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Old 06-29-2014, 06:35 PM   #1
Scott_PDX OP
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To Hells and Back 2014 – Portland to Hells Canyon and Back

A couple of us from the Portland area decided to take the whole week off to get to Enterprise this year. Last year some of us did the WABDR and it was a lot of fun rolling into Enterprise on little bikes and easing back into Civilization.

Route Route Out = http://ridewithgps.com/routes/4915637

This year brought the following:

Scott_PDX – Navigator, 3RD Class


SuperD! – Reconnaissance, 2nd Class


PigPen – Social Liason, 1st Class


RockyRoad – General (PITA;)
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Old 06-29-2014, 06:41 PM   #2
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Day 1 – Portland to Pine Mountain, OR

SuperD! and I both were running a little later than planned, and decided to meet up at RockyRoad’s up near Mt. Hood. PigPen was going to join us on Monday. Parts froze off we riders crossed Mt Hood. It was misting and low 40’s. I was dressed for warmer weather and had to load up some layers. Regretting that last minute decision to leave the winter gloves at home, but happy to bring that one extra layer.

Didn’t take many pictures the first day, sorry.

From Madras we tried taking Grizzly Canyon road to Prineville, but ran into a posted gate. The signs said it was open, but the Padlock said it wasn’t. Backtracked 2 miles and ran to 26 to get to Prineville. Hit the first Mexican place in town on the right. Food was so-so, not great, but the gas was good. Picked up our nightly beer and ran south toward Pine Mountain.

We wanted to get there the first night as on Fri and Sat nights they open up the Telescopes and let the general public act like asstrometers for the night. Last few miles finally put us back on some dirt. Was very cold up there, and not the best night’s sleep but we showed up on bikes and adventure was underway.

Squishy was there to show us off and took this picture on SuperD!’ s camera.


Gizzly Road SE of Prineville


Pine Mountain


Pine Mountain (SuperD!)


Soaking up the Sun after a cold run


All kinds of Observatories (SuperD!)


Campsite was “Advanced” (SuperD!)


Nice view above the Campsite
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Old 06-30-2014, 07:58 AM   #3
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LATE?! I was fully 14 hours ahead of my normal schedule!
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:51 AM   #4
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Day 2 - Pine Mountain, Or to Hart Mountain H.S., Or

Rockyroad marshals the troops for an early departure…okay, early for me on the first day of Vacation. But then again, leaving camp at 2pm probably isn’t the best way to tour.



Looking like a much nicer day is in store for us in Central Oregon.


A fun decent from Pine Mountain


…with nice views of the direction we are heading.


Gary motoring along on his newer WR. Loving that it starts every morning!


We opted to run the Powerline south as I heard good things from other reports. They were right, it was much more fun than the loose cinder roads. Although riding on Red Roads is kinda fun.





The Powerline Road went on for quite awhile.


Stopped for a bit of relief


The Powerline was fun, but when we tried to leave it to head to Derricks Cave we ran into some "Deliverance" style signs allegedly saying there was no recorded public easement to travel on the road. WTF? So back to the PowerLines and across, most likely, the same douchebags, pastures we go.


Eventually ended up near this lookout

,
Nice views, cept the half people trying to keep up with my Panorama whirling dervish routine.




Next, stop, Crack in the Ground. Decided to ride all the way to the entrance and grab some shade....shhh....don't tell.


Then, off to Fandango.


First time in Fandango Canyon, nice to finally see what all the fuss is about.


Eventually, things straightened out. And we decided to head to Hart Mountain for a soak.


There’ s not a lot out there, but there is a lot of nothing.


Overlooking Warner Lakes at the "Dual Sport lookout".


Nice Views!!!




SuperD! Giving his camera a workout.


Home for the night at Hart Mountain.


Met another Rider from Grants Pass (Dave) on an loaded up Super Sherpa. He was a fun guy to hang out with and I think he appreciated the “Adventure Company".


Fashion has officially left the building.


Hey little girl, is your daddy home?


There's a hot pool out there somewhere. Found some folks from Lakeview in it, but invited me to hang out with them and watch the sunset.

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Old 06-30-2014, 11:33 AM   #5
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Nice start, I'm looking forward to the rest

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Old 06-30-2014, 09:20 PM   #6
Jettn Jim
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Thumb In....

Ooh yea this is gonna be goooood!
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Old 07-03-2014, 09:22 AM   #7
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Day 3 - Hart Mnt H.S to Crystal Crand H.S. .... ;)

The next morning we tried to continue on Barnhardt road which runs through the the campground, but found that it was closed until August, so we backtracked a bit to Blue Sky road, and found that it had just opened the day before. That road was still within the Hart Mountain Antelope reserve and now I see where all the Antelope were hiding! It was a great ride, very open spaces and no traffic. Eventually we can to where Barnhardt road came out, and that looks like it would be a fun ride when it opens in August. We then took the South Boundry road all the way down to Shirk Ranch. That is a great ride if you like wide open spaces.

From there, we ran south down to Hwy 140 and jumped on that for a bit. It has a great hill climb soon after and I actually got to pass a couple of cars on the little 250. That pipe, programmer and gearing gave me a little advantage! Originally we were going to go to Beatty’s Butte, but we were on vacation and that would have made a LONG day, plus we needed to meet up with PigPen in Crane and needed to make some miles. I wanted to be sure to have some time to soak in the Crane Hot Springs as well (My Favorite!!!). Near the Nevada Border we jumped off the pavement and headed towards Funnel Canyon. We did get a little confused on all the tracks out in the desert, but between 3 GPS, 2 maps, 3 routes and a couple of tracks we figured it out.

Funnel Canyon was nice and remote, but there were a few sandy silty spots. Not long ones, but one particular one was deep and took out Gary. We were moving along at a pretty fast space, and not sure how fast he was going when he went down. We were spaced out a bit and by the time I got to him he already had the bike up. The silt bed was like water – I actually got suction on my boot as they sand 4 or 5 inches in dry talc! Gary seemed okay, but you could tell the crash took the wind out of his sails.

After catching up with SuperD! We hit hwy 202 and gassed up in FrenchGlen. We chatted with the new proprieter building a combination gun store/saddle shop, and recharged out batteries…and gassed up. Next stop was the Round Barn, were we did a quick photostop…dinner and a soak were on our minds. We stopped at Crane for a WELCOME dinner (and cell service!). Beer’ed up for the night and ran up to Crane Hot Springs. Turns out PigPen ran into snow so tucked in a JohnDay for the night. The soak in the big pond was glorious. A great day indeed!

Southern Boundry of Hart Mountain


Not a lot out there, soon after I took this picture some Antelope crossed right in front of me. Too amazed to take pictures…sorry.


This is near Jacobs Lake, and you can’t see it, but there are heards of Antelope out there.


Wait…there’s one


The road deteriorated a bit and we had to ride by braille, but it was in good shape.


More Antelope…actually Pronghorn, not Antelope, but when in Rome…




Getting ready to drop into Shirk Lake


Shirk Lake Ranch in the distance….fun fast dirt to get there!


SuperD! Coming in HOT!


The Ranch












Heading towards funnel canyon


Which road?


Canyon lands




Round Barn




Crane Hot Spings…the big hot pond awaits!

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Old 07-03-2014, 09:56 AM   #8
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Day 4 - Crane H.S, Or to Bog H.S.,m NV

PipPen made a cold early run down from JohnDay to join us in the morning. Alas, as one member joined, another backed out. Rockyroad was pretty sore from his fall the day before. He suspected broken ribs, or at least bruised ribs and tender hip. He decided to take it easy for the day, and maybe meet us in Leslie Gulch the next day if he was feeling better. He didn’t – but headed home safe and sound and texted us he was enjoying a beer on his porch, so all was good in the end…phew! He’s a tough dude, and not one to complain, so he made the right decision, but we sure missed him the rest of the trip. Was a lesson to us all to be a bit more careful.

Anyways, we then headed south from Crane on 78 after gassing up and headed over towards Anderson Valley road. This was a Great Road, but not used much in recent years. We saw more antelope up there, and was one of the better sections of the trip (Sorry RockyRoad!). It eventuall dropped back down towards East Steens Road, which we ran down to Fields on. We gassed up in Fields and (Petrol and Burgers), and goofed around the “kids” running the place. They were a lot of fun. The cook had to reach for her gun with some of PigPen’s comments, but all in good fun!

From there we ran down to Denio Junction and looked for Bog Hot Springs. None of us had been there and didn’t know what to expect. There were a couple of rigs parked out near the hot creek, and we choose a good looking camping spot, in the talcum dirt. The soaking spot was a bit slimy and shallow, but it was warm. We had a great sunset, and just enjoyed the evening.

Here comes PigPen.


Rockyroad, decides to stay and soak some more.


SuperD!’s telling me I’m #1 in his book…thanks!


Anderson Valley Road










Yep, that’s a road…as I said Anderson Valley road isn’t used much any longer.




It had a few gates, but no Posted signs.


Dropping back towards the desert playa. Note, SuperD!s about ready to loose his tent poles. Fortunately, PigPen has a good eye for dropped goods.


Little confusing at the bottom, but nothing to stop you from just picking a direction and GO!!!!


Note the Steens in the background. They were still closed and looked DAMN cold up there.




Nearing Alvord Desert


Road down to the Playa. Rode my GS down there last year - no problem!


3…2…1…Luanch










Denio


Bog H.S.










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Old 07-03-2014, 05:17 PM   #9
Ladybug0048
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You're doing a great job on this report. Keep it coming
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Old 07-03-2014, 05:31 PM   #10
wheelbender6
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Great pics, I really miss living in the desert.
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Old 07-07-2014, 09:12 PM   #11
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Day 5 – Bog H.S., NV to Rome, Or

Finally getting into our camping groove, had a great nights sleep and good breakfast to start off the day. After consulting the maps we decided to try to get to the B25 Liberator crash up in the Pueblo mountains directly from the Hot Springs. All we had was the coordinates, and not sure of the exact roads to get up there. After a few misturns we finally made it up there. That last climb was a bit tough though.

From there we dropped down into Denio again, then off to Fields for lunch. Was hot when we got to fields, and apparently missing a rider. PigPen said SuperD! was behind him just a few miles back, but he didn’t show up. We gave him a good 10 minutes, before heading back 5 miles to find him changing a tire. He had a good system going so I took the time for some camp chores along the side of the freeway.

Met back up with the kids running fields and had another quick lunch and a few laughs . We knew it was going to be a long day, so didn’t hang out too long. From there we ran north a few miles along the Power line road, where I promptly crashed in the silt. Dave tried to show me how it’s done, and disappeared in a cloud of dust. Not sure what happened, but when the silt cleared he wasn’t on the bike any longer, but was laughing, so all good!

Stupid Whitehorse ranch had some posted signs just about the time we would have met Whitehorse Ranch road, so we had to backtrack quite a bit to find out way out. The good news is that Eastern Oregon sure knows how to make fast dirt roads. Once we hit the highway near Basque Corner, we planned to get on the Idaho-Oregon-Nevada highway, but had trouble finding it at the first intersection. At the next intersection , we found it, but didn’t realize it was just an old stage road, really just two rough tracts. It was cool though, and very remote. Near the end it turned into a highspeed roller coaster dirt road. It’s weird doing 70 across the desert with huge roostertails of dust.

Rome had gas, but all we needed was a cold drink and water. Getting that, we found a dirt spot in the desert and stealth camped for the night.

PigPen is ready to go!


Heading up into the Pueblo’s.


Lots of gates. Getting off and opening them, soon became a drag.


Had some nice views working up to Propeller Meadows.


More gates


Got separated, then soon found myself here.






When you cross a stream and see this meadow, head south and UP!


Spent awhile up here alone and decided I better head back to where we last met. At the top of the steep section, I found the guys back on track…well…kinda.


Top of the steep section


PigPen makes it look easy, going tractor style.


SuperD!’s lil 250 aint got no tractor gear, but it does have a firecracker gear.


Later, looking back to the PowerLine road across the Alvord Playa


Remote land, and fun roads. I’ll take dirt over gravel and day of the week.


PowerLine road slowly deteriorates


Looking back towards Fields ,the Alvord desert and the Steen Mountains keeping an eye on them.


Whitehorse was boring…at reasonable speeds.




ION Highway (An old stage road)…very cool.


This is a highlight on the ION Highway.


No pictures from camp today, too tired. Imagine a silt parking area in big depression in the desert.
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Old 07-07-2014, 09:30 PM   #12
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In the morning we ran into Jordan Valley and gassed up, and stunk up, their restrooms (gotta love desert camping). We knew we had a big day so decided to skip Idaho City and Leslie Gulch, but the good news is that leaves us with another adventure for another time. The riding through Scoggins Creek was pretty nice though.

It took forever to cross the Treasure Valley and had a great Pizza Buffer for lunch at Idaho Pizza Company in Weiser thanks to a recommendation from SuperD!’s coworker. Salad bar and pizza…fuel for the rider!

After Council the riding got really nice. We worked our way over to Klienschmidt grade, which was great fun. The temperature rose about 30 degrees from the top to the bottom. After crossing the bridge, and running up the GOOD side of the river, I narrowly dodged a couple of suicidal deer, fortunately I wasn't going too fast at the time. The ride up Hess Road was F-U-N. My first time and I loved it. It is a great climb. I’d hate to go down it on a big bike though.

We really pushed the rest of the way to Enterprise for the Wallowa Jamboree, in order to try to get there before dark, which we did barely. We grabbed some cold ones and rolled into the grassy area at the back of camp and proceeded to get a case of culture shock. We set up chairs, and talked bikes and riding with whoever came within ear shot - and don’t think we left the chairs the rest of the night. Man that grass was soft, I slept like the dead!

Scoggins Creek Road


The Scoggins Creek Campground. SuperD! telling me I’m in first place…for what, I don’t know.


Pretty campground




We did manage some dirt roads coming out of Wiser and working up towards Council. Worth it? I dunno. Was nice to get off the pavement though.


Fixer-upper near the top of Klienschmidt Grade.


Dropping into the canyon


PigPen chillin on the edge of the world.


Typical Hess Road Turn…Do not go wide!!!


Meanwhile 3500’ lower…

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Old 07-07-2014, 09:46 PM   #13
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Day 7 - Wallowa Jamboree

So we had a “day off” today, so what the hell are we supposed to do now? Go for a ride of course. So we rode to Hat Point. I’ll let the pictures tell the story for today.



















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Old 07-07-2014, 10:06 PM   #14
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Day 8 - Enterprise, Or to Bates, Or

Portland to Joseph is a LONG way on a small dual sport, so our schedule was to break it up into 2 days so we left Enterprise a day early. It was tough saying goodbye and I didn’t get a chance to visit with very many folks. I think next year I need to show up and stay for a couple more days. Thanks to LadyBug and Log Cabin folks for pulling the event together.

We had planned to head back towards Minam then head sounds along the west ridge of the Wallowa’s. It was a great road and a really nice area back there. After getting turned back from some snow above 7,000 feet, we finally dropped into LaGrande for lunch.

SuperD! has some truckin in his past and always wanted to know what that Ladd Canyon exit between La Grande and Baker City was like, so it was time to find out. This was a great dual sport road! We eventually worked our way over 7500’ into a real alpine area by Anthony Lakes. There was quite bit of snow up there an even when we hit the hwy, we found that even it was closed to snow. We were able to work around the drifts though and soon dropped into Granite and Sumpter, where we able to pick up a 6 pack, but not gas. We decided to stop near Bates as the sun was getting pretty low and a real campsite might be nice for the last night – not sure if the others felt the same, but we were in travelling mode and not hanging out. We did score all the wood we needed for $4 and got our moneys worth. Also killed all the flasks, bottles and squeezy things of alcholol. Great last night.

West rim of Elkhorn/Wallow mountains


Back side of the mountains we woke up looking into.


Nice long ridge


Not without it’s challenges though.






Ladd Road…break.


These guys kept me laughing for 9 days straight.


Heading UP Ladd Ridge


SuperD! up high


Can’t remember what we called this mountain…?


Oops


Phew, made it to 73…we’re safe now…


…not



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Old 07-07-2014, 10:12 PM   #15
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Day 9 - Bates, Or to Portland, Or

Turns out that Bates, Oregon actually has a gas-station, grocery, restaurant and lodging just a mile or two down the road. Had we known we would have run down there for dinner, the couple running the place were quite nice.

From there we basically slabbed it home. We did run some of the better roads though and it was quite nice. Think , JohnDay, Long Valley, Kimberly, Fossil, Bakeoven, Maupin, Government Camp and Home.

This ride was a lot of fun and it's always nice to see the other side of Oregon. There's lots more out there to see.
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