of the highway. But instead of deciding against riding during the winter months, I began searching for the things that would allow me to safely and warmly ride when dead-man winter raises his anti-motorcycling head. Nearly four years later of riding 12 months a year, here are some of the things I’ve learned…” Click here for more.
The call of the road is strong this fall! I hope you have many wonderful rides and that you get home safely every time!