Colorado is our home state, and it is one of the BEST places to see fall colors. Even though we both grew up in Colorado, and we've each seen 20+ Colorado falls already in our lives, this year we got extreme FOMO by having been away from Colorado the past three years during its prime fall season. In our three years of full timing, we've screwed up our fall plans 3/3 years. By this, ...
Work picked up for us a bit in November, which had us driving all around southern California. We had two shoots back to back that were in Johnson Valley and Big Bear, with one of those shoots also taking us south of the Salton Sea, so we were driving back and forth through LA, and ended up filming in a total blizzard in Big Bear, which ended up being really neat for the lighting product we were shooting. Then we made the long drive back to Denver to be home with family for Thanksgiving, with a few stops on the way.
We stopped for an event in Moab with Mosko Moto, with a bunch of people in the media and dirt bike industry that were going on a group ride and getting content along the way. Blake was supposed to join them for a 120 mile loop from town around to Newspaper Rock and back through Lockhart Basin, but his dirt bike seized up three miles into the ride on Highway 191. (I was hanging back at their AirBnB because obviously I wasn’t going to ride for 120 miles haha). These are the situations where I am so happy that we now own an automatic truck, and I feel comfortable driving it by myself, because I went to pick up Blake right away on the side of the highway, and it was no big deal to go load the bike back up. One of the other guys on the ride, who was local to Moab, decided to come back with Blake as well and offered to take all of us in his RZR. This was awesome because now I got to join. We went the opposite direction as the rest of the group and met them halfway through their ride to get some drone and RED footage of the riders. I had never been out this direction in Moab and now want to come back for some dual sporting of our own. We rode out to Chicken Corners and then into Lockhart Basin. We always love Moab, but we’ve been so many times and done so many of the trails multiple times that when we get to do something new or different there, it renews all the magic and makes us want to come back.
Then we stopped in Mesa, Colorado to take the boat out one more time with our friends Dan and Shannon on the Colorado River, and had a very chilly day out on the very low water, which was barely enough to run the jet boats in anyway. Still a fun day though running a couple sections back and forth in full winter gear. Shannon and I went for a hike on the Mesa as well while the boys worked on some truck maintenance.
One reason of coming back to Denver this time of year was to put the jetboat in storage and switch back to our dual rail carrier for the bikes for the winter. While it’s been a blast having the boat, its also a pain in the ass towing a trailer around all the time, and it was definitely time to go back to being agile for the winter. We also had to figure out a place to store the boat several times while we were on gigs in California, and during our Idaho trip in August, and luckily, we have good friends in several states. The plan was to store the boat in my parents third pay garage for the winter with their gracious permission, but when we got there, I had forgotten about the fact that the boat trailer is 8 ft wide, and it wouldn’t fit in the bay. We had been calculating the length and forgot about the width. So we ended up parking it on a back portion of their driveway for a month with a tarp on it, and it got snowed on several times.
We’d originally wanted to camp with family for Thanksgiving, but snowy weather changed our plans, and we ended up just going to Colorado Springs for a couple days with Blake’s family. We walked through Garden of the Gods, did a Cave of the Winds tour, and got BBQ at the one Rudy’s BBQ location in Colorado, since we enjoyed it so much in Texas.
The rest of November we spent with family, did a bit of editing work, and Blake found a bike to replace his one that seized, but it happened to be in North Carolina. Just like the boat shortage and RV shortage due to the pandemic, we found out that there’s also a dirt bike shortage. There were only one or two dirt bikes for sale for the year and type he wanted, and both were out east. Apparently dirt bikes in states like North Carolina and Tennessee are often much cheaper because they get caked in mud out there. I told Blake he should just wait until people start dumping the bikes that they bought during the pandemic when they get their jobs back and their wives realize they can travel internationally again, but Blake needed a new bike NOW. So we booked a cheap plane ticket to Charleston on points to look at the bike. The plan was to rent a truck and drive it back, but truck rentals were like $1,000. So we got creative and rented an SUV, put a moving blanket down in back, unbolted the wheels, removed the front forks, and laid the bike down on its side on the blanket. This type of bike had electronic fuel injection so no gas or oil would lead while it’s on its side, but the guy who sold it sprayed some sort of tire shine on the engine though to make it “look good”, so it stunk like tire shine the entire 20 hour drive back to Denver. The SUV we rented was a new Chevy Blazer, and doing a 20 hour drive in a new vehicle compared to our big camper rig made such a difference. Didn’t even realize I was driving 90 sometimes. Whoops. We did the drive over two and a half days so that Blake could get to work right away cleaning the bike up, and only stopped for BBQ in Nashville and Kansas City.
The reason Blake needed to get the bike all cleaned up and ready to ride quickly was because we’d recently convinced our friend’s Dan and Shannon to go to Baja with us this winter. We joked about it with them when we stopped at their house in Mesa on the way to Denver, but their circumstances changed, and now they actually wanted to join us for a month long trip to Baja. We told them all about how amazing it was the last time we went, and how this year would be even more amazing because the beaches were sure to be empty without all the Canadian and Alaskan snowbirds camping on the beaches this year. Dan has a built out van, and a similar dirt bike carrier to us, and they both dirt bike, so it would be the perfect trip to be able to caravan together to Cabo and back.
We had to get a bunch of stuff done in Denver though before leaving for Baja. We got our old F250 ready to sell, since it had been sitting at Blake’s brothers house since June, and the tires were so bald we barely got it out of his snowy backyard in Conifer. Luckily we were able to sell it to the first guy that looked at it. Blake did a new top end on his dirt bike and got that ready to sell as well, and cleaned up the new one top to bottom. We had a couple last minute gigs in Dallas and Orlando before leaving town again, and then we were ready to head to Baja!