Southwest Utah: Dual Sport Riding from St. George

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by RedRockRider, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Oddometer:
    2,005
    Location:
    Lansing, MI
    Hello RRR,

    It was a simple relay issue. Thank God the Auto Parts Store in Moab had the equivalent relay needed for the KLR.

    I will probably be there a little early as need to pick up some fastners for the bike.

    Simba

  2. 413.45

    413.45 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2009
    Oddometer:
    164
    Location:
    southwest Utah,
    I just got message about ride.
    I have to wait till 9:30 in morning for call to find out if Im working or not.
    If not, I'll try to meet up with you guys over where Kolob rd meets 14
  3. trevor2k

    trevor2k Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2010
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Vegas...or around the desert SW
    Have fun tomorrow gents. Kolob Reservoir is always great. The views while still in the park are some of my favorite. (Fixed my pics from above - don't know what the issue was)
  4. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Looking forward to seeing you guys at 9 am at Subway in Hurricane. Expecting 3-4 riders. Everyone else is on vacation, working, can't figure out how to login to ADVrider, or just too lazy to get out and ride. Stragglers always welcome, just be there by 9:05 am or else haul ass up the Kolob Reservoir Rd to catch us.

    Spent the weekend moto camping in Great Basin National Park. A few preview pics:

    On the way via Milford, UT.

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    Stayed 100% on pavement for the ride to Baker, NV, entrance to Great Basin National Park. Great opportunity to put some wear on the new Versys tires. UT 21 from Milford to Garrison is a very empty smooth road with at least a few curves and some elevation changes. Very, very empty road = :clap:clap:clap

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    Wheeler Peak. Just over 13,000 ft.

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    Hiking up to the Bristlecone Pine Groves.

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    Up close and personal. These trees are the stars of the show!

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    Stella Lake. Above 10,000 ft. Alpine scenery on an isolated mountain top in the middle of the Nevada/Utah desert.

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    Took the "scenic" way back south via Hamlin Valley. About 90 miles of dirt along the Nevada/Utah border. A few local inmates may have been through here, but not many. Pretty isolated area.

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    Typical scenery in Northern Hamlin Valley. Nevada isn't wasting any money on "Bicycle Crossing Use Caution" signs here. :lol3

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    I'll be on my dad's red Honda Tuesday. My WR is in Brian Head and the TW is not the fastest of all possible bikes for the pavement stretches.

    Thanks for the posts and the PMs from quite a few of you.
  5. notsofasteddie

    notsofasteddie Semi Slow Rider

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Oddometer:
    112
    Location:
    Far North (of Arizona)
    I really enjoy Wheeler Peak and the whole area around Baker and Ely. Lot's of country to explore on the KLR also. I try to explain how lonely that highway between Milford and Garrison really is to people living in more populated areas and I don't think can grasp it. (I ride it on the Concours or KLR at least once or twice a year going between Page and Ely.) After the pass just west of Milford as I head down into the valley, that view, as desolate and lonely as it may be, just puts me in a state of awe and all the crap I've been carrying in my head seems to evaporate.
  6. StG

    StG Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Oddometer:
    141
    Location:
    SW Utah
    Hey R3,

    Thanks for leading another great ride! Nice meeting you other FFs as well. Until next time!

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  7. DirtyJohnny

    DirtyJohnny BR 549

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2010
    Oddometer:
    147
    Location:
    NE,SW Utah,
    Looks like a you all had a great ride. Hated to miss it. Maybe next time.

    Hey STG, Did you get a new bike? :thumb
  8. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Thanks to my three riding partners, SimbaBoy, Samthg, and StG. Great PMs from all. All the other FF were too busy working, out of town, or couldn't figure out how to check their messages. Hopefully next time. More riders always welcome to join. We are an easy going group.

    Here's the map. Started in Hurricane - Smith Mesa (dirt) - Kolob Reservoir - dirt to #14 - Cedar City - Parowan - Yankee Meadows Reservoir - dirt/rocks to Sydney Valley Road (easy dirt) - Cedar Breaks National Monument - Navajo Lake - North Fork Road (dirt) - East entrance of Zion National Park - tunnels, switchbacks and home.


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    About 250 miles. Seemed like we were hauling ass the whole time, but still took us a bit past dark to finish. :lol3


    Our four bikes starting out on Smith Mesa. For newcomers to the thread check out the index of rides on page 1. Smith Mesa is Post #238 on page 16. And thanks to all my "imaginary" friends for riding along. :rofl

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    I was on my dad's little Honda. My WR is at Brian Head and the TW200 is not exactly the fastest bike for the pavement stretches. My dad is in Europe bicycling right now so he wasn't missing out. Fun to get out and ride on his bike. Honda 230 is a rock solid machine. Headlight works, no leaking gas, all blinkers intact, no bailing wire needed -- can't say that for every bike on the ride . . . :eek1 :lol3

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    StG has the new monster tank on his WRR. The 250 miles seemed to barely make a difference. StG is ready to ride to Death Valley or Moab non-stop. What an animal! :clap

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    Samthg's KLX250 - very clean. Samthg's a SoCal guy, but knows Southern Utah well. Great guy and happened to be his B-day. Very nice that he and his bike could make it to St. George for a ride with some fellow inmates.

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    SimbaBoy's mighty KLR! It's a KLR, need we say more. SimbaBoy is a doc who escaped Michigan to find some dirt riding while on vacation. Right on. :ricky Only problem was all those cases were full of medical supplies. We were all afraid that Simbaboy was going to perform a roadside amputation or emergency tracheotomy at the first sign of trouble. No one dared to show a scrape or cough during lunch . . . Simbaboy was all too eager. He was prepared!!! :wink:

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    Enough with the intros. Here we are enjoying some of the dirt and views from Smith Mesa. Great way to see views of Zion with no one else around. Don't think we saw another person on this part of the ride.

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    Simbaboy on the KLR approaching the entrance to Zion National Park. Good times.

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    We stop near the top of the paved road to Kolob Reservoir. Cooler air, great moto road even though there is some traffic which prevents Samthg from maxing out the KLX.

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    Looking down on Kolob Creek. I'm practicing for Toroweap, always good to grow the 'nads on 100 ft drops vs. 2,000 ft drops. Side note: Any experienced canyoneers out there that want to take me and StG down Heaps? :ear

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    Kolob Reservoir. Clear full, beautiful water. Most reservoirs in Southern Utah are low. Kolob is a real standout. We though about riding our bikes out on the dock, but thought better of it. Didn't want to lose a bike unneccesarily. Day was still young, lots of riding to do.

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    Good dirt above Kolob Reservoir. Samthg cooperates for the photo op. :D

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    StG and Samthg. We spaced out a bit to avoid the dust, but generally rode as a group.

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    No more photos, time to ride. The boys take off. Not sure, but I think Samthg might have been waving the "salute" to me, probably along with something like "eat my dust." :evil

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    Here's StG showing a proper greeting for a fellow rider. :D

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    Since we were enjoying the scenery instead of riding like maniacs, I got the chance to take some pics on the fly. Here's the guys cruising along, about 9,000 ft elevation. Good way to beat the heat!

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    Another pic on the move. Simbaboy and Samthg heading out with blue skies and green meadows. Turned out to be a good B-day ride for Samthg!

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    Looking back over my shoulder.

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    Not sure what inspired this stop. Ahhhh, the smell of gas. Not loose luggage racks, non-working lights, or fuel additives -- those little gems came a little later on. Hey, four riders and four bikes all made it home. No roadside amputations for riders or bikes -- all good. :clap

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    Taking off through the open meadows. Fantastic sections of pink and purple flowers. Too busy riding for nature photography. Great scenery above Kolob Reservoir right now! Springtime for high mountain meadows!

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    I'm still messing about with my camera on the move. Same guy is still behind me, eating the proper amount of dust. :lol3

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    Simbaboy checking out the "sheep jam." Don't see this very often back in Michigan on the Concours.

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    StG and Samthg caught in the "sheep jam" also.

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    Not sure, but looks like Samthg may have been secretly making a birthday wish that had to do with sheep. Or was it airplanes or golf. We'll never know. Good thing the sheep all moved along and could continue with ride. :deal

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    Back on pavement above Cedar City. The two guys from out of town check messages, making sure the wives know that the crazy Utards haven't kidnapped their beloved hubbies and stolen their bikes.

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    Simbaboy gets an "emergency" text from his bank. Simbaboy's wife withdrew $50 K to make a downpayment on second home in St. George. Probably a non-refundable deposit to a settlement company. Sure hope Simbaboy likes his new second house. We told him as long as there is lots of garage space for toys who cares about the rest. If it has a kitchen, a bathroom, a bed, and a place to watch TV --- you're good. It's all about the garage!

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    Down to Cedar City for food. After a very short drive around town we went directly to Hermie's, a hamburger place recommended by a local. Perfect. Not much fine dining in Cedar City, but that's not what we were after. Burgers, it's all about the ride!

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    The sign shot. Good lunch with a fine group of inmates.

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    Some fast frontage roads though Summit and up to Parowan. Easy to ride 60-70 mph. Here we are at the gas station in Parowan. We bought Samthg a few bucks of gas because we were too cheap to buy him lunch, even on his B-day. Of course, StG with that monster tank just chilled while us guys with the little weeny tanks topped up.

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    A little ADV bling on Samthg's bike. :thumb

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    Great road up Parowan Canyon and First Left Hand Fork (almost all paved) to Yankee Meadows Reservoir. Clear full. Stunning. Really looks good right now. Met an older guy named Luck on his ancient bike here. Good dude, we should all be so lucky.

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    Samthg, StG, and Simbaboy at Yankee Meadows. Post #395 on page 27 is a prior ride to Yankee Meadows.

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    We head up past the Reservoir. Great forest, good rocks and dirt. This stretch gets our attention, but is much more interesting than just blasting up Parowan Canyon on pavement. We'll save that for the road bike ride.

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    The B-day boy on his KLX enjoying the moment.:thumb

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    Simbaboy thinking, "I wonder if my wife really would buy a house without letting me see it first." No cell coverage here so not much to do but ride on!

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    Big views up on top. About 10,000 ft. Little camera doesn't do it justice. Yankee Meadows Reservoir is just visible in center of photo. Lots of mountain bike trails in this area. Short descent from Brian Head peak. This is the far edge of the ridgeline we explore on snowmachines in the winter.

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    Up on top the Syndey Valley Road is smooth and fast.

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    Late afternoon light. We are all enjoying the ride and decide to continue on towards Cedar Breaks.

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    On the paved road in Cedar Breaks. Simbaboy on the KLR ripping the curves right behind me on the little Honda. :D

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    We caught some really good light at the Sunset Point overlook at Cedar Breaks. Some other folks were singing Happy Birthday so Samthg got in on a bit of that action. As if the daydreams about the sheep weren't enough. :lol3

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    The guys from out of town are taking pics. You don't see this every day!

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    So I take a few more pics also. Cedar Breaks. Kind of like a miniature Bryce Canyon. Higher elevation, not quite as big. Almost no crowds, and about 5 minutes from my place in Brian Head. :clap In winter they close the road and turn it into a snowmobile trail. Going to have to check this out on the sleds a bit more this next winter. Was too busy pulling kids on tubes and getting machines stuck with my nephews last winter to venture very far from the condo. Any inmates with sleds in Southern Utah let me know.

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    Stopped at Point Supreme, the main headquarters for the park. Light wasn't as good, but still no complaints. Brian Head Peak is mountain in distance. We came up the backside from Yankee Meadows. Never got to the top, save that for the next time. Easy stretch of 3 mile dirt from the pavement of UT 143. Doable on road bikes.

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    Simbaboy on his KLR at Navajo Lake. Another gorgeous mountain lake. Navajo Lake isn't full, but it is much better than last year. No amputations for riders or bikes. Simba was always ready, offering up lots of crazy pain meds. Luckily we didn't need to have any takers.

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    The dike at Navajo Lake. All repaired. Good mountain biking here also. Lots of inmate activity in the area.

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    Good gravel/dirt on the backside of Navajo Lake, just before the North Fork Road. Samthg and StG. We are using up our daylight, but all of our bikes have headlights. What could possibly go wrong? :eek1

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    StG enjoying a bike with a throttle as opposed to pedals.

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    More messing about with the camera while riding. I'm trying to get a photo of my shadow and a couple of the guys. Not bad. At least the shadow falls in nice bright spot on the road.

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    Lots of deer. Here we are further down on the North Fork Road where there are some lovely meadows.

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    Headlights all working here. Lost track of some of the details. Let's just say it's good to stay together as a group. Very hard to ride a bike at night without light. :huh

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    Got to practice some more pics on the go. This is the beauty of digital. Don't think I would do much of this back in the days of film. Way too many misses for the few reasonable keepers.

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    Riding up close. North Fork Road, near the start of Orderville. Anyone want to do some "easier" canyons?

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    Using the flash now. Nighttime photography.

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    Stopped at Highway #9 just east of Zion to repair the rack on Simbaboy's bike. Hey, it's a KLR. At least we all had working headlights (high beam only) at this point. Riding pavement and tunnels at night without light might not have been a great idea. Utardia has some pretty lax standards about vehicle preparedness, but last I checked, headlights were required for night driving.

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    I was really enjoying this. A bit of an adventure. Here's what the Zion tunnel looks like at night if you are riding behind Samthg.

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    And going down the switchbacks.

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    Great little adventure guys. Thanks, Simbaboy, Samthg, and StG. Four riders, four bikes, good times. Looking forward to riding together again.

    All you other FFs and lurkers, you missed out. 'Til next time. Keep it safe out there. Rubber side down! :wave
  9. sealsam

    sealsam Sam...I am.

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Oddometer:
    3,222
    Location:
    seal beach, ca.
    Thanks RRR, StG & SimbaBoy for a fantastic 54th birthday ride.

    YOU GUYS ARE ANIMAL'S!

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  10. G19Tony

    G19Tony Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Oddometer:
    422
    Location:
    KLAS
    Great report R3. I think this will be the day 3 ride for my brother and I. Day 1 will be that short ride to a lake that was in an earlier RR. I have to look it up. Day 2 is Toroweap. On Saturday, we are set up for golf at the Ledges. It's going to be a great 4 days. :clap
  11. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Oddometer:
    2,005
    Location:
    Lansing, MI
    These three riders were strangers at the beginning but within a few hours became like Brothers in Battle.

    The multiple reference to headlights working being important was directed at my KLR. My headlight was working intermittently. I think the guys were just jealous of my Supertanker Status. They took me along just so they could sip gas from my tank when I was on frequent nature calls.

    RRR was also insistent on showing us some Flying Monkey Spot---he swears both 'Wizard of Oz' movies were filmed right at that spot. I did not believe him for a second, but was afraid that he would sulk and quit the ride if challenged. So we did a lot of oohs and ahhs when he was talking about 'Monkeys'. 'Flying Monkeys', Really!

    He also showed us some small, really small streams, telling us that these were the source of The Mighty Colorado which is the 'source of water for all the Oceans on Earth'. He even told us he has named these little streams but the State of Utah is still insisting that he is somewhat inaccurate about his findings. His enthusiasm about his home town and state is admirable. Like 'The Monkeys' nobody challenged him.

    Once I made the mistake of adding some Seafoam to the KLR's tank. The guys saw this even though I was being discreet. I will say no more on this topic.

    I am glad there were plenty of zip ties, rolls of duct tape, wires, flashlights, etc otherwise I would still be somewhere in Zion or one of its tunnels that RRR insists he drew the architecture plans for.

    Thanks for an experience of a lifetime.
    Simba
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  12. StG

    StG Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Oddometer:
    141
    Location:
    SW Utah
    Hey DirtyJohnny,

    You referring to my pedal bike? Yeah, I need to get a real dirt bike someday. If ya ever consider paring down your stable of 20+ bikes, let me know:D.

    R3,

    Some great photos as usual!
  13. DirtyJohnny

    DirtyJohnny BR 549

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2010
    Oddometer:
    147
    Location:
    NE,SW Utah,
    R3 and STG, Great pics!

    STG, Saw the KLR and thought maybe you upsized, then realized that you were taking the pic.
    Nothing wrong with the WR for SW Utah Riding. Most bikes in my stable are not as road worthy or handle as well as your WR. You have your WR set up very well! hope to ride with you again soon.:D
  14. MTNclimber0331

    MTNclimber0331 n00b

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2013
    Oddometer:
    6
    Location:
    Washington, UT
    Looks like yo guys had fun ride. Wish I could of joined you all. Maybe a weekend ride, sometime?
  15. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    My buddy Ken works for MotoZoo in St. George. He has the day off on Friday so we try to escape the heat in St. George by riding to Enterprise and Pine Valley. Ken rarely takes a weekday off, and Saturdays are always busy at MotoZoo.

    Chasing Ken on his V-Strom up the small paved road to Enterprise Reservoir. Been practicing my on the move pics recently. :clap

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    My stock '09 Versys and Ken's fully farkled '12 V-Strom at Upper Enterprise Reservoir. Ken keeps wanting to trade me even up on bikes, but I'm not budging. Sticking with the Versys; not taking any chances on that dodgy V-Strom engine. :lol3

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    Short ride back to Enterprise for lunch at Marv's.

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    Classic hamburgers. No salads here; don't even think they have vegetables on the menu. :D

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    Ken's no inmate, but he understands the salute! Good guy, go buy a bike from this man. MotoZoo. He's always checking his messages. Making sure his schedule is clear for all the Yamaha, CanAm, Suzuki . . . events for riding all the new bikes and boats. Rough part of his job . . . keeping track of all the work playtime in Florida and Mexico. We should all feel sorry for Ken. :cry

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    On dirt in the "suburbs" of Pine Valley. Brave man, shorts on the bike. Even flying insects have an unpleasant ping on shins at 80+ mph.

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    Pine Valley Chapel. At least it is only 90 degrees. Probably going to be 110 in St. George later this afternoon.

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    Tourist pic. The paved road up to Pine Valley is very moto friendly. Not a long ride, but a few nice curves.

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    Local history.

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    Here's Ken keeping track of his Florida and Mexico work commitments prior to hopping on the bikes for the hot blast on the descent back into St. George.

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    Later that afternoon I pick up my son at his "Camp Invention." Son is on left with 3 friends. Their job was to build a catapult from household recycle items. Objective was to launch a rubber duck across the school gym. Very accurate contraption they came up with. Look at those smiles. The catapult now lives in our family room. My wife will be very pleased when she gets back into town in a few days. Surprise, Mommy. The boys have redecorated with a homemade rubber duck launcher. Every family should have one. :lol3

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    Thanks for checkin' in inmates & lurkers. Ride often, ride safe! :wave
  16. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Wife is away for a long weekend visiting her dad in PA. Son and I went to Brian Head. Pic of my son earlier today. Temps in low 80s with overcast. We even had a slight rain. Perfect way to beat the heat from St. George. Good times with my son. :D

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  17. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Oddometer:
    2,005
    Location:
    Lansing, MI
    Hello Friends,

    While riding with RRR, et al on my KLR650 (I know, I know) I went down a couple of times in some sand. I am planning some further rides in the next week and August and am thinking of a smaller DS bike.

    I also got some new more dirt oriented tires but am wondering if I just need more practice on the KLR. I see people doing all kinds of crazy trails with their big boy DS bikes.

    RRR--heading towards Moab next week. Are you in for WRT or other trails? I will send out a PM to others who rode with us.

    Thanks,
    Simba

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  18. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT

    Hey Simba -- Thanks for the heads up on your Moab trip next week. Not enough flex in the schedule to make that happen. Will be doing a few canyons (with water) and hanging out at Brian Head to beat the heat of Southern Utah. Remember, rubber side down. Have fun out there! :wave --- RRR
  19. ringokelly

    ringokelly Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Oddometer:
    271
    Location:
    Utah
    RRR and crew, man I wish I had made that last trip...looks great. Plus I could have had a fellow KLX250 comrade along! Hope to make the next ride.
  20. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,603
    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Two good ways to beat the heat of St. George for 4th of July weekend. 1) Go to Brian Head, and 2) Find a wet slot canyon in Zion.

    Very pleasant temps at Brian Head, mostly in the 70s. Even had a big hail storm yesterday evening. Here's my son earlier in the day doing a "water crossing" on his mightly KLX 110. This right at the base of one of the ski runs, near our condo. We go through here on ATVs all the time so he knows the depth. Still a good job! :clap

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    Forest service roads take us up on top of the ski runs. He's ready to lead us out. Doesn't want to be in our dust. Smart kid, go first. :lol3

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    For this ride I'm on an ATV, mostly riding sweep. My wife's on the yellow ATV. She's having fun watching the little guy gain confidence on the bike.

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    Kick-starting the beast at the High Mountain Meadow Overlook. Cedar Breaks is in the background.

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    Son takes off in the lead again. Great scenery. Nice temps.

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    He's careful to avoid this water/mud. Not quite bold enough to take on the unknown quite yet. He's only dropped the bike once, and that was several years ago. Cautious rider, takes after his dad. :wink:

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    Fun to watch him set-up and pick his line through the aspen groves.

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    Hammering the throttle on the long straight stretches, probably 25 mph for the KLX 110. Only 3 gears and no clutch.

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    Great ride. Back at the top of the ski runs on Navajo Mountain. Son elects to take a different road back into town. He knows this will bring us past the store in the center of town where they sell ice-cream. He's no dummy. Great fun riding around with son and wife. For us, 3 is a good number!

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    A few days earlier I went down the Subway slot canyon in Zion with my buddy Eddie. We were taking a group of noobs through. Good to have one guy at the top of the rappels and one guy at the bottom. Very fun successful trip. Smiles all around. Here's Eddie on the first rappel, dropping into the interesting part of the canyon.

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    Air temps are above 100, but water is cold, and there is lots of shade in the canyon. Two of the rookies, emerging from one of the swims. They are impressed by the Subway.

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    Eddie leading through one of the corridors.

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    Swim with the "bowling ball" in the background. Water levels are low so it is an easy swim under the bowling ball. At higher water the swim can be substantially trickier.

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    Showing the way. Lots of clear running springs in the Subway section of the canyon.

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    Red shoes for RRR at the iconic "North Pole" log. :thumb

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    The group enjoying the Subway. Just after the last rappel. This is the namesake for the canyon.

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    This water isn't as cold. Worth a quick float.

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    Leaving the Subway.

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    Playtime for the noobs at one of the Red Ledges waterfalls.

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    Soaking, before the slide.

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    And the water slide.

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    Last pic. Fantastic scenery in the Subway. Some of the best in Zion. Many famous photos taken at the red ledge waterfalls. From this point it is still several hours to hike out. Best to go slowly and wait for some shade in the later afternoon.

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    Hope everyone is having a nice 4th of July weekend. Thanks for checkin' in. Keep cool, and keep the rubber side down.