Archive for the ‘Updates Made to Website’ Category

Milestones And Good Intentions

Monday, November 28th, 2016
Blog dashboard

I missed the point where I published my 1,000th post on this blog.

It’s frustrating when you see something coming, you anticipate it, wait for it, and then get distracted and let it go by unnoticed.

That happened to me last week. I had known for a couple months I was drawing near the point of having put up 1,000 posts on this blog, and I intended some sort of recognition of that fact in that 1,000th post. Look at that section of my blog dashboard above. It shows there are now 1,005 posts on this blog (1,006 when this one goes up) and 1,002 of them are mine. Just slipped right by. Whatever. I’m marking the occasion now.

Of course you might well ask who put up the other three. I had to check myself. That would be Matt Wessels. I knew Matt had put up two but I had forgotten he put up three. Matt was someone who I knew and thought could make a contribution here and he was very interested. So I set him up.

Obviously his interest flagged pretty quickly. Too bad. I was looking for some good stuff from him. That’s where the “Good Intentions” in the header above comes from.

Matt had written about the Motorcycle Safety Foundation and kind of annoyed them. They expressed an interest in what they felt would be setting the record straight and I encouraged Matt and them to talk. Nothing ever came of that.

Not that I haven’t been guilty of the same thing numerous times over the course of 1,000 posts. Most recently I had written some things that annoyed the ethanol industry and the sent me a bunch of information and asked me to present their side. I told them I would but the issue faded away and I’ve never had the time where it was a higher priority than anything else. Similarly, there have been a number of times when I’ve written about something in progress and promised to follow up, only to fail to ever do so.

My apologies. If this blog was my full-time job and the way I earn my living I could have devoted the resources to making these things happen. But I’m just a guy doing this on the side.

So anyway, I guess I’ve demonstrated that I’m serious about this, and I think I’ve put up a bunch of good stuff. And I certainly hope you agree. Now let’s see what I come with in the second 1,000.

Biker Quote for Today

I’m not easily distracted. I just . . . OMG, do I hear a bike? sets new traffic record

Monday, June 4th, 2012

Permit me to boast a little bit here, there were some really good numbers on this website last month. For the first time ever, had more than 15,000 unique visits in one month in May 2012.

Concours On Wolf Creek Pass

One reason why so many people are interested in riding motorcycles in Colorado: Wolf Creek Pass.

What is especially exciting about this (to me, at least) is that this is only the beginning of the season and customarily the numbers continue to rise each month through August, so that record is likely to be beaten, and soon. In fact, just a few days into June, if the entire month goes like these days have it would come out to 18,000 unique visits in June. I’m not going to count on that, but if it’s anything close that suggests it could hit 20,000 by August. Yow! That’s just incredible.

Before this the best month ever on the site was 14,860 visits in August 2011. The exact number in May this year was 15,247. That compares with 11,740 in May of 2011. It’s that kind of growth year after year that continues to blow me away.

So once again, as I have other times when I’ve announced big numbers, I want to thank you–all of you folks who have come to the website and found it useful–for making this possible. I built this site for you and nothing can be more gratifying than to see that you find my efforts valuable.

Note: On a totally different subject, in case you saw my recent post about the EagleRider photo contest in which I have a finalist entry: You may have clicked on that link to go and vote for my picture and had problems. It seems a lot of people are having problems. I learned first off that Facebook, where the contest is in operation, had a server failure and was offline for awhile. But even since they got their operation back up there continue to be problems getting in to vote. I wish I could explain it but I can’t. All I ask is that you try again and perhaps bookmark the URL so you can vote each day through June 29. Here’s that link again:

Recent from National Motorcycle Examiner
Call made to push Congress on motorcycle-only stops

Biker Quote for Today

A day without a wheelie is like a day without sunshine.

Celebrating an Anniversary and Growing Presence

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

The Passes and Canyons BlogIt almost slipped by me that this blog just reached its fifth anniversary. It was April 8, 2006 when I first posted Passes and Canyons Enters the Blogosphere. That’s pretty amazing, at least it is to me.

I’ll come back to that in a moment but I also want to pass this bit of news along. I was contacted recently by Lenore Bates of the Colorado Dept. of Transportation asking if I would include a link from my Great Roads page to their site where they have some good information on Colorado’s scenic and historic byways. I said sure, you bet, and gosh, it would sure be nice if you could link to my site from yours as well.

Well, sure enough, she did and now the CDOT website is directing people to Passes and Canyons as a resource for people looking for information on scenic roads in the state. That’s pretty much guaranteed to boost traffic on the site a bit. Thank you CDOT.

So back to the blog. It’s not like I started out with a lot of energy. I was still building the Passes and Canyons website and figured I ought to include a blog but I really didn’t feel I had much to say. In fact, for the rest of 2006 I only managed to post to the blog once, twice, or three times a month, and didn’t post anything at all in November. I had had the same experience as a newspaper editor. I occasionally ran personal columns but only when I was really driven to say something, which wasn’t often.

Finally I got serious about it and told myself I had to post three times a week. I had to! And an amazing thing happened. I opened my eyes and looked at everything from the perspective of whether it could be a blog post and suddenly I was flooded with ideas. Then I started writing for other publications as well, until I concluded I had to cut back on the blog to twice a week because I was just too busy elsewhere. That’s where we stand today and I have no intention of cutting back any further, no matter how busy I get doing other things.

So thanks for helping make this website and blog the successes that they are. I look forward to continuing with them for many years to come.

Recent from National Motorcycle Examiner
Polaris making bold statements with motorcycle, EV purchases

Biker Quote for Today

The older I get–the bigger my rear sprocket gets

Cottonwood Pass and Taylor Canyon Now Up On Website

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Eight months ago I went up Taylor Canyon and over Cottonwood Pass shooting pictures and gathering information to put these places up on the Passes and Canyons, Motorcycle Touring in Colorado website. Taylor Canyon is a beautiful canyon, with lots of good motorcycle-accessible camping spots. Cottonwood Pass is only paved on the east side but the gravel road is passable on the west. Both deserved to be on the site.

I’ve been busy. But I finally got it done. Here are some photos from these places.

Taylor Canyon

Cottonwood Pass

The top of Cottonwood Pass

Recent from National Motorcycle Examiner
SuperSkin helmet touted as lifesaver

Biker Quote for Today

To me, the best kind of trips are the ones you planned on the way, allowed yourself to change, and maybe didn’t end up where you expected.

Big Changes on

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

You’ve probably already noticed. At least if you’ve ever been to this blog before.

Hoosier PassAfter four years with the same basic design, we’re making a big change here. The blog has already changed, as you can see, but the Passes and Canyons, Motorcycle Touring in Colorado website will not get its make-over for another day or two.

This has been a lot of work for my brother and for me. He is a professional web designer and I guess he decided it was time for me to have a more professional-looking site. I built and have maintained this thing all by myself all this time. I don’t have the skills to do what he does. I’m a writer; he’s the designer.

Here’s an interesting example of what he’s done. You see this picture in the body of this post? And you see the image across the top of the screen. They are the same picture. It’s the second shot on the Hoosier Pass page.

What I saw as just a shot of the road at the top of Hoosier Pass he saw as a defining photo to make the theme of the whole site. Just crop a lot from the bottom and a lot from the top and you have a guy on a motorcycle with the mountains behind him . . .

When he asked me if I had a high resolution copy of that image I couldn’t understand what he wanted it for. I was impressed when I saw.

So anyway, I hope you think the change is good. There have been a few mishaps along the way and it has been a lot of work for both of us. I doubt you’ll see another major change for at least another four years.

Recent from National Motorcycle Examiner
Motomarathoners cruising some of the best Colorado has to offer

Biker Quote for Today

When you feel like playing hooky, play it. When the sun is shining, go for a ride. If you need a motorcycle, just buy it. Sooner is better than later.

Nearly 10,000 Bikers Stopped By Here Last Month

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

Oh man, I’m blown away. I track unique visitors to this website each month and last month, May 2009, the traffic nearly hit 10,000. There were 9,754 unique visitors last month, to be exact.

Just to give you an idea of how big that is, the best month the site has ever had before was July 2008, where traffic hit 6,051 unique visitors. I was thrilled in May 2008 when it topped 4,000 for the first time, 4,024, and then it only went up to 4,504 in June 2008.

After four years I know the pattern here. Traffic climbs from December through July and then tapers off. What that means is that this 9,754 record is destined to fall, and soon. And the numbers show it. Already this month, only 3 days and 21 hours in, the total of unique visitors is 1,579. That works out to about 12,000.

This all just blows me away. I built this website out of passion and my own interest, and hoped that at least a few other people would like it and my work would be appreciated. Hitting these numbers leaves me in awe. Thank each and every one of you for your interest. This is so rewarding.

Recent from the National Motorcycle Examiner
A terrific motorcycle sidetrip in southwestern Utah

Biker Quote for Today

HEY! Let’s go ride our BIKES!!!!

Crested Butte Has Been Ruined

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

It had been a long time since I’d been to Crested Butte, but I had really good memories of it years ago. So when I built this website I included a page for the road up from Gunnison, but had no pictures to show what it was like.

Crested ButteWell, this summer I finally got up that way again and I was a bit chagrined. First of all, despite my “memory” the road is no big deal. It’s certainly not worth going out of your way to ride this road when there are so many truly terrific roads in Colorado to ride.

Second, oh my god, what have they done to Crested Butte?! This beautiful, picturesque little town has been engulfed with condos, malls, and everything else from which it was once a refuge. So I can’t even suggest you go to Crested Butte for the town. The old part of town is still there but it is totally touristed out. The mountains are still beautiful, but that’s about it. It’s not worth the trip. Don’t go.

Really, about the only reason to go to Crested Butte now, as far as I can see, is to ride Gunnison County Road 12 over Kebler Pass. This gravel road is in good condition, even good enough for Gold Wings, and comes out onto CO 133 along the south side of McClure Pass.

I’m sorry, all you Chamber of Commerce types in Crested Butte, I just call things the way I see them.

Biker Quote for Today

Life is too short for bad rides.

Big Changes on Web Site

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

It has taken me quite awhile, and I’m not finished yet, but there is a lot of new material on the Passes and Canyons, Motorcycle Touring in Colorado web site. Although I’ve been all over this state numerous times, there are some areas I haven’t gotten back to since I started building this site — until this summer.

Let me give you a quick run-through of what is new.

I’ve added photos to the Red Mountain Pass page. This is one of the premier passes in Colorado and the photos show it — finally!

I’ve also added photos of Colorado 65 over the Grand Mesa. The mesa itself is beautiful but the ascent and descent have breathtaking vistas.

One couple of passes I had overlooked are Cumbres and La Manga Passes. It had been long enough ago that I had been there that when I started on the web site I forgot how nice they are. So I’ve added them. (And they are a pair, it’s one stretch of road.)

Wolf Creek Pass is another that I had on the site but did not have adequate coverage of. Now it’s there. McClure Pass is another.

In addition to these passes, I have added a lot of motorcycle-accessible campgrounds along these same routes. I know that this is not of much interest to a lot of people but for those of you who do camp, anything I’ve listed can be reached on two wheels without too much hassle.

And finally, I put up some photos from Rim Rock Drive through the Colorado National Monument, as well as some more photos from Skyline Drive in Canon City.

And I’m still not done. Within the next couple weeks I should have the rest of it complete. Keep checking back. Thanks.

Biker Quote for Today

The road goes ever on and on, down from the door where it began. Now far ahead the road has gone and I must follow, if I can.

Blowing the Roof Off Passes and Canyons Web Stats

Friday, August 1st, 2008

I have to tell you, I’m amazed. You may recall that I announced in early April that this Passes and Canyons, Motorcycle Touring in Colorado website had had more than 3,000 unique visitors in the month of March, the first time it ever hit that level. It took 2 years and 5 months to go from zero to 3,000, so I was pretty excited.

Then I was really excited to be able to announce in June that the total of unique visitors for May had passed 4,000. That’s 29 months to go from zero to 3,000, but only 2 months to go from 3,000 to 4,000.

So you might be thinking now that I’m going to tell you the number went from 4,000 to 5,000 in July, but you would be wrong. It went over 6,000! I am just blown away! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your interest. I do this website as a labor of love and it matters immensely that someone out there appreciates my efforts.

Now, knowing the month to month trends, I have every expectation that the numbers will drop off in the immediate future. That’s the way it has worked every year up to now, so I see no reason to expect anything different. But that’s fine. I have a lot of new material that I’m in the process of adding, so when next year’s surge comes you and all the other visitors will have a lot more hopefully useful information available.

Thank you.

Biker Quote for Today

I only feel like riding my motorcycle on days that end with the letter “Y.”

OFMC Route Was Big Boon for Passes and Canyons Site

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

Man, have I got a lot of work ahead of me. If you have gone through the Passes and Canyons, Motorcycle Touring in Colorado website thoroughly you know that even three years in it is still weak in information on some roads. The simple fact is that although I’ve been all over this state numerous times, there were some places I had not been back to since I started the website. Therefore, although I could show a map and talk a little about the route, I did not have the photos and other information I routinely collect and post.

Well, that’s about to change. The OFMC trip last week could not have been better tailored to meet my needs if I had planned the route myself with that in mind–which I did not do. I had made a list some time ago of 27 places I needed to get to. On this trip I hit 15 of those spots. It’s going to take time to work through it all but in the next few weeks you can expect to see improvements on a lot of pages, including:

And more. Here’s a map showing our route. What a great ride we had.

OFMC 2008 route

Biker Quote for Today

The ride IS the destination.