Mengel Pass - October 2012

Discussion in 'Day Trippin'' started by byh, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    We heard that the summer monsoons had changed the road conditions through Mengel Pass in Death Valley. Hmm....

    MGM and HHH (byh) left Las Vegas, NV, on Saturday morning...

    ...to balloons.
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    Headed towards Pahrump but turned left on Tecopa Road.
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    Checked out the warm spring near Tecopa. First time it wasn't occupied by the usual clothing optional gang.
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    Continuing north.
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    We took West Side Road in Death Valley.
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    Lots of silt beds. Hang on and give it more gas!
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    Head west on Warm Spring Canyon.
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    MGM cooling off at Warm Spring Camp.
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    Onward. The summer monsoons have really changed the road/trail/goatpath.
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    Not too bad heading towards Striped Butte.
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    Striped Butte (background).
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    #1
  2. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    MGM roosting out of a ditch.
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    We skipped Archeologists Cabin because someone was there. At the next set of cabins, we saw some erosion from the rain.
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    Inside the cabins looked fine.
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    Time to move.
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    This climb was much harder than last year.
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    MGM goes ahead to spot for me. He points at a rock I should avoid.
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    Made it!
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    MGM's turn. I spotted for him, pointing at rocks he may not have noticed.
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    We both happy to be at the top!
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    The road condition is very rough.
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    The road is sometimes faint.
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    A few washouts like this.
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    #2
  3. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    Going down the small steps at Mengel Pass.
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    Then the big one. The center is washed out. MGM takes a line next to the wall.
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    Emboldened by MGM's success, I take a stupider line and the front tire slips into the washout. Boom.
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    MGM helps me pickup the DR. And it's good to go.
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    Pushing on.
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    I can see it!
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    Exiting Goler Wash. Yay!
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    #3
  4. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    We are beat. Lucky that Wingate Road is nice and flat.
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    Arriving at Ballarat.
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    We each had a couple of Cokes. The sugar and caffeine felt great.
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    Taking Ballarat Road towards Trona.
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    We have to come back another time and check out the Trona Pinnacles.
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    Gas at Buttermilk Acres near Ridgecrest.
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    Heading up 9 Mile Canyon Road.
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    It's getting dark, so we take a dirt road to find a camp site.
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    Found one!
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    Setup camp and made a fire.
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    The road conditions were a lot rougher than last year (2011) over the same route through Death Valley.

    Sometimes the same way just isn't.
    #4
  5. copter105

    copter105 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
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    55
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    Las Vegas
    This picture is awsome dude!
    #5
  6. The_Scottsman

    The_Scottsman There's Beer here??

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2010
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    Location:
    On a mote of dust, suspended in a sunbeam.
    Yes!

    Great photos all around, and nice RR! Thanks for sharing!
    #6
  7. ShawnWorks

    ShawnWorks Rock on!!!

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2005
    Oddometer:
    243
    Location:
    Prunedale, and to a lesser extent, Santa Cruz CA
    Hey guys,

    great report!

    I am looking to tackle Mengle from the west, via Goler, starting next week. The phone recording @ furnace creek says goler is closed, however the recording is old. Any thoughts on pass-ability?
    #7
  8. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    I would defer to the NPS on official word of the route being open or closed. But when we went through, there were no road closed signs.

    Entering Goler Wash from the west, one would know in the first mile if they would enjoy the route just getting to the steps. Pass-ability is a subjective thing. We found it pass-able, but we also don't mind adding some character marks, dings and scratches to our bikes. :-)
    #8
  9. MeinMotorrad

    MeinMotorrad Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
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    1,612
    Location:
    UK for now.
    Great photos.

    What was the temperature?
    #9
  10. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    At the time, mid to high 80s.
    #10
  11. dave6253

    dave6253 aka. dave62538675309

    Joined:
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    Excellent!
    #11
  12. redog1

    redog1 KLR650-2009

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
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    Location:
    Magalia, CA./ Butte & Siskiyou C.
    Thanks for sharing. Looked like some kick-assed riding :clap
    #12
  13. oldmanb777

    oldmanb777 Just say NO to socialism!

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Centennial,Co./ Grand Lake,Co
    Thanks for the report and pix. I'm 58 yrs now so a few years back when I was a senior in Highschool: My best freind (He rode west for the big sleep a few years back) and I headed out for a week, no special plans, no special place to go, just ride and camp and explore. We found ourselves in Death Valley at Stovepipe wells and decided to camp there for the night. It was mid April. A Thunderstorm was brewing way off to the south. As it approached, but before it started raining, water started running down through the campground. We were lucky to get our gear onto the picknick table and head for cover. By the time we got to the outhouse (The only cover we could find) we were knee deep in running water. Flash flood! Then it startede to rain, rained for maybe 10 minutes. 20 minutes later everything was dry. The next night we camped @ Monanche Meadows in the high Sieras. A special trip, with a special friend, that doesn't happen often. thanks for bringing back the memories with some great pix. We didn't have a camera with us then (neither one of us owned or could afford one).:thumb
    #13
  14. NMTrailboss

    NMTrailboss Team Dead End

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    Albuquerque, NM
    Great report and loved the photos!! Nice looking area to ride! :clap
    #14
  15. [ECHO]

    [ECHO] Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2011
    Oddometer:
    51
    Location:
    Elko, NV
    Out of curiosity byh, how were you taking the majority of those pictures on the bike looking ahead? Was it a mounted GoPro or something? Great pictures and ride report man, thanks!
    #15
  16. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    Thank you. We are lucky to be near Death Valley.
    #16
  17. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    We used a GoPro on the bike and one-handed operation of pocket cameras.
    #17
  18. [ECHO]

    [ECHO] Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2011
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Elko, NV
    Thanks for the reply byh! A quick follow-up question then: were those stills from video, or did you use timelapse?
    #18
  19. byh

    byh Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Fabulous Las Vegas!
    Images from the GoPro were timelapse photos.
    #19
  20. ShawnWorks

    ShawnWorks Rock on!!!

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2005
    Oddometer:
    243
    Location:
    Prunedale, and to a lesser extent, Santa Cruz CA
    Thanks again for the advice. We ended up taking a few R1200GS's up Goler a few days ago... It was challenging, but fun!
    #20