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Discussion in 'Pacific Northwet - Where it's green. And wet.' started by MadChap, Aug 18, 2012.

  1. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    Thought I'd begin a thread for Central Oregonians to connect for rides, post short ride reports, link to longer ride reports and hang out. I know there is the Central Oregon Meetup thread which is used to connect for dinner or drinks, so I'm not going to replace that.

    This will be more focused on riding in Central Oregon. If you take a short trip and only get a couple pics and it's not worth taking the time to create a new thread, this is the place to drop your pics off. I love the "Riding Around The Hood" thread and I hope this will become something like that for those riding further south than "The Hood"

    If nothing else, this will be where I can post rides I take so they'll be all in one thread and easier to find.

    All you lovers of Central Oregon riding, feel free to post up here. Hopefully you'll subscribe so that others can post upcoming day rides and make connections.

    Let the fun begin
    #1
  2. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    A few weeks ago, someone posted a picture of Wolf Mountain Lookout. For some reason it interested me and I did a quick Google search. While reading I discovered that in 1942 a WWII B18 Bomber crashed within 1/2 mile of the lookout. I tried to discover more, but didn't find much. My son, who has a Bachelor's in History and Masters in Teaching, took over the challenge and found out quite a bit about the plane and it's demise. All the wreckage was removed for scrap during the war. In 2008 a forest fire pretty much eliminated the remaining evidence of a crash zone. Never the less, I wanted to ride there just to see the area and put the real scene in my head to go along with all the history and articles I had read.

    So due to a weird set of circumstances I had a Saturday off which is very unusual. Friday night I quickly prepped the bike for a longer day ride, sorted my maps and gear.

    Here's the route, starting in my hometown of Madras:

    [​IMG]


    Here's the Google Maps link if you want to zoom in and check out the area:

    http://goo.gl/maps/zjQQL


    Headed east to Ashwood then south on Trout Creek road, one of my favorites as you cross the stream a bunch of times. I didn't take any pics until I rode past this little rattler. Had to turn around to get the pic and he was most of the way across the road.

    [​IMG]



    Riding a little further it began to sprinkle. I didn't look like it was going to continue to rain and the forecast had stated 20% chance of scattered thunderstorms. Trout Creek road can be an absolutely impassable route if it gets too wet. I stopped under a tree for a few minutes to see what would happen:

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    I was just a very brief shower so on I rode. Here my Vstrom cooling her heels at one of the crossings:


    [​IMG]


    Through the Ochoco Mtns. Across Prinville-Mitchell Hwy, past Walton Lake, South of Big Summit Prairie, continuing east until I came to "Boeing Field" This is the field very near where the B18 crashed. It crashed in February and was discovered by a sheepherder in August. The story is that the Sheepherder mistakenly named the field thinking the plane was a Boeing, but it was actually a McDonnell-Douglas B18. Here's Boeing Field with Wolf Mtn Lookout barely visible in the upper left corner of the photo:

    [​IMG]

    A trail head takes off here into the Black Canyon Winderness:

    [​IMG]


    The last mile to the lookout was brutally rocky and a challenge for the Wee, but we made it.


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    In that pic, you can see a large rock in the foreground. Here's the plaque on the rock:


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    I hiked the ridge for awhile trying to find a tree that looked like it had been clipped by the bomber, but didn't find one that was convincing. So, now where to???

    Checked the maps, I was probably good on fuel, but why not hit the metropolis of Paulina for a couple gallons then decide where to go. So south on good gravel roads then paved to Paulina. As I was turning onto the Paulina hwy, three BMW GS's when flying by heading east. After paying $4.95 per gallon regular in Pauline and $1.50 for a can of Mt. Dew, it was about 2:45. Too early to slab it home via Post. Check the maps.....Paulina Valley Rd is a dark red dashed road on my Benchmark Atlas. Dark red dashed roads are typically good gravel roads. Light red dashed roads are typically two track jeep type roads and the thin red lines can typically be overgrown roads that are often no longer visible or blocked off.

    So, Paulina Valley Road....Dark red dashes....no problem. And it wasn't at first, wide gravel ranch type road....until the last ranch. Then it became a rough rutted jeep trail that I wasn't expecting to take my Wee on. When I got here, I considered turning back as it just continued to get tougher:

    [​IMG]

    The pic makes it look easy, but it was pretty bad for a bike with limited ground clearance. I chose to push ahead as I had plenty of daylight. The surface eventually became better, but the trees were closing in:


    [​IMG]

    I finally popped out back on 42 which I had been on earlier in the day. I had passed this "Road Closed" sign earlier, and being the curious person I am, wondered if it was really impassable for a motorcycle....


    [​IMG]

    2 miles up the road....yep they're putting in a new bridge and unless you can jump the 20' gap, it's a no go:

    [​IMG]

    However, right where they are putting in the new bridge is a beautiful camp spot on the creek. I need to come back here for an overnight when they are done:

    [​IMG]


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    Headed back, knew I was too tired for any more adventure so just took 42 to the hwy. 42 is an amazing paved road with little traffic:

    [​IMG]

    Prineville for dinner then home by 6:30pm. What a great day riding. Thanks for tagging along.

    Tim
    #2
  3. peterman

    peterman cop magnet

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    Well done!
    I love that area, and have seen many miles there, but missed a couple I need to visit obviously. Thanks!
    #3
  4. BLU HWY

    BLU HWY Guilty By-Stander

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    :thumb :lurk
    #4
  5. ChickenDance

    ChickenDance Keepin up with Darth

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    Beautiful Bend, OR
    Great photos and narrative. Looks like this will be a fun thread!
    #5
  6. Craig McCurdy

    Craig McCurdy BIGMAC

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    We were at Wolf Mt. lookout this summer and had no idea that plaque was there. The fire lookouts camper was parked right there in front of the rock!
    [​IMG]
    #6
  7. RECON

    RECON Guit Sum

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    Bend, Oregon
    Thanks for posting! You gave me some flashbacks, I rode Trout Creek road for the first time a spring ago during the high run off. Almost drowned the big GS on those water crossings! Great route.
    #7
  8. peterman

    peterman cop magnet

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    fishinpole
    freshcaughtgrasshoppers
    :clap :1drink
    #8
  9. forrest_fire1

    forrest_fire1 I came, went & discovered

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    Smith Rocks, Oregon
    :d I'd ride that! Never been 1/2 those places, and it's my back yard...
    :lurk, Any one else gorADV riding this weekend?
    #9
  10. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    Trout Creek is probably not really ridable until mid to late May. Here's a of the first crossing in early May:


    [​IMG]

    My Avatar pic is from the same ride:

    [​IMG]



    Yesterday I discovered that Ashwood Rd and Trout Creek had both been freshly graded. I know Trout Creek hadn't been graded in years. It's not much of a challenge now.
    #10
  11. Hootowl

    Hootowl Long timer

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    Less than a 1/2 mile east of Wolf Mountain LO are the remains of a tree top lookout. I've been told its from the 1920's.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #11
  12. Used2BeFast2

    Used2BeFast2 Chupacabra Rider

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    Eugene, OR
    Great thread and thanks for sharing. I love the obscure Oregon history bits. P.S. You picked a cool name for this thread...you made us look!
    #12
  13. tony the tiger

    tony the tiger Long timer

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    #13
  14. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    Awesome, thanks for posting those pics. I had heard it was near by, but walked west instead of east. I wasn't sure if it was burned in the fire in 08. Glad to know it's still there. Fun history bits!

    For this interested in the history of the plane, here is some of the research my son sent me:

    The newspaper incorrectly dates the crash as Feb 3, 1942 which caused some problems researching it. The crash is actually thought to have happened on 02-04-42.

    The plane was an RB-18A, a version of a Boeing B-18 'Bolo' bomber that was "restricted from combat", an interwar bomber that was quickly outdated as the US began to produce the B-25 "Mitchell' and B-26 'Marauder'. This crash happened so early in 1942 that this plane was still in service and had not yet been decomissioned. In fact, one source has only one plane listed as having received this desigation -- this could be the only plane to have ever had the RB-18A designation. The plane's serial number was 39-26.

    The last running B-18s were sent to where they sent all the old, outdated junk -- Alaska. The plane was to be stationed at Elmendorf AFB, Anchorage, AK as a part of the USAAF's 36th Bombardment Squadron, 28th Composite Group, 11th Air Force. The plane was en route from McLellan AFB, Sacramento, CA to Pendleton AFB, Pendleton, OR as a part of it's journey to rejoin its unit in Anchorage. The reason it was in Sacramento in the first place was to be repaired after it was damaged in an earlier taxiing accident at Elmendorf.

    This source states that there was bad weather in the area the day the plane went missing. Here are the names of the four men who were killed:

    2/LT Richard J Heiderstadt O-417958 (pilot)
    2/LT Walter V McShane O-421271 (co-pilot)
    TSG Michael R Bittner 1096450 (engineer)
    SSG Donald R Kirtland 624 31 53 (radio operator)

    There are four newspaper articles here with varying amounts of detail (this one and the others under "related articles" on the right:
    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=PzxPAAAAIBAJ&sjid=UiEEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4000,2739688

    Here are a couple sites with crash information:
    http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/dbasn.asp?SN=39-26&Submit4=Go
    http://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/wiki.php?id=105576

    Page 144 of this book states there is some confusion over the origin of the crew, but it looks like the crew was just a transport crew that was taking the plane back to Elmendorf.

    Finally, there is this account of a guy who went to the tower last month and found a marker with a plaque for the wreck, but there are no pictures of the wreck:
    http://www.hidarg.org/Albums/VHF12.html
    #14
  15. Apple Jam

    Apple Jam Forest Flyer

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    Too bad about the messing up trout creek road:cry

    Too good about the rest of this thread:norton

    Looking forward to more Lava tales :clap
    #15
  16. K_N_Fodder

    K_N_Fodder Long timer

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    Nicely done, good photos and history. I'm on a couple of "Day Ride" kind of threads in other places and they seem to work well, since for most of us normal humans, "Day Rides" are about the best we can do. I got in some riding this weekend, took back roads up to Kennewick and back for a buddy's B-day party. Unfortunately the wife had snuck off with the camera when I left so all I have are a few crappy cell phone pics. I did manage to help rescue a lady with a blown out front tire on an obscure dirt road north of Mitchell :)

    J
    #16
  17. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    For those that love the very south east corner of Oregon, looks like the landscape will be altered for many years to come. Most of the Trout Creek Mountains burned, and it came really close to the Willow Creek Hot springs that many riders have enjoyed. Here's the current link.

    http://www.inciweb.org/incident/3113/

    Here's a pic taken in Sept. 2010

    [​IMG]

    From the outline of the fire, looks like it may have burned around these cool old ruins:

    [​IMG]

    I know it's mostly sagebrush, but it was a cool area.
    #17
  18. Apple Jam

    Apple Jam Forest Flyer

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    We just got back from four days of van-camping with my wife and our two hooligan hounds.

    After visiting the headwaters spring of the Metolius River,
    we headed North to explore a forest I have not yet spent time in, South of Warm Springs Res.
    We camped that night right at the South border entrance to the only Southern road into the Res,
    at a great little dispersed spot right on the creek.

    Interesting valley, there where two creeks run basically parallel down this valley
    ... for about five miles from the looks of it in my Benchmark.
    The Benchmark was all I had this trip,
    and in the van, we did limited dirt exploring around there,
    and headed over to explore the old Santiam Wagon Road South of Hwy 20 for the next few days.

    But on the way back home I bought a Sisters Ranger District map
    with vows to return in my bike for more exploration from where we camped towards lake Billy Chinook.

    From the map, it looks likely to be empty and less traveled,
    which is just the ticked to get me to come back.
    MadChap, I know you've spent some time in that area,
    what will I need to ride most?
    what's the best stuff?
    looking for dirt-only two-track whenever possible,
    Kinda like what I see in the Paulina Valley Road in your pics above.
    (And now, I have to go there, too, dammit:lol3)
    #18
  19. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    AJ: First is this near where you camped?:

    [​IMG]

    Here's a ride report I did riding to each trail head on the east side of the Jefferson Wilderness:

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=706086

    There are a number of great two tracks along green Ridge, but I can't remember the route #'s. Normally I just ride up there and take whatever looks fun. That said, here's a couple suggestions:

    Ride all the way the the very north end of Green Ridge on 1190

    Take 1149 south from there with a detour to "Castle Rock". My Deschutes NF maps doesn't show the road, but there is one there. I've actually penciled in several roads. Not sure if it's in the "approved roads" list that the NF now issues.

    1149 has some great offshoots here and there. Kind of it it looks good ....take it.

    [​IMG]

    Further east is 2055.... DO NOT TAKE THAT.....unless you really like sharp softball size rocks scattered all over the road and extreme dust. Just sayin..

    Way further east is a great ride to Geneva with several amazing overlooks of the Deschutes River. There was a fire there recently, so I'm not sure if some of it may be ashy now.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Of course, if you just want to ride close to Madras, this is within 2 miles of my house. Maybe not good for the 990?

    [​IMG]


    Be careful of the Squaw Creek Crossing found in the Squaw Flats area:

    [​IMG]

    Not sure why, but you must click to view this next pic of Wachs enjoying the waters of Squaw Creek.


    [​IMG]


    Here's an older RR from some of that area:

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=275767
    #19
  20. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    So I had to spend a couple hours in John Day for work purposes. Well, if I have to go there, why not enjoy the ride?

    Started my usual Madras to Ashwood. Up on the pass the views of Jefferson were blocked except the very top because of the Waterfall Fire smoke:

    [​IMG]


    I love this ride and never tire of the scenery

    [​IMG]

    From Ashwood took Gosner Road. Once past Donnybrook, I notice it looked like it had been freshly graded.

    [​IMG]

    Then......

    [​IMG]


    What a bummer, now even grandma's Prius can drive Gosner rd. Why not leave it like it was:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    Well the views haven't changed even if the road has:

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    So instead of taking Bridge creek road to Mitchell, I took a little river access road towards Twickingham and was rewarded with this:


    [​IMG]


    and this:


    [​IMG]


    Once at the Twickingham bridge, I chose to go south on Girds Creek to 207, then north to Service Creek. I stopped at the little restaurant there at 11:55am and looked around. About 5 other tables full and no one had food....looked at my watch and my appt. book. Realized I was suppose to be in John Day at 1:00 not 1:30. oops.

    Left without ordering and made it to John Day at 1:15. I may have exceeded the speed limit for a moment or two? Needless to say, no pics

    Left John Day at 4:00pm still wanting some adventure but not wanting to ride past dark on account of the critters who love to explore the headlights of motorcycles. Mudbutt had asked about the road along the south fork of the John Day river out of Dayville. Why not get and answer for him.

    Headed south and thought the pavement would last about 6 miles, after 1 it turned to gravel. Sometime nasty deep and washboarded and at other times beautiful 60mph dirt. Of course I never exceeded the speed limit......by the way what is the speed limit on dirt? Anyway took a wrong fork (west) and the road dead ended in about 2 miles. Back tracked and too the road to Izee:

    [​IMG]

    By the way, that is looking north from my reroute. If heading south, take the left fork and follow the Izee sign.

    Bombing down the road come upon two cowboys on horseback herding about 30 head down the road. Took a few minutes for them to get the cows around a cattleguard then I got by slowly. Nice folks. Asked how many more miles until pavement? 20 hmmm....daylight is fading quickly.

    Picked up the pace and came bombing around a corner and scared the crap out of me and about 30 wild mountain goats. Fortunately they hung around and even let me take some pics:

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    That was cool!

    Finally hit pavement - county rd 63 called Izee road.

    [​IMG]

    Then took 380 through Paulina and Plush home arriving at dusk. 9 hrs in the saddle and 3 hrs in meetings, guess which I enjoyed the most?

    Thanks for riding along.
    Tim
    #20