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HAVING DISCOVERED A LEAK IN THE FINAL DRIVE, I STARTED LOOKING FOR THE NEAREST MOTO GUZZI DEALER. THERE IS ONE IN NEW MEXICO AND ANOTHER IN FORT COLLINS, COLORADO. THE FORT COLLINS ONE WAS A MORE DIRECT ROAD, SO I PHONED 2 DAYS IN ADVANCE TO CHECK THAT THEY COULD ORDER THE PART AND HAVE IT THERE FOR WHEN I ARRIVED.

ASSURED THEY COULD,  I CHECKED THE MAP TO FIND A MOTEL CLOSEST TO THE SHOP. FORTUNATELY, THERE WAS A MOTEL 6 LESS THAN A MILE AWAY, SO I WENT ONLINE & BOOKED 2 NIGHTS.

THE FASTEST ROUTE WAS HW6 (191) SOUTH TO I-70 TO DENVER, THEN THE I-25 TO FT COLLINS.

THERE WAS A SLIGHTLY SHORTER ROUTE FURTHER NORTH, TAKING HW40. CHRISTINE DECIDED TO CHECK THE ROUTE WITH A PHOTOGRAPHER FRIEND, PATTI, WHO LIVES IN GRAND JUNCTION (BETWEEN THE TWO ROUTES). PATTI’S RESPONSE WAS……

Don’t do Hwy 40, Maybell, Colorado! Antelope hunting area! Nothing,not even a watering hole for miles and miles of rough roads and nasty desert. Then, over mountain passes. It is a bitch”.

Bless her, Patti tried her best to dissuade Jan from riding all that way (466 miles) with a problem on the bike; she phoned everyone she could think of to ask for an alternative solution but, in the end, she had to concede that Jan was a stubborn s-o-b and would not be put off!

The Legacy Inn, Price, Utah

The Legacy Inn, Price, Utah

I SET OFF FROM PRICE AT 0730. I MADE THE ODD STOP TO GET SOME PHOTOS AND ALSO AT SOME OF THE FUEL STOPS. THE IN-BETWEEN STOPS WERE JUST PULL OUTS SO I COULD CHECK ON THE STATE OF THE LEAK ON THE REAR WHEEL, BUT I STILL GOT THE ODD PIC AS WELL.

untitled052-3-2 untitled052-4 untitled052-5FRISCO (above)

I GOT TO THE MOTEL JUST BEFORE 1600, OFFLOADED THE BAGS THEN RANG BEEMERSANDMORE FOR DIRECTIONS.

Hello Motel 6 (again)

Hello Motel 6 (again)

THERE IS A FREEWAY TYPE ROAD, JUST IN FRONT OF THE MOTEL, WITH NO INDICATION OF HOW TO CROSS IT. AND YES, THE SHOP WAS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE FREEWAY. I WAS TOLD WHICH WAY TO GET ACROSS AND ENDED UP AT A BIG MOTORCYCLE SHOP WITH BMWs & DUCATIs. I WENT IN, AND ASKED FOR BILL; WELL ,THERE WASN’T ANYONE CALLED BILL AT THAT SHOP. THEY SOON WORKED OUT WHERE I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE, “AS YOU COME DOWN THE ROAD, YOU PASS A SIGN SAYING AMERICAN FURNITURE WAREHOUSE, WITH A HUGE BUILDING AFTER THE PARKING AREA, TURN IN THERE, AND BEHIND THE HUGE BUILDING THERE IS A ROW OF SHOPS, THAT’S WHERE YOU HAVE TO GO”.

OK, THAT DID THE TRICK; I FOUND THE RIGHT PLACE, HANDED THE BIKE OVER, THEN ASKED THEM TO PLEASE PHONE A TAXI TO GET ME BACK TO THE MOTEL.

HMM; THAT SEEMED TO CAUSE NO END OF PROBLEMS. THE CHAP BEHIND THE DESK SAID THAT NORMALLY THEY WOULD JUST RUN ME BACK TO THE MOTEL, BUT THAT DAY EVERYONE HAD COME IN ON BIKES.

WELL AS THEY WERE SORTING OUT MY TRANSPORT, I TOOK SOME PICCYS OF THE NEW 1400, THE V7 RACER, AND MY FAVOURITE, THE V7 STONE.

untitled052-2-3 untitled052-3-3 untitled052-5-2 untitled052-6ANYWAY, SOMEONE CAME OUT FROM THE WORKSHOP AND SAID THERE WAS A PROBLEM WITH GETTING THE PARTS FOR THE BIKE; YES, THEY HAD THE SEAL, BUT THE FINAL DRIVE HAS TO BE TAKEN APART TO GET AT IT, AND THEY DID NOT HAVE THE GASKETS IN STOCK; PERHAPS BY FRIDAY, AS THE SHOP DOES NOT OPEN MONDAYS. WELL I GOT SOMEWHAT STROPPY AND SAID THEY’D HAD 2 DAYS TO SORT THIS AND HAD ASSURED ME THAT THEY WOULD HAVE THE PARTS TO DO THE JOB BY SATURDAY.”

I SAID, OK YOU MIGHT BE CLOSED ON MONDAYS, BUT I AM NOT, SO GIVE ME THE NUMBER TO CALL, AND THE REF NR, AND I WILL ORDER THE PARTS FOR OVERNIGHT DELIVERY FOR TUESDAY…..WELL THE PAIR OF THEM  STARTED LOOKING INTO  WHAT COULD BE DONE, AND THEY ORDERED THE PARTS ONLINE, AND THEY COULD APPARENTLY SEE THAT THE GASKETS WERE IN STOCK AND COULD BE DELIVERED.
WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO ” GASKET PAPER ” AND  CUT IT YOURSELF ?
ANYWAY,  AS LONG AS THE GASKETS TURN UP, ON TUESDAY, I MIGHT BE ABLE TO CARRY ON ON WEDNESDAY.

ABOUT THAT MOMENT, A YOUNGER CHAP CAME OUT FROM THE BACK, AND ON HEARING ABOUT THE TAXI PROBLEM SAID,  “I HAVE TO TEST RIDE A BIKE, THEN I WILL BE BACK, YOU CAN RIDE PILLION BACK TO THE MOTEL”.

AFTER A FEW MINUTES, HE CAME BACK, I GOT ON THE BACK OF HIS APRILLIA, AND WE SPED OFF BACK TO THE MOTEL 6 – WHERE HE THEN INTRODUCED HIMSELF, AS ‘FLASH’

HE SUGGESTED GOING OUT FOR DINNER BUT WE COULD NOT GO TO HIS HOUSE TO EAT, BECAUSE IT WAS STILL IN A MESS FROM THEIR ABSENCE DURING A 3 WEEK TOUR OF ALL THE ITALIAN BIKE & CAR FACTORIES. THEY HAD ONLY GOT HOME THIS WEDNESDAY PAST. WE AGREED TO MEET IN ABOUT AN HOUR AND GO OUT TO EAT; FLASH WOULD PICK ME UP IN HIS CAR.

I GOT THE BAGS UNPACKED, HAD A SHAVE & SHOWER AND GOT DRESSED, BEFORE GOING TO RECEPTION TO ASK FOR MORE NIGHTS IN THE ROOM. WALKING TO RECEPTION, I DID NOTICE BIG CLOUDS BUILDING.

untitled052-7A LONG STORY – SHORT; THE RECEPTIONIST SOMEHOW CODED MY CARD WITH THE WRONG ROOM NUMBER, SO WHEN I GOT BACK TO MY ROOM, THE CARD WOULDN’T WORK. WELL I WALKED BACK AND TRIED IT AGAIN, BUT STILL COULDN’T GET IN. THIS TIME THE ERROR WAS DISCOVERED AND JUST AS IT WAS PUT RIGHT, MY PHONE RANG; IT WAS FLASH, OUTSIDE MY ROOM. I EXPLAINED THE PROBLEM AND AFTER US BOTH TRYING THE CARD, A FEW MORE TIMES, WE FINALLY GOT IT TO WORK.

WE SET OFF. FLASH ALSO LIKES BEER, SO WE WENT TO HIS FAVORITE EATERY AND BREW PUB, SO I COULD SAMPLE SOME OF THE GOODIES. FLASH DRANK AT A SEDATE PACE, AS HE WAS DRIVING, BUT I DID ENJOY MYSELF. WE SHARED A SPECIALITY SAUSAGE PLATTER, AND “PORK WINGS” SUPPOSEDLY IN A MADRAS SAUCE. WELL, MEBBE AMERICAN MADRAS, CERTAINLY NOT THE UK MADRAS, BUT STILL VERY TASTY, ALL OF IT.

untitled052-8 untitled052-9 untitled052-11WE WERE JUST ABOUT FINISHED, WHEN THE LIGHTNING FLASHED AND THUNDER CRASHED AND THE HEAVENS OPENED. SO I TOOK A PICCY THROUGH THE WINDOW

untitled052-10AND WE SHARED A BOTTLE OF BEER WHILE WAITING FOR THE RAIN TO STOP. EVENTUALLY, WE GOT IN THE CAR AND WENT TO A SCENIC LOOK OUT ABOVE THE TOWN, WHERE I GOT PICCYS OF 2 DIFFERENT COLORED CLOUDS, WITH A BRIGHT BLUE HOLE IN THE MIDDLE, SO I DID MY BEST TO GET A DECENT PICCY OF THAT.
DESPITE LIGHTNING FLASHING ALL OVER, IT NEVER HAPPENED JUST WHERE I WAS POINTING THE CAMERA AT THE TIME.

untitled052-12 untitled052-13 NEXT WE WENT TO A BEER STORE THAT WAS INCREDIBLE, SO I COULD STOCK UP FOR THE DAYS WAITING FOR THE BIKE TO GET FIXED.

untitled052-18 untitled052-19AS WE DROVE HOME, WE GOT CAUGHT IN A MINIATURE FLASH FLOOD, I TRIED, BUT IT WASN’T EASY TO PHOTOGRAPH FROM INSIDE THE CAR AS I HAD THE CAMERA ON AUTO AND IT WOULDN’T FOCUS BEYOND THE RAIN ON THE WINDSHIELD.

untitled052-16 untitled052-14WE ARRIVED AT THE HOTEL, TO FIND THAT THE STORM HAD KNOCKED THE POWER OUT………BUGGER.

FLASH TOLD ME TO BE AT THE SHOP, AROUND 0900 IN THE MORNING, AND HE WOULD LEND ME HIS SINGLE CYLINDER BMW 650. I SAID THANKS YOU VERY MUCH THEN OFF HE WENT HOME. HE HAD WORKED FOR ONE OF THE MAINSTREAM COMPUTER COMPANIES FOR MANY YEARS AND HAS TOURED EUROPE, JAPAN, INDIA & SOUTH AFRICA. HE HAS DONE A ‘DUSTY BUTT’, WHICH IS THE SAME 1,000 MILES IN 24 HOURS RIDE AS AS AN ‘IRON BUTT’, BUT DONE ENTIRELY OFF ROAD. HE DOES NOT HAVE A WEBSITE AS SUCH BUT WRITES A LOT FOR ADV, AND SOME OTHERS, INCLUDING www.deathstar.org/flash.

BACK IN MY ROOM, I RUMMAGED IN THE BAGS AND FINALLY FOUND MY DOUBLE AA MAGLITE & TURNED IT ON, AS I FUMBLED AROUND GETTING READY FOR BED WHERE I READ BY TORCHLIGHT FOR A WHILE, HOPING THE POWER WOULD COME BACK ON. WELL IT DIDN’T AND THE MAG LITE DIED. SO I FINALLY WENT TO SLEEP.

AT 0138 IN THE MORNING, I WOKE UP WHEN THE LIGHTS CAME BACK ON, BUT I WAS SO TIRED BY THEN, THAT I JUST TURNED THEM OFF AND WENT BACK TO SLEEP.

RIGHT HERE ARE PICCYS OF THE BEER I BOUGHT

untitled052-23These are NOT all for the one night – but for the duration!

HERE’S THE BIKE FLASH HAS VERY KINDLY LOANED TO ME.

untitled052-21 untitled052-22WE DISCUSSED INSURANCE AND HE CHECKED MY DRIVING LICENSE AND THAT WAS THAT.

I RODE AROUND THE BACK ROADS A BIT, TO GET USED TO THE KNOBBLY TYRES. THE BIKE DOES VIBRATE A LOT JUST ON SETTING OFF AND SLOWING DOWN.

BUT SUPPLIED WITH MAPS, I WILL BE LOOKING FOR SOME SCENIC ROUTES TO RIDE AROUND WHILE HERE.
TAKE CARE OUT THERE.

The following day, this was the scene outside – following the flash flood of the previous evening;

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It was amazing there was any power and internet the following morning.

untitled052-41 untitled052-42

The high water line (above)

After a hearty breakfast……

untitled052-43Jan took off to explore. He headed to the Cache la Poudre River Corridor

untitled052-25The River that Set Historic Water Law in the West

untitled052-26THE TUNNEL, WHICH IS 8 FT HIGH, IS TOTALLY BLOCKED WITH ROCKS TREES & MUD. THOSE TWO TUBES WITH POINTS ON ARE THE WATER GAUGES FOR CHECKING HOW MUCH WATER IS BEING DIVERTED AND THEY ARE 10 FT TALL!

THE TUNNEL WAS BUILT IN 1952. THIS IS THE FIRST TIME EVER, SINCE IT WAS BUILT, THAT ANYTHING LIKE THIS HAS HAPPENED. I’M NOT SURE HOW MANY HOMES AND FARMS DEPEND ON THAT TUNNEL FOR THEIR WATER, BUT IT WAS QUITE A FEW.

untitled052-27 untitled052-28

Horsetooth Reservoir

untitled052-29Originating among the Rocky Mountains and dropping some 7,000 feet to the Great Plains, the Cache la Poudre River is relatively short;125 miles from start to end. It flows eastward through diverse geographic settings. In many areas one can see head gates, flumes, water measurement devices, and an intricate network of ditches as reminders that people are able to modify the river’s flow. These structures symbolize the long struggle to sustain a viable agricultural economy and to meet the water needs of urban development for the people of northern Colorado.

The Poudre is significant for its contribution to the development of Western water law and the evolution of complex water delivery systems.The Poudre has also played a crucial role in regional economic development and has become a focal point for recreation.

untitled052-31 untitled052-32 untitled052-33 untitled052-35 untitled052-37Here is his route from Price, UT to Fort Collins, CO

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