Thursday, September 07, 2006

Hatch to Monticello, Utah

We had a lot of ground to cover today so we were to leave and on the bikes at 7AM. We headed toward the amazing route 12. The scenery on 12 was breathtaking and it was hard not to pull over for pictures every few miles. The road itself was great too, the curves twisting and turning though beautiful rock formations and changing colors and shapes.

This has to be one of my favorite roads in the USA. Some people go to Deal’s Gap for twisties, I rather come here and ride 12, 24 and 95. It’s THAT good. This is open range country, so there were cows hanging out in the road, but not where you’d expect them to hang out. Not in the flat areas, where there was grass near the roadway. They were up in the hills and near the canyons. We would go through a corner and there would be a cow standing in the road or a cow just about to cross the road.

On 12 near Bryce Canyon

That is a huge sign

The temperatures were cool this morning, the skies were overcast and there was a light drizzle at times also, but it didn’t spoil our fun at all, even when at times drizzle would turn to light rain, the road was still so much fun that it didn’t matter to us if it was wet or dry. The small towns we passed on the way were really neat, too bad we didn’t have time to stop and look around.

Then in Torrey we headed east on 24, which is another one of my favorite roads, through Capitol Reef the rock formations are just amazing and the curves here are my favorite type of sweepers. You can really get in to a rhythm as you turn left and right and left and right and left and right. We stopped for a mi-day snack at one of the scenic pull outs. The sun had come out and the temperature was in the high 80’s now. There really weren’t a lot of people here, we’d only see a car go by once in a great while.

Rt 24 though Capitol Reef

Our lunch stop on 24

In Hanksville Sandy took off to buy some fossils and I hang out at one of the gas stations where I talked to a few HD riders and the lady that ran the gas station. The wind was picking up again and the HD riders had come from the south and told me I’d be riding in to more rain on 95. As we departed, it seemed we were riding in a full blow sand storm, the winds were pretty strong and we were being blown all over the road.We were enjoying the awesome sweepers through the canyons and then the rain started up again just as we approached the Glen Canyon overlook. At the scenic overlook we found two Triumphs with Texas plates. We chatted with the riders a bit, one of them frequents ST.N. After a few minutes they headed north and we took off towards the south.

Glen Canyon

View from the Glen Canyon overlook on 95

The rain was light, sometimes a drizzle and sometimes none at all. Since I’ve been on 24 and 95 before, I rode it a bit harder then before, even when it was raining. That road is just like a roller coaster and is great when going fast. Since there are no towns or gas stations for 122 miles between Hanksville and Blanding, I bet the only way they could catch speeders is using air planes and with the clouds and rain they would have to fly pretty low. This road was just as amazing as I remembered, actually it was even better traveling south then it is traveling north, because you can see the nice scenery all around as the road dips down in elevation.

Once past Blanding the rain started up again and we decided to again grab a motel room for the night. We checked in to the Best Western in Monticello and by the time we got on our bikes to move them in front of our motel room, it was pouring rain. I’m so glad I brought that small folding umbrella, I unpacked my hard bags without getting the contents too wet, I’m just to lazy the bags all the way off. We also used the umbrella to walk next door to the Spur restaurant for dinner. The Spur was a real western type place and we were served by real cowboys and cowgirls. It’s a family owned place, the daughter which was our waitress had on her boots, wranglers and big silver buckle and a toothpick in her mouth. His was not a fancy place and there were only 5 things on the menu plus a few specials. This was also a dry town, so no beer for us - again. The food was just OK. Sandy went to soak in the hot tub outside in the cold rain and I stayed inside the dry motel room to figure out the route for tomorrow. It kept raining hard all evening and all night.

Spur restaurant menu 1 meat 2 meat 3 meat 4 meat 5 chicken

Spur restaurant check

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