Day Six - Moab UT to Mexican Hat UT
Miles: 348
Elapsed Time: 12:45

Denny’s for breakfast wasn’t going to work today,we stopped at Moab Diner for breakfast and it was well worth it. Nothing like a good breakfast to get started. The first 80 miles were going be a repeat allowing us to look around a little more as we rode. Those who missed the jeep hanging precariously above the Hole In The Rock recreation area can get a good look the second time through. As we were riding down into the Paradox Valley we pulled over at a wide spot in the road I identified as a POI but we didn’t stop there on the way in. Today after 50 miles it was perfect timing and the view was really quite nice with good views of the twisting road and the valley. Continuing on and back into Colorado we hit C145 at Naturita which would take us into Telluride after the descent from the Norwood Mesa. As C145 descends from the Mesa it begins to follow the San Miguel River and the road becomes much more fun. The road wasn’t all that crooked, but the condition was perfect and the scenery and lack of traffic made it a very enjoyable ride. Before we knew it we were in Telluride. We arrived a little early for lunch so we walked around town a little and everyone seemed to enjoy the charming aspects of this well kept mountain town. We stopped in Smuggler’s Inn as they opened and Steve and I sat down for the second time in the same year. Our visit to Smuggler’s dates to 1995 and I think it’s well documented the number of times we have returned since. Everyone ate a pretty big lunch and Jim and Sebastian would remark later in the trip that this was the best burger of the trip, and it was buffalo. We continued south on C145 and the road continued to impress and even got better. Many of the roads in Colorado follow a river and that usually means some pretty good riding, and in the case of C145 below Placerville it follows a series of creeks before picking up the Dolores River near Rico which is near the headwaters of the Dolores. We had to stop before we had gotten too far on C145 to put on our rain suits, and the rain really came down. It made the ride less than perfect but by the time we reached the town of Dolores we were able to shed the suits and continue on. Once through the town of Dolores it was another 15 miles to get through the town of Cortez and then turning west on County Road G. This road was not the best but Sebastian took off and left us all in the dust. It was another 30 miles before we stopped and the road was manageable in some areas but fairly well degraded in others. The landscape in general was less than appealing, but the open hard scrabble desert gave us a different look than we had enjoyed earlier in the day. We stopped at the entrance to Hovenweep National Monument but we didn’t have time to stop. County Road G had turned into U402 and U407 as we crossed over the state line back into Utah. Also as we crossed over the state line we entered an Indian Reservation. Shortly after stopping and entering Utah we reached the town of Aneth turned west and followed the San Juan River on U162. This was a big improvement over the county road. It wasn’t long until we reached Bluff UT and US163 and sighted Twin Rocks. Moving west on US163 we dropped down through the comb ridge, but on the southern portion it didn’t seem as prevalent as the more northern section we would ride the next day. Riding across US163 in Utah is similar to the Moab area but the landscape is more red. We could see Valley of the Gods off in the distance but we needed to get to Mexican Hat. Once there we checked into our trailer and unpacked. Once again we would all stay together in the same cabin. This mobile home was better than the one where we stayed in 2014 but not as nice as Moab although we had more room here. Anyway, it wasn’t bad and we were quickly back on the bikes headed toward Monument Valley. On the way we hit rain again but it wasn’t a strong storm and it would pay dividends once we arrived. It was quickly approaching dusk when we arrived and there was still a fair amount of people there, but we made quick order of getting in, parking and going for the pictures. It had stopped raining and a beautiful rainbow appeared making picture taking all the more relevant. We walked around quite a bit and took as many unique angles as possible with as many combinations of people as possible. We wanted to make one more stop to get Winzi’s picture running on US163 in the famous Forrest Gump scene. We were successful. We rode back in time for our dinner at the Swingin’ Steak. Dinner was good and the steaks were very tasty. It was a very good day despite somewhat uncooperative weather.

Day Six 2015 Moab to Mexican Hat