Day 2 – Pacific Coast Highway Motorcycle Ride
Our motorcycle ride of 5534 miles in 14 days, riding more scenic western U.S. roads. Today we are riding from Amarillo, Texas to Georgetown, Colorado, 476 miles via Hwy 87, I-25 & I-70. We rode up this way several years ago on what I called our “National Park” and our “Mount Rushmore” rides. On those rides we made stops at Capulin Volcano National Monument and Pikes Peak National Monument. Today, we are just riding, putting some miles behind us, getting to our destination, the Pacific Coast. So, we won’t be stopping except for gas, food and rest but we will be seeing nice scenery along the way…
We were up, and on the road a bit later than usual, but not too late for the number of miles we are riding today. It is partly overcast and 67 degrees, making for some nice riding weather but it did warm up as we traveled northwest and it was a little above the average temperatures for this time of the year. On our ride last year the temperatures were 10 to 15 degrees warmer than normal and we rode in triple digit weather on several days. The hottest temperature last year reached 115 degrees L… This year so far… so good…
We picked up US Highway 87 just outside Dumas, Texas and rode it to Raton, New Mexico (215 miles). Everything is few and far between on this stretch of road so, if you are riding out this way, I would suggest planning food and gas stops appropriately. The scenery on Highway 87 is mainly rolling hills with a few sizable peaks. Scenery along this route is mostly ranch land with views of cattle and antelope along the way. Capulin Volcano National Monument is just 30 miles from Raton. If you haven’t been there, I would suggest checking it out. The history and views from the top of Capulin Volcano is something you don’t want to miss. At its base is a visitor center featuring exhibits about the volcano and the geology, natural and cultural history. In Raton there are many places to eat, stay and get gas. And is a good place to stop at the end of the day.
At Raton, we picked up I-25 and headed north. Once on I-25 we were in the mountains and rode across Raton Pass. Just over the pass, I-25 pretty much parallels the Rocky Mountains to the west. We planned on staying on the interstate to make time… and intended riding it to Georgetown, CO. via I-70… But we ran into very heavy traffic at Colorado Springs. Instead we took Hwy, 24, 67 and 285 to I-70. We traveled this route to Georgetown several years ago when we rode “Pikes Peak” The scenery along this route is better and a bit slower pace. It did take a little longer but I’m not sure it was any slower than I-25 traffic. Going this way was a lot easier on the nerves for sure. Traffic on I-70 was heavy but not too bad for the time of day. Today has been a long day. The sun was starting to set by the time we arrived at our home away from home in Georgetown. We were ready to eat and rest up for the next day.
Larry T. found a fellow “Vision” rider among the “Damn Builders” who were staying at the motel. They swapped Vision stories. He gave us a few suggestion for places to eat. We walked down the road to a little café for some good local food.
When Janet and I lived in Aurora, Georgetown was a favorite get away for us. If you are out this way there are lots of things to see and do here in Georgetown.
Georgetown was once the third largest town in Colorado, but today it is home to about a thousand residents. George and David Griffith, two prospectors from Kentucky founded Georgetown in 1859. Georgetown’s name honors the older brother. Before the silver boom collapsed in 1893, the town’s population exceeded 10,000. At one time, some of the town’s people tried to move the state capital to Georgetown from Denver. It’s probably a good thing that never happened.
Georgetown is a great place for visitors who want to shop, sight see, have lunch or spend the night at a Victorian bed-and-breakfast.
If out this way you will want to check-out some of the history. A must see are the Hotel de Paris and Hamill House Museum. The Georgetown Loop Railroad takes visitors on a round-trip narrow-gauge steam train ride from Georgetown to Silver Plume and back.
If hungry, there are many restaurants like these to choose from.
- In a haunted historic building, Lucha Cantina, serves traditional Mexican and American food.
- To satisfy a sweet tooth, checkout the Georgetown Cake Shoppeand have a good cup of coffee at Kaffehuset.
- The Dusty Rose Tea Room, offers traditional tea and lunch menu.
We will have to explore Georgetown the next time through because we are just riding to get to the Pacific Coast Highway. We will be leaving early and riding 517 miles to Ogden, UT via I-70, US 191, US 89 & I-15. Come follow along and enjoy the ride…
I hope we see you down the road somewhere… Ride safe…