Archive for July, 2007

Three Day Trips From Estes Park

Sunday, July 29th, 2007

I ran across this question on the Delphi motorcycle forum:

Ok, who is a good ride planner? We plan on being at the KOA in Estes Park in a couple of weeks. We have 3 day that we will be riding day trips out of there. Any recommendations? Not looking for a ton of miles, maybe 200-300 per day or less.



I posted this reply:


From Estes Park you will definitely want to take the ride up over Trail Ridge Road. For a 200-mile ride you could go over Trail Ridge, then from Granby to Walden, then take Coloado 14 over Cameron Pass and down through Poudre Canyon to Fort Collins, and then south to Loveland and back up Big Thompson Canyon to Estes Park.

Beyond that you’re a bit limited. Unless you go over Trail Ridge again to go in other directions from Granby you’re faced with going back down to the plains or coming back at night over the same roads you left on.

You can go south out of Estes Park along the Peak to Peak Highway, to where you meet US 6, to Idaho Springs, up Squaw Pass, and to the top of Mount Evans. Then backtrack, more or less, or return over Trail Ridge.

Then for your third day you might consider going over Trail Ridge again, from Granby head to Kremmling and Steamboat Springs, over Rabbit Ears Pass. Then south on Colorado 131 either to Toponas and back over Gore Pass to Kremmling and backtrack. Or, continue south from Toponas to Wolcott and pick up I-70 and take it back over Vail Pass and get off at Silverthorne and take Loveland Pass to regain the interstate on the east side of the tunnel. Then back just east of Idaho Springs to get back on the Peak to Peak. But that runs close to 300 miles and a very long day. It’s tough from Estes Park because you’re really limited on where you can go from there.

Anyway, I hope that helps. You can find out a lot more about these roads on my website, Have fun.

I’m always happy to help. Anyone else looking for motorcycling information in Colorado, just write. I need to make note here, however, that because of the spam bastards I had to turn comments off on this blog. So to write, send your email to ken at motorcyclecolorado dot com.

Let’s See What Sen. Ken Gordon Says He Plans Re. Helmet Laws

Saturday, July 28th, 2007

I sent an email to Ken Gordon, my state senator, today. I want to know if he really is planning to introduce a helmet law bill to require adults to wear them. He succeeded this past session in passing a law requiring minors to do so. Here’s the text of my message to him:

Hello. I am one of your constituents and I ride motorcycles. I have a question for you.

In an article on July 5 in the Rocky Mountain News about the new helmet law for minors, they quoted Terry Howard of ABATE saying “It’s been rumored that they are going to try and introduce a helmet bill for adults next session. . . . (We fully expect our opponents) to introduce an adult helmet law.”

My question: Is this true? Are you planning to introduce a more comprehensive law? I would very much appreciate a direct answer. I don’t want to assume that Terry Howard is right, I would rather hear directly from you about it.

I’ll tell you right now that I would oppose any such law. I wear my helmet at times when I feel it is wise and at other times I do not. I prefer to be the judge of this.

To your argument that bikers hurt while not wearing helmets add to health costs for all I would simply respond, people who eat poorly and eat junk and become overweight incur health costs that drive up the costs for the rest of us. Do you plan to outlaw eating junk food? I mean, seriously: what is the difference? There are a lot more people eating that second donut and getting fat than there are bikers getting hurt not wearing helmets. The health costs are much higher.

I will really, truly appreciate hearing from you on this issue. Thanks.

So now let’s see how he responds. I’ll be sure to post it here. Stay tuned.

Colorado Now Has A Helmet Law

Tuesday, July 17th, 2007

Contrary to what I said here before, it appears that the Colorado Legislature did indeed pass a helmet law this past session. If you are under 18 you are required to wear a helmet, either as a rider or passenger.

I have a bit of a beef with the Rocky Mountain News on this, because I read the newspaper every single day and they had stories about this as it was under consideration, but I never saw anything about it passing. So after awhile I assumed that like so many bills that get introduced, this one had just died a quiet death. Wrong.

Now, I’m not going to get all upset about this particular law. As ABATE’s Terry Howard said, because it was about kids, it was hard to oppose. The problem, as Howard also says, is what comes next. According to the story in the Rocky, Howard and ABATE fully expect Sen. Ken Gordon, this bill’s sponsor, to come back with a helmet bill for adults.

I’m sorry to say that Ken Gordon is my senator. I didn’t vote for him–and I did vote, for the Libertarian candidate–but Gordon is my senator. I’ve never had any real negative feelings toward Gordon but that could change if he tries this. I developed a strong animosity toward then-Rep. Bill Owens, back when the now-former Colorado governor was a state rep and introduced helmet bills in every session. But Owens finally gave up. What’s it going to take for Gordon to give up?

Of course, this may be a matter of jumping the gun. He may have no such intentions. Still, I intend to contact Ken Gordon and ask him flat out if that is his intent. And I will make it clear that if he tries it he will have a fight on his hands. It won’t be so easy next time.

Gordon says it’s all about the health of the people and lowering medical costs for us all. Stop right there Ken! Would it not be a safe statement that overweight people incur much higher health care costs–running costs up for us all–than non-overweight people? Overweight people such as, say, Sen. Ken Gordon? Let’s pass a law against eating junk food, or gaining too much weight, or some other measure to stop people from endangering themselves in this manner. It’s only fair!

Ride To Work Day Is This Week

Saturday, July 14th, 2007

This coming Wednesday, July 18, is Ride Your Motorcycle To Work Day. Do it!

The idea here is to get as many people on the road on their bikes on the same day to show people how many of us there are and to thereby make people more aware that they need to be aware we are there. We’ve all had the “he didn’t even see me” experience. If people are more aware that we might be there then hopefully they’ll be more careful to check to see if we are there. Wishful thinking? Probably, but what the hey, it can’t hurt and riding to work is more fun than driving anyway. I try to do it once a week. Aside from anything else, it also saves money on gas.

Oh, and here’s the disclaimer. Here I am pushing Ride to Work Day and I won’t be riding to work on Wednesday. Why? Because I’m fortunate in my current job to be able to work at home two days a week and one of my two days is always Wednesday–that’s July 18.

Here’s the URL in case you want to learn more:


On a different note, I always welcome comments and responses to these posts but the spam bastards have made it so I had to turn off that function. I can’t spend an hour every day deleting hundreds of spam postings, which is what it had turned into. So if you want to contact me, send me an email to ken at motorcycle dot com and I’ll put your comment up, or respond to you, as appropriate. Thanks. Sorry for the hassle.

OFMC Having Identify Crisis, Mulls Name Change

Saturday, July 7th, 2007

What do you do when the name of your motorcycle club no longer really fits, but you’ve got the coolest logo around and you are not about to jettison that? I mean, check this out:

The OFMC logo

Old Farts Motorcycle Club was always tongue in cheek, and in the beginning we were nowhere near old. Heck, I was still in my 30s. The original three of us are all quite a bit older now, and we’ve been joined by several other guys our age, but we’ve also been joined by sons and their friends. They’ve only borne the OFMC title grudgingly.

On this year’s trip the discussion began in earnest. We had some good proposals. For the sons it was proposed that OFMC could mean “Our Fathers’ Motorcycle Club.” For the friends it could be “Our Friends’ Motorcycle Club.” And finally, to cover everyone, it could be “Our Fuckin’ Motorcycle Club.”

So there was no decision one way or the other. More than anything, I guess the idea is going to be that the name is “OFMC,” and you can let those initials represent whatever you want. Everyone is happy and we still have our killer logo. Is this a great country or what?!

OFMC Rides the Inferno

Thursday, July 5th, 2007

The Old Farts Motorcycle Club headed southwest this year, to the land of blazing heat. Descending into Laughlin, NV, we could feel the heat rising until it felt, in the most literal sense possible, like a sauna. Probably about 110 degrees.

We rode about 1,600 miles this time, and learned a number of interesting, useful things. For one, you can’t get a cold brew anywhere on the Navajo reservation. We pulled into Tuba City, AZ, hot and dusty and ready for a swimming pool and/or a cold beer and found that neither was available. No pool was actually surprising considering we were at the Quality Inn. The redeeming factor was that the people working at the Quality Inn were absolutely the nicest, more friendly, most helpful folks you’ll ever meet. Plus, it was a gorgeous evening to sit out on the lawn and enjoy the perfect, cool night.

There were nine of us this year and that’s really too many. That many guys can’t just roll into town and expect to find room at the inn. And having reservations for the whole trip removes the spontaneity that has so often led to the best part of our trips.

So what do you do? You can’t tell three or four guys they’re disinvited next year. No, the only approach I can see that makes sense is to take more trips and you just assume that some guys will be on one trip but not another. With any luck, this will be a situation where too much of a good thing is resolved by having even more of a good thing.