Ultimate Utah Adventure Route – The UTBDR and a Whole Lot More

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by jglow, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    Lowry Crossing, TX
    And here is a little video from the Day 1 riding:
    (Viewing HD is better :evil)




    jordan
    #21
    Footy likes this.
  2. utefan

    utefan Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Oddometer:
    466
    Location:
    Scottsdale - Arizona
    Great Video :clap
    #22
  3. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    Lowry Crossing, TX


    It turned out to be a very pleasant and cool night. No clouds and plenty of stars were out. Typically, I wake up pretty early, and since my body was still on Texas time, I was up super early – probably about 4:30 – 5:00am. It was really awesome out. Dead silent. Definitely one of the reasons why you look forward to these kind of trips. About 30 mins before daybreak, I set up the GoPro to do some time lapse shots, and strolled around while I waited for the other dudes to wake up.

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    We fired up the little stoves and had our required morning coffee. I think we also cooked up some instant oatmeal for breakfast.

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    After breakfast, we loaded the 250cc mules back up. We are heading West towards Green River, but before we get going that way, we wanted to back track just a few miles from last night to check out the Ghost Town of Sego.

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    Which seemed to only consist of about 1.5 structures, and a few random pieces of decaying steel.

    And on the way back out, we passed by the small Sego Cemetery.

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    Then we headed out to Green River to get gas and refill our water.

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    Old Hwy 50 brings you into town.

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    After topping off the tanks and the camelbacks, we headed back out.

    I was having a bit of lame nostalgia coming through here. My wife and I rode the Trans-America Trail a few years ago, and the route comes right through Green River as well, but then the TAT continues East enters the San Rafael Swell. Our route we are on now (UTBDR) will take us due North, and we will only see the Swell from the distance.

    Fast gravel roads…

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    Bring us to Cotton Wood Wash Rd.

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    And we find some sand to entertain us.

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    Did I mention how lucky we were to have the cloud cover through here? Probably kept the temps 15-20 degrees lower. We were digging it.

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    The riding through this section is pretty fun. You get some fast stuff, and you also get on to some rougher roads and trails. It’s a good mix of making miles, and having fun.

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    We just referred to this whole section as the “Spanish Trail” because at some point we saw a few signs labeling the trails as such.

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    Slowly leaving the desert, as we haul further North.

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    We swing into Wellington for gas, and some trail food before burning down the newly paved Nine Mile Canyon Rd, and then onto some gravel roads into the Ashley National Forest.

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    More day 2 coming up....



    jordan
    #23
  4. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    Lowry Crossing, TX
    So, this is the point where our route cuts off from the Utah Backcountry Discovery Route. We tried to include a good bit of technical riding on our route, and to do that, we have utilized a lot of OHV trail systems that will bring us North up to Strawberry Reservoir, and all the way back South past Lake Powell. As I mentioned earlier, I was able to gather a fair amount of intel on most of the areas, but some of the areas, I could do no better than a satellite image on Google Earth to check out the terrain. Also, nobody I was reading about was really riding these trail systems on fully loaded down Dual Sport bikes, expecting to still make ~185 miles a day. But, we had a plan, and a track so we followed it!

    Heading into the Strawberry OHV System in the Uinta National Forest.

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    We were about ready to call it quits for the day…

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    Just looking for a nice spot to throw down.

    The Strawberry OHV System is a pretty large trail system. It even has some legit single track motorcycle/mountain bike only trails. So, after passing on a few other camp spots because they “weren’t flat” or “too close” to the main trail, we decided to push on a little further to one of the "Motorcycle Only" single track trails. We figured there would be no one riding those, and we would find a primo spot to camp in no time.

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    Now... It’s been my experience that usually when things turn EPIC, it’s at the end of the day. Pushing past that point where you know you probably should've stopped. That’s kind of what happened to us.

    This trail starts out super mellow, in a wonderful meadow.

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    Lawson even saw a huge Elk.

    And the first mile or so of the trail was indeed serene :ricky.


    But then we got to the section of the trail that started using a small shelf carved into the mountain slope.

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    Which doesn’t look tough, but your margin for error was shrinking.
    And we might as well go ahead and put the disclaimer out now: *It’s steeper, further, scarier in person than it looks in the pics.

    Lawson’s bike’s front tire washes, and he goes down.

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    Not a big deal… We drag his bike back on the trail, rest a minute and keep going.

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    About 100 ft after that, I manage to let the front wheel wash off the trail, but I’m not as lucky as Lawson. My bike goes full on down the slope to the stream that is meandering through the valley. No pics or vid of the bike going down. I didn’t think it was as cool and/or funny at that moment. A few minutes later, Richard and Lawson notice I’m not behind them, and then they eventually locate me at the bottom, where I am feebly trying to get my bike back up this impossible slope and back to the trail.

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    The next hour is spent working the bike forward through the small shoulder of the stream, to a point where we had no choice but to get the bike back up the slope. We managed it, but not without some effort and carnage. We (I) was super gassed at that point. Had there been anywhere remotely flat at that point to camp, we would have. We even consider throwing the tents up in the middle of a little island in the stream, but the threat of rain kept us from that.

    We had no choice but to push on. We had about 2.5 miles more of the single track to ride before it turned us out onto a forest road.

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    A lot of the trail was still fun, but I think at that point we were all super timid about losing the bikes down the slope :cry.

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    What a beautiful place though :nod.

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    At about 8:30pm we came up to what looked like an old corral of some sort. There was a flat area next to it, so we thought we would camp there….

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    Except for some reason, no one was really sold on it. The place had a really weird vibe, and possible bear scat. We decided we better ride the rest of the .5 miles of the Willow Creek Single Track Trail, and see what else we could find.

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    And not too far after we junctioned with the forest road, we found a open meadow to setup camp in.

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    About 5 minutes after the tents were up a storm blew in. I ended up cooking in my tent’s vestibule before calling it a night.

    The first section of our own routing had turned Epic on us pretty quick, and I was sort of nervous about what I had routed us through over the next couple of days :cry.



    jordan

    #24
  5. =[BAD]=TEX

    =[BAD]=TEX Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2010
    Oddometer:
    44
    Location:
    Lindale TX
    IN! IN! IN! :clap
    #25
  6. RACINGTHESUN

    RACINGTHESUN Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Oddometer:
    117
    Location:
    On the Flatirons
    Can't wait to get my little blue bike properly farkled and get out to Utah to ride!:clap
    #26
  7. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
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    2,747
    I'm N !
    I really like Utah!:freaky
    #27
  8. Pantah

    Pantah PJ Fan from Boston

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    Oct 25, 2004
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    Location:
    India Wharf summers - Boulders winters
    Jeepers....:huh
    #28
  9. CBAT

    CBAT occasional wanderer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    849
    Location:
    Central Texas
    Joining in; keep it coming. Love the videos. :clap
    #29
  10. kawagumby

    kawagumby Long timer

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    Sep 5, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,289
    Whoa! Nice job! Can't wait for more to come....:clap
    #30
  11. RideDualSport.com

    RideDualSport.com TPB all the way

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,998
    Location:
    Texas at large.
    Wow, that is an awesome route you stitched together! You are riding in some incredible areas, very challenging and beautiful terrain. I like your gopro still shots, lots of action! I am enjoying your report! Thanks!
    #31
  12. redog1

    redog1 KTM 690R

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    Location:
    Magalia, CA./ Butte & Siskiyou C.
    I'm in. :clap:clap:clap
    #32
  13. KnightRider374

    KnightRider374 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2012
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    30
    Location:
    Ever Dry part of the Evergreen State
    I'm in!
    #33
  14. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    Lowry Crossing, TX


    Stats for Day 2: 231 miles


    Here is the Video wrap from Day 2:





    jordan
    #34
  15. Motokirby

    Motokirby Anti log hopper

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    52
    Location:
    Paron, Ar
    We would have had more gopro shots but mine quit after day 3. Along with every other electronic device I brought. :/
    #35
  16. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,903
    Location:
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Hi jglow!
    Looks like you guys had a great ride!
    The UTBDR is cool, but it's nice to add more stuff to it.
    Good job!

    It was fun to see your pics from Lockhart Basin and Hurrah Pass...
    We're leaving Colorado tomorrow and will hit that stuff on the way to Moab.
    I can't wait!!
    #36
  17. jtmajors

    jtmajors OCD with motorcycles

    Joined:
    May 27, 2011
    Oddometer:
    303
    Location:
    Tx
    That one section where y'all were pushing your bike so it didn't fall down the hill looked SO sketchy. Definitely would not want to be on a big adv during that stuff. WOW! I'm kicking myself right now for going on vacation with my family instead of with you guys! Don't tell my wife I said that. Lol!
    #37
  18. davesupreme

    davesupreme grand poobah

    Joined:
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    Location:
    palm harbor, fla
    oh, yeah!... this is my kinda trip, and you guys look like you got all the right stuff..... been dying to try pretty much exactly that same loop, burr trail, escalante, hanksville, etc....

    i'm IN !!!!!!!.....
    #38
  19. jglow

    jglow Two wheeled traveler

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    443
    Location:
    Lowry Crossing, TX
    :dog

    The storm blew through overnight, and I was eventually able to get out of the tent and get rid of all my food stuff from cooking in the vestibule before going to sleep – I didn’t want any bears cuddling up with me! In the morning we awoke to super wet and foggy conditions.

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    We weren’t heading out early today :nono.

    Very few things worse than packing up a soggy tent, so we waited it out, and it was actually turning out to be a sunny, pleasant morning.

    It had gotten pretty chilly overnight, and with all the rain, we didn’t bother to have a fire, so we huddled up around the morning brew stations to catch some exhaust heat.

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    Once the sun got above the hills, everything dried quickly.

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    We loaded up and headed out, swinging by these white shacks that were near where we had camped.

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    Turns out that they are like little cabins that are public use (just keep them the way you found them). They were fully stocked with firewood too! The funny thing is that we had been talking all morning about how nice a fire would’ve been, and we were so close to these shacks the whole time, and had no idea. We could’ve been living large with a fire, and sleeping bags thrown out on the floor. Oh, well… Guess we know for next time.

    Heading up towards Strawberry Reservoir…

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    And then by the Marina where we grabbed a late breakfast before heading back out on the OHV Trails.

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    We start off on an easy trail that brings us up to the ridge…

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    Where we pick up a sandy intermediate 2-track trail that was loads of fun.

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    Although a little dusty. Doesn’t look like they got any rain here last night.

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    Richard skids off the trail abruptly. I thought he was either: 1. Having trouble with the biscuits and gravy, or 2. Seeing a photo-op he couldn’t pass up :rofl.

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    Turned out to be neither. His jacket had just come loose from the bungee, and wadded up in the back tire. Stopped him instantly – like pulling the E-brake. It also wasn't a terrible spot to stop and take some pics :evil.

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    With no visible damage to the jacket, Richard re-strapped it, and we continued on.

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    We come to our next section of Single Track MC trail that I had routed. We were feeling a bit apprehensive about jumping back into it, after the experience we had last night. There was a go around that utilized EZ and Intermediate ATV trails, but everyone was feeling much better this morning, so we opted for the single track :evil.

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    Which was an intermediate (blue) trail...

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    Same as the ones we were on last night,


    And it was not without it's technical sections...

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    But overall this section was a breeze, and a ton of fun.

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    It's not that the trail last night was super hard... The trail itself was pretty easy riding. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that a lot of the riding was off-camber, and we are pretty loaded down. There were times that my bags were literally dragging against the side of the mountain slope - making our margin for error pretty small :nod.

    None of that today, but any openings smaller that 50" made me nervous to pass through :lol3.

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    Which is why to Giant Loop bags that Richard and Lawson were sporting may have been better suited for this type of trail riding than my Wolfman Expedition Dry Bags.

    Further down the line, the trail spits us out at a junction...

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    Where the men continue South on the Expert (black) Single Track Route, and the boys head West for the Forest Road Go-Around.

    Were we men or still feeling a little boyish this morning :shog?




    more day 2 coming up later....



    jordan
    #39
  20. GailCallsMeKarl

    GailCallsMeKarl Squirrel w/ no nuts

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2011
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    1,457
    Location:
    Canyon, TX
    :clap
    #40