Doing the Ton on Christmas Staff
by Staff
Are there any who don't understand the title? Well it will be explained somewhere below.

My younger son has long been a fan of "South Park", and when he comes to visit me in Colorado, he always insists on doing a little tour of the real South Park. Yes, for those who live on the flat lands, there is really such a place, and yes, there are snow covered mountains all around it (at least in the winter and spring). I can't say that the kids in Fairplay (that's the real name of the County Seat) look exactly like the characters in Comedy Central, but you have to grant a certain artistic license to the show's creators.

My son works in Southern California, and he really appreciates the wide open spaces. So, on Christmas day, he insisted that we take a spin. He also insisted that he take my Ducati (no surprise there). That left me with my BMW R1100GS, which would be a dual sport if only it were 200 pounds lighter. But it is still capable of at least exceeding "the ton" (that's 100 mph, which the newbies probably don't know). Since I live here, he let me lead over Trout Creek Pass (a couple blind turns have killed their share of cyclists over the years), but at the top of the pass there was a great view in all directions. As we went down, I could see in the mirror that he was looking in all directions, and when we got to the flat, he accelerated past me, as I was going a safe and sane 75 mph. So I had no choice but to keep up, right?

I was going, well over the ton, when we saw a car over a distant rise, and slowed down. (As I had repeatedly pointed out to my son, the Colorado State Patrol has unmarked cars; I'd suppose some of the fancier ones are drug seizures, and they also have Cherokees to keep moving in blizzards.) The Ducati was only a little faster.

We headed north from Hartsel to Fairplay, and enjoyed some more deserted roads. Oh yes, the weather was ideal. Down in Denver, they had a record hight temperature, and it was up over 50F even at 10,000 feet.

So, if there are any other MO readers besides me that know of the old tradition (mostly British) of making the Ton on Christmas, let me tell you that it is still possible, even in Colorado, if the weather cooperates and all the traffic is parked at home opening presents or watching TV. I really wouldn't want to do it on a freeway in California, though. And I think I made a wise choice in my selection of motorcycles.

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