Southwest Utah: Dual Sport Riding from St. George

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

  1. UpST8

    UpST8 turnin gas to noise

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    WOW!!!! That wet slot canyon looks like a blast!!! :happay

    and to watch the boy pick up riding..epic. My little girl is a few years out from her first dirt bike...
  2. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS

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    and good times.
    I gotta do The Narrows more than just 1/2 hour. Maybe, we might be in St. George area mid-August.
    As usual great pics, RRR.
    Simba
  3. Superhawk

    Superhawk Been here awhile

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    Awesome shots - next time I come to zion Im hiring you to be my guide !!
  4. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS

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    I have met RRR---he loves the area so much a Subway sandwich would do it. He will even pay for your gasoline!
    Simba

  5. sealsam

    sealsam Sam...I am.

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    :hmmmmm Hey. I resemble that remark.
  6. Superhawk

    Superhawk Been here awhile

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    thats my kinda price !
  7. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

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    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Found myself up at Brian Head with a flexible schedule for getting home to St. George. Took the Vulcan the scenic route via Highway 89 and Zion National Park. Here is the Vulcan on the easy dirt road to Brian Head Peak.

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    At the top. Nice and cool.

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    The sign and the hut.

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    Lots of beautiful wildflowers. It's the season!

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    Lots of purple, yellow, and white on the slopes of Brian Head Peak, although purple is dominant.

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    Looking down into Cedar Breaks National Monument.

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    All the Cedar Breaks overlook points have visitors, lots of tourists. Chessman Ridge has nice views.

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    Took one self-portrait before moving on.

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    Brief stop at the Navajo Lake sign.

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    Interesting bit of info.

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    Navajo Lake.

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    Stopped in at Duck Creek Yamaha.

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    89 South from Long Valley Junction to Mount Carmel Junction. Lots of traffic. Vacation season Utah even though it is hot. More fun to ride the moto when the roads are empty.

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    Classic stop.

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    Worth a second pic. :wink:

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    Home through Zion.

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    Hope everyone is enjoying summer. Keep it safe out there. Thanks for checkin' in. :wave
  8. Bob

    Bob Formerly H20Pumper

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    This last batch of great pics pretty much sums up Southwest Utah!
    Thanks
  9. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junkie

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    RRR, Amazing pictures as usual. You do a great job of capturing the beauty of SW Utah. Thanks for sharing. :D
  10. Mr Head

    Mr Head PowerPoint ADV

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    Mmmm, pie.:evil
  11. Brakelate

    Brakelate Supermoto Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Location:
    UT / AZ Border overlooking Lake Powell
    Hey, RRR! I've been working graveyard shifts and reading your ride reports weekly (daily at times) for the last few years.

    I finally made my move from the CA. High Desert, out to Big Water, UT just outside of Page, AZ!

    I currently do not have a true dual sport bike, but do have one perhaps better... a DRZ-400SM. :evil

    I am not afraid to ride it in the dirt, tour it on the pavement or race it around on both.

    I JUST moved in, so give me a week or two and I'll be looking for a riding partner out this way as I am now in the center of all the amazing National Parks and everything else out here.

    I will be posting up Local Ride Alerts over at Supermoto Junkie forum, as I was very active in the SoCal riding / racing scene out there. But, I fear I am the only one within 100+ miles of anyone else riding supermoto. Though I may be wrong.

    Shoot me a PM if you get lonely and are headed out this way, as I will do the same. I just scouted out a cool spot where Coyboys from the late 1800's though the 1940's wrote and etched their names on rock faces in a box canyon near the house. Though I have to admit, I took the truck due to all my gear still being boxed up somewhere... and I try very hard to be ATGATT, even out here in this amazingly casual biking environment.

    Looking forward for a tour!
  12. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

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    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Thanks, inmates for all the positive comments and PMs. Ride safely out there. Ride often. :wave

    Here's a bunch of photos from my solo moto camping trip to Great Basin National Park from late June.

    Always good to get a pic of the town sign as you are passing through.

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    Next town is Milford. The settlement dates offer clues about the early history.

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    Milford is a railroad town.

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    Old hotel in the center of town. Would have been fun to check out the interior.

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    Signage from a different era. And old brickwork.

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    The railroad station.

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    Still active.

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    Leaving Milford. It is 75 empty miles to Garrison. :clap

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    The open road. Good comments from inmate NotSoFastEddie earlier in the thread regarding empty roads and mental happiness. :thumb
    Quote: "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."

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    There are a couple of cool little summits. Just enough to add some curves and elevation changes. Versys is very happy on these roads.

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    Mirror view of the terrain.

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    Arriving at the Nevada border. Nevada has a cool sign.

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    Gas station at Baker. No attendant. Takes a bit of time for the credit card transmission to activate the pump.

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    One of two small restaurants in Baker. All the essentials.

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    The visitor center. I always like to check out the visitor center of National Parks. Also a good place to get water since the water at the upper campground wasn't turned on yet.

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    The view north towards Mount Moriah (12,000 ft) from the road up to the Wheeler Peak campground.

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    The ridegline between Baker Peak and Wheeler Peak.

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    Arrived at the campground and picked out my spot. $6 well spent. :D

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    My little one-man tent. Campsite is at 10,000 ft. Might be a bit chilly.

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    Evening campfire.

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    Messing around with my wood-burning campstove.

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    The simple life.

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    Looking out the tent the next morning. Didn't bother to wake up early. Felt good to sleep in the tent. :snore

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    A couple of interesting signs at the campground entrance.

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    Thought about climbing Wheeler Peak, but decided to start with the Alpine Lakes Loop. Never got around to Wheeler Peak. That will have to be the next trip.

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    Also connected to the Bristlecone Pine Trail. :thumbup

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    The Bristlecone Pine.

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    Trail sign in morning light.

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    The Bristlecone Pines in real life.

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    More signs. :deal

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    Over 3,000 years old.

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    Amazing shapes, colors, and textures.

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    Looking upwards.

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    Another old tree.

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    A few of the Bristlecone Pines are dead, but most are alive. Many have needles on just a few branches. Apparently the Bristlecone Pines grow best (slowly) right at the edge of their ability to exist.

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    The trail.

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    Self-portrait.

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    Texture and color.

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    Stopped for some beautiful purple wildflowers.

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    Next spot on the trail was Teresa Lake.

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    Small and shallow, but very scenic. Nice backdrop of snow and mountains.

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    Little stream at one end of the lake.

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    Wildflowers.

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    Looking back downstream at the lake.

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    The little bridge.

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    Back on the trail.

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    Small white flowers.

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    Dead trees, but not Bristlecone Pines.

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    Lots of interesting rock colors.

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    Along the shoreline of Stella Lake.

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    Yellow flowers.

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    And more rock.

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    Easy walking all around the shoreline of Stella Lake.

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    Small ridge of land on the far side of the lake, all in the shadow of Wheeler Peak.

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    Grabbing a photo of the sign on the way out.

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    Very well-maintained and used trails. Descending into the trees on the way back to the campground.

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    Blue sky by late morning, looking back at Baker Peak.

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    Here's the map of the overall area. Highly recommend a visit, either as a moto trip or take along the family. Trail to the Bristlecone Pines and Lakes is very doable. Great way to beat the heat.

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    Back on the moto. Noticed this guy by the side of the road on my descent back to Baker, NV.

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    Close up. Notice the IV hooked up to his finger. And someone was clever enough to get "alien" beer. :lol3

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    Roadside art.

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    Iconic western images.

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    Visitor Center map. Pretty good outline of the whole trip. For the return to St. George I road on dirt straight south from Baker. Hamlin Valley Road roughly tracks the Utah Nevada border. Reconnects with pavement in Modena, UT., about where the t is in Caliente.

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    By the side of the road, back down low. Wheeler Peak in background.

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    Back in Baker. This place was closed. So I went across the street.

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    The view from inside the other restaurant. Good to load up prior to hitting dirt for the ride back south.

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    Also fill up with gas before leaving town. Very reasonable prices, especially given how isolated this is.

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    Old house directly across from gas station. Someone in Baker has a good sense of humor. :nod

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    The inside. Lots of work to be done.

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    View out the window back to the Sinclair station.

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    Heading south. Cross back into Utah just before Garrison (no facilities). Utah also has a very cool state sign! :nod

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    Pruess Lake.

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    Sweet, empty road. And some nice curves.

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    Lots of birds on the lake.

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    Decide to leave asphalt and find my way back south via Hamlin Valley. Haven't been through here before so always a bit of a wildcard regarding road conditions. I expected relatively smooth sailing. But still, I was on the Versys, so any significant rough spots would turn me around. Always good to explore the unknown!

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    I would turn off before reaching Atlanta, a mining site in Nevada. But it was always good to see signs with at least a few familar names. :wink: Old forest service road signs are cool. :thumb

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    Empty roads.

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    That soon looked like this. Definitely was not a dirt superhighway, but never had any significant challenges. Navigated mostly by memory and sight. The west is great for wide open distances. Follow the main valley south.

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    At about the half-way mark came to the watering station.

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    Sign on the weathervane from a different era.

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    The large tank is dry.

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    But the large green tub has water. There are a few cows in the area. Not much else. Similar to some of the open stretches on the AZ Strip.

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    Tracking south in Hamlin Valley along the Nevada Utah border. Road is improving slightly. Definitely some regular maintenance here.

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    Crossing from Nevada back into Utah. I stop and look over my shoulder to grab the sign pic. Generally, Nevada puts signs on these crossings but Utah does not.

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    Roadside house. In its day, perhaps a happy place. Or perhaps only broken dreams. Always think about the history and circumstances of these remote houses.

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    I'm headed to Modena, which is on pavement, UT 56. This is the first sign to Modena and I'm increasingly confident that I'll get through on the Versys without hitting an uncrossable wash-out. Plan to come back at some point and ride the road out to Lund, another railroad town that time has passed by.

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    Closer to Modena the road gently descends a canyon. Interesting plants in the wash.

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    Stop to explore another abandoned house in Modena Canyon.

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    The last old sign just before pavement, and the modern signage of UT 56. Back with cell coverage. All good on the homefront. I'll be home in time for a late dinner.

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    A quick look around Modena. Some rockwork from the schoolhouse.

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    Buildings from a different era. Probably was an inmate hang-out in its day. :freaky

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    The same active trainline. Tracks run from Modena northeast to Beryl, Lund, and eventually Milford. All good moto territory.

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    Thanks for riding along. Highly recommend Great Basin National Park, especially the Bristlecone Pine and Alpine Lakes hiking loop. Time on the moto exploring new roads is almost always time well spent. Enjoy it out there.
  13. ckjj888

    ckjj888 Been here awhile

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    Post I top!
  14. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Very nice trip to GBNP. I really like the trail picture's you took when on you hike, peaceful looking. Love the old buildings too and train stuff. Looked like fun, thanks for sharing.
  15. notsofasteddie

    notsofasteddie Semi Slow Rider

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Far North (of Arizona)
    Yup, you got the spot just right! Great pic with the Versys in the road.

    Great job on the coverage of that area. I've got a bunch of similar pictures. We spent father's day 2012 at the upper campground and the jaunt up the Teresa Lake with granddaughter, nieces, and nephews in tow. I remember floating on a log on that lake at 14 (44 years ago) in early June with ice still on one end of the lake. Those mountain ranges truly are islands in the desert.
  16. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
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    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Been escaping the summer heat of southern Utah by spending time in a few of the slot canyons in Zion. Here are some pics of recent trips through the Subway and Orderville. Zion National Park is a mecca for canyoneers.

    My wife, Dr. RedRockRider, in the pink hat along with her friend. They are warning me that I am in deep trouble if it rains. No worries. Down we go into the canyon. :lol3

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    Holding up the wall. :D

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    Wife and buddy starting into an interesting section of the Subway.

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    Rappel into water.

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    Awesome victory pose by Mrs. Dr. RedRockRider for the camera.

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    Swimming the narrow gap. And my wife isn't that big. :eek1

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    Looking back from underneath the "bowling ball."

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    Heading back out towards a sunny part of the canyon.

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    Mrs Dr. RedRockRider with our good friends.

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    Beautiful clear running water half-way through the Subway.

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    Very scenic.

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    Neoprene shirt went on to ward off the chill of wet landings.

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    Stole my extra shirt just after our lunch break. :rofl

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    Final rappel into the Subway. Nice smile for the camera!

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    Friendly ADV salute to all my imaginary friends and lurkers.

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    Posing. Perhaps part of our next holiday card. :D

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    I go back to check out the waterfall room.

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    Green pools and classic Subway scenery.

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    Mrs. Dr. RedRockRider striking a yoga pose at the Red Ledges waterfalls.

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    Action photo on the water slide.

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    Our group of seven had a great hike through the Subway. Relatively tough permit to get, but well worth it. Highly recommended! From the Red Ledges waterfall it is a couple of hours of rugged hiking to get out.


    Next up was Orderville Canyon with my dad.

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    We stop for a photo early in the day.

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    Huge walls and narrow gaps and chutes.

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    Dad in one of the beautiful fluted narrow sections.

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    Water starts to appear in the canyon about half-way down.

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    Dad provides scale while I take the photo.

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    Dad easily handles the couple of short rappels and all the downclimbs.

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    Often the best / only path is straight down the water course.

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    Lots of tree obstacles in Orderville.

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    One deep pool.

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    Close to the end of Orderville, near the junction with the Virgin River in the Zion Narrows.

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    Great hiking with Dad. Not only do we do motos together, but also canyons! Way to be for a guy well into his seventies with two knees with lots of artificial parts. Always fun to be on an outdoor adventure with Dad.


    Did Orderville a second time with wife and friends and few days later. Mrs. Dr. RedRockRider on one of the rappels.

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    Our friend, the other cute girl.

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    My buddy getting kisses from both girls.

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    The girls. Or since it's Utah, should I say "sister wives" -- :lol3

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    Climbing over a log jam.

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    Our friends enjoying the moment.

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    I send my wife down the rappels first, you know, to test rope strength, water landings, etc.

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    Enjoying the day with my wife. :raabia

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    Smiling after a little waterfall downclimb.

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    Our friends are loving the "Orderville Waterpark." :clap

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    Victory photo of our foursome as we hike out the Narrows near the base of Mystery Falls.

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    Subway and Orderville and two of the easiest and most scenic of the Zion slot canyons. Permits and a rope necessary. Well worth doing if you are the canyoneering type of inmate.

    Thanks for all the positive comments. Ride safely out there. :wave
  17. Superhawk

    Superhawk Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Flatlands of NJ
    great photos !
  18. Ol Man

    Ol Man Been here awhile

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    Apple Valley, Calif
    How about telling us about the shoes, socks and other items you are using there to clamber about the wetness.
  19. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Sand Hollow, Idaho
    Man, the water in the slot canyon's looks oh so refreshing! I think I'd be able to give up a bit of riding on the hot days of summer, to go cool off in that place. "Sister wives - Utah" too funny:lol3.

    Looks like you're having a great summer, thanks for sharing it with us.
  20. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

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    Location:
    St. George, UT
    Was up at Brian Head a few days ago. Had a bit of time to cruise around on the WRR. :D Big project digging a new lake in the meadow. Hope it turns out well.

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    Might change our winter patterns with the snow mobiles and tubes, but we'll find a place. On the plus side the lake will give us another place to play with the kayaks. :thumb

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    Looking down on the excavation pit.

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    My son on the ATV, not waiting around for any more pics. He's ready to ride!!! :clap

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    Did Mystery Canyon in Zion with sister and nephew yesterday. Here's me tossing the rope at the top of the Mystery Spring rappel.

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    With my nephew in a wet part of the canyon.

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    Recent rain made this water landing about chest deep. For those interested, "Mystery Lake" is 1/2 full. Water is about waist deep, still relatively fresh and not too cold. I'll spare you the pics of the floating debris.

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    They always leave me to deal with the rope in the water. :lol3

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    Sister going down the last rap into the Narrows. Always an audience of curious onlookers down below. Most common question: "Where the hell are you coming from?" :rofl

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    Keeping with the waterfall and rappelling theme, I'll add a few pics from our recent trip to Costa Rica. This is my son and wife rappelling down a 160 ft. drop. Lots of water for my son on the left rope.

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    My wife a little further down canyon. All wet all the time. Fun!

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    Two happy campers. Almost the same size. :lol3 :raabia

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    Thanks for checkin' in. Heading to CA (Bay Area) for a week. More moto rides in St. George area starting in mid-August. Ride safely out there.