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Discussion Starter #21
Inching ever closer. Took both Rangers to a local ATV shop for oil changes and a good inspection. There have been some late season snowfalls, hopefully there won't be too many trails closed.
 

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Discussion Starter #22
Loaded and ready, leaving bright and early tomorrow
 

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Safe travels sir! Have a blast and take lots of pics!
 

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Have fun and stay safe! Please post a write up when you get a chance! This is where we would like to go next year... From speaking with folks that have went, you pretty much have to book it Jan 1st, as places fill up really quickly. Also, any hints, tips or suggestions for a future visitor would be greatly appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter #26
We still have a few days of vacation to go and more riding to do but here are a few to get you started. The first day we rode the Durango and Silverton train, something I have been wanting to do that for years. DH357 and my daughter decided to take a nap on the way back.
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The first day of riding, out of Silverton we tried to make it Animas Forks, but were blocked by an avalanche just past the Eureka site. They told us the snow was over 100 ft deep in places. The grandkids loved playing in the snow, throwing snowballs and even made a mini snowman.
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The next day we went to up to Corkscrew Pass. We made it to the pass but the trail was blocked by snow beyond that. We turned around and went to Hurricane Pass and California Pass, 12,970 ft. We drove through snow "canyons" that towered 15+ feet over the trail. The San Juan county dozer driver was slowing working on the Alpine loop but probably won't get it cleared this year.
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sorry for cockeyed pictures, just tilt your head.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Have fun and stay safe! Please post a write up when you get a chance! This is where we would like to go next year... From speaking with folks that have went, you pretty much have to book it Jan 1st, as places fill up really quickly. Also, any hints, tips or suggestions for a future visitor would be greatly appreciated!
We booked a house, through VRBO, that is about 1/2 way between Durango and Silverton. I parked my trailer and Rangers in Silverton so I wouldn't have to drag it over two mountains each way.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
We saw these two Rams hanging out on the side of highway 550 this morning.
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Today we went back up county road 110 and took several of the side roads/trails. Most only went a couple of miles and you would run into snow.
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Tomorrow's plan is Cunningham, Minnie and Maggie Gulches and see how far we can get up them, and possibly the "Old Hundred Gold Mine" tour.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Great pictures! Man I can't believe how much snow there is up high! We will be in Silverton in less than a month.
Pack warm clothes, face masks, gloves etc. The wind coming down off the mountains is cold. You might check with San Juan County and see how far Dave, the dozer driver, has made it. He was headed downhill from California pass but was only making a few hundred yards each day, but the snow should thin out as he goes down.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Ok here are some more,
We made it over Stony Pass today, The trail was open farther but extremely muddy and others were turning around so did we.
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Looking down from Stony Pass, this is the trail up
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Discussion Starter #34
We also went up Minnie and Maggie Gulches. We only made it about 1/2 way up each of them before being blocked by avalanches. There are avalanches everywhere. It will take years to clean up the debris. There were some neat cabins along Minnie Gulch.
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The last couple of days I have heard a popping from the rear of my mid size 500, I was afraid it was a CV shaft, I checked and couldn't find any damage, nothing had any slack in it so we kept going. While we were on the top of Stony Pass I noticed that the one of the links on the rear sway bar had came apart. The link pulled off of the bushing. I knew I was carrying those big zip ties for some reason. I zip tied it out of the way and noises stopped.
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Discussion Starter #36
Yesterday we loaded up from Silverton and brought everything back to the house at Purgatory. This morning we decided to ride a few of the Forest Service trails behind the Purgatory ski resort. We were allowed to park and unload in their gravel lots. It was mostly wide open gravel roads, and dusty , but was still a lot of fun. We stopped beside the trail and had lunch, the grandkids and my stepson even had a snowball fight. There were a few obstacles along the trail and the water crossings were fun. Ezra, my grandson, DH357's boy, was worn out by the time the ride was over. Thank you Ransom Proctor for the cage, works great on my 570.
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Interesting note, the Robby Gordon RZR4 belongs to stepson's uncle. Its a 2010 model, and now, after a week here, it only has 208 miles. His uncle bought new, his wife got cancer and passed, and its been parked in the garage.

We have the Rangers loaded and will spend tomorrow shopping and packing and plan on hitting the road Sunday morning. It will be good to get back home. If anyone is planning on coming to the Durango / Silverton / Alpine Loop area and has questions, go ahead and ask.
 

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A great snowy summer vacation. Who would of thought there would be that much snow.
Great photos. Thanks for sharing.
 

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In my defense, we just had lunch and the train rocked a little. It rocked me asleep haha. The trip was an absolute blast. My wife and son and I really enjoyed riding in the mountains on the train and on the Ranger. My son likes trains now. As soon as we got to the hotel in Amarillo last night he started yelling "train, train!" from seeing an old picture of RR tracks. Anyone thinking about going up there, just go! You will not be disappointed. It was cool seeing the other machines people have built, lots of RZR's, Generals and Rangers. The cage on the back was nice to keep things covered with the tarp and my son rode back there one day and his 3 cousins took turns riding in the open seat with him and they really enjoyed riding with us. One of the best things is you can ride SxS's and ATV's for about half the town on the OHV route.
 

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One thing I did notice was on the 570, in low range it has enough engine braking to really just coast downhill at a safe speed. I didnt ride brakes at all and rarely hit brakes just decending hills.

Now that we're home and its 100 degrees and high humidity, we miss Colorado even more.
 
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