Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 55

Thread: Country Roads

  1. #1

    Country Roads

    I have been contemplating starting a thread here geared toward motorcyclists, but began to think there may not be a lot of bikers of the motoring variety on this forum. By naming it Country Roads, we can open it up to anyone that likes to sight-see and hit the open road, 2 wheels or 4, motor or not. Many of us live in one of the most incredibly scenic parts of the country, and I'm amazed by the undiscovered (in my eyes) variety and beauty in my own backyard.

    I bought a motorcycle (Suzuki Vstrom) about 5 years ago, after not having been on one since college. I took the Motorcycle Safety Training class, and haven't looked back. To me there is a serenity bordering on spirituality in hitting some remote stretch of road on a sunny day with no traffic...at least for the first few hours until my rear end starts aching...

    With that said, I'd like to learn from others what their favorite sightseeing road tours have been, either by motorcycle, car, or bicycle...in the state of Utah, or anywhere else. If you have pictures to share, even better.

    I'll start it out with one of my favorite summer rides when I have a long weekend. I start out in Star Valley, WY at the south end of Palisades Reservoir and head north on Rte 26 along the eastern shoreline. There are many turnoffs along the way with awesome views. Then continue on through Swan Valley to Pine Creek Road, where you veer off toward Victor, ID. Once in Victor, you can loop down over the Teton Pass toward Wilson and Jackson, or head north toward Island Park or West Yellowstone. Beautiful views and breathtaking scenery either way. If you do the loop through Jackson, it can easily be completed in a day with time for a leisurely breakfast and lunch.

    http://goo.gl/maps/B4kBn

    284982_10150242371676850_6366591_n.jpg

    Sitting here looking at the snow outside is giving me the itch...hope to learn about other great places I should see. Happy Trails.
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  2. #2
    I love me some mirror lake highway, especially if you head up on the dirt and go to Black's fork commissary. I pretty much just do the normal ones everyone knows about.... Guardsman, Alpine loop, skyline above Bountiful, etc.... I'm looking forward to what others say, as i always like learning new routes

  3. #3
    Been on Mirror Lake Highway many times, but not familiar with Black's Fork. I'm fine on fire roads, but my bike isn't suited for a lot of ruts and bumps...what kind of condition is the road?
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  4. #4
    It's hard to find unless you already know where it is. I'm going to have to have my dad show me how to get there again this year.

    A toyota corolla could make it there, if you ride gravel roads i think you would be ok. I'll try to remember to report on it this summer when I go back

    It is 10 or 15 old cabins in various states of disrepair. Cool place

    blacksfork_4072.jpg

  5. #5
    Great idea for a thread. I ride motorcycles, an FZ-1 and V-Star 1100. I do sport touring on the FZ-1 with my dad and brothers, and cruiser touring with a group of my wife's friends that are mostly on Harleys.

    Day trips in Utah are awesome. Some of my favorites include:

    Any sort of loop including 2 ot of the 3 of Bear Lake/Logan Canyon, Monte Cristo, and Mirror Lake highway. (Evantson is usually involved, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.)

    Loop from Kamas up Wolf Creek Pass to Duchesne, then back to Heber City along Hwy 40 (or vise versa)

    Energy Loop from Huntington to Fairview, with options of going around Scofield.

    The Alpine Loop and Mt Nebo loop are nice, but overdone.

    Probably the most epic in Utah is Hwy 12 between Escalante and Torrey, with a side trip up the Burr Trail. It's more than a day trip from SLC, but we have done it as a day trip out of St George.

    If you are down in the south part of the state, loops on highways between I-15 and Hwy 89 are fun. They can incorporate Hwy 9 through Zion, Hwy 14 from Cedar City (my favorite), Hwy 143 from Parawon to Brian Head to Panguitch.


    When I get more time, I'll post some of our favorite roads outside of Utah, and see if I can incorporate some pictures.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  6. #6
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    Good stuff here. Motorcycles and 4x4's on back roads and trails... great time.

    Sturgis S.D. campground



    Wendover MDA ride with friends


  7. #7
    How do you get all those girls on one bike?
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisrenrut View Post
    Great idea for a thread. I ride motorcycles, an FZ-1 and V-Star 1100. I do sport touring on the FZ-1 with my dad and brothers, and cruiser touring with a group of my wife's friends that are mostly on Harleys.

    Day trips in Utah are awesome. Some of my favorites include:

    Any sort of loop including 2 ot of the 3 of Bear Lake/Logan Canyon, Monte Cristo, and Mirror Lake highway. (Evantson is usually involved, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.)

    Loop from Kamas up Wolf Creek Pass to Duchesne, then back to Heber City along Hwy 40 (or vise versa)

    Energy Loop from Huntington to Fairview, with options of going around Scofield.

    The Alpine Loop and Mt Nebo loop are nice, but overdone.

    Probably the most epic in Utah is Hwy 12 between Escalante and Torrey, with a side trip up the Burr Trail. It's more than a day trip from SLC, but we have done it as a day trip out of St George.

    If you are down in the south part of the state, loops on highways between I-15 and Hwy 89 are fun. They can incorporate Hwy 9 through Zion, Hwy 14 from Cedar City (my favorite), Hwy 143 from Parawon to Brian Head to Panguitch.


    When I get more time, I'll post some of our favorite roads outside of Utah, and see if I can incorporate some pictures.
    Chris, nice list. The Burr Trail is on my to-do list this year.
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by 3UteDad View Post
    Chris, nice list. The Burr Trail is on my to-do list this year.
    One other that is on my list, but haven't gotten to yet is the Moki Dugway road (Hwy 261) in far southeast Utah. The part in the picture is dirt road, except on the corners of the switchbacks where it is paved.

    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  10. #10
    This thread has already paid off...I hadn't heard of Moki Dugway before. Looks like a desolate ride getting there...probably better to go before it gets hot, but spectacular views!
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  11. #11
    Yeah, I'm really trying to figure out how to do it this year. I'm thinking mid-May might be good for decent temperatures and avoiding crowds. It seems that it is at least a 3 day trip, one getting down, one taking the road and exploring the area, and one day back. There are some other things nearby that could be cool to see too, such as Gooseneck State Park and Natural Bridges National Monument
    Last edited by chrisrenrut; 02-22-2013 at 01:58 PM.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  12. #12
    Chris- do it, I took my family down to Bridges last year.......you won't regret it.


    -What would you do
    if you saw spaceships over Glasgow?
    Would you fear them?
    Every aircraft, every camera, is a wish that wasn't granted.

    What was that for?
    Try to be bad.


  13. #13
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    The million dollar highway between Ouray and Silverton Colorado is incredible. The kind of ride that can get you in trouble with the twisting road because the views are amazing.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Devildog View Post
    The million dollar highway between Ouray and Silverton Colorado is incredible. The kind of ride that can get you in trouble with the twisting road because the views are amazing.

    Yes, beautiful and scary in places. There are some stretches that have no guardrail, and a 200 foot sheer cliff off the side. We did it in a nice loop from Durango to Telluride, Ridgeway, Ouray, Silverton, and back to Durango. Very memorable trip.

    Colorado is a state I would love to spend a couple of weeks just riding around. One other great road is Hwy 149 from South Fork (the city, don't get excited trouthead) to Gunnison. Pretty isolated, and lots of curves and scenery. I couldn't talk the Harley guys into doing it as a 400 mile loop from Durango.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  15. #15
    One of my favorite rides is from Boise to Missoula. The ride from Boise to Grangeville is nice, it goes through beautiful McCall, and Hells Canyon is, umm, interesting. We took a rest near Hells Canyon, and I got this picture:


    Just past Grangeville, you turn southeast and head into the canyon carved by the Clearwater River. At the beginning of the canyon, this sign gives you an idea of what is to come:


    The next 99 miles are motorcycle nirvana. Fast, sweeping curves along the river. The road is smooth, and there is no traffic. You can smell the pine trees and river, hear the resonance of your exhaust, and feel yourself leaning deep into the turns. There are nicer and more scenic roads out there, but when we road this last summer, it was about as perfect as it could get.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  16. #16
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisrenrut View Post
    Yes, beautiful and scary in places. There are some stretches that have no guardrail, and a 200 foot sheer cliff off the side. We did it in a nice loop from Durango to Telluride, Ridgeway, Ouray, Silverton, and back to Durango. Very memorable trip.
    Yep. I've done that trip several times on the motorcycle. Telluride is a great place to stop, eat, and spend some time.

    I've also taken the truck over the mountain (Black Bear Pass) from Ouray into Telluride. Spent the day, and then taken Imogene pass back to Ouray. I stay at the Box Canyon Lodge (I'd recommend that place to anybody). That is always a great July trip.

    You can see the tight switchbacks on Black Bear Pass crisscrossing the mountain in the center of this pic. That road is so narrow that my passengers side tires are literally hanging over the edge of the trail. Scary.







    Last edited by Devildog; 02-23-2013 at 12:20 PM. Reason: added pics

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisrenrut View Post
    One of my favorite rides is from Boise to Missoula. The ride from Boise to Grangeville is nice, it goes through beautiful McCall, and Hells Canyon is, umm, interesting. We took a rest near Hells Canyon, and I got this picture:


    Just past Grangeville, you turn southeast and head into the canyon carved by the Clearwater River. At the beginning of the canyon, this sign gives you an idea of what is to come:


    The next 99 miles are motorcycle nirvana. Fast, sweeping curves along the river. The road is smooth, and there is no traffic. You can smell the pine trees and river, hear the resonance of your exhaust, and feel yourself leaning deep into the turns. There are nicer and more scenic roads out there, but when we road this last summer, it was about as perfect as it could get.

    awesome pics. That is a great stretch of road. Makes me miss home!

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by FN Phat View Post
    awesome pics. That is a great stretch of road. Makes me miss home!
    Welcome FN!!
    “Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.”
    André Gide

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Jarid in Cedar View Post
    Welcome FN!!
    You know I have to support my boy! I dig the new board...minus all the red!

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by FN Phat View Post
    You know I have to support my boy! I dig the new board...minus all the red!
    Couldn't do a Bronco's theme, sorry.
    “Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.”
    André Gide

  21. #21
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    Here are a few more pics from the Telluride area.





    Looking down onto Telluride from above on Black Bear.



    Here is an old Warn winch ad from 1975 showing the Black Bear switchbacks they way they used to be. They're still tight now (but not quite like this), and the drop over the edge is straight down... The trail today is not to be taken lightly or for the faint hearted... but back then it was only for the truly crazy.

    Last edited by Devildog; 02-23-2013 at 01:54 PM. Reason: added winch ad

  22. #22
    Devildog, you have convinced me to add southwestern Colorado to my list (I think I'll be skipping the Black Bear switchbacks). How many days would you suggest allowing for travel from SLC, and what's the best time of year for the trip?
    You can observe a lot by just watching - Yogi Berra

  23. #23
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    Quote Originally Posted by 3UteDad View Post
    Devildog, you have convinced me to add southwestern Colorado to my list (I think I'll be skipping the Black Bear switchbacks). How many days would you suggest allowing for travel from SLC, and what's the best time of year for the trip?
    You can't go wrong with the San Juan range in Southwestern Colorado. The state of Colorado has (I think) 14 - fourteen thousand foot high mountains, and most of them are in the San Juans. I've been on top of one 14 thousand footer and could see five more from there. The town of Ouray bills itself as "The Switzerland of America". The whole area is spectacular. The drive is only about 6-6.5 hours from SLC. I usually 4 wheel the trails there and bring the motorcycle in a trailer now, and that requires waiting until late July for all the snow to melt and expose the 4x4 trails, so that's when I've always made my trips.

    The first time I ever found Ouray was when a friend and I were headed to Durango on motorcycles... and we got caught in a torrential mountain rain storm. We pulled into Ouray just as the clouds broke and a rainbow was pointing straight into this outstanding little mountain town. We stopped at a place that had natural hot springs hot tubs set along the incredibly scenic ridge. We dried off, went and grabbed some steaks at a great little steak house right on Main street, picked up a case of beer and took it back to the hot-tubs and sat there and got ripped while the deer came down and ate the shrubs around us.

    It was such a great time, I've been back half a dozen times, and have never been back to Durango. I keep finding new cool things to do in the Ouray-Silverton-Telluride area.
    Last edited by Devildog; 02-23-2013 at 10:22 PM.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by 3UteDad View Post
    Devildog, you have convinced me to add southwestern Colorado to my list (I think I'll be skipping the Black Bear switchbacks). How many days would you suggest allowing for travel from SLC, and what's the best time of year for the trip?
    I keep imagining getting to the top of those switchbacks and celebrating only to realize that you have to now go down them. Talk about coming back down to earth.

  25. #25
    Springerville to Clifton, AZ

    It takes a bit of doing to get to ride this stretch of road. My dad and I took our motorcycles down to the Arizona State game last year, and took the opportunity to go out of our way to take this road. I had heard good things about if from other motorcyclist. Unfortunately, it was the highlight of the trip, since the team decided figuratively not to show up for the game.

    As you head south out of Springerville, you start heading up into the mountains. I did not know that southeastern Arizona had such great pine forests. The road goes through a small village called Alpine, and then there is nothing but the mountain, forest, and road.

    The road twists lazily at first. For a few miles I was worried that this was all there was, and started to wonder what the fuss was. The curves were labeled by road signs as 35 to 45 MPH, which on a sporty motorcycle are taken about 20 MPH higher.

    About 10 miles in, a new sign arrived. 25 PM Curves Next 10 Miles. And sure enough, the curves got tighter, and there were no more signs to tell you how to guage your entry speed.

    5-10 miles later, another sign, 15 MPH Curves next 10 Miles. We are having to slow down a lot in the corners now, downshifting to 2nd. Lost of accelerating and breaking, which is a lot of work, and a lot of fun.

    After another 10 miles or so, another sign, 10 MPH Curves Next 20 Miles. We have crossed over the mountain range, and are now traversing our way down the backside, winding in and out of side canyons which is where the sharpest curves are. At 10 miles an hour, it feels like you are about to stop. First gear is a given, and it’s a lot more work mentally to coordinate the break, lean, and acceleration.

    As we get towards the end, we are coming out of the pine trees and to a lower elevation, but still with a lot of curves. I notice my front and back tire seem to be slipping a bit in the corners, which is disconcerting. We stop for a rest and view, and I check my tires to see if they are under-inflated, but they aren’t. I start to notice dust coming from our tires, which seem strange because it feels like we are in a remote place. Finally as we got to the bottom, it is very apparent that we are traversing a very large mining operation. The Morenci mine is apparently one of the larges open pit mines in the world, bigger than Bingham. There is dust everywhere. The road winds through the operations area of the mine.

    It was fun exploring this road, and having to adapt our riding to new conditions. However, I think I will enjoy the road more the next time I ride it, whenever that may be.
    Last edited by chrisrenrut; 03-02-2013 at 07:16 PM.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  26. #26
    Flying out to Knoxville, TN in a couple of weeks to buy and ride back a 2009 BMW R1200RT. I have been searching the country for a used one, and this seems to be the best out there. It has less than 2000 miles on it, and has all the options I want. It a little more than I wanted to spend, but nothing great came up in my price range (I was looking for a 2007 with low-ish miles).

    There won't be many country roads riding it back. But we have rides planned this year for the Oregon Coast and Canadian Rockies that this bike will be perfect for.

    I'll be selling my Yamaha V-Star that I have had for 12 years and 50,000 miles to make room for the new bike.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  27. #27
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mormon Mecca (North)
    Posts
    1,138
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisrenrut View Post
    Flying out to Knoxville, TN in a couple of weeks to buy and ride back a 2009 BMW R1200RT. I have been searching the country for a used one, and this seems to be the best out there. It has less than 2000 miles on it, and has all the options I want. It a little more than I wanted to spend, but nothing great came up in my price range (I was looking for a 2007 with low-ish miles).

    There won't be many country roads riding it back. But we have rides planned this year for the Oregon Coast and Canadian Rockies that this bike will be perfect for.

    I'll be selling my Yamaha V-Star that I have had for 12 years and 50,000 miles to make room for the new bike.
    Congrats on finding the bike you want. I hope you have great luck with it.

    I finally got my bike into the shop for new tires today. This weather has me thinking about riding all day while I'm stuck at work.

  28. #28
    Utah SR 12 from Torrey to Panguitch is an 122 mile incredible drive. The Hogback between Boulder and Escalante is probably my favorite stretch of road. Ever. The photo is a view of the road from the air:



    It's a great drive, but if you want to have a lot of fun, get a 4WD vehicle so you can take SR 12 from Boulder to Escalante, then go back to Boulder via Hell's Backbone road. That'll get your blood pumpin'.

    This video is SR 12 from Bryce Canyon to Boulder. It's worth the 15 minutes it takes to watch.

    "Ninety feet between home plate and first base may be the closest man has ever come to perfection." - Red Smith

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by GarthUte View Post
    Utah SR 12 from Torrey to Panguitch is an 122 mile incredible drive. The Hogback between Boulder and Escalante is probably my favorite stretch of road. Ever. The photo is a view of the road from the air:



    It's a great drive, but if you want to have a lot of fun, get a 4WD vehicle so you can take SR 12 from Boulder to Escalante, then go back to Boulder via Hell's Backbone road. That'll get your blood pumping.
    Below is a pic of my brother near the overlook just outside of Escalante.

    Also, if you are in the area, a hike to Lower Calf Creek Falls is a must.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by chrisrenrut; 05-05-2013 at 11:03 AM.
    I saw a door that said exit only. So I entered through it and went up to the guy working there and said "I have good news. You have severely underestimated that door over there. By like a hundred percent." Demetri Marti

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisrenrut View Post
    Below is a pic of my brother near the overlook just outside of Escalante.

    Also, if you are in the area, a hike to Lower Calf Creek Falls is a must.
    Great photo of your brother. And agreed about the lower falls. Easy access and worth the little bit of time it takes to get to them. I'd also suggest seeing the upper falls, It's a shorter hike, but more difficult.

    "Ninety feet between home plate and first base may be the closest man has ever come to perfection." - Red Smith

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •