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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by DYNOBOB, Jan 5, 2018.
Fantastic RR! Thanks for the tracks, Lockhart Basin & 3 Step is in the plan.
Thanks for posting the vid BlockPass! Wish I had editing skills to put those together (and ride a heavy bike like that). You can see the rock at 1:40 that got Phil's stator cover.
I should have had my GoPro on...
Here are a couple though from 2013 when we got turned around just past Chicken Corners.
I take a spill.
Kane Creek Rd between Hurrah Pass and Moab.
Wed Oct 25 and Thur 26 - Arches Natl Park and camping on the White Rim Trail
If you're planning a trip to Moab, you should really consider camping out on the White Rim Trail one night. Camping in the absolute darkness and quiet of the desert is an experience you will remember the rest of your life. There are about 10 named camp locations that each have 2-4 campsites. You reserve them online and they book up early, so if you set a date for your trip check immediately what's available. In general, the ones toward the middle of the WRT book up first since it breaks the loop up into two equal parts (White Crack is hardest to get). All of the locations are fantastic though, I've stayed once at Potato Bottoms and twice now at Airport.
A couple suggestions I'll offer:
- If you're an average rider on a big adv bike with camping gear, you should be OK going in to Labyrinth campsite on the Mineral Bottoms Switchback side - or Shafer, Airport, and probably Gooseberry campsites on the Shafer Switchbacks side. Neither the Mineral Bottom or Shafer switchbacks are anything to worry about, you could take a minivan down them. The toughest parts of the WRT are between White Crack and Hardscrabble, I would not want to be on a heavily loaded 600lb bike thru there.
- You are only allowed 3 vehicles on a campsite. We had to reserve Airport "B" and "D" since we had 3 bikes and a truck.
- This will not be an issue for bikers, but no dogs are allowed on the WRT. Initially Tom and his pooch planned to ride in the truck with me, but this kept him from being able to join us for today's fun (I really don't understand this since every big RV 1/2 mile above us in Canyonlands N.P. has a dog).
- If you're riding thru the area and haven't made a reservation, check at the visitor center, they do allow some walk-ins.
I'm going to drive the truck out and meet the guys at Airport "D" campsite this evening, and since the DR is out of commission Phil rides with me. On the way, Phil/I take a drive into Arches N. P. to see the sights, while the guys ride in on Gemini Bridges Rd and take the Shafer Switchbacks to get there. And from the "you can't make this stuff up file", Shannon's 690 refused to start this morning (dead fuel pump). Damn glad it didn't happen 10 miles south of Chicken Corners!!! Anyway, for the rest of the trip he's breaking in the minty new 1190. Ironically, the decision to bring both bikes was last minute, he was 5 miles from home and turned around to get the 1190. It's always a good idea for someone to bring a spare bike on these trips if you have the luxury.
You could spend two days in Arches and not see it all, but we hit most of the highlights.
It was getting late by the time we left Arches, so we went north on 191 and took the main road into Canyonlands. After checking in with the rangers at the visitor center, we took the Shafer Switchbacks down to the WRT.
Airport campsite is only 15 miles in from Shafer but we only average 10mph in the truck so it takes a while. The guys have been out exploring (Lathrop Canyon down to the Colorado) so we end up arriving about the same time.
After some Mountain House dinners, Shannon breaks out the new drone. We really should have used this more on the trip - Lockhart Basin comes to mind - but we were not far along its learning curve yet. Practice is underway for the next trip...
I've got some footage from the drone uploading..
The night sky in the desert seems to have twice as many stars.
Sunrise in the desert is also not to be missed.
The "Airport Tower"
After breakfast and packing up, the boys head for town via Potash Rd.
Phil and I take our time heading back to the Shafer Switchbacks.
Looking east across the Colorado with the La Sals in the distance.
It's absolutely worth the 1/4 mile walk out to Gooseneck Overlook. Tiny Phil in the upper left corner.
And this time we stop for pics of the Shafer Switchbacks!
Looking back down at the WRT.
Tomorrow we're back on the bikes for Onion Creek Rd.
Thank you sir.
Spring and fall are prime time for Moab. Things do book up so be aware...
Trailering is a the only practical way for us, driving straight thru buys us two more days of riding. Plus, the more technical the stuff you plan to ride, the more likely you'll need the trailer to get home.
Shooting a Sony A7R2 and 24-70 2.8.
WR250R will be a great choice. Smaller bike = smaller risk. I think DingWeed is on his WR right now in Mexico...
Imagine you've already done this, but watch some YT videos on the "Active Track" feature of the Mavic. I just picked one up myself and CANNOT wait to take it along on my next ADV ride. The footage is simply outstanding and adds a whole new element to riding videos. If you have time (and interest), check out the Continental Divide Ride thread and video: http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/great-continental-divide-ride-2017.1250447/ - some of the footage they captured of riding through the passes is epic.
Curious - how did you guys get those night shots with Moab and 17? Those are frickin' sweet.
Thoroughly enjoying the report and pictures, what a stunning area.
We were saying the other day that we need to practice the tracking feature. I'll check out those vids.
The night shots were 20-30 sec exposures with Curtis and Shannon "writing" with small flashlights (headlamps). It takes some practice to perfect writing letters backwards
For some reason our 2013 efforts came out better? I really need to read up on the technique to get my settings better next time.
Outstanding images man! Gives a great feel of the area. I can't wait to go.
Friday Oct 27 - Onion Creek Rd, Castle Valley Rd
No trip to Moab is complete without a trip around the famous Onion Creek Rd. In addition to the 34 water crossings, it gives a fantastic variety of terrain from red rock canyons to views from the side of the La Sal Mountains. During periods of good weather, it's an easy ride that offers just a couple brief spots that would challenge a big adv bike. If you happen to be here after heavy rains, the Onion Creek crossings are a totally different experience. When we were here in 2013 (after the floods), it was basically impassible to anything but ATVs and dirt bikes. In many places you couldn't tell there was a road and just followed the creek bed. But, today it is a perfectly graded road with shallow crossings. Tom and Curtis opted to hit Slickrock today on mountain bikes so Phil borrowed Tom's KTM to make the ride with Shannon, Jim and I.
While you can do it several way, we head up Hwy 128 to hit the Onion Creek section first.
This is some of my GoPro from '13 of the same sections after the floods.
I believe this is called the Rose Garden Hill area
The plateau above Onion Creek, heading into the foothills of the La Sals
Fantastic views as you climb.
We intended to take La Sal Mountain Loop Rd to Spanish Valley but road construction turned us onto Castle Valley Rd instead.
Last shot I took on the trip...
Alas, all good things must end. We were blessed with a perfect week of weather, no illness or injuries, and an uneventful trip home.
Onion Creek tracks.
Beautiful pics. I always love the riding around Moab. Onion Creek was in even worse condition in 2013 than when I was there in 2015, and I thought that was bad.
Have ridden onion creek in 2013 and 2015, and 13 was worse, both the lead into onion creek from kokopelli trail, lots of wash outs. After this section the rest of kokopelli was impassable due to clay mud clogging wheels. Went back in 15 and rode what we missed. Onion creek is a favorite, and now you have given me a reason to go back for the WRT and other sections, not to mention 3 step hideaway. Great ride report.
What an awesome trip DYNO, thank you for taking the time to document all the rides and post your adventure
Thanks for sharing tracks.