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It wasn't me
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just was reading the sticky thread about the best states for good roads. I see a lot of good suggestions, but they're really vague. You say west Texas or Colorado, etc., but can you be more specific?

I'll be doing a pretty good-size road trip this June. Going from East Oklahoma through NW Texas, NM, AZ, and up north through CA via the PCH to a town east of Santa Rosa. After a week there, I'll return to east OK. I had planned on returning the way I came, but now I'm strongly considering going back through Nevada, Utah, and Colorado.

I had posted a similar thread in General, but the activity is too high to keep it going for the subject's intended audience.


National Parks are automatic targets, both for free camping and beautiful scenery. Curvy roads tend to be there as well. The Grand Canyon for sure is one stop, and HW 1 in California is one of the reasons to make the trip by motorcycle, so that of course will be ridden as well.
 

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If you end up returning through Utah/Colorado you should definately consider heading south from Grand Junction, Colorado and following that to Druango. Basically between Ouray and Durago is The Million Dollar Highway. It winds through the mountains and is very scenic. It's one of the best rides in the western part of Colorado. A group of us went through there a couple years back. You can do a Google search for the million dollar highway and find out more info.
 

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It wasn't me
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
If you end up returning through Utah/Colorado you should definately consider heading south from Grand Junction, Colorado and following that to Druango. Basically between Ouray and Durago is The Million Dollar Highway. It winds through the mountains and is very scenic. It's one of the best rides in the western part of Colorado. A group of us went through there a couple years back. You can do a Google search for the million dollar highway and find out more info.

I just looked that up and researched it a bit. Now that is what I'm talking about! :dblthumb

Think I may go back west and camp at Mesa Verde NP that night. Looks like it's only about 30 miles from Durango, and there are some amazing cliff dwelling ruins there (I love history).
 

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yep Mese Verde is cool. I'm not sure how much free camping you'll find in national parks. I think you meant national forests. In the NF pick a spot and camp, just mind your fire and make sure it's out when you leave. I can tell you about a trip I took from Colorado out to Monterey California for the MotoGP races at Laguna. I took hwy 50 out to Reno and then dropped over the Sierras on hwy 4. Then hung out at the races and rode hwy 1 along the coast for a few days. The trip back was the best route. From Monterey I made my way east through Yosemite and Tioga Pass and stopped near the Nevada/Ca border in Lee Vining for the night. The next morning I had to cross Nevada-in July, so I left Lee Vining early and made my way across the desert averaging probably close to 80mph, which means I had long sprints of 100+ mph. I made it across Nevada in 6 hours and stopped in Cedar City Utah for the night. The next day was a trip across southern Utah from Bryce through Escalante and Blanding. This was a great route along hwy 12,24,95. I stopped in Montecello Utah for the night. The Colorado border was just a quick 2 hour sprint the next morning and I went through Mesa Verde for a couple hours before heading over Wolf Creek Pass on hwy 160 to South Fork Colorado. Then I headed north on hwy 149 through Creede To Lake City and camped near Lake San Cristobal. Home was just 4 hours away from there so I did some fishing and cruised home later in the afternoon.

It was an epic trip and a great route-highly recommended.

Near Durango and Mesa Verde



Million Dollar Highway hwy 550
 

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It wasn't me
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Discussion Starter #7
yep Mese Verde is cool. I'm not sure how much free camping you'll find in national parks. I think you meant national forests. In the NF pick a spot and camp, just mind your fire and make sure it's out when you leave. I can tell you about a trip I took from Colorado out to Monterey California for the MotoGP races at Laguna. I took hwy 50 out to Reno and then dropped over the Sierras on hwy 4. Then hung out at the races and rode hwy 1 along the coast for a few days. The trip back was the best route. From Monterey I made my way east through Yosemite and Tioga Pass and stopped near the Nevada/Ca border in Lee Vining for the night. The next morning I had to cross Nevada-in July, so I left Lee Vining early and made my way across the desert averaging probably close to 80mph, which means I had long sprints of 100+ mph. I made it across Nevada in 6 hours and stopped in Cedar City Utah for the night. The next day was a trip across southern Utah from Bryce through Escalante and Blanding. This was a great route along hwy 12,24,95. I stopped in Montecello Utah for the night. The Colorado border was just a quick 2 hour sprint the next morning and I went through Mesa Verde for a couple hours before heading over Wolf Creek Pass on hwy 160 to South Fork Colorado. Then I headed north on hwy 149 through Creede To Lake City and camped near Lake San Cristobal. Home was just 4 hours away from there so I did some fishing and cruised home later in the afternoon.

It was an epic trip and a great route-highly recommended.

Near Durango and Mesa Verde



Million Dollar Highway hwy 550

Yeah, you're right. I had always thought the free camping thing applied to NP's as well as NF's, but I just recently found out that wasn't the case.

Could you PM me your travel route (if you still know it)? I wouldn't be following it closely, but there may be sections that I could easily incorporate into the trip. That picture further confirms that HW 550 will absolutely be in the trip. Beautiful country does something for me that I can't quite describe. It isn't just "ooh, pretty scenery."
 

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If I get time I can map it for ya, but the general route is above. On the way out I just wanted to get into Reno, rest up and plan a route over the Sierras. On the way back I just headed from Monterey to Yosemite and tried to avoid major metro areas. I always picked my route by how remote and squiggly the lines on the map are. Then I would just plan a next destination and break it into nice chunks and hit the road.


Once I left Lee Vining and headed across Nevada I took hwy 6 into Tonopah and then the "extraterrestrial highway" 375 to 93 into Caliente. There is absolutly nothing out there. In fact at one point I stopped my bike in the middle of the road and turned it off. There was NO sound. No birds, no animals, no engines, no sound what so ever. It was freaky.
 

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Quiet Old Guy
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You guys have already listed one of my favorites. Actually, anywhere around the Continental divide in CO or WY are absolutely wonderful roads. NM is not bad either.

Along the southern WY border.


Eastern Utah, north of the 4 corners area.


Along the northern CO border north of Rocky Mountain Natl park.
 

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18 Hours to Daytona
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I'm a big advocate of West Texas. Here's the 'River Road' RM 170 that runs between Lajitas and Presidio.

Note the dramatic scenery and the tight, disappearing curves. The first picture has a 20 mph caution sign with two right angle turns on it. The second pic announces "HILL." As if the scenery behind it didn't give that one away!

Big Bend has some awesome dual sport roads as well. It's a different kind of desert riding.
 

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