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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 11:58 PM Thread Starter
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Tour de Colorado 2013

It took me a couple times, but I finally completed the Tour de Colorado trip I've been trying to do since 2011...this time with Montrose in the loop

Last summer I told my mom to come visit CO in August so I could show her places we rarely get to see that aren't snowed in. So she booked a week's vacation out here and off we went. I also picked up another rig along for the trip from CO4x4.

We started out on Engineer Pass in Ouray...


We set up camp near an old mining town...




...and saw some amazing sites on the way down...


Then it was on to Black Bear Pass. A view from the summit...


...and down into Telluride...








After a very quick beer at Smuggler's Brewery (our rigs weren't exactly "street" legal), we headed up Imogene Pass to setup camp at the old Ghost Town. We picked up a Slow Guy on the way



It rained most of the evening, but we were keeping dry with my trusty shelter. The next morning it was on to the summit, down to the trailers, and on to Montrose for the good shit





Unfortunately, it was too cloudy for a view from the top, but it quickly cleared up on the Ouray side...


We found a pretty cool waterfall on the way down.


...and some wildlife...

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 11:59 PM Thread Starter
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We got out of Ouray just in time. From what I was told there was a HUGE storm coming in the day we left and it was just starting to come down pretty hard when we got the trailers loaded up. The weather was NOT looking good for us in Montrose and I was doubtful we would get to wheel anything the first day. We met a friend of mine in Ridgeway, who drove up from AZ and then continued on to Montrose. To our surprise the weather looked pretty good in Montrose. Cory's buggy wasn't running very well in Montrose, but neither was mine due to the elevation. We verified that our rigs were good-to-go at the gas station, and headed to the staging area for the trails.

I have been told that Montrose isn't much for scenery, but I disagree....






After a wrong turn and some re-wiring of Cory's buggy, we finally found the trails. After wheeling for several years in AZ I sure as hell wasn't expecting to see signs telling me where to go for the hardcore trails.


...or much less a HUGE sign telling me exactly what trail this is and how hard it is


Signs are not something I'm used to at all, but I have to say....I kind of like it. I especially like the difficultly rating and recommended equipment. It's refreshing to see that there are designated hardcore areas for us to play in. A ginormous thanks to the Montrose peeps for making that happen.

Die Tryin isn't "the" hardest trail in CO, but it's up there (from what I'm told). I'll tell you this though...it's the funnest trail I've ever done anywhere! It's non-stop action with one obstacle after another. It has an excellent level of challenge and is just a lot of fun to drive.





























We finally got to the exit and once we saw what was in front of us we realized it was far from over. The exit was large & steep! Pics don't do it justice. You really have to see it for yourself. I got up it without any issues, but Cory's rig was not running well all day and whenever he started it, it sounded violent. He got a little crazy toward the end and got turtled on a big boulder and right after I said "whatever you do, don't break!", the motor died for the last time that night. We were able to get him off the boulder he was pinned on with a little hi-lifting and winching...


Then, after some troubleshooting we determined that the starter was the culprit. Cory took it out completely and sure enough, it was toast.



It was getting pretty late by this point, and everything was closed so the only thing to do was leave it on the trail, get a new starter in the morning, and get it out the next day. After a recent experience of pulling dead weight off the exit of Carnage, I knew full well that there was no way in hell we were pulling that thing up the exit of Die Tryin.

The next day Cory replaced the starter and got it off the trail.

Shawn
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-14-2013, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
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For our second day in Montrose, Dave & I hit up Cactus 1. This had some good boulders on it, but really only 2 big obstacles.











The waterfall at the end was pretty big, but it was the sandy ledge on the first step that fawked us. Both of us got on it, but since we couldn't get any traction on the front we had to winch up.











After Cactus, we picked up Cory at the exit of Die Tryin and went to hit an easy trail called Calamity.





This trail was pretty boring, but there was an optional second loop toward the end that was much better.



...and the exit was pretty gnarly...


I tried every line I could think of, but just couldn't get it...





Then Cory tried his luck, but still no love...



Finally, Dave was up and it looked like he going to show us all up right away....



I even caught him stacking rocks!



Alas, he succumbed to the winch as well. However.................







....his winch is a little too slow, and couldn't keep up with his forward movement, so he flopped it. Then he tried to explain exactly how it happend...



We finally made it to the top and the weather was starting to come in fast, so it was a short celebration before we had to high-tail it out of there.


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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-14-2013, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Holy Cross

The final leg of our trip was Holy Cross. Dave wasn't up for the extra drive out there, so he headed back home to AZ. That left Cory & I for Holy Cross. We got there Thursday evening for a Friday run. I was able to snag my favorite campsite, nice & close to the trail head.



...and it has a great view close by...



Since we had all day Friday to run the trail and we were camping so close to the trail head, we were finally able to take our time the next morning so I made us a nice big breakfast, casually got ready, and hit the trail at noon. Unfortunately, Cory's rig blew an oil pressure hose right away, so he had to bail back to camp to fix it. He said that I should continue on while he fixes it, so I did. I got to French Creek pretty quick and there were a couple brand new stock JK's at the Creek that let me pass. I had my mom get out to take pics, but I went through so fast that she was only able to snap a couple pics before it was all over.





I made it up to the city in about 2 hours. Funny how fast that can go when there isn't any traffic at French Creek

I continued on to Cleveland Rock to show my mom the obstacle and kick around the idea of going for it by myself. Since Cory broke early on in the day and there was no one else on the trail, I was by myself by this point and wasn't sure about doing this obstacle solo. Cleveland Rock has been a monkey on my back for several years now. Every time I've been on it I was denied. I was determined to own that bitch on this trip, but wasn't sure about trying it without any other rigs there in case I needed a recovery. After taking a look at it again, I decided that I just couldn't end this trip without at least trying it. I got back in the geap, strapped in and went for it.

http://youtu.be/1_CtTt05y-M

I did it! I finally conquered that Mutha!







I was VERY pleased I never went beyond Cleveland Rock on that trail, even for a hike, because I always felt like I haven't earned it yet. Well today I fawking earned it, so I drove the rest of the trail and hiked up to the lake to check out the view.





...and what a view it was. That lake up there is spectacular; a must-see. I finally got the RC crawler out for a bit & played with that while I was up there too.



The weather was starting to come in, so we stared our way back down. Going down Cleveland Rock is much easier that going up





On the way down I saw Cory coming up the trail. His rig was sounding good and he felt confident in going up solo so he continued on while my mom & I headed back to camp. They made it up to Cleveland Rock, saw the weather getting worse, so turned around and headed back to camp. After the epic we had in Montrose, we were VERY happy to see him get back to camp early that night. We made some dinner, had some victory beers, and had a raging camp fire. A perfect end to an excellent trip.

Mission accomplished!

Shawn
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-14-2013, 11:24 AM
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Sounds and looks like a great time!

Glad you made Cleveland rock!!!



Sorry we never had a chance to meet up. I had issue after issue getting up there. Once we got there... we had a issue with the K9's. My aunts dog died So we had to rush to vail in an attempt to save her, no luck. By the time we got back it was raining and i wasnt in the mood to hit the trail.

We hit it sat and had little to no traffic. We played in the creek for a bit and hit Cleveland rock. I tried the right line and someone must have broke and left oil/water down in a small hole (looks like your right rear is in it at about 36sec in vid), as soon as my tire got covered in oil it was over for us. We nearly flopped off the side We eventualy got up it though Coming down was more fun though. I nearly Indo'd, we came right down the chute. No one had a camera for picts though


Glad you had a blast!

Jerry

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-15-2013, 07:48 AM
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Looks like a good trip. Wish I could have made it.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-15-2013, 12:04 PM
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Awesome! Finally conquered the rock! Nicely done.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-18-2013, 09:24 AM
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You're mom must be your good luck charm.

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-20-2013, 03:17 PM
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Great post, thanks for the pics.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-22-2013, 02:23 PM
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Quote:
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You're mom must be your good luck charm.
His mom is alot of things, most of them will cost ya, but I don't remember good luck charm being on the menu.

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-22-2013, 05:35 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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His mom is alot of things, most of them will cost ya, but I don't remember good luck charm being on the menu.
You're confusing my mom with Nate's mom

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-23-2013, 08:23 PM
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Cool story bro!

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-27-2013, 12:07 PM
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Your heep has come a long ways since the days of the stinger hard-on...





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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-27-2013, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Cool story bro!


That's funny that you noticed that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stealth 4x4 View Post
Your heep has come a long ways since the days of the stinger hard-on...


No shit huh? Wow, that pic is old. That was many builds, tires, wheels, & shiny paint ago

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-26-2014, 06:06 PM
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What a kick add trip!!

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