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Old 03-25-2013, 07:53 AM   #3001
Lav1200
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I'm itching to get out this weekend too. Wife is going away for the weekend, Honey-Do list is minimal, forecast looks great and my Husky will be ready to rip.
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Old 03-26-2013, 12:33 PM   #3002
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Originally Posted by Voltsmith View Post
It's great having a wife that rides. Finished up our chores etc around 1:30, I'm feeling a little blue and she suggests going for a ride. We had a nice little poodle from Okotoks, thru' Millarville, on to Turner Valley & Black Diamond then home to Okotoks. Not very far but just what the doctor ordered
Second ride of the season and feeling good. Bye bye winter blues. Didn't see one other bike tho' on such a great day.
Has anyone headed into the gravel roads in the SW there, like 532? Was thinking of trying to go in on that and up to 40. I went up 40 north of 1a last Sunday and it seems that area picked up more ice and snow. Also, does anyone know where 40 is blocked on the east side...I know it's shut down going south at Peter Lougheed, but where is the barrier on the other side...so if you can get in on 532 can you go up 52a and 940 and get to an active part of it? Thanks.
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Old 03-26-2013, 12:54 PM   #3003
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The south gate on Hwy 40 is at the highwood junction, so you can still access the trunk road.
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Old 03-26-2013, 01:35 PM   #3004
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The south gate on Hwy 40 is at the highwood junction, so you can still access the trunk road.
OK thanks - I guess that is right where 940 comes out onto 40. I was looking at it more closely in Google maps, and it also says 940 is closed until May, so maybe you can't make that last bit to the highway after all...with the weather this warm I think I'll ride out and find out!
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:55 PM   #3005
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Hwy 532 to Forestry Trunk Road

XSoCal, with the amount of snow we have had this winter it will be interesting to hear whether you can make it across to the Forestry Trunk Road on 532 Last year I did that ride on March 20th, and we had more snow and I couldn't ride it again until mid April. The tricky part is the climb up to the pass just south of Plateau Mountain. The road gets quite broken up near the top of the pass, but you will be okay as long as it isn't snow covered and icy. Be careful of the wind. Last year the wind at the top of the pass was blowing at over 80 kmh. It can knock you around a bit when picking your way through the rough stuff if you aren't prepared for it. Also, since there is no through road, the only traffic you will see is others going in and out. I only saw one vehicle on my ride in March last year. If you go alone it would be a good hing to take a Spot GPS since there is no cellphone coverage. If you do get to the Forestry Trunk Road you won't be able to go north to Hwy 40 as the road is seasonally closed so the wildlife aren't disturbed. Same thing heading south to Coleman. Good luck, and let us know what you discover. Cheers, David
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:31 AM   #3006
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XSoCal, with the amount of snow we have had this winter it will be interesting to hear whether you can make it across to the Forestry Trunk Road on 532 Last year I did that ride on March 20th, and we had more snow and I couldn't ride it again until mid April. The tricky part is the climb up to the pass just south of Plateau Mountain. The road gets quite broken up near the top of the pass, but you will be okay as long as it isn't snow covered and icy. Be careful of the wind. Last year the wind at the top of the pass was blowing at over 80 kmh. It can knock you around a bit when picking your way through the rough stuff if you aren't prepared for it. Also, since there is no through road, the only traffic you will see is others going in and out. I only saw one vehicle on my ride in March last year. If you go alone it would be a good hing to take a Spot GPS since there is no cellphone coverage. If you do get to the Forestry Trunk Road you won't be able to go north to Hwy 40 as the road is seasonally closed so the wildlife aren't disturbed. Same thing heading south to Coleman. Good luck, and let us know what you discover. Cheers, David
Totally agree David, its the wind on that pass that is the hard part. I tried it a few weeks ago, and the wind was so strong, if you hit a patch of ice it would slide you sideways. If things work out I'm going to try it tomorrow and I'll post a comment on the conditions.

I've been looking for a satellite messaging unit, but hadn't seen the Spot GPS - do you have one? I was wondering how well they work in Canada.
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:47 AM   #3007
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Totally agree David, its the wind on that pass that is the hard part. I tried it a few weeks ago, and the wind was so strong, if you hit a patch of ice it would slide you sideways. If things work out I'm going to try it tomorrow and I'll post a comment on the conditions.

I've been looking for a satellite messaging unit, but hadn't seen the Spot GPS - do you have one? I was wondering how well they work in Canada.

I have the regular genII spot tracker and it works just fine.

Are you guys talking the Indian Graves pass? If so, that area doesn't get a ton of snow. Once over the pass and closer to the divide it does get moderate amounts, but you should be good to get to the top. If you don't go on a ultra hot day the winds will likely be less, but this time of year doesn't help. You could luck out yet!
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Old 03-27-2013, 03:41 PM   #3008
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Spot GPS

XSoCal, I have a Spot GPS and wouldn't leave home alone without it. My wife insists that I carry it so she carry recover the body and collect the life insurance. Just be sure to use lithium batteries. Alkaline don't work. Cheers, David
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:04 PM   #3009
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XSoCal, I have a Spot GPS and wouldn't leave home alone without it. My wife insists that I carry it so she carry recover the body and collect the life insurance. Just be sure to use lithium batteries. Alkaline don't work. Cheers, David
Thanks David! Exact same reason I'd get one. I actually got shut down on 532 last summer with my then new to me XRR (stripped the teeth off my aluminum rear sprocket)...would have saved a lot of walking to get signal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shibby! View Post
I have the regular genII spot tracker and it works just fine.

Are you guys talking the Indian Graves pass? If so, that area doesn't get a ton of snow. Once over the pass and closer to the divide it does get moderate amounts, but you should be good to get to the top. If you don't go on a ultra hot day the winds will likely be less, but this time of year doesn't help. You could luck out yet!
If the employment gods are in a good mood tomorrow I'm going to take a look, I'll bring the GoPro so maybe some clips of the conditions to post.
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:11 PM   #3010
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I haven't got the video processed yet, it tells the story much better, but in case people were thinking of heading out to Indian Graves pass, here is a report. Had a really great ride, most of 532 is ideal, couple of spots are kinda slippery as mud is starting to come, and one ice sheet to go slow over, but a very enjoyable ride. Closer to the pass there are some climbs which were tricky where it got steep (for me anyway, nearly went down once, got it on video:) because of that relatively thin layer of mud over frozen dirt. Close to the summit it turned into snow/ice, just soft enough that you could still move forward, most of the time. Gets really bike dependent at this point. I think my XRR would have been fine, but this was my first time with the 950 on slippery climbs so I wimped out. Shibby, you'd be fine on your XRR, but you're right, there was no one out there, and I was by myself. No wind btw, which was nice.

I'll post the video soon.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:10 PM   #3011
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You can't ride like a hooligan with your name on the side of your pellican case....
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:43 PM   #3012
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South and Eastward backroads

Great afternoon for a ride headed south through the hills and then east from Okotoks out past Carseland on the canal road on a mix of gravel and tarmac. There is a lot more snow as you head east with full ditches of snow in a lot of places but it won't be long as the smaller sloughs are thawing quick
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:33 PM   #3013
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Canmore was great yesterday.
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Old 03-30-2013, 07:05 AM   #3014
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Can you name the green-lane (street) behind me (looking south)?
Lee - is that 37 St SW, south of 22X??

I also got out out yesterday - things are pretty dry now by Water Valley. Great day to be on the bike.
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:46 PM   #3015
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Socio-political Comment

I was out for a ride yesterday north and west of Calgary, wandering aimlessly through the secondary paved and gravel roads between Highway 1A on the south, 22 on the east, and the FTR on the west as I worked my way north to Sundre. I had been on a lot of these roads before, and given the time of year I had a bias to stay on good (read dry) gravel and clear (read dry) pavement. After a couple of hours of twisting and turning I came to a road heading west that I had never been on before. Google maps labels it Township Road 304A. A few miles down this pristine paved road I came upon a sign proclaiming this to be courtesy of Canada's Economic Action Plan. That got my attention. I started to look more closely at my surroundings as I continued west. This was an expensive road. What was the economic reason for our federal government to spend untold millions of dollars upgrading it to the present high standard and what was it going to cost the Alberta taxpayer in the future to maintain the road? I do not have answers to either question but probably wouldn't like them even if I had them. There does not seem to be any justification for the money spent to date since there is nothing other than a few oil and gas sites in the area, and surely those would have been fine continuing with the usual quality of rural Alberta gravel road. I turned around at the point where 304A became 302A so I can't comment on how far the pavement carries on or what else is out there that would justify the cost once you hit the forest reserve. My recollection is that there is no paved road connecting to the FTR south of where Hwy 584 meets the FTR a little north of Sundre. So Township Road 302A probably isn't paved alll the way to the FTR. Still, as a taxpayer in a country overburdened by debt at the federal level and a provincial government so mired in debt it is slashing budgets left and right (mostly right), this paved road seems pointlessly extravagant. At the same time as this has been happening the Alberta Government has been ramping up processes that are intended to restrict access to many remote areas in the province. Does anyone else see the irony in this?
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