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Eclipse Ride

Dave Wood

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I decided to take a few days off and “chase” the annular eclipse. My good friend and riding buddy suggested that we make sure we find some good roads while we were at it. So, with the intention of getting to the area around Cedar City, Utah on Sunday at 7:30 local, we headed off last Thursday from San Diego to Prescott AZ, Sedona, Durango, to Cedar City on Sunday and returning to SD yesterday. We decided after the first day in to head straight to Durango and stay two nights so that we could ditch the bags and make a loop out of Durango before heading to Cedar City. Total trip length ended up about 2400 miles in 5 days.


Best Roads on the trip – AZ 89 from Congress to Prescott, The entire loop around the San Juan’s (Hwy 180 over Wolf Creek Pass to 149 N to 50 W to 92 North to Delta to 550 south back to Durango) and the Utah Scenic Byway from Blanding to Bryce Canyon Via Hwy 95 and Utah Hwy 12. The San Juan loop might be the best ride I’ve had in 25 years. Very little traffic gorgeous views and the roads were all in excellent shape.


Worst M.C. experience ever – Left Flagstaff for Durango on Friday Morning and about 15 miles south of Hwy 160 ran into 150 miles of nasty crosswinds and dust storms. Never in my life have I made a left hand sweeper turn while leaning to the right. No place to stop and if we did we’d have been blown over. I forgot to close the vent on the top of my helmet letting the dust coat the inside of my visor. The wind never really stopped but at least there wasn’t any dust left when we reached Cortez, Co.


Runner up - "Tar Snakes" on Hwy 12 up and over the Grand Staircase. Lots of tire slipping and sphincter puckering.


Oh – the total eclipse was very cool too.





On Hwy 190 about 10 miles out of Pagosa Springs




Looking back down at Hwy 190 from the lookout not too far from Wolf Creek Pass




Co. Hwy 149 about 10 miles south of Creede




Alpine Meadows just north of Creede on Co. Hwy 149




Rest stop next to a nice river about 5 miles north of Lake City, Co on Hwy 149




Utah Hwy 92 about 15 miles out of Blanding, Utah




On Utah 12 overlooking the Escalante Canyons

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Thanks for the comments, we live near AZ 89 between Congress and Prescott and it is a sweet road. In our opinion, one of the best in Arizona. Vicious winds north of Flagstaff are always expected. We've been blown across our lane on some of the gusts along Hwy 89 north of Flag, Hwy 160 across the rez also gets these crosswinds as you experienced. We rode UT Hwy 12, the Escalante, last fall headed to Torrey and had never encountered tar snakes before, nor did we expect them at 80 degrees. They are a pucker factor.

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