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Our Big Trip West Next Year

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My wife has never been " Out West ". So next year ( End of June 2023 ) We will be going from Northern Lower Michigan through the lower U.P. to Menominee MI. Then to the Menominee Indian Reservation for a brief stop as we continue west to Mount Rushmore. Next will be Yellowstone National Park, the Grand Canyon, Pikes Peak, back up to Deadwood and then return home. We are looking at 5,000 miles on the XCT. This will be a long and expensive trip but you only live once and we are not getting any younger. Estimating being gone 3 weeks or more. Has anyone done this or have suggestions? My 2013 XCT has less than 11,000 miles with new tires, brakes etc. Should be no worries for my Victory.
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A few years ago when I was stationed in southeast Michigan, I was a member of what was then known as the Great Lakes Road Riders. We took two separate trips from southeast Michigan, first to Mount Rushmore, and later to Colorado.

Mount Rushmore and routes like Needles Highway were really fun. We traveled there the week after the big Sturgis Bike Rally was over. So the t-shirts were really cheap, and we didn't have to contend with a lot of traffic congestion nor wild revelry while out that way. On the way back to Michigan, though, we encountered a lot of rain, and we even had to divert a bit southwards to avoid a bad rain cell that we later learned also had a bad tornado.

Our Colorado Ride was also a lot of fun. We tried to ride up Pikes Peak, the the line of traffic that was waiting to drive up Pikes Peak was ridiculous. Instead, we rode up Mount Evans, which was actually taller and more scenic than Pikes Peak. It was hot at the base of Mount Evans, but it was incredibly cold and very windy atop Mount Evans. We also rode out to a scenic place called The Garden of Stones out in Colorado. Both riding to and returning from Colorado, crossing the high mountain desert was incredibly hot. Very hot. I don't know what the temperature will be like for you in June 2023 while crossing that high mountain desert. I just remember taking a lot of cooling and water stops when we crossed that high mountain desert.

Have fun on your trip out west next summer.


 
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