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Old 07-01-2014, 10:41 PM   #1
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Need advice on short Colorado trip!

My wife and I were finally able to schedule some time off together. Right now, it's only the 28th of July through the 1st of August. That's a Monday through Friday. So, we are going to drive our 2006 TJ Sport up to Colorado! We live in Oklahoma City too. I've bought maps, books and have been doing a lot of research online too. It will take us a full day just to get to Colorado Springs. My wife wants to drive up Pike's Peak even though we've done that numerous times before. So, we will stay in Colorado Springs that night. But what I really want to do, is hit trails like Black Bear, Imogene, etc. I reserved a hotel in Ouray for the next night. Would there be enough time in the day to head out from Ouray in the morning, do Yankee Boy and Imogene into Telluride, Ophir back east and then Black Bear back into Telluride? That's kind of my plan right now. Tuesday night in Ouray, Wednesday night in Telluride. Hopefully, we can get a couple more days than five days, but for now, that's what I'm looking at. Can I do Yankee Boy, Imogene, Ophir and Black bear in one day and still have time to stop and explore the area?

Also, I made a reservation at the Beaumont Hotel in Ouray. Anybody ever stayed there?

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Old 07-01-2014, 11:19 PM   #2
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That's an aggressive day, not that you can't do it but you'll be out from sun up to dark for sure.

Why not run Yankee boy and then Black bear and stay in T-Ride then pick either Immogene or Orphir to run on the way out the next day? You could connect it to the alpine loop and run back to lake city on your way home or to wherever your going next. Just my 2 cents.

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Old 07-01-2014, 11:21 PM   #3
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That would be a marathon to try and get them all in, in one day. Probably doable, but not enjoyable.
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Old 07-01-2014, 11:28 PM   #4
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Agreed. It would need to be split to do it and enjoy it. We normally run black bear and Imogene in 1 day. Takes us most of the day. The scenery and mine history can slow things down.
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Old 07-01-2014, 11:43 PM   #5
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Agree. That'd be an all day run.
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Old 07-02-2014, 11:09 PM   #6
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Thanks for the advice! I'm pretty sure I'll be able to get an extra day out of this trip. That would give me a couple of days of Jeeping around the area. I'm not interested in just driving and not stopping and exploring the mine ruins and stuff.
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Old 07-05-2014, 05:38 PM   #7
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I'll be in the area 28-July to 1-Aug, staying just outside of Ridgeway (North of Ouray / Telluride). I'll be with the family, but they won't hit every trail with me and it'd be nice to have some backup on the trails. I won't be hitting Black Bear on the day one, maybe day 2 or 3.
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:34 PM   #8
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It's Ridgway, NOT Ridgeway. Here's a listing of open trails:

Jeep Trail Conditions | Switzerland of America Ouray Jeep Tours
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:58 PM   #9
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Thanks for the spellcheck, guess I need to spring for the bifocals. Is it pronounced differently too? The wife already found the SOA trail list, that's great that those folks keep tabs on the trails for us "foreigners".
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Old 07-06-2014, 12:32 AM   #10
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KC, I go to the Ouray, Silverton, Telluride area every summer

A short trip to this area would be like going to the Super Bowl and watching one quarter.

Spend some time there, its worth it, Everyone is giving you good advice.


Im making my annual trip, will be there July 29 and stay tell I get done

Here is a link to last years run. Watch in the largest screen possible, adjust for music. Give yourself about 11 min.
Telluride Ouray Offroad July 2013 - YouTube
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:17 AM   #11
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Thanks again for all of the advice! So, we should find out in the next couple of days if my wife was approved for extra days off. She works in the medical field and they've been short handed lately. Currently, we have the 28th through the 1st off together. If that's all we can get, we'll just have to make it work. I already made hotel reservations in Ouray and Telluride and had to pay for it already. That's $600 and not refundable. Yikes! We're planning on going to Colorado Springs on the 28th and doing Pike's Peak that day. Then, we'll head out early on the 29th. I'd like to go to St. Elmo and then do Tincup Pass. Then, head into Lake City and do Engineer Pass into Ouray. On the 30th, I'd do Yankee Boy Basin and Imogene into Telluride. On the 31st, Ophir Pass going east and then Black Bear back into Telluride. If she can't get that Saturday off, then we'll just have to spend all day Friday doing a marathon drive from Telluride to Oklahoma City. It's about 820 miles from Telluride to my house. If she can get Saturday off, I'll still leave Telluride on Friday and break up the drive home a bit. Does all of that sound reasonable for those trails? I'm wondering if the Colorado Springs to Ouray day with Tincup Pass and Engineer Pass is a bit of a stretch? What say you pros?
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:21 AM   #12
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Quite an ambitious trip you have. Be sure to bring rain gear as it's Monsoon season here and you can expect thunderstorms every afternoon.

As of July 12:

CLOSED:
Govenor Basin
Black Bear
Poughkeepsie-Open from Engineer to wall.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:07 AM   #13
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I don't see how Springs to Ouray with with Tincup Pass and Engineer Pass thrown in would be an enjoyable day. The Springs to Ouray is a good solid 5 hour drive with Monarch pass and traffic. Throwing in 4 or 5 more hours on two trails (assuming you not just going to haul ass through them) will make a for a very long day that will leave you tired at the beginning of your Ouray runs.

I know it's easy to say this since we live close, but you really should try to do less and enjoy it more than do more and enjoy it less.

Feel free to check out my ~200 photos from last week on Ophir, Imogene, Poughkeepsie Gulch, Mineral Creek, Corkscrew, California and Hurricane.

With the scenery of Ouray on the list, I'd drop Pikes Peak in a heartbeat to gain that extra time!
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jim9251 View Post
As of July 12:
Poughkeepsie-Open from Engineer to wall.
A bunch of us ran P. Gulch from end to end on the 10th.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:20 PM   #15
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Black Bear is open San Miguel County Colorado | Road & Bridge Department I will be there on the 21 and 22 and will let you know what the condition of it is after that.
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:18 PM   #16
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The long drive to that area is worth a day trip if that's all you have in the San Juans ! You will love it.
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:50 PM   #17
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Thanks for the advice! That's kind of what I was afraid of. Fortunately, my wife was able to get that Sunday off before and probably the Saturday after. I can add a day up front! WOO! My hotel reservations in Ouray and Telluride are already made and paid for. It costs more money to change them. So, I was figuring we could hit the road Sunday morning and be to the Springs in the afternoon. We'll do Pike's Peak that day, stay the night there, and then hit the road the next morning and do Tincup and Cumberland. Then, stay Monday night in Lake City. Engineer Pass on Tuesday and stay Tuesday night in Ouray. Wednesday I'd do Yankee Boy and Imogene, Thursday I'd do Ophir and Black Bear, and head out on Friday. It's a lot but I don't have the luxury of a lot of time. This is my first time running trails like this. We just don't have Jeep trails here in Oklahoma. It's a real drag. I'd love to move to Colorado someday.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:15 PM   #18
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Also, do you guys have any good hotel recommendations for Lake City or Gunnison? It looks like Gunnison has more options. I'm sure my wife will want to stay somewhere decent and be able to walk around town and get something to eat. She's more civilized than I am. If it were just me, I'd camp out and eat Mountain House meals.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:33 PM   #19
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Sorry, no help here for hotels. The three times we have been out we have done a B&B, trailer camping and rented a house with another Jeep'n family.

I think your new revised plan should be a lot more enjoyable. If you don't mess around on Ophir too much, you can run it in about 2 hours. If you need to shave more time off, don't air down for it. It'll be a rougher ride, but you don't need the extra traction. That way you can just air down for Black Bear.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:35 PM   #20
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Having just finished a trip like yours. You will be more tired when your done. My advise, Go to Ouray and make that your base camp. Telluride, Silverton, and lake city are close by and easy to get too by way of mountain trails.
on the way back if you have time hit Pikes Peak since you have been there before.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:42 PM   #21
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What a great video

Quote:
Originally Posted by h2ogun View Post
K

Here is a link to last years run. Watch in the largest screen possible, adjust for music. Give yourself about 11 min.
Telluride Ouray Offroad July 2013 - YouTube

Dude

Nice photographs and video

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Old 07-21-2014, 12:41 PM   #22
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Dude

Nice photographs and video

Bill
Bill, thanks for the comment

80% is being there. Just a few more days, and Im headed that way.

Dif
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Old 07-21-2014, 12:52 PM   #23
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We are driving down on the 23rd and were hoping to do Black Bear either Thursday or Friday, if you have any pictures or info on the conditions please post would like to know a bit a head of time what it's like up there.

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Black Bear is open San Miguel County Colorado | Road & Bridge Department I will be there on the 21 and 22 and will let you know what the condition of it is after that.
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Old 07-21-2014, 01:03 PM   #24
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Black Bear Pass was opened July 16 (2014). You should be good to go,
I'll be there on July 27, and will look for you on the trails if your still there.

Dif
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Old 07-22-2014, 11:13 PM   #25
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I'll try and post an update, but I was planning to run Black Bear next Thursday as well. I may run it Wednesday if it looks like the weather will be better on Wednesday vs. Thursday.

Also, I had a bad experience reserving a hotel in Telluride. Not with the hotel, but with the reservation company, Telluride Resort Reservations. I was trying to stay at the Inn at Lost Creek. I called them and they transferred me to this reservation company. I made a reservation for Wednesday and Thursday night and it was supposed to be $274 for both nights. I checked with the lady on the phone no less than five times and she seemed irritated that I kept asking, but said that yes, I was checking in on the 30th and checking out on the 1st. But when I got my confirmation E-mail after my card was charged, it only said the 30th through the 31st. Still, I was charged $274. I called back and they were not helpful at all. Difficult to get hold of. They refused to make it right or refund my money. I had to get my bank (USAA) involved and they are going to refund the charges. After I did that, a lady called back from the reservation company and asked what the problem was. I politely explained that I felt like I had been lied to and that this was done deliberately. She was kind of short with me and said that she'd cancel my reservation and refund my money and promptly hung up on me. Whatevs. I just need to find another place to stay now! $274 for one night is a bit steep when all I'll really be doing there is sleeping. Anyways, beware of that place. Not the hotel, just the reservation company.

Besides all of that, we are super stoked about our trip. We're leaving Sunday morning. Can't wait!
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Old 07-23-2014, 12:22 AM   #26
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I decided to take Wayne D's advice and set up shop in Ouray. We are going to stay at the Beaumont in Downtown Ouray for three nights. It's kind of expensive, but my wife loves those sorts of places and she's been working hard lately. Anybody ever stayed at the Beaumont? I read about it in one of my 4x4 books. http://www.beaumonthotel.com/

Anyways, I was thinking that if I stayed in Ouray, I could do Black Bear and then Ophir to get back and then maybe do Black Bear again the next day and take Imogene and Yankee Boy Basin to get back to Ouray. Any other trails I should be checking out around there? Is Ophir a fun trail or should I be looking into something else with my time in town? We'll get there Tuesday afternoon or evening after running Engineer Pass from Lake City. We'll leave Ouray on Friday morning. Thanks again for all of the advice! You guys have really helped me put my trip together.

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Old 07-23-2014, 12:30 AM   #27
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I enjoyed ophir. It's worth it.
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Old 07-23-2014, 08:16 AM   #28
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I really liked Ophir as well. It's a pretty short trail, I think we did it in about an hour and a half. But, with your limited time there, I might be inclined to skip it this trip. That would keep you from doing Black Bear twice and basically free up an entire day for other trails.

How are you planning to get from Engineer into Ouray... via Mineral Creek or the Cali/Hurricane/Corkscrew system? Most people run Mineral Creek going up to Engineer, so you might run into a decent amount of on coming, up hill, traffic. There are not a lot of places to pass on that trail (depending on what section you are in), so you could be backing and waiting more than you would like.
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Old 07-23-2014, 11:34 AM   #29
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If you end up being limited to one day, you could fit most of that in. Last year I ran Black Bear to Telluride, had lunch, then returned to Ouray via Imogene with plenty of time to spare. I wanted to do Yankee Boy that same day, but it was raining the entire return trip on Imogene so I didn't since it would be raining there too. To fit Ophir in there somewhere in the same day would be tough.
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Old 07-23-2014, 11:57 AM   #30
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Ophir was cool. Short, but sort of like being on another planet when you get to the top. You'll see what I mean when you get there.
Make sure you take mineral creek up to the alpine loop. One if my favorites. It's just south of town on the left. Can't miss it.
The hotel should be cool, right in town and you can walk to dinner or shopping. Gas stations and one power wash station are on the north side if town past the hot springs.
Fill up with gas everyday along with ice, drinks and lunch.
Most of all slow down, stop often and take lots of pictures.

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