Originally Posted by wbbnm
Smokey Mountain is a great ride. We have done it twice in the past few years. Both times we took the Smokey Hollow version but by mistake. I really want to do the real Smokey Hollow sometime. I understand the Kelly Grade is pretty neat.
What was wrong with the water crossing? Too much water or too deeply washed out or too muddy?
There was a lot of rain previous days and the second crossing I thought was way too big for me since I was solo. It looked like a river. The first one outside of Big Water was pretty big too, but there was a pickup with a boat and trailer on the other side, so I tried it. It was shallow and the bottom was firm.
The mud was dried enough that it was no problem and the sand was actually fairly firm from the moisture. Probably perfect for my ride. But I had no tracks for the Hollow Rd and there were hardly any tire marks in the wash. So I was often worried that I might have missed the road climbing out of the wash. But just as I was about to turn around, I'd see jeep tracks climbing out.
Probably the hardest part were some of the washouts, that left step-ups and step-downs through the rocks. I flopped on one of them. After awhile my anxiety diminished and I was able to enjoy the last hour of the wash and the rest of the run to Escalante.
It's pretty wild through there, though. One really should have a small group to help eachother if something happened.
The junction with Smokey Mountain Rd after climbing out of the wash:
I manufactured my tracks on my laptop and then rode them. But I forgot to turn on the active log...shame on me.