The Mobius Trip

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by DR. Rock, May 23, 2008.

  1. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    -- Click on the underlined links to go to:
    Mobius 9, May, 2012: [Idaho Falls, ID - Great Basin Loop]

    M9 Corporate sponsor announcement, some during-trip banter, some previews, and the official M9 prelude
    Departure from ChezQ, rerouting at McCammon, cowboy camping with Q. Riding canyons to the City of Rocks,
    Almost Blocked by snow, the giant web camp, really blocked by snow, the great go-around, cow-poking, then into
    and out of Bruneau Canyon. Gerrying our way to Jordan Valley, Rattler on the old ION, the Pillars of Rome,
    Lava fields, buckarooing (before we even knew the term), Mr. Jenkins and the Round Barn, crappy camping at
    The Narrows. Crossing the Malheur refuge, passing Llewelen Moss trees, Sheeprock and Fandango to Christmas Valley.
    Ranching re-routes and a bit o' pavement getting to Crater Lake. Klamath falls, Northeast California, to Blue Lake camp.
    Crossing on Buckhorn road and Buffalo Creek into Nevada, gas at Gerlach, Painted canyon on the Applegate, the eclipse
    cowboy camp, sheep hill climb, Battle Mountain, shortcut to Crescent Valley, Cottonwood canyon, and the rancher incident.
    Garcia flat, Hastings cutoff, to pick up the Pony Express, through Cherry Creek, saved by Tatiana at Langes Station.
    Morgan Pass, Bunnyville salt flats, Lucin and the Transcontinental past Kelton Cemetery to Golden Spike,
    Pioneer camp, two miles of hell, through Paris, Crow Creek road, T2 from the ID border back to Questor's @ Idaho Falls.

    [​IMG]
  2. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    It had been a long winter. Not particularly cold, but still, lots of time for planning, plotting, scheming, and fine tuning our next leg. Looking back on our trips across the states, and then up into the northern hinterlands and back down, we were able to formulate some opinions about what we liked better and not so much.

    While Alaska and the way-up north-is stunningly beautiful, and remote as heck, and we have absolutely zero regrets hauling ourselves up there, the riding for the most part isn't particularly challenging, and the routing and navigation couldn't be simpler.

    M8 gave us some insights into what really makes these trips great. The first was the technical challenges of riding rough terrain (once we got to the Tour of Idaho), as well as traversing vast areas on little traveled roads, not really knowing whether they go through or not. The second was the social aspect of riding with other people. LDF and I agreed that having folks ride with us here and there on M8 (and other sections) really added to the experience, so we were really looking forward to having Dave join us for the whole two weeks of M9. Having Q join us for the first few days was a welcome bonus.

    I think we're pretty explicit in our descriptions of how we roll, but if I had to guess, maybe Q, but especially Dave (and maybe even LDF :lol3) had to re-calibrate expectations of what it takes to ride along with the Mobius traveling circus. This was a tough one. Take the hardest riding we did on the TAT, make it 50% harder, throw in at least one massive obstacle per day, and then don't take a single day off for two weeks.

    I kinda had a feeling I'd be routing us on some tough stuff, and at times it was way over the top, and my riding partners probably wanted to kill me, but I gotta say, I think I've got this routing thing pretty dialed in. All said and done there were very few reroutes at all, and the ones there were were mostly due to snow... only a couple of locked gates, though there were times that we all had our doubts that the trail (or as Mr. Jenkins calls them "roads") would emerge back into civilization.

    More on Mr. Jenkins at a later date. :evil

    There was a lot of history all along the route, from the old ION trail to the Pony Express, to the Trans-continental railway. I'm not a big history buff, but every time we spend time at one of these places, I'm surprised to find that I get all stoked to learn more about the places when I get back. For instance, Kelton cemetery left a big impression on me for some reason. :dunno

    The great basin. Personally, I love the place. The riding is the bomb, the scenery austere, the weather pretty perfect for riding in May. Could use a few more gas stations, but whattya gonna do?

    2-weeks... 2347miles. Probably fewer than 100 on pavement. :clap
    (click on image for a larger version)
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    It was like the Dakar... only not a race. And with luggage. And way slower. And with no day off in the middle. :D
  3. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    A few weeks before departing. I'm loading maps onto the GPS units. I want to include maps segments for any cities we have layovers in, just in case we get stranded or something. LDF is in charge of M9 airline logistics. I call her from work.

    "Hey, what cities do we have layovers in on the way to and from Idaho Falls?"

    "Just a second, let me find the itineraries. OK, on the way there we stop in Minneapolis, then Salt Lake City, then Twin Falls."

    "Wow, three layovers? What time do we land in Idaho Falls?"

    "Ummm. This just says "Twin Falls"...

    "Yeah, but then we must get on a small plane to Idaho Falls, right?"
    :hmmmmm

    "Ummmm.... I'm gonna have to call you back in a few minutes."

    :doh

    That was soooo M8. :choppa Well, we got that sorted out. Nothing that can't be solved by throwing money at it. :rolleyes Funny how at the time it was such a big deal, but now in retrospect I'd have paid 10X what it cost to change the tickets to be able to experience this trip.

    In the end we only had one layover in Salt Lake City. On the way to JFK we got to see the Enterprise waiting to get to the Intrepid.

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    I bet Q will like these pics. :D

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    We thought of him as we drove by.
  4. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

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    I doubt anyone could get upset while using the Anti Hassel Tassels.

    I need a set. Sometimes I'm way to serious to be on vacation.

    Bring it on Doc, your fans are waiting! :freaky
  5. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    Was noteworthy for two things. 1. these seriously yummy rosemary/candied almonds:

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    And that they have a smoking lounge. It was like stepping back in time.

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    For real. Smokers in captivity. Cool. :1drink

    Before long we were boarding our plane (not ours)

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    stepping out into....

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    :clap
  6. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    to get friday off to travel is that I work overnight thursday. If I'm lucky, I get to sleep at the hospital and it's like a free day. If I'm not lucky, I'm up most of the night, and it takes a few days to get caught back up with sleep.

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    If I'm really unlucky, I'm up most of thursday, spend the day friday traveling across the country, and then stay up 'till 2am mountain time (4am EST) prepping bikes so we can get at least a half day riding in on Saturday.

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    OK, even my worst-case sleep deprivation scenario involves riding, so I got nothing to complain about. But man, was I dragging those first few days.

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  7. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    from Edmonton, and we got his bike unloaded. This was NOT posed. :norton

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    He's a capable wrench, and helped with the radiator,

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    and heated grips re-wiring project:

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    Fortunately, we had adult supervision. :smooch

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  8. Gooch

    Gooch Been here awhile

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    I'm locked in. Euro12 is no competition. Work? It doesn't stand a chance.:clap
  9. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    we had to install 3 pairs of Anti-hassle Tassels™ (compliments of the new corporate sponsor of the Mobius trip) on the Blueberry, the Tiger, and the Black Beauty.

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    We took a break for dinner -- pizza, salad, and adult beverages.

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    talked about the weather, bikes, gear,

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    you know, the usual stuff you talk about

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    before embarking on an adventure. Look how happy we are! :rayof

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    Not that we were ever truly unhappy, but this is probably the high-point of morale, and the lowest amount of stress we had for the next two weeks.

    :evil
  10. taco250

    taco250 wannabe adventurer

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    See folks, our patience is rewarded!:clap
  11. AugustFalcon

    AugustFalcon Long timer

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    Looks like you've been practicing with that M8, too! Love those last 3 people shots above. :clap
  12. DRRambler

    DRRambler AKA Albertastrom

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    The Doc's reporting of Mobius lacks nothing in my opinion and could not convey the true spirit of the ride more accurately. But I would like to humbly add my 2 cents here and there. Perhaps it will add a different perspective, or embellish the exaggerations (like the 10 foot Rattler we saw). Besides, I can't write/photograph/narrate like him, so I'll let him do the heavy lifting.
    BIG thank-you to DR. Rock and LDF for having me along.
    Thank-you Questor for your hospitality. It was fantastic having you with us.
    AND glorp is delish.

    The undertaking of a Mobius leg was truly an experience that will linger in my memory (and my arms) for a long long time. When I joined Doc and LDF for a few days during M8, I was concerned that I would disrupt the Mobius karma. I knew them to be generous and gracious hosts from my visit to the Adventure loft but what about riding with them? How would their major corporate mustard sponsor feel about a tag-along? They took me in and showed me what Mobius was all about....or so I thought, M9 would be different.

    Among the first communiques on the Scala intercom to me was a query from DR. Rock..."Hey Dave, have you ever ridden in the desert before?".
    "Err yeah, I think so" (on pavement across death valley) "I mean like a REAL desert off road?" RE-CALIBRATION #1

    I wouldn't say I ever wanted to harm Dave for his routing. I can't speak for LDF, however it would have been interesting it the Scalas allowed three way conferencing :eek1 In reality he truly does have it dialed in and I'm grateful for all the hard work and spectacular perfectly good roads we encountered.
  13. Tall Mike

    Tall Mike TAT Rookie (planning!)

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    I am in once again!! :clap :lurk :*sip* :beer :ricky :clap :thumb
  14. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    As we go along, I'm gonna post each day's tracks to this thread. This way, if any future generations want to see exactly where we were, it'll be there.

    Also, any photos that were taken while the GPS was on have been geotagged. Unfortunately, SmugMug's mapping only allows the first 200 photos in a gallery to appear on the SmugMug map, but the coordinates are in the EXIF data. If you're really curious to see where a particular photo was taken, you'll have to head on over to our M9 gallery and download a copy of the photo in question open the EXIF data, and link to the location from there. Alternately, you can load the whole gallery into googlemaps as an RSS hack. (Sounds more techno-geeky than it is)

    1. Open this page: http://10012.smugmug.com/hack/feed....LgsbD6&format=atom10&ImageCount=3000&Paging=0
    2. Copy the full http address that appears in the address bar of above page
    3. Open the following page: http://maps.google.com/ and then
    4. Paste the address from the first page into the "Google Search" field (NOT into the top address bar) of the second page

    Pretty cool, eh?
  15. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    and an early start. The one thing I wasn't able to do was to start the bikes. I didn't want to wake anyone up so that had to wait. Always makes me a little nervous. Once the sun was up, I got into trouble by spilling a bit of radiator fluid on Q's neighbor's lawn. Ooops.

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    All four bikes were sporting Anti-Hassle Tassels™. And boy, did they look supreme. :rilla

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    And they work even better than they look! :nod
  16. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    completely unfounded. Blueberry started up pretty easily, but Honeybee wasn't kicking. When the battery started to flag, we hooked her up to Q's toaster. Of course that necessitated directing the exhaust pipe towards his neighbor's open bedroom windows, so again... my bad. :brow

    Vid poached from AlbertaStrom (he's made some nice compilation videos for the first 4 days he'll hopefully post here)

    <iframe frameborder="0" scrolling="no" width="640" height="360" src="http://api.smugmug.com/services/embed/1875509560_gn3Wjkk?width=640&height=360"></iframe>

    All said and done, we had wheels rolling 'round 10am. Not bad considering.

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    A quick stop for gas became a major production when every cruiser rider wanted to chat about our tassels.

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    Eventually we just had to say "giddy-up"

    :lol3
  17. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    we were riding past stuff like this:

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    It doesn't take long to get off pavement from Idaho Falls. :clap

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    The weather was fantastic as well... this was a great start.

    <iframe frameborder="0" scrolling="no" width="640" height="360" src="http://api.smugmug.com/services/embed/1876511048_2wkWcVq?width=640&height=360"></iframe>

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  18. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    would take us on some easy gravel roads

    <iframe src="http://api.smugmug.com/services/embed/1876510938_H6v7STK?width=640&height=360" frameborder="0" height="360" scrolling="no" width="640"></iframe>

    south from Idaho Falls to where we would intercept the Tour of Idaho East-West T2 route.

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    T2 starts at the Wyoming border, and ends at the Oregon border at Jordan Valley. Our plan was to do about 4/5ths of it at the beginning of M9, then to pick up the start of T2 after we'd looped around at the end of M9.

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    After a nice canyon carving session,

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    the terrain flattened out a little,

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    and over the rise, if you stood really tall on your pegs, you could see the peaks of the mountains where we were heading:

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  19. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    so of course when we took a break,

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    we were overrun by a marauding herds of 'tard-chariots. No photos -- too dusty. :puke1

    Soon we were kicking up dust of our own.

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    Big open spaces,

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    It didn't seem like it, but we'd climbed some elevation. There were still some patches of snow.

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    which was a little concerning, as the NOAA model had just shown that our route across monument pass was clear of snow. Hmmmm.
  20. DR. Rock

    DR. Rock Part of the problem

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    we took Brush Creek road to the Four corners intersection which put us on Bone road and the T2 trail.

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    Straight and nicely graded, that aimed us straight at the Blackfoot reservoir,

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    all high-speed, top-gear stuff. A great way to shake out the cobwebs from a winter of not riding.

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    there really is a little bit of method to my routing madness. :dllama