Sunday, November 02, 2008
Buckhorn Road - this time on dual-sports
Written by Anna
Above average temperatures continue. Today another beautiful day in the low 70’s. In the early afternoon Mike and I took off on our dual-sports toward Buckhorn Road. There was a forest road right off Buckhorn Road that is popular with dirt bikes. When I was driving that road last month I remember seeing lots of pickup trucks and trailers parked on the side of the road and a few people loading their dirt bikes.
We arrived at FR 513. I took one look at it and said “no way”. The road was very steep and very rocky. I wasn’t ready for this technical riding, I just started riding dirt again.
Ready to explore some roads
I really wanted to ride to the top of Buckhorn Road, I wanted to see what was beyond the point where I turned around last time. So I continued on Buckhorn Road and Mike turned off on FR 513.
I was enjoying this road and the curves, taking pictures, taking my time and all the sudden I saw a bike in my rear view mirror. It was Mike, he passed me and continued up Buckhorn Road.
I continued for many miles and finally reached the point where I turned around last month. There was a post with a sign that said I was now entering a national forest. I rode a further, then I saw a good spot on the left to pull over and decided it was time to eat my sandwich. This was a really late lunch. I also had to put a couple of layers on. It was chilly up here, the sun was already behind the trees and I was at a higher elevation. I didn’t bring the GPS, so I didn’t know the exact elevation of this road but Pennock Pass at 9143 feet was only a few miles from here.
I continued further up the road, passed Monument Gulch Road and continued a bit further until I came to the sign that said the road up ahead would be very steep and twisty. This would be my turn around point today. As much as I wanted to continue, it was getting late and if I didn’t turn around now, I’d be riding home in the dark with all those deer around Horsetooth Reservoir. I saw a deer on the side of the road coming up here today, in the middle of the day.
I made it all the way down to Stove Prairie and headed toward Fort Collins, stopping twice for pictures. At the second stop I heard a thumper in the distance, it was Mike. He turned back around and pulled over. I hadn’t seen him since he passed me on Buckhorn Road hours ago and I was still wondering how he ended up passing me.
Views from Stove Prairie
Mike on Stove Prairie
Some fall colors along Stove Prairie
Mike only rode a small portion of FR 513. The road was very steep, it . It climbs 1500+ feet in 2 miles. There are also lots of washouts, roots and rocks. Mike said it's a road that would be more enjoyable on a smaller, lighter bike, not the XR650L. Mike ended up riding Crystal Mountain Road. I’ll have to check it out, along with Monument Gulch Road, the rest of Buckhorn Road and Pennock Pass and Pingree Park Road. Lots of good roads this way.
Today's route was 74 miles round trip
So many more roads to ride