Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Pikes Peak

First, the bad news, good news. The bad news is the aluminum spline in my RZR's steering wheel was stripped and the nearest Polaris dealer is ~100 miles away in Colorado Springs. The good news is the nearest Polaris dealer had just installed a performance steering wheel on a new RZR and sold me the factory original for $40. If the replacement goes well, I will be back "on the off-road again" by tomorrow.

In as much as Pikes Peak is on the way to Colorado Springs, I took the opportunity to put it in the "been there, done that" column. The Pikes Peak Highway is one of the most famous roads in the U.S. and deservedly so - the views are stunning (you can see the curvature of the earth). Although I did not have a problem driving my 22' dually to the top, there are some severe switchbacks (you can see your tail lights) and sizable drop-offs with no guard rails that might make someone with a fear of heights nervous - in which case you may wish to consider the Cog Railway.

Corvettes coming up the mountain

One of the switchbacks

COG Railway
The highest I have been without being in an airplane

You can just see the curvature of the earth

Panoramic view from the top
(click on photos to enlarge)

About half way down the mountain, there is a mandatory brake inspection which is done with an infrared gun. If your brakes are over 300 degrees, you have to pull over and let them cool. My brakes were 170.

Lastly, this is "Beware of Bears" country...

I suspect it is because they are terrible drivers

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