3 Kaboom's, 3 Dudes, and a Chick ride Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho, Montana

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by zeegman, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. byways

    byways byways

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    Jeez, that's freaky. I hate county roads; love Forest Service and BLM roads. In fact, for folks considering riding Forever West, I've rerouted that segment from Wyoming into Idaho Falls to bypass that stretch and go onto more native-surface national forest roads instead.

    I suppose I learned early, in my SUV backroading days, that graveled county roads are among the most dangerous. It's because they lull one into a false sense of security, and we ramp up the speed, not knowing there's a curve ahead and rolling gravel beneath the tires.

    One time many years ago, in central Idaho, my wife and I came upon a brand-new 4Runner lying on its roof at a bend in such a road, far from anywhere. A rancher had already come upon the wreck and was racing off with the passengers toward the nearest town, many miles away.

    Anyway, as they say, a landing you can walk away from is a good landing ...
    #61
  2. Sourjon

    Sourjon TAT'erd

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    Louisville, KY
    Hey Tony are you planning a Wyoming Byways? I have the Utah Byways and the Wy Benchmark but a Wyoming from you would be great.

    John
    #62
  3. byways

    byways byways

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    Thank you for asking! But no, nothing for Wyoming in terms of a book. But that's not to say there isn't another way of accomplishing something similar ...
    #63
  4. DARKRYDER

    DARKRYDER NoNoob

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    Day 3 was one of the most memorable for me on this trip. Alpine, WY is one of the most beautiful places I've ever experienced...it is just eye-popping gorgeous. The cool, clean pine air and stunning scenery was breathtaking and I would not pass the chance to visit this place again someday. To add to Mike's excellent write-up, here are some of my favorite pics from day 3...
    #64
  5. byways

    byways byways

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    To think what lay ahead for the emigrants ... the Bonneville Salt Flats, the Snake River Plain, the Great Basin, the High Sierra ...
    #65
  6. ian408

    ian408 Administrator Administrator

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    What's amazing was the timing required to get across the Sierra once you'd crossed the Great Basin. Early emigrants had such a small window of opportunity to cross. I sat for a moment near where the Donner Party spent the winter. It's a really pretty place in the summer. I cannot imagine what it would be like in a tent for the winter.
    #66
  7. Jwats

    Jwats Bike till u Die

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    Your last post is my back yard and my favorite day ride. I noticed no pics of Big Piney Lake, It is spectacular, also. You back road riders did a nice loop around The Wyoming Range & Wyoming peak down the Grey's River to Alpine. It looked like you were enjoying Big Wyo. Congrats. I would have enjoyed seeing you all. I smoked through that area by myself just in front of you only going the opposite direction. Big Wyo has it all. Great RR, Thanks, Joe
    #67
  8. Just Paul

    Just Paul Pro Cat Herder

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    Yes it does !

    It was some of the best riding we did on the trip
    #68
  9. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

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    Need to catch up here. Been busy but i cant miss this rr!

    Sent from my SCH-I800 using Tapatalk
    #69
  10. byways

    byways byways

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    :lurk

    Darkryder: Please call in "sick" for a day or two ...
    #70
  11. Jwats

    Jwats Bike till u Die

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    Docking Pilot, I remember you RR on Forever west 2010, very cool, speaking of day rides, after work we occasionally peel one off around Grassy Lake, going through the park[GTNP] & home. Also over Togwotee Pass to Union Pass and home through Bondurant. I have wanted to link the Alpine, Greys River, Labarge Creek back to Middle Piney then across and over Union Pass & home. Just have not done that in a day yet. So many places to ride out here it is incredible. We did peel off 700 miles of almost all dirt and some difficult riding to boot last summer in a weekend on the big bikes. Very satisfying. I am jones'en bad right now, lookin out the window at 4" of snow. Keep posting it is killing me. Joe
    #71
  12. Jwats

    Jwats Bike till u Die

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    opps that 4 foots of the snows, not 4 eeenches
    #72
  13. zeegman

    zeegman Been here awhile

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    Day 4 Aug 24
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p>[​IMG][​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>Idaho Falls is a picturesque town and we had a good rest and food there. <o:p></o:p>
    Day four would be about 195 miles and we would see rolling grasslands, horse herding, historic trails, big stream crossing, enter into Montana, old mines and cabins, and, a truly wild west Ghost Town in Bannack.<o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    Idaho Falls has , well, falls and we were fortunate to stay right by them so we took a few quick pictures as we were getting ready to leave.
    The peaceful scenic falls are on the Snake river at the site of Taylor&#8217;s Crossing which was a wooden toll bridge built in 1865 by Matt Taylor on the Montana Trail. The bridge was important in allowing settlers migrating westward seeking riches in towns like Bannack and Virginia city
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
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    <o:p>So when I woke up and went outside the hotel room I hear this cussing &#8220;these dam ?$%&**#!! straps&#8221;. <o:p></o:p>
    Jeremy was having a tough time doing up his Rok straps holding his gas bladders down on his panniers.<o:p></o:p>
    But he eventually got it done and was so happy about it he gave me the Advrider salute.<o:p></o:p>

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    After the strap fun we headed quickly North on Hwy 15 for a fuel up in Dubois Idaho. Saw a fun sign at the gas station.
    <o:p>[​IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>We head West on hwy 22 but there are some nasty looking clouds in that direction.
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    <o:p>The weather gods are with us as we escape the rain and sky turns sunny again as we hit the dirt heading North on Warm Springs road towards the hills.
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    <o:p>We then start heading up a narrow valley on a rockier road that leads up to the top of some ridges.
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    <o:p>Paul and Jill ride up the canyon ahead and at one point on the ridge they stop and take a look back at the valley we had come up when they notice an interesting sight. <o:p></o:p>
    You can see in the photo on the far left a line of animal advancing towards them. <o:p></o:p>
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    They waited some more and then they were upon them &#8211; a herd of horses all marching in a single line!<o:p></o:p>

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    Followed by the ranchers. Not something we are used to seeing as a bunch of city slickers. Seen lots of cows and ranchers but never any horse ranching.<o:p></o:p>

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    Some video of our ride up the canyon and along the ridges.
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    <IFRAME height=720 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/euwnqW6sI1Y" frameBorder=0 width=960 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>
    We are in Targhee Forests now<o:p></o:p>
    Although there are not that many trees and the vegetation is more bush like.
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    A one room school &#8211; the Edie school complete with its own outhouse in the back right.
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    <o:p>We were on Medicine Lodge road which is where you would expect to see Medicine Lodge Ranch!
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    <o:p>He headed onto the Bannock pass.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p>Nothing but open roads in front of us as far as one can see. We also crossed into Montana.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p>Deadman creek crossing.</o:p>
    <o:p>[​IMG] </o:p>
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    <o:p>It doesn&#8217;t look too deep but it actually is and as you see in the video it is high enough to get into our intakes and choke the bikes into stalling just as we get cross the creek.
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    <IFRAME height=720 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/-5AEcEeFct4" frameBorder=0 width=960 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>
    We just had to wait a bit for the water to evaporate and then we were fine. We needed a food and water break anyways.

    <o:p>After the water adventure we headed out and saw some signs of some old habitats on the plains.
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    <o:p>Bits and pieces of animal remains strewn all about inside the cabin and it was not much shelter from the heat or wet (if it rained) so we moved on.
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    <o:p>Another old cabin on the Bannock trail
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    <o:p>We then came upon what looked like an old mining operation
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    A poor old snake that had seen better days
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    <o:p>A herd of Pronghorn way off in the distance
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    <o:p>Now the sign says Bannack road &#8211; Bannock &#8211; Bannack &#8211; which is it? &#8211; this is confusing!
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    <o:p>Nice rolling hills with different color rock sticking out in the middle.
    [​IMG]
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    <o:p>W
    We then happened upon an Elk Ranch. The males stuck to one side of the pen, and,<o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    the females and youngsters stuck to the other side.<o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    We got to the highlight of the day &#8211; The Bannack State Park &#8211; site of the wild old west ghost town of Bannack.<o:p></o:p>

    Video of the way up to Bannack State Park

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    <IFRAME height=720 src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/cKLWWj-Gp7M" frameBorder=0 width=960 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>
    [​IMG]

    The creek was called Grasshopper creek for all the grasshoppers that hung out there
    [​IMG]
    <o:p>The Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks people have done a wonderful job of preserving this historic site of the gold mining early settlers.<o:p></o:p>
    We stopped in the visitor center (much cooler than outside) and had a cold drink and bought some visitors guides &#8211; well worth it.<o:p></o:p>
    The visitor center also has some artifacts from the town and some interesting old photographs.<o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    You can walk down the old board walk and visit the buildings to see how people lived back then.
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    <o:p>Town site
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    <o:p>Paul and Jill checking in at Hotel Meade
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    <o:p>It was a real scortcher of a day outside but surprisingly it was nice and cool inside the buildings. <o:p></o:p>
    Here Paul is inspecting one of what appears to be some kind of air conditioning as you could actually feel cold air coming into the room from the vent. It might be coming from below ground. <o:p></o:p>

    [​IMG]
    Paul checking out what&#8217;s cookin for dinner in the stove
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    <o:p>The elegant stairway in the hotel. Paul is admiring the fine craftsmanship.
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    <o:p>We moseyed on over to the Saloon for happy hour.
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    <o:p>Jeremy walked over to the area where all the heavy mining artifacts we stored. There was all sorts of rusting pieces from a bygone era.
    [​IMG]
    <o:p>And an old delivery truck. Wonder if it was used to deliver pizza back then.
    <o:p>[IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0649.jpg[/IMG]</o:p>
    <o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]They used these wagons to deliver pizza before the truck came along[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0640.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]We walked to the inspect the gallows. It was used quite frequently in the old days. Apparently the man who had it built, Sheriff Henry Plummer, was actually hung at the same gallows later.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Having such wealth as all the gold being mined was too big a temptation. <o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Plummer organized a group of bandits called the &#8220;Innocents&#8221; who robbed and killed up to people 102 in transit on the roads in an 8 month span.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Bannack was a very dangerous place to live.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]But a Vigilante group was formed and they hunted Plummer and his bandits down and promptly hung them at his own gallows.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]They were then buried in a cemetery way on the top of a hill overlooking the town. <o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]

    [IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0658-1.jpg[/IMG][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSC00584-1.jpg[/IMG]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Jill hiked way up the hill to get this cool shot of the whole town.[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSC00580a.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]We checked the Barber shop complete with a well preserved chair. They built them well.[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0638.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]We wandered over to the Masonic Lodge/Schoolhouse[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0628a.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Pretty strict rules for teachers back then.[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/IMG_0213.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Here&#8217;s Paul in the Jail house. They caught you speeding again![/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/IMG_0207.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Well we went over to the church and did some prayin for Paul and they let him out![/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSCN0664.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]At this point we were starting to feel like the poor old snake we saw earlier as we had driven a lot of miles and walked a lot and it was hot out.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]So we loaded up and headed to Dillon where we would stay for the night.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSC00597.jpg[/IMG]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]We found a place called Grandmother&#8217;s place (I think), and had some good chow (Jill really liked it), and called it a day.[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial][IMG]http://i793.photobucket.com/albums/yy214/Mike_Zieglmeier/foreverwest4/DSC00605.jpg[/IMG][/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]<o:p>[COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]Overall a really good day filled with wide open roads, historic old Ghost towns and buildings, and a fun water crossing.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]The next day would bring fantastic mountain top scenery as we would visit the Gravelly Range Mountains,[/FONT][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=white][FONT=Arial]cross the Continental Divide and Red Rock pass, meet up with some foreigner bikers, and find a perfect campsite.<o:p></o:p>[/FONT][/COLOR]
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    #73
  14. DARKRYDER

    DARKRYDER NoNoob

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2010
    Oddometer:
    236
    Location:
    Santa Clara
    Day 4 was a long, hot, windy day of riding under big open Montana skies. This day would really test our endurance, but the Bannack ghost town at the end of the day made it all worthwhile! This was my first time in Montana and I was awestruck by the beauty and vastness of this place. Such a complete contrast from chaotic life in the Bay Area. Mike did a great job documenting the day, here are some of my favorite images from the day. Many of them are from Bannack as I couldn't stop clicking the camera there. Enjoy!
    #74
  15. byways

    byways byways

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    Awesome report, Darkryder!

    A bit of background: There are two passes with similar names on the Cont'l Divide in the Bitterroot Range: Bannack Pass, which you crossed, and Bannock Pass, a little farther north.

    The old structure closest to the road, not the first one but the second, is an authentic stagecoach station. One doesn't see many of them out in the wild anymore. I learned this when I was developing the Forever West route. I was stopped at the Deadman Creek crossing on my KLR, pondering the path across, when a rancher came along in his truck. We visited for a while, and he told me his family owns 11,000 acres there, and homesteaded there in the late 19th century. He'd never lived anywhere else. I mentioned that some ADVers would be riding through that fall, and he said they'd be welcome. It was one of those chance encounters that make this kind of travel so rewarding.

    The large sheds are the remains of an old sheep-shearing station, I was told.
    #75
  16. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

    Joined:
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    Wow ! Finally have time to start catching up. You guys just pulled into IdaHuegel Falls after the gravel crash. Whew :knary, glad he is ok !
    Excellent report !!!!
    :clap

    I will continue with the story.............:lurk
    #76
  17. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

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    caught up ! Didnt you love deadmans creek ? :clap
    Please continue !!
    :lurk
    #77
  18. byways

    byways byways

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2006
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    2,485
    Location:
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    Yup.

    :lurk
    #78
  19. Phil in K.C.

    Phil in K.C. Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    565
    Location:
    just outta town
    MORE!!! Going to the area this summer! Will be riding out of Missoula. This stuff is just what I want!
    #79
  20. MizzouRider

    MizzouRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2007
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    1,979
    Location:
    Fly over zone
    Great stuff you guys (and gal)
    Please continue..:clap
    We hope to be through there in Sept.
    #80