2014 Cannonball Rally Comes to Colorado

The Cannonball Rally is a ride across the United States for vintage motorcycles.  This year, the rally is open to bikes built in 1936 or older. There are some 120 entries and the route goes from Daytona Beach, FL to Tacoma, WA, a distance of more than 3,900 miles.

The rally comes across Colorado. On Saturday, September 13, the riders stayed in Burlington, CO on the eastern plains. On Sunday they stop for lunch in Colorado Springs and then continue to Golden, CO for dinner. On Monday they continue west over the Rocky Mountains stopping in Leadville before ending the day in Grand Junction.

On Sunday I rode Grover, Rochelle’s 1973 BMW R75/5, and she rode Elmo, her 2002 F650GS down to Colorado Springs. We met another BMW rider, Sawyer and his friend Ashley, on a  green 1972 R75/5 toaster tank bike. We took a nice ride over the Palmer divide on our way to the Rocky Mountain Motorcycle Museum (aka, Pikes Peak Harley Davidson). We arrived when the first rally riders were scheduled to arrive only to find about 20 rally bikes were already there.

There are six BMW bikes in the ride along with a lot of Harley’s, and some more exotic bikes such as Henderson, Moto Guzzi, Sokol, India, Brough Superior, Neracar, Moto Frera, and Sunbeam. I chuckled at one point as a rider put a pan under their parked bike to collect the oil leaking from the engine. Several bikes arrived in a swirl of blue smoke as oil was blowing on the headers.  The oldest bikes are 1916-1917, so nearly 100 years old. It is impressive to see these bikes and their riders do a cross-country rally on iron that old.

We had to head back early due to another commitment, so we weren’t able to ride with the Rally riders on their way to Golden.

Here are the pictures I took at the Sunday lunch stop.

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