Western States 2009 Part II - October 1-18, 2009

From my home in Nashville, TN to my friend's home in Phoenix, AZ is 1,670 miles by the most direct route.  It took us 2,944 miles to get there and I enjoyed virtually every single one of them.  We rode in sunshine and clouds.  We rode in warm and cold.  We even rode in light snow.  Through Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas into New Mexico.  Then north through Colorado and Utah back into Arizona.  We went from 500' above sea level to 10,600' above sea level.  We stopped at 21 national parks and national monuments.  We saw the mountains of northern New Mexico and southern Colorado and Utah.  For 8 days we rode through magnificent scenery and had an absolute blast doing so.  There aren't any very high-mileage days here, 556 was the longest.  We were both more concerned with enjoying the scenery and stopping when we wanted to than just putting in miles.  We watched hot air balloons take off in Albuquerque and we walked around Sedona, AZ for a couple of hours.  We toured the rock formations of Arches National Park and stopped so many times that we ran the battery on one of the bikes down.  We rode Scenic Byways in 6 states and we stopped to take photographs of a thunderstorm in the distance.  For 8 days we purely and simply enjoyed the scenery that the USA has to offer.

As with my trip to Arizona and California Earlier This Year I spent a good part of the flight back home trying to decide what I was going to write on these pages.  I came to the same conclusion this time that I did last time: Regardless of what I try to write the words will fall miserably short.  I cannot describe the feeling that I have when I ride.  I can write about the heat or the cold or the rain or the snow or the scenery but it just doesn't do justice to the trip.  So once again I simply decided that I would keep the narrative short and let my photographs speak for themselves.  So here they are.  700 or so photographs documenting a 3,000 mile trip through 8 states.  Enjoy the ride!

Update - January, 2010 - Upon returning home I realized that many of the photographs on these pages had extremely harsh contrast as well as some oversaturation of the colors.  I have gone back through virtually all of them and recorrected the contrast, saturation, and sharpening to more correctly reflect what I saw on my trip.  It is a beautiful area of the country and I want my photographs to reflect that properly.  I'm a lot more content with them now and feel that they are much cleaner than they previously were.


October 1, 2009
Nashville, TN to Little Rock, AR
October 2, 2009
Little Rock, AR to Clinton, OK
October 3, 2009
Clinton, OK to Albuquerque, NM

October 4, 2009
Albuquerque, NM to Durango, CO
October 5, 2009
Durango, CO to Moab, UT
October 6, 2009
Moab, UT to Tropic, UT

October 7, 2009
Tropic, UT to Page, AZ
October 8, 2009
Page, AZ to Phoenix, AZ
October 10, 2009
Williams, AZ

October 11, 2009
The Grand Canyon
October 16, 2009
Minerals and Drag Racing
October 18, 2009
Trip Summary


AGirl's trip report is on This Page beginning on October 1.  She got a lot of photographs that I missed, and her narrative is much better than mine is, so between the two of us I think we hit most of the highlights.



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