Shawnee National Forest Nostalgia Ride

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by jonny cash, Dec 18, 2011.

  1. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    Please bear with me as this is my first ride report after being a member here for the better part of 7 years. This ride started out as a test of a new seat and new gearing on my new to me 950, and ended up kind of a journey back to my youth. The Shawnee National in southern Illinois has some excellent gravel and forest service roads, although a few local forest activists have managed to really screw it up in the last 25 years. I hope you can follow along, as I hope to get better at this, as me and fellow inmate Craiger are planning an Idaho trip that I plan on documenting in 2012.
    This first pic was taken at the top of what the locals call Wamble mountain. They don't get out much as it is really just a good hill.

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    #1
  2. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This shot is indicative of most of the road conditions in the Shawnee.

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    #2
  3. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This right here is one of the reasons am lot of the Shawnee has become unaccessible to motorized traffic. Local off-roaders and atv riders find a nice hole and like to see how deep they can make it.

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    #3
  4. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    proof not all of illinois is flat

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    #4
  5. scarysharkface

    scarysharkface Imbecile

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    About 4 hours away from me. I love Jackson Falls. More pics please!

    John
    #5
  6. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This is Oak Blanchard Rd, one of my favorite places to ride when I was a kid.

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  7. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This Oak Blanchard church. This is where my dad brought me to ride when I was a youngster. I remembered today what happened the first time he brought me here. I had just gotten a yz-80, and my dad couldn't believe that it was faster than his ts-185 so he traded it for a Pe 175. The look on his face after the first half mile of trail was priceless. That big Suzuki scared the crap out of him!!

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    #7
  8. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    I love to go down there when them crazy kids are rock climbing!
    #8
  9. sect8dr

    sect8dr ride them all

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    Me and the girlfriend have been finding our way down to the garden of the gods quite often this past year, love it down there.
    #9
  10. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This is what has gotten screwed up around here. 25 years ago the horse riders got the bike riders pretty much kicked out of the Shawnee. Now, the hikers have pretty much done the same to them. This sign is at the trailhead of what used to be my favorite trail, it started at that church and goes down through Lusk Creek Canyon. It is now closed to foot traffic only, no groups of more than 10. You have to sign in, and if caught by a ranger you had better be in the right. It is hard to believe that just a few activists have screwed the shawnee up so bad.

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    #10
  11. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    Well, guess I'll just have to turn around. Can you tell I really like this bike? It seems to make its way into most of my pictures

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    #11
  12. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    Nice shot looking back at Williams Hill

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  13. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    I have been looking at these old pickups for at least 25 years. I don't think the owners is planning on fixing them up any time soon, but they sure are cool.

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    #13
  14. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    Sign of progress? Puke!!

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  15. KankakeeBenjamin

    KankakeeBenjamin Been here awhile

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    Just got back from hunting in Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois. My buddy and I rode down there with all of our gear loaded on our bikes. We hunted right by the Dutton chapel and one horse gap lake I think it's called. I was on my BMW GSA which went through the puddles fine, but my buddy rode his Harley full dresser which didn't do as well. Great riding down there all the same. Thanks for the pictures it brought back great memories. This puddle was one of the biggest, I was able to make it through just fine on my bike, but the Harley had to ride up on the shoulders and still struggled...

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    #15
  16. BackRoadNomad

    BackRoadNomad Wandering around

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    Not intending to hijack your Ride Report...just add to it. Several years ago, the 'Ol Big Dog hisself turned me on to it. Camping out at Cave-In-Rock campground, I spent three days touring southern IL back roads. Quite a treat. Looking forward to riding it again.

    Thanks for your ride report and photos.

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    #16
  17. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This is a shot looking back towards Harrisburg from Oak Rd almost to state route 145. On a clear day you can see the coal silo's at my old place of work, Kerr Mcgee Coal. That is almost 18 miles away. Thew cows gave me the thumbs up on the 950.

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    #17
  18. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    Wiiliams Hill was where i took the shot of my gps. I have lived here most of my life, and Bigdog showed me places I had not been right in my own backyard.
    #18
  19. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    If I am not mistaken, I think I saw you guys at KFC in Harrisburg. I was on the clock and couldn't stop, but I remember seeing a GSA and and a 'Glide loaded down.
    #19
  20. jonny cash

    jonny cash LEGEND

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    This Jenny Ridge Rd, not far from my house. When I was young, you were the MAN if you could climb this. Not much of a challenge as this is a county maintained road now, but sure was tough back in the day.

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    #20