September 20, 2017

Ouray, Colorado

Rides-   70, 60 miles

     We arrived at Ouray, which is often called Little Switzerland, now I know why!  The town is in the valley with mountains surrounding. We camped in town at 4J+1+1 RV park, because most of the primitive camping in the forest are to small/tight for our 27ft camper. We bought the Fun Treks, ATV trails Guide for Colorado- Silverton, Ouray, Lake City, Telluride by Charles A. Wells.   There is also information at the Visitor Center in town


       We decided to the Alpine Loop, which starts south of town and travels east to Lake City and back. Haul you rigs south on Hwy 550, 3.8 miles, at the sharp curve, on left, is the Alpine staging area, a large rocky road.  Easy to miss. Be forewarned, Hwy 550's shoulder is a 500ft drop off,  but it can be done!

       It is a rocky and somewhat steep, but no obstacles. Numerous trails spur off from Alpine Loop.


You will see shelf roads, old mining camps, valleys and high elevation saddles. The trails are well marked, just be sure you have a GPS and maps. More than half of this trail is a gravel road, but still interesting. It might sound confusing, but with good maps, it all makes sense.


     We went over Engineer Pass, 12,800ft.  numerous mines. You CAN DRIVE thru Lake City and pick up the trail to Cinnamon Pass, which would make a circle. They have recently allowed licensed OHV driving on the roads.

     We came back on County road 30, past Lake San Cristobal, over Cinnamon Pass, 12,640ft and back to Engineer Pass Trail. It took all day, 7 hours, 70 miles. A very diverse trail.

September 21, 2017  South on Hwy 550, 7.8 miles theres a large staging area.  Corkscrew to California Gulch to Animas Fork, then down to Silverton. 6 hours, 60 miles[000002][023756][023768]

    Red Mountain number 1 & 2 are so beautiful. then over to Hurricane Pass 12,407ft., viewing Lake Como, then up the hill to California Gulch ( we found some snow in the shade) We stopped at Animas Forks, where you can view several homes and mines. Animas Forks was a old mining town in 1870, pop. 450.  We followed the river down and south to Silverton. There are only certain streets you can drive on in town. Find a map at the Kiosk along the road.[023619][023369]hurricane3Lake san cristol

     Going back, find County road 110 north, to Gladstone, then back to our staging area. Another fine trip thru valleys, mountains, forest, and peaks.

September 14, 2017

Peach Valley OHV, Olathe, Colorado (north of Montrose)

56 miles 

This is a unique  OHV area and easy to get to.
From Olathe, Colorado, turn east on Falcon Road,  4 miles, which is paved and turns into Peach Valley Road, there is 1 mile of gravel road.  There is a BLM sign and the big area is on your right.  This is a large area with two pit toilets, several picnic tables, some with pavilions. There is no water/electric/dump, but a large flat area to free camp. BLM has maps at the kiosk.

DSCN2248 DSCN2249
DSCN2247 DSCN2250
There is several loading docks, a play-practice area for children and a obstacle course with jumps. Around the staging area you will find a large open area with adobe clay hills to climb for motorbikes or Atv's. When it rains, it gets very slippery, so let it dry up before hitting the hills. The trails are marked with names as well as which machine can go on that trail
DSCN2194 DSCN2190
Day 1- 11 miles- After setting up our camper, we played in the open hills area, learning where they go, and how steep the hills are. Some of the dirt bikes, go straight up the hill side, be careful to ride within your ability. Then we headed out to Eagle Trail, which was marked dangerous, but it was more rocky with elevation. It was marked a road on the map(BLM) but was more of a trail. We came to a cross road with a huge drop off!  we turned left Red Rocks-Nighthorse Trail, then Wave road. We made a circle of the trails and ended back at the campground.
DSCN2203 DSCN2205 - Copy
DSCN2200 DSCN2235

Day 2 -45 miles Nice sunny day, we headed south and rode up some high hills, wow! We finally made it to the Elephant skin road, which we rode south to Flat Top Trailhead, about 6 miles. Elephant skin road is a easy 4x4 road. Most of the trails off this road were for motorbikes or hiking. We did go up the Dump Ridge trail. It rose 530 ft in a short distance, with sheer drop offs on both sides!!
DSCN2209 DSCN2223
DSCN2225 DSCN2218
When we reached the top, we turned around, since the trail turned quite narrow.  Returning toward camp, we took the Chuckar road, which is a slow 4x4 bumpy road, (4 miles one way) that dead ends at the Gunnison River, which flows north in the Gunnison Gorge Wilderness. We thought we'd be the only ones there, but there were 10 vehicles, 10 pack mules and a few people. We found out, pack mules carry rafts and gear, one mile down 1,000 ft to the river, for a 3 day rafting trip.
We rode some trails up and down the hills making our way to camp. They are so much fun, but pick the one for your machine and riding experience. They are steeper then they look!
DSCN2232 DSCN2238
DSCN2237 DSCN2247


LOCATION>   NEAREST CITY=Olathe, Co   DIRECTIONS=4 miles east on Falcon road/Peach road
AREA >   TYPE OF LAND=-desert, juniper, mountain  , OWNER=  BLM
QUALITY >  Pro-diverse & camping on site / Con-could have more Atv trails /  Length of stay 2-3 days/ Rating-stars 4
TERRAIN>  MILES OF TRAILS, hills / dunes / mud / dust /elevation                                             TRAIL MAINTENCE   / SQ. MILE AREA -9,700 acres/  NEAR BY TRAILS-Flat Top & Elephant Skin OHV staging 
REGULATIONS> Permit required-Co.OHV sticker / Camping-on site /whip-no / helmets req-no. / width req.-yes
FEE> Camping / Entry-no fee
KEY SERVICES> Camping / Gasoline / Diesel / First Aid /  Water /  Dump / Food=Olathe or Montrose, Colorado
SIDE TRIPS>  Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Monument, Grand Mesa to the north
CONTACTS>  BLM office in Montrose

September 12, 2017

Wagon Wheel Trail System, Meeker, Colorado

35 miles

   We stopped at Meeker to load up on grocery, gas, diesel and information from the Forest Service Office on main street, along with the Champer of Commerce. Nice small town
  We headed east of Meeker Colorado, on County road #8, a paved road, which follows beside the White River. It is a beautiful 32 mile drive, the landscape changes every mile.  At first the area is flat and dry, with juniper growing on the hill side.  The bottom land is farmed and there are amazing homes in the valley.  The further out, you will see aspen with a mix of pine trees on the steep hills. One home was called Cattle Lack Ranch!  We camped at an official BLM campground with water, and clean pit toilets, $23 per night, but one of us holds the Golden Age pass, so the fee is 1/2.
I had numerous maps of the area including the downloadable MVUM on my tablet, which shows us exactly where we are on the trails.

DSCN2124 DSCN2138
DSCN2183 DSCN2126
Day 1-- 35 miles  We headed east on County road 8 to the Dead Horse Loop road.  It was a easy drive with fantastic views into the valley.  Big aspen trees line the well marked trail. We saw a few elk hunters camped in the woods. The highest elevation was 10300 ft. when a dark cloud passed over and dropped some hail.  The views were spectacular, from big grass meadows, spruce trees to mountain tops.  We also rode on the narrow ATV trails, which we found enjoyable. We saw s large herd of cattle being rounded up for the fall season. The cowboy filled us in on the lay of the land, including sheep range permits over the hills. We made a big circle coming out on 280 FS #.
DSCN2132 DSCN2142
DSCN2149 DSCN2151
DSCN2169 DSCN2177

Day 2—Due to an electrical problem in the camper, we had to go into Meeker and fix it. The business in town are well supplied and friendly. There is a yearly Wagon Wheel OHV Rendezvous in July out of Meeker, Colorado. They have it all organized with 14 trails. You can have a guide, or use the booklet with all the information you will need to go out and enjoy this great area!

DSCN2175 DSCN2176
DSCN2179 DSCN2164
DSCN2173 DSCN2160

LOCATION>   NEAREST CITY=Meeker, Colorado   DIRECTIONS=East of Meeker, turn on County Rd. 8, go 32 miles out
AREA >   TYPE OF LAND= forest, mountain  , OWNER= Nat Forest
QUALITY >  Pro-lots of miles of trails / Con-finding a place to camp and stage /  Length of stay- 5 days / Rating-stars-5
TERRAIN>  MILES OF TRAILS, 250 miles- hills / forest / dust / water crossing /elevation     TRAIL MAINTENCE –yes   / SQ. MILE AREA -/  NEAR BY TRAILS- Sand Wash Basin, Maybell
REGULATIONS> Permit required / Camping-depends /whip-no / helmets req-no. / width req.-some places
FEE> Camping-depends where / Entry-just Colorado OHV permit
KEY SERVICES> Camping / Gasoline / Diesel / First Aid /  Water /  Dump / Food=Meeker
SIDE TRIPS>Trappers Lake
CONTACTS>Forest Service Office, Meeker, Co