Riding the Gold Belt Tour - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-02-2016, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Riding the Gold Belt Tour

I have been pretty self involved the last week, what with buying the new bike, riding, reading up on it, etc., and I've been neglecting duties around the house and ignoring my wife. So I thought I would take a day off from the AT.

Yeah, you can guess how long I stuck with that decision. My ride home from the dealership was on some pretty boring road, and I wanted to get out on some dirt to see what the bike can do; nothing too challenging since my dirt skills are non-existent and I don't have any protection on the bike yet.

Decided to take a ride on the Shelf Road that runs from Canon City Colorado to Cripple Creek. The Shelf Road is an old stagecoach road, it is just about 25 miles long, and the elevation gain from Canon City to Cripple Creek is just shy of 4000 feet. It was used to transport ore and supplies during the Pike's Peak gold rush in 1859. The road has got a lot of rocky stretches, and a great deal of washboard, but it is not particularly challenging. A good SUV could make the trip without problem. The road is just visible in the far left of this photo.


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There are some really beautiful limestone formations, particularly near the Canon City end of the road, which is where I started.


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It was an unseasonably warm day, nearly 85 according to the gauge on my dash. The bike pulled effortlessly and I was having so much fun it should've been illegal. The controls were a little disconcerting, what with remembering to set the traction control and ABS appropriately every time I started the bike. This is a view of the road from across the valley.



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Saw a great deal of wildlife along the way including deer, turkeys, and this guy:


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A Western rattlesnake was out in the road taking the sun. I was surprised to see him out this late in the year at this altitude.


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At the Cripple Creek end of the trail there are a lot of abandoned mine shafts and mine tailings. It is also one of the cities in Colorado that allows gambling, but that is not my interest, so I headed back down the canyon.


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Despite the mild nature of this ride, I did end up taking a spill. I parked on an uphill grade to take a photo, and as I prepared to dismount, I lost my footing on some gravel and my balance went with it. The bike tipped past the point of no return and down we went. The brush guard got pushed out of the way, and the clutch lever snapped.That was the only black cloud of the day, but I had enough clutch lever to keep riding, and it wasn't long before I was enjoying myself again.


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Thats it for this ride, hope to see you out there. Still waiting to see another Africa Twin in the wild.


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Last edited by pvanryn; 11-02-2016 at 09:48 PM.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-02-2016, 07:31 PM
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It's a shame the pics didn't upload, sounds like a nice ride tho.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-02-2016, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you imgur.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-03-2016, 04:56 PM
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Looks like a relaxing ride out.

Levers do snap very quickly, even from a small drop. Did the plastic bracket for the hand guard also brake?
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-04-2016, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Wouter V. View Post
Levers do snap very quickly, even from a small drop. Did the plastic bracket for the hand guard also brake?
The plastic bracket popped off the end of the handlebar and got scuffed, but did not break.

AT parts are still a scarcity here. I talked to the local Honda dealer who told me he would have to order a clutch lever. I think I am going to invest in some folding levers.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-07-2016, 03:43 AM
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Some better protection for the handles would be nice, it's to silly to have you trip ruined because of a small drop.
Over here parts are readily available, but it's still an inconvenience.


I've ordered the Hepco & Becker guards that go over the original guards.
With the money I've spend on levers and brackets they would have paid for themselves by now.
I'll post some pics once they're fitted.
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