Experiences and Stories

Motorcycle Touring Enthusiasts sharing their experiences and stories:

Before, During, or After 2020, We all have riding stories we like to share and I want to hear Yours!

Danny D. – Colorado, USA – 2020 Touring Season

I rode a little more that 11,500 miles on my Harley’s last year. 99% was done on my touring bike Annie. During a time when social distancing became the norm, I went all over the place, but day trips only.

I rode through 8 different states (some of them, multiple times), did a 1,000 mile butt burner, and did another ride of over 800 miles. I saw Mt Rushmore for the very first time, and made my way to Sturgis (but not during the rally). Bishops Castle, and Skyline Drive are absolutely MUST SEE places in Colorado that I finally got to visit. The last picture was on Cameron Peak, leading down into Wyoming. That picture was taken just about a week before the largest wildfire in Colorado’s history started in that forest.
I got to do several bucket list rides in 2020, including hitting all 10 Harley dealers
along the front range in a single ride.
Overall, even though 2020 wreaked havoc on the group riding, I still had a great riding season.
Photo’s by: Danny D.
Cameron Pass, CO
Skyline Drive, Cañon City, CO
Bishops Castle in Rye, CO







Note from Short Shot:

You can map and find any of these beautiful and fascinating places by checking out my Resources, Tools, and Shopping page.

Day Trip Rides

Motorcycle Day Trips

These rides are a great getaway that can be done in a day, usually 4-8 hours with lunch and bio breaks, and site seeing that are a little further from Denver. These are great tours through canyons and mountain passes that will take you through beautiful valleys and mountain peaks. Take a day to unwind and enjoy the vast beauty of Colorado.

Cottonwood Pass Via Silverthorn and return Via Fairplay, CO

Another Spring time (or anytime) day trip ride is to head up I-70 W, over the Continental Divide through the famous Eisenhower Tunnel and down into Silverthorn, CO.  Continue from Silverthorn on I-70 W to CO-91 S, Fremont Pass (elevation 11,318 ft), which is also called “Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway”. CO-91 S will go down to US-24 W and into Buena Vista, CO. In Buena Vista, pick up Co Rd 209 up to the summit of Cottonwood Pass at 12,126 ft. Continue on Co Rd 209 and turn into Co Rd 742. I did this part of ride earlier this year as a three day tour to Gunnison, it was a great ride then and when the trees are in Fall colors, it is simply amazing! Stay on Co Rd 742 and it turns into CO-135 S which will run into Gunnison, CO. In Gunnison you pick up US-50 E and it goes over Monarch Pass (11,312 ft) into Poncha Springs. In Poncha Springs you pick up US-285 N, go over beautiful Kenosah Pass (10,000 ft)and back down to the Denver Metro, Lakewood area.

Cottonwood Pass Day Trip – Fall 2020
Buena Vista to Cottonwood Pass – Fall 2020

Be sure to check out the Cottonwood Pass to Gunnison videos on the Day Trip Video’s Page!

Cripple Creek, Victor Colorado, Woodland Park and Deckers

Spring and fall are my favorite times to ride here in Colorado! The temperatures are comfortable, plenty of sunshine, and this year, not much precipitation to worry about. This ride took us from the Denver Metro area to the beautiful fall mountains, through quiet little towns, and the weather was perfect, in the mid to upper 70’s.

You can click on the link below the displayed map to get the full details of the route. Basically we headed South on HWY 285 to Pine, CO and turned left onto Co Rd 126 (Pine Valley Rd) toward Deckers. At Deckers we stayed on CO-67-S to Woodland Park and made a right onto US-24 W. US-24 took us into Divide and we made a left onto CO-67-S, again, and we enjoyed a very beautiful ride to one of Colorado’s Gambling towns, Cripple Creek. Besides gambling, there are a couple great places to visit in the area, like Molly Kathleen Mine, the Museum/Visitor Center, and an Old Fashion train ride.From Cripple Creep we continued on to Victor, which is just a cool Old Western Town that has a lot of mining history. We completed the loop on Co-81 back to CO-67 to US-24 through Woodland Park and down to Manitou Springs, CO where we had lunch at Rudy’s. Manitou Springs is another great little town with a lot of things to do, check it out if you have the time.

Fall Ride to Cripple Creek and Victor Colorado
Deckers to Woodland Park

Be sure to check out the great video’s I posted in the Touring Video’s page!

Twin Lakes, Independence Pass and Aspen in the Fall

Riding mountain passes is one of my favorite things to do, the only thing that can make it better is riding mountain passes in the Fall Season! Here is a great day trip that takes about 7 hours in the saddle and has plenty of eye popping colors of the season.

Independence Pass_Fall Colors_2020

Lakewood to Independence Pass:

Lakewood to Independence Pass Summit

Aspen to Lakewood:

Aspen to Lakewood_via Glenwood Canyon

You can see the whole route in the first picture, with Rever, but Google Maps has already closed the pass for the season (actually closes early November). There is construction for rock mitigation going on and there are full closures scheduled between now and seasonal close, so be sure to check the website before you head up there. Check out these websites for status and information about the Independence pass: https://www.codot.gov/projects/archived-project-sites/SH82/independence-pass/independence-pass-travel-information.html OR https://www.independencepass.org/hwy-82-status.

Independence Pass-Fall-2020 (videos)

Basic Directions:

Hwy 285 S to Johnson Village

Turn right onto Hwy 24 W through Buena Vista

Continue on Hwy 24 W to Hwy 82 W, turn left

Hwy 82 W will take you through Twin Lakes, Over the Independence Pass, into Aspen and all the way to Glenwood Springs/Glenwood Canyon on I-70 E.

Be sure to click on the link above to check out the stunning videos from this ride and then leave me a comment and don’t forget to “follow me” so you get updates when I add a new post.

Poudre Canyon and Cameron Pass

From the Lakewood/Denver area up to Fort Collins is a short ride up I-25. In Fort Collins you will make a few jots through the city and make your way to HWY-14 which will take you up the Poudre Canyon. Mishawaka Inn is a great place to stop for food and entertainment in Poudre Canyon. Continue up HWY-14 and you will enjoy beautiful scenery, rivers and mountain views until you reach the top of Cameron Pass (10,276 feet)! Stop for a while and take in the fresh, crisp, clean air of the Rocky Mountains! Now continue down HWY-14 and you will end up in Walden, CO, another great place to stop for lunch and take a break. When you leave Walden, you’ll pick up HWY-125 all the way to Granby, CO. In Granby you’ll catch HWY-40 that will take you through Winter Park, CO and over Berthoud Pass (11,315 feet) where there are plenty of places to stop for photo ops. Continue down HWY-40 and you’ll hook up to I-70 East which will take you back down to the Lakewood/Denver area.

Poudre Canyon and Cameron Pass


Four Pass Fall Season Day Ride:

This is a ride I usually do with the HOG Chapter I ride with, The Denver Chapter HOG (DCH)! They are a great bunch of fun loving, Harley loving, Motorcycle Touring Enthusiasts, like me, and we always have a great time viewing the beautiful Colorado fall colors together.

From Golden, CO

I-70 W to Georgetown to Guanella Pass Rd (381)

Over Guanella Pass to 285 south (right)

Over Kenosha Pass to Fairplay, CO to Hwy 9 (right)

Over Hoosier Pass

Through Breckenridge, CO to Swan Mountain Road in Frisco, CO (around the East side of Dillon Reservoir) and to Hwy 6 (right)

Stay on Hwy 6 and go Over Loveland Pass to I-70 east back to Golden


4 Pass Fall Colors (Map may display different)

4 Pass Fall Colors Videos

We just did this ride and I will be posting some pictures and video on the Touring Videos page. The only variation to the ride we just went on was we went down Hwy 285 S to Kenosha Pass and the last part was over Guanella Pass to 285 N back up to Golden.

This is just a very small sample of the many tours I’ve taken in Colorado. I will show you routes that are close to Denver along the Rocky Mountain Front Range, I’ll show you places Up North, Down South, East and West that will just fill your senses!

Have you ever ridden your motorcycle over a 10, 11, 12,000 ft pass before? How about a 14,000 + ft pass? Let me tell you, there is nothing like reaching the summit of one and seeing the view to be had! Ears are popping, the air is thin, and the temperature will be chilled, but you will feel like you’re on top of the world!

I will be adding rides for

Horse Tooth Reservoir and Carter Lake

Colorado Springs and Garden of the Gods

Canyon City and Bishops Castle

Mount Evans and Pikes Peak

Rocky Mountain National Park

I will take you on rides to the top of Mt. Evans and Pikes Peak that are over 14,000 ft above sea level, and I will take you to the beautiful valleys below so you can experience the vast beauty of Colorado like I do. Well, I’ll do the best I can to make you feel like you’ve been there, but in order to really experience and enjoy Colorado you’re going to just have to come out here and visit!

There is a lot more to come! Check back soon and check back often!

Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

Short Shot

Northwest Colorado-Tarantula Highway

An Over-Night Getaway – Craig, CO

Sometimes I just need to go for a ride and to get away to check out something new for a couple days so I headed Northwest to see the Dinosaur National Monument.

Day 1

According to the map, it looks like this first day is about 460 miles and will take about 7.5 hrs in the saddle, and it does not include gas stops, bio breaks (restroom stops), or lunch stops. It’s gonna be a good days’ ride and I wanted to get an early start so I hit the road at 8AM. Well, even though it’s been fairly hot day’s lately, the mornings can be pretty brisk, but then if you are crossing over the Continental Divide, it will get downright COLD, even in July! So, I was prepared for a cold ride, what I didn’t see in the forecast was rain and SNOW past Georgetown, CO! Well, I didn’t have winter gloves on, long johns, or even my winter coat with me when the rain started in Georgetown, but then as I got past Georgetown, the rain turned to snow and it was like that all the way to Silverthorn, CO, then the rain finally stopped after Vail Pass! Fortunately it was not a heavy precipitation and there was no accumulation, just wet and cold!

Denver to Dinosaur

I stopped in Rifle, CO to get fuel, warm up and have a snack break. I also put my GoPro Max on to capture some of the ride where I never been before. I could have stayed on the beaten path of HWY 64 which would have taken me right into Dinosaur, CO, but I decided to venture into new territory on County Road 7 / 57 instead. So, anyway, from Rifle I headed up CO-13 N (Government Road) where I ran into road construction (surprise) and they had the road completely torn down to DIRT for at least 10-15 miles (felt like 50 miles) and one lane closed for a portion of that! This put me behind schedule as clouds were building and looked like there was going to me more rain…thank you road construction.

I finally got through the road construction and took CO-13 N to CO-64 W, then after a short distance picked up the road I’d never been on, Co Rd 7. Fortunately it was paved the whole way because there are still a lot of County Roads that are still dirt in Colorado. It was very quiet, very little traffic, and very scenic! I do have to mention, I experienced something I’d never seen before and it was a little freaky! I was riding along and enjoying the peaceful and beautiful ride on the quiet county road, cruising at 60 mph, when all of a sudden I saw these dark objects all over the road ahead. I tried to avoid them as I didn’t know if they were rocks, frogs, turtles or something else smooshed on the road, but I couldn’t get a good look. As I got closer, I notice they were moving! Wow, what the hell was that! Well, further down the road the objects were in the road again but this time, a lot more! I was not able to get around them so I just rolled right over them! I tried to get a better look…they weren’t frogs (not hopping), they weren’t turtles (not crunching), so, what could they be? Well, that cleared up and then further down the road…EVEN MORE! They were so thick on the road it looked black, but it was moving, I THINK THEY ARE TARANTULAS! I never saw them this far North and I’d never seen this many, but I wasn’t gonna stop and get a better look because if they are Tarantulas, I want nothing to do with them! I didn’t want them on my bike, I didn’t want them on me, and I didn’t want any hitching a ride to my over-night stop (or home) with me, so I kept on keep’n on! After a couple more patches of these creatures on the road, the clouds are increasing and I’m getting some rain here and there, behind schedule because of road construction, and the road coming to life, I decided to forego the Dinosaur National Park and go straight to the hotel in Craig, CO. Well, I no sooner got checked in and the floodgates opened! It rained on and off the rest of the day!

Tarantula Highway

I checked into the Quality Inn in Craig, CO for the night. They were very accommodating and friendly and I found out they were locals, so I asked about the road creatures, but they had never seen or heard of it before. Well, as we were talking a couple came in to check in and heard what we were talking about. The man confirmed, they were Tarantulas!!! He went on to say that they are usually more South, where it’s warmer, but up here where it’s much cooler, they will come out onto the warm road to get themselves warmed up from the cold! So, I’m like “What?!”…and he’s like “Yah!” and the wife is like “GROSS!”, and the girls behind the counter are like “EEEWWWW!!!” and I’m like “I’m glad I didn’t stop to get a better look!!”. That was an experience! I’ve got video and pictures (of the road creatures, not this conversation) that I will upload soon!

If anybody can dispute or confirm what these creatures were, if they weren’t Tarantula’s, please comment or e-mail me details. I’ve never seen them this far North, but it doesn’t mean it couldn’t be possible…right?

The hotel was very clean and comfortable, no complaints! The hot tub and pool were open so I went for a dip to relax the ole muscles and tired bones…very nice! There was a Walmart nearby so I went and picked up some food for the evening and retired to my room for some R and R!

Day 2

It is a BEAUTIFUL morning! Sun is shining and not a cloud in the sky! I went down for breakfast and they had individually wrapped danishes, bagels, coffee, hard boiled egg’s, yogurt, etc., so I enjoyed breakfast as watched the news. After breakfast I packed up, checked out and hit the road!

The plan today is to take CO-40 E through Steamboat Springs, Kremmling, Grand Lake and Winter Park, CO (North Central Region). On this route I’ll go over Rabbit Ears Pass from Steamboat and over Berthoud Pass from Winter Park then pick up I-70 E for Denver.

Craig to Denver

Tour Recap

Have you ever heard the term “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey”? Well, that’s not to say that the destination isn’t part of the journey, but it means that it’s about the entire experience. The route you take, the things and places you see, the people you meet, and the feelings that it creates. I know, a biker talking about “feelings”, what’s next? Wind therapy on my motorcycle is about freedom, relaxation, the great outdoors, the mountains and what it does for my soul! Whether it’s a 1 day, 2 day, a week a month trip, it’s always about experience and enjoying what I have and enjoying my surrounding!

This was a great over-nighter! It didn’t go as planned, it wasn’t great weather, and it was longer that expected on day 1, but the journey and the experience of “road creatures”, talking to locals, and traveling this beautiful state made this trip one to remember and created memories for a lifetime.

This trip was created from using all the resources available on this site, from planning the ride, booking the hotel and checking weather!

So Plan a trip, take a tour, or just get out on a short ride for some “wind therapy”, but make this site the place to go for a “one stop shop” on your journey to becoming a Motorcycle Touring Enthusiast!

As usual,

Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

Short Shot

Southwest and Northwest Colorado – Pagosa Sprngs

Three Day Tour to Pagosa Springs and Ouray Colorado

This journey will take you through the Southwest Region where I stayed the night in Pagosa Springs and then the following day rode to Durango, Silverton, and stopped in Ouray, CO for the night. The next day I took the long way home (the best way) and went into the Northwest Region through Grand Mesa. I planned, mapped, and reserved hotel using all the resources from this website!

Day 1

I hit the road on Monday morning headed to Pagosa Springs, CO to enjoy a relaxing soak in the Famous Pagosa Springs Hot Springs. I took HWY-285 S over Kenosha Pass and through Fairplay all the way to the intersection of HWY-24 N to Buena Vista and HWY-285 S toward Poncha Springs. We’re headed to Pagosa Springs so we will continue S on HWY-285. As we roll South we’ll go through Poncha Springs and over Poncha Pass all the way to HWY-112. At this intersection we turn right and head West until we reach HWY-160 W. Now HWY-160 W will take us over Wolf Creek Pass to our day 1 destination, Pagosa Springs, CO.


There are several places to stay in Pagosa Springs. Where you chose to stay will depend on how much you want to spend, location to the hot springs, and amenities, right? Well, my preference is cheap and easy! Get you mind out of the gutter! Inexpensive room and close to what I want to see or do is what I’m talking about. I chose the San Juan Motel because it was walking distance to the hot springs and it was inexpensive, only $100 for the night. I did not care for the room, personally, it had hard wood floors, no closet space to hang anything, very small bathroom with a shower (no tub), did not have towel racks, and the TV had a huge scratch and did not work very well. The grounds were unkept, long grass and weeds, and old water heaters and piles of wood. The first room I got had dirty sheets so I had to switch rooms and the breakfast were package donuts and danishes with coffee in the lobby. I would find another place to stay next time I visit.

The Pagosa Springs Hot Springs were very nice and I enjoyed a much needed natural mineral springs soak! It cost $35 to enter, $4 towel rental, and I was able to leave and come back if desired. The only thing is that they are only allowed so many guests in the pool area at a time, so when I get back, they could have a line that I would have to wait in to get back in. I stayed for a few hours and when I left for dinner, there was a line! The hot spring pools ranged from 107 degrees (hottest) to a mild 95 degrees down by the river. I stayed in the 103-105 degree range and that suited my tired bones just fine! The pool area also had 1 large pool and two hot tubs (not sure of temps) separate from the rest. There was also a drink station for alcohol and non-alcohol beverages and a snack food area in a covered/shaded area as well.

Pagosa Springs Hot Springs

There were several places to eat in the area, everything from fast food to brewery’s, pizza joints, Mexican food, and small diners. On my way back to the motel I stopped at a place called Kip’s Grill and had a great buffalo burger and a bear.

Day 2

I departed Pagosa Springs and continue South on HWY-160 headed to Durango, CO where I’ll stop at the Durango HD to get a challenge coin. From Durango I picked up HWY-550 N headed to Silverton, CO and stop at the Worlds Highest Harley Store, Silverton HD for another challenge coin.

Pagosa Springs to Ouray via Durango and Silverton, CO
Durango and Silverton Challenge Coins

The route to Silverton is another spectacular ride that will take us over Coal Bank Pass (10,640 ft above sea level) and Molas Pass (10,910 ft above sea level) where there are some great scenic views!

Molas Pass

From Silverton we’ll continue on HWY-550 N to Ouray, CO where I’m going to stop for the night. On the way to Ouray we’ll go over Red Mountain Pass and the famous Million Dollar Highway, and believe me, you don’t want to get caught in bad weather on this road, so check the forecast and know before you go. Before I went to the hotel I stopped at the Box Falls to take a look at this amazing site.

The hotel I stayed at in Ouray was the Riverside Inn and Cabins, and with the exception that they did not have breakfast, it was a great place to stay. The hot tubs were clean and private, the room was very clean with comfortable beds, there was a riverwalk that was about 2 miles round trip, there was a gas station and convenience store onsite and there was jeep rental next door. They were also nice enough to let me check in an hour early.

River Walk

I had dinner at The Goldbelt Bar and Grill (pizza) and I had breakfast at Timerline Deli of Ouray before I packed for the trip home.

Day 3

After breakfast at the Timberline Deli of Ouray I packed up, fueled up, and hit the road for home, via Grand Mesa that is.

I took HWY-550 N / HWY-50 W through Delta to CO HWY-92 E to CO-65 W (Grand Mesa Scenic Byway) which will take us through Cedaredge then on to Grand Mesa. There are a lot of lakes to fish in and many trails to hike or bike. The are is very wooded with wide open spaces between that are breathtaking!

Grand Mesa
Grand Mesa-2

Grand Mesa Scenic Byway (CO HWY-65 W) goes through the town of Mesa and then the road turns into 45 1/2 Rd which is a very curvey road with tall and steep canyon walls that will take us to I-70 E, just West of Parachute, CO. I-70 will get us back to the Denver area after we make one more stop for gas.

Tour Recap

This was a great trip and I would highly recommend it to anybody visiting Colorado. From Denver to Pagosa Springs where I spent a few hours soaking at the famous Pagosa Springs Hot Springs, had a great buffalo burger and a beer at Kips Grill.

Day 2 I rode to Durango and got a challenge coin for my collection, then rode up Coal Bank Pass and Molas Pass on my way to Silverton for another challenge coin, then continued up Red Mountain pass to the Million Dollar Highway and stayed the night in Ouray, CO. I went to see the Box Falls, had a great pizza for dinner and the hotel was great. The only bummer was the road construction by Telluride, CO…I hate road construction!

Day 3 I headed home via Grand Mesa which was a beautiful, relaxing, beginning of great ride home to Denver!

I hope you enjoyed reading about my Colorado Tour in the Southwest and Northwest region and it inspires you to come visit Colordo and tour this beautiful state.

As usual,

Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

Short Shot

Southwest and Northwest Colorado – Gunnison

Three DayTour to Gunnison and Glenwood Springs

Cottonwood Pass, Gunnison, Black Canyons of the Gunnison, Colorado National Monument, Glenwood Springs and Independence Pass were the destionations on this 3 day tour in Colorado. This tour covered areas of the Southwest and Northwest Regions of Colorado, AND I did all the planning, mapping, and reservations from This Website!


I left Monday morning for Gunnison, CO and I decided to take the scenic route over Cottonwood Pass. I’ve never been over this pass and it was a great ride. I left from Lakewood, CO and jumped on HWY 287 South, went over beautiful Kenaosha Pass and down to Fairplay. From Fairplay I stayed on HWY 287 to US-24 West to Buena Vista. I think I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again, if you get the chance to visit Buena Vista and the surrounding area, I highly recommend it. There are several hot springs around, hiking and biking trails, and abundant scenery. Here’s a link to check out all that Buena Vista has to offer (https://www.colorado.com/cities-and-towns/buena-vista). From Buena vista take HWY 306 to Cottonwood Pass.

Down From Summit
Cottonwood Pass-Summit
Overlook at Cottonwood Pass

It was a beautiful ride up to the summit, very little traffic, and it wasn’t very cold either…a perfect ride!

From Cottonwood Pass to Gunnison, CO is a great ride through the Gunnison National Forest. I’ve never taken this route to Gunnison before and if you have the time for the scenic route, I would highly recommend it. I noticed a great deal of camp grounds along this route, so if you enjoy camping, I’m guessing you could find a very nice spot.


I stayed at the Roadway Inn in Gunnison. It is located outside the downtown area, very quiet, the hot tub was very nice and they had breakfast, not a sack breakfast to go like I had a week ago in Alamosa. The reason I mentioned this is because it seems the hotels are starting to become more accommodating as time goes on since the COVID-19 shutdown and breakfast is getting better as well.


Today is one of my favorite rides that goes through the Curecanti National Recreation Area and takes you by the Gunnison River and Blue Mesa Reservoir along Highway 50. Someday I’m going to stay in the Gunnison area to go fishing for a couple days.

Take HWY-50 to HWY-92 which will take you through a scenic ride up to Hotchkiss and Delta, CO. In Delta I jumped on HWY-50 which took me into Grand Junction where after a few left turns got me onto Glade Park Rd / Monument Rd which turns into Rimrock Dr in Colorado National Monument.

Gunnison to Glenwood Springs via Colorado National Monument


Colorado National Monument
Colorado National Monument
Colorado National Monument
Colorado National Monument

After exploring Colorado National Monument I headed to Grand Junction Harley Davidson to get challenge coins for my collection.

Grand Junction Harley Davidson

This is my collection so far!


After getting my new challenge coins I saddled up again and headed to Glenwood Springs and checked into Glenwood Springs Inn. These rooms, at least the one I stayed in, was a fresh remodel and very nice.

While I was in Glenwood Springs I had to visit and soak in the hot springs, so I went to the Glenwood Springs Hot Springs Pool and relaxed in the pool for an hour before they closed. It made me feel like a millions bucks and helped me sleep like a baby! It was just a short walk from the hotel to the hot springs and it was a beautiful evening for a walk. Again, since COVID-19, there are certain rules you need to follow while at the hot springs (at the time of this post), so be sure to have a mask and plan on social distancing .

Glenwood Springs Hot Springs
Day 3

The hotel had breakfast in the dining area but it was only single serving and individually wrapped items, no eggs, meat, or waffles due to COVID-19 restrictions.

After breakfast I packed up and decided to go over Independence Pass, the oposite direction I did on my way home from Alamosa the week before, because the scenery is very different from another point of view or coming from a different direction or angle. I’m glad I decide to go over Independence Pass because the weather was perfect, the scenery was Amazing, and summit was not crowded…this visit was better than the first!

As you may remember, from my previous post “Motorcycle Tours in 2020 / South Central Colorado“, we get to Independence Pass via HWY-82. We will pass through Snowmass and Aspen before we start the ascent to the summit.

Glenwood Springs_to_Denver_via_IndependencePass

I took my time on the summit of Independence Pass this time. I walked up the path to the look out points, took pictures and video, and watched a guy try to get a parasail in the air.

Independence Pass Summit
Independence Pass Summit
Independence Pass Summit
Independence Pass Summit

From Independence Pass I headed down to Twin Lakes and hopped onto HWY-24 toward Leadville, CO. In Leadville I picked up HWY-91 for a beautiful ride toward Copper Mountain. Then I caught I-70 East to HWY-6 and went over Loveland Pass, the round about way back to I-70 East to Denver.

Wrap Up

This was a great tour, great weather, and some of the best scenery! The hotels I stayed at were very accommodating, comfortable and clean. The restrictions from COVID-19 still have a grip on tourism but it seems to be getting better as time moves on. The road through Colorado National Monument was amazing and the pictures do not do it justice! Glenwood Springs Hot Springs was fantastic and the sun setting on the mountains while I soaked my road worn body was amazing! The ride over Independence Pass, going a different direction than I did last time, really made this ride a New Ride because everything looks completely different.

I’m hoping that this COVID-19 issue continues to get better and I can take a tour outside Colorado soon, but I think my next trip will be in the Northwest and North Central regions of Colorado while I wait out the travel conditions.

I will be posting my tour to Pagosa Springs, Durango, Red Mountain, Molas Pass, Million Dollar Highway, Ouray and Grand Mesa in the very near future, so be sure to Follow me (by e-mail) and Like me on Facebook to get notifications about updates, tours, and destinations.


Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

Short Shot

My Objective

My Objective is to provide Motorcycle Touring Enthusiasts with a “One Stop” site that will provide information and resources for all your Motorcycle Touring needs. I want this site to be the place people go when they are looking for ideas and places to go on a motorcycle tour. No matter if you own your own bike, you’re renting a bike, or you’re borrowing a bike, I can help with your ride. On this site, We can plan a route and stops, We can find motorcycle rentals, We can check weather, and We can book hotels. Bookmark this website, make it your start page, or set as a favorite, but make it the place you go to plan your Motorcycle Tour in Colorado.

About Me

Glenn (Short Shot) 2019

My road name is Short Shot and I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was 10 years old. I’ve ridden dirt, enduro, street, sport, race, and touring machines. I’m not into building or modifying engines, I’m into touring this beautiful country on my motorcycle. I love my Harley but I do not judge or discriminate against any make or model that an enthusiast enjoys riding. I bought my ’18 Street Glide with 32 test miles on it, today (01-2021) I’ve got 65,100 miles on it! I’m always down for a ride!

How I Want To Help

I want to provide a “one Stop” site with Info, links and resources to help Motorcycle Touring Enthusiast with whatever they are looking for. I also want to meet new people who like to ride, who love to tour, and would like to share their stories and adventures! I’m here to share my rides, my favorite tours and help others to tour Colorado. Whether you live in the Denver area, your out of town, out of state, or out of this country, if you are in Colorado (or coming to Colorado) and want to go for a ride with me, shoot me an e-mail or leave me a comment with details and let’s go for a ride!

The Black Canyons of Gunnison National Park, CO

My Goal

I would like to help fellow Motorcycle Touring Enthusiasts get what they need in order to fuel and enable them to ride, explore and tour the places they want to visit.

My plan is to build a site for people who have the same love of riding as I do. A place to share stories, experiences, destinations, routes, and resources with each other.

Motorcycle Enthusiasts are passionate collectors, owners, riders and builders that love motorcycles, the freedom of riding and the therapeutic energy they provide and I want this site to be the place that will bring us all together.

Though I have ridden to many different states, I live in Colorado and I absolutely love riding this state! If you’re ever planning a trip to tour these beautiful mountains of Colorado, I’m always down for a ride and I’d love to help with your plans!

This site will be a continuous work in progress and I will be updating it often, so be sure to check back to see more links, information, and help with all your Motorcycle Touring needs.


Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

Short Shot

Canyon Rides Near Denver

Early Season Rides

Scenic motorcycle rides minutes from Denver are a great way to get a relaxing ride in during spare time. There are 6 spectacular canyons that are easy to get to and fun to ride on the front range mountains of Denver. But riding in Colorado in the early Spring season can be a challenge. Spring time still brings snow, ice, sand, rock slides, mud slides and wildlife challenges to be on the alert for. Believe me, you do NOT want to hit some sand when you are in a switchback curve! Also, you never know what is around the corner, rocks/boulders, animals, ice, water, mud, etc., and it’s best to just expect there’s going to be Something there rather than it’s it’s going to be clear during this time of year. The weather in the mountains is very unpredictable and you can get caught in very cold temps and snow all the way through May and into June sometimes in the higher elevations! The foothills, passes and canyons may be passable and great rides during early season riding, but, Rider Be Aware!

Rides Near Denver

Once we are past the early season riding and weather patterns get a little more consistent, it will be sunny in the morning, start clouding up by or shortly after noon, rain a bit around 2 – 3 pm for about an hour or two, then clear up for the rest of the night! This is a typical pattern for Colorado in the summer and this is when we can make some getaways for short rides in the mountains that are near the Denver Metro Area.

Golden Gate Canyon and Clear Creek Canyon

Golden Gate and Clear Creek Canyon

This is a nice 1.5 hr ride and about 45 min. round trip from Golden, CO. This route goes up Golden Gate Canyon, through historic Black Hawk, CO and then down Clear Creek Canyon. Golden Gate Canyon has several places to hike, bike, camp, fish or just picnic. Black Hawk is a gambling town now just up the rode is historic Central City, CO which is also a gambling town now. There are a lot of old mines and historic buildings in the area and you can also ride the Central City Parkway all the way I-70 to Idaho Springs, CO. This route continues through Black Hawk down Hwy-119 which hooks onto Hwy-6, Clear Creek Canyon back down to Golden, CO. Clear Creek Canyon has been under a lot of construction to create scenic walk/bike trails along the creek, so there are several places to stop and enjoy the beauty.

Here are some links to get information about Black Hawk and Central City Colorado:
Golden, CO: https://www.visitgolden.com/
Black Hawk, CO: http://site.cityofblackhawk.org/
Central City, CO: https://www.colorado.com/cities-and-towns/central-city


Coal Creek Canyon Rd and Boulder Canyon Dr

 Coal Creek and Boulder Canyon

This is a great route if you have a couple hours to spare for a very scenic ride. On this route we are leaving from Golden, head up Hwy-93 to Hwy-72, Coal Creek Canyon Rd, and head West into the mountains. Once you pass through a little town called Wondervu, you’ll start a descent on steep switch back roads into a valley. Take it slow and easy so you can take in some of the breath taking views on this part of the route. Continue on Hwy-72 and the next little town is Pinecliffe, cross over the railroad track and continue up to Hwy-119. Be careful here, this stop sign is on a steep hill and you will make a sharp right turn onto Hwy-119 which will take you into Nederland, CO and by beautiful Barker Meadow Reservoir. There are several places to eat, get fuel, and check out the Dam in Nederaland. Continue down Hwy-119 pas the the reservoir and it become Boulder Canyon Dr (still Hwy-119) which takes you down into Boulder. This is a beautiful drive down through the narrows of the canyon and right along the river with beautiful views. Once you get to Boulder you’ll make a right onto Broadway / Hwy-93 that will take you through the CU Boulder campus area and past the Boulder Flat-Irons on your way back to Golden.

Here are some links to get information about Nederland and Boulder, CO:
Nederland, CO: https://nederlandco.org/
Boulder, CO: https://bouldercolorado.gov/trails-and-recreation


Bear Creek and Deer Creek Canyon

 Bear Creek Canyon and Deer Creek Canyon

West of Denver is the small town of Morrison, CO. and this is where the route for Bear Creek and Deer Creek Canyon ride begins. Morrison has many places to eat and is right next to the famous Red Rocks Amphitheater and Park where you can hike and drive through to see some amazing rock formations. The ride heads West on Hwy-72 / Bear Creek Rd and goes through the little towns of Idledale and Kittredge, CO before you get to Evergreen, CO. There are several park along the way that you can hike and picnic to enjoy the natural beauty of this canyon. In Evergreen is where you will pick up Hwy-73 to Conifer, CO. If you’re hungry or want to enjoy some mountain town culture, you should spend a little time in Evergreen before you head up to Conifer. In Conifer you will pick up Pleasant Park Rd, it’s the light before you get to the gas station in Conifer. You’ll make a left and go under the Hwy-285 bridge. Follow Pleasant Park Rd and it will turn into High Grande Rd, then after  a couple switchbacks, the road turns into Deer Creek Rd. Take Deer Creek Rd all the way to Deer Creek Canyon Rd where you will then make a left. Deer Creek Canyon Rd turns into S Turkey Creek Rd and will take you to Hwy-285. Take Hwy-285 to Hwy-8 and back into Morrison, CO. There are a bunch of twisties and beautiful scenery that you will absolutely enjoy on this ride.

Here are some links for more information Morrison and Evergreen, CO. Also be sure to check out Red Rocks Amphitheater!
Morrison, CO: https://town.morrison.co.us/
Evergreen, CO: https://downtownevergreen.com/
Red Rocks Amphitheater: https://www.redrocksonline.com/


Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

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COVID-19 and Motorcycle Riding

How to Ride and Avoid COVID-19

Is Motorcycle Riding Legal During The COVID-19 Pandemic?

The short answer is, Yes. You can ride your motorcycle in Colorado. There are still restrictions of groups no more than 10 people gathering and you must still practice social distancing. People from the same household can ride 2 up. It is still recommended that people wear face masks or bandanna’s, wear gloves when touching things, don’t touch your face, and thoroughly wash your hands. If you stop to go into a store or gas station, you’ll still need to wear your face covering. Be aware, there are still gas stations that do not have restrooms open to the public. If you live in any other state, other than Colorado, you need to be sure of any restrictions IN YOUR STATE.

I can’t stress enough, this is only my view and opinion from what I’ve seen, read, and heard from the same State, City, and County officials that you’ve heard it from. But I tell you what, if you have the virus and don’t know it, you give it to somebody else and they get sick or die and it’s traced back to you, well that’s on you! I don’t want to be the person that somebody tries to blame for a virus related death! Is the risk worth the reward? I’m extra careful about keeping my face covered around other people while I’m in public places, I wear my gloves when I get fuel, I stay at least 6 feet apart from others and I wash up and change clothes when I get home! I would recommend the same for my touring buddies! This is all about being safe and avoiding COVID-19 and not spreading the virus while riding.

I’m not sure and won’t really speak about dirt riding or back country riders on dirt bikes or ATV’s. From what I’ve seen and heard, there are still a lot of closures to public, state and national forest areas. It is best to call or check the official website of the area you want to ride. A couple weeks ago I rode through Red Rocks (paved roads) and this week, they have it closed off. So be prepared to change direction or plans during this time of uncertainty.

Also remember, just because there is less traffic on the roads and more breathing room, doesn’t mean we can be speeding and driving recklessly! This is the time of the year when people are getting out on their motorcycles and our numbers are growing but those driving cars and trucks aren’t watching for us yet. I am surprised how much speeding I hear on the roads near my home!

Motorcycle Riding To Other States?

As quoted directly from the CDC.GOV website, “The COVID-19 outbreak in United States is a rapidly evolving situation. The status of the outbreak varies by location and state and local authorities are updating their guidance frequently. The White House’s Opening Up America (Official document- https://www.whitehouse.gov/openingamerica/) plan means some parts of the country may have different guidance than other areas. Check with the state or local authorities where you are, along your route, and at your planned destination to learn about local circumstances and any restrictions that may be in place.” (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-in-the-us.html)

So, what it boils down to is you can travel across state lines At Your Own Risk, but you better check the state, city and county’s you’re traveling into for any restrictions before you leave. Don’t travel if you’re sick! If you get sick while you are traveling, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible to prevent spreading the infection. Some medical facilities may be closed or overwhelmed with patients in areas that you’re traveling as well. If you are planning an over night stop, be sure to check if there are hotels/motels open in the area before you leave. Also, there are many local, state, and national parks that may be temporarily out of service. The planning and preparation for traveling long distance on a motorcycle is very important to begin with, now it’s going to be critical! Me, personally, as bad as I want to start traveling, I will not do it… yet! I don’t want to get stranded somewhere that has a major outbreak while I’m hundreds of miles from home! There are plenty of places nearby where I can get my wind therapy!

Motorcycle Riding To/From Neighboring Countries?

Well, let me put it this way, you should check before you try! From what I’ve seen, Canada and Mexico still have closed borders. All I can really find is that everyone is saying “Essential Travel Only”.

Canada’s official website states specifically “How COVID-19 is affecting applications to visit, work or study in Canada; If you meet the criteria for the travel exemptions, and you want to apply to come to Canada, there are changes to the application process. Learn more (and be sure to read the #1 footnote at the bottom of the page). You can travel to Canada only if you are exempt from the travel restrictions and are coming for an essential purpose”.

Wrap Up

It is not Illegal for you to ride your motorcycle in Colorado or even out of state. But you would be going against the request for “only essential travel”. Is getting wind therapy “essential”? It is for me! There are a lot of things you can do to and places to go that you can be safe, keep distance and still reduce your chances of getting the virus, but it is everywhere, so travel at your own risk. Check out my Shopping, Resources and Tools page for great get away ideas.

As I said earlier, this is only my view and opinion based on what I’ve seen, heard and read. I’ve provided many links to data for you to check and decide for yourself if you want to go for a ride or not.

At the time of this post, Colorado was entering into a “Safer at Home” phase that eased up on some parks, cities and counties but there are still restrictions for restaurants, bars and other businesses, so check for any news or changes before you head out on the road. Remember, you don’t want to be surprised and get turned around or get a fine for being somewhere you shouldn’t be.

Stay Healthy, Stay Safe, and Ride On!

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Short Shot Tours

Some Colorado Motorcycle Tours I’ve done

If you’re looking for some great Colorado Motorcycle Touring destinations, let me point you in the right direction. I’ll show you some rides that are a couple hours or a full day and some that are a couple day’s (at least) that will satisfy you needs for saddle time, wind therapy and scenery.

I’ll breakdown some of the places I’ve gone and give you route’s with times, distance’s and stops

Here is a great Fall Season Day Ride:

I-70 to Georgetown to Guanella Pass Rd (381)

Over Guanella Pass to 285 south (right)

Over Kenosha Pass to Fairplay to Hwy 9 (right) 

Over Hoosier Pass

Through Breckenridge to Squaw Mountain Road (right – around Dillon Res) to Hwy 6 (right)

Over Loveland Pass to I-70 east back to Golden

4 Pass Fall Colors
4 Pass Fall Colors

Here is a Great 3 Day Tour:

Montrose, Ouray, and Durango for theWeekend!

Day 1 – Golden to Montrose: 4 h 37 min (254 miles)

Day 2 – Montrose/Durango/Dove Creek/Montrose: 6hr 45min / 328 miles


Day 3 – Montrose to Golden: 6 h 40 min (346 miles)

This is just a very small sample of the many tours I’ve taken in Colorado. I will show you routes that are close to Denver along the Rocky Mountain Front Range, I’ll show you places Up North, Down South, East and West that will just fill your senses!

Have you ever rode your motorcycle over a 10, 11, 12,000 Ft pass before? I have done many and let me tell you, there is nothing like reaching the summit of one and seeing the view to be had! Ears are popping, the air is thin, and the temperature will be chilled, but you’ll barely be able to pay attention to it because of the raw beauty that will before your eyes! It’s like being on top of the world!

I will take you on rides to the top of Mt. Evans and Pikes Peak that are over 14,000 ft above sea level, and I will take you to the beautiful valleys below so you can experience the vast beauty of Colorado like I do. Well, I’ll do the best I can to make you feel like you’ve been there, but in order to really experience and enjoy Colorado you’re going to just have to come out here and visit!

There is a lot more to come! Check back soon and check back often!

Be Safe, Have Fun and Ride On!

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Group Touring

Motorcycle Group Touring

Riding in a group is very different from riding by yourself. Though the rules of the road are the same, the procedure and etiquette are not.

Speaking From Experience

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been riding for a long time and I have organized, planned, lead, and managed group tours with the HOG Chapter for several years. We have training manuals and conduct training for group rides on a regular basis. No matter how much you plan and prepare, you can almost always count on something going wrong. No matter if it’s a wrong turn, construction or accident detours, motorcycle breakdowns, or weather, the objective is to get the group to the destination safely. The riders that assist with the tour, like the Leader and Sweep and the helpers (Road Captains) in between, take a lot of responsibility and put a great deal of work into a group tour, so following these procedures and etiquette will make their job much easier.

Riding in a Group

  1. Pre-Ride Meeting
    1. When conducting this meeting you will explain where you’re going, the route you’re taking and stops you’re making. Procedures to be followed such as stagger riding positions, spacing, passing procedures, hand signals, etc., will also be discussed. The person conducting the meeting will advise the group of the person in charge of the ride and who will be assisting. It is very important to be sure all attending riders are clear and comfortable with all the procedures and etiquette. If possible they should provide printed maps and directions in case the group gets separated.
  2. TCLOCK (Tires and Wheels, Control Levers, Lights and Battery, Oil Levels, Chassis, and  Kickstand)
    1. This is the Acronym for the physical safety check that should be performed on motorcycles that will be in operation during the ride. (link-http://frederickhog.org/tips/tclock.htm).
    2. If your are operating a motorcycle you should be doing this regularly and especially when going on a long tour.
    3. It is the motorcycle operators responsibility to be sure the motorcycle is up to date with scheduled service and it is in safe operating condition.
    4. If a motorcycle is not safe and will create a hazard to themselves, their passenger or to other group members, they may be asked to join another ride after the motorcycle has been repaired.
  3. Who’s Leading and Who’s Sweeping
    1. The leader of the group should be trained and experienced for this position as he/she will set the pace, be the eyes for the group, and make decisions and modifications to the ride for the safety of the whole group. He/she will also try to keep the group together and provide hand signals to be passed back to the rest of the group.
    2. The Sweep should also be trained and experienced as they are responsible for keeping a watchful eye over the group for issues such as safety, reckless behavior, and to assist if there is a breakdown.
    3. With large groups there may be Mid Group riders that are designated to assist with breakdowns, directions, and safety issues also.
  4. Tools, Med Kits, and Supplies

    1. I would recommend that Every rider who operates a motorcycle should always carry these items with them.
    2. In the chapter I ride with, we require Road Captains to carry these items as part of their responsibility for their position in case somebody is in need.
    3. Some groups ride with other cars or trucks called “chase vehicles” that carry tools and supplies for riders.
  5. Rules of the Road
    1. Just because you’re riding in a group it does not mean you can disregard the rules of the road. Stop at stop signs and red lights and obey speed limits.
    2. The Leader, the Mids, and the Sweep will try to keep the group together by slowing down, pulling over or communication with the group.
    3. Covered in the Pre-Ride Meeting, there is a procedure if you do get split from the group, which is usually communicated via radio, cell phone, text, or visible stop locations.
  6. Hand Signals
    1. These should be covered in the Pre-Ride Meeting to make riders aware of the procedures to be followed will on the ride.
    2. Here is a link to a website that has animated hand signal instructions: https://www.motorcyclelegalfoundation.com/motorcycle-hand-signals-chart/
    3. It is important to pass the signals back to the riders behind you as soon as possible.
  7. Fuel, Food, and Restroom Stops
    1. This is also covered during the Pre-Ride Meeting as part of the route you will be taking.
    2. Usually the Leader will pull through a gas station or parking lot to keep everybody moving and them all off the road for safety. Follow the Leader and don’t stop, pull into a gas pump or park until all riders are safely off the road.
    3. Unless this is a planned lunch stop, these stops are usually a quick stop, so you can get back into formation and get back on the road to keep time schedules.
  8. Riding Positions

    1. This will be covered during the Pre-Ride Meeting also and should be followed in order to keep the group safe and keep it together.
    2. There are three ways to position in a group, Side by Side, Single File, and Stagger.
    3. The safest group positioning is stagger with at least 2 seconds following the rider directly in front of you, 1 second from the rider diagonal from you.
    4. Single file positioning is usually used when riding a lot of curves (twisties), narrow roads or bridges, and when there a pedestrians or bicyclists on the side of the road.
  9. Communication
    1. Fortunately we live in a technology world and communication has become a whole lot easier.
    2. CB Radios and Cell phones are easy to use on a lot of motorcycles these days with the ability to connect with Bluetooth headsets and microphones or the old fashioned wired solutions.
    3. If none of the methods above are available, there is always hand signals.
  10. Post Ride Meeting
    1. I recommend having a meeting with everybody after the ride to
      1. Advise of dinner or other event plans.
      2. Discuss meeting times and locations for the rest of the tour.
      3. It is also a good way of getting feedback from the group as to how they felt the ride went and get any suggestions or comments they may have.

Wrap Up

Touring with a group of people that share the same interest in motorcycles and have the same passion for the brotherhood and sisterhood is only fully appreciated if you ALL get to the destination safe and alive. Group Touring is fun and exciting but if we don’t follow the group procedures and etiquette we are putting the group, the tour and the people around us at risk.

One last thing, there are other motorists on the road with us that may get aggravated with a group of motorcycles and become aggressive toward us, but you have to remember, they are bigger and heavier and they will win. They may need to get to an approaching exit, they may need to change lanes, they may want to pass us…be courteous, be patient and give them the right of way because it’s not worth the fight!

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