1st Solo Rip, Remote SE Oregon, & a Drone - Updated w/ Drone Vid

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by liv2day, Jun 28, 2018.

  1. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Thanks @KarmaSect, given the images you shoot, I'll definitely take that compliment.

    And yeah, as I re-watch the videos, look at all the footage that didn't "make the cut", and go back through the galleries I have from riding...I can't wait to get back out there and ride. Truly enjoy that part of OR - and I still haven't made it to the Owyhee river yet either...lol.
    #61
  2. oregonlmd

    oregonlmd Dirt,street,its all good.

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    Its to the NW, on the other side of the fence, up on the hill.
    When I was there years ago, an OLD man drove up with his wife. It was Father's Day, and they were out on a Father's Day drive. It had been years since he was there, wanted to check out the grave marker again. Here's the story he told me (as best I can recall):
    "A sheriff (or deputy, can't recall) was waiting for a couple horse thieves in the vicinity, as he'd been tracking them and had determined they would be coming though that "pass". When he confronted them, a gunfight broke out and he ended up killing them both. He buried them both there".
    According to this old man, the monument/grave markers used to be in a different spot when he was a young man. The marker was moved and renovated at least once, but in any case the incident was in this general area.
    This old man had to have been in his late 80's, at the very least. He described to me the road/route before highway 140 was put in, plus had a bunch of other anecdotes about other places of interest in that part of the country. I feel very fortunate to have met him.

    Here's a vid of me riding up onto the knoll with the marker on top. This was November 3, 2012.
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    Here's a pic of the marker from June 17th, 2012. Vickers and Grunke, August 1887.
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    #62
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  3. NEPAChuy

    NEPAChuy Been here awhile

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    Great photos and excellent usage of the drone! I need to get over to E/SE Oregon again.
    #63
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  4. KillerD

    KillerD BoozeMagician

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    Killer report! I’ve been skimming and will catch up on the whole thing in the morning, but figured I’d chime in on the tube discussion.

    I’ve been running IRC Extra Heavy Duty tubes on my G650X for a few years now. 9k miles of single track and OBDR/Oregon Desert riding and.....while I hate to put this in writing.....I’ve never had a single flat. I run 16-18 rear and 12-14 front.

    A buddy and I did 800 miles of OBDR Route five in four days including the nightmare boulder garden north east of summer lake , both running those tubes. while we broke god only knows how many hard parts, and clogged multiple air filters, neither of us ever had to change a tube.

    Wonderful footage and photos! Thinking about hitting fisher hot springs with the wife on our anniversary ride in a couple weeks after we hike around the painted hills.

    If you’re ever in Corvallis, swing by Flat Tail on a Tuesday for our weekly meat up!
    #64
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  5. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    That is simply cool as HELL! Now I really need to find that marker, means I’ll be going back :nod:nod

    Thanks for posting the story and pictures, great story from the old timer.
    #65
  6. Sfcootz

    Sfcootz Proud to be a 0.6106142755%er Super Moderator Super Supporter

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    @liv2day what pressures were you running in your tires? I am hoping to get out this way soon and want to avoid a flat fest since I'll be alone.
    #66
  7. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Not enough? LOL. I probably had 17 or 18 in the rear, should have been running 23-26 given the rocks and weight load. Did a ride last weekend with a new tire and ran 23 with a much lighter load. No problems, though she did spin up in the gravel...which is saying something for a little 250. Had the front at 25 the whole time, no issues.

    Have fun and be careful, it’s truly desolate out there...but beautiful!
    #67
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  8. Sfcootz

    Sfcootz Proud to be a 0.6106142755%er Super Moderator Super Supporter

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    Thanks for the answer. I'm excited about getting out there again.
    #68
  9. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    Nice Report! Maybe I missed it, but what rear tire were you running?
    #69
  10. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Sorry for the delay in responding, been off-grid the last few days :D:D

    I ran the Kenda Trakmaster II, have been running these tires for quite some time and never had a problem. They wear out faster than something like the D606 or Pirelli MT21, but for the $$$, I don't mind.

    The issue with flats was self induced (much to my chagrin), didn't have enough air pressure in the tube and the bike was too under sprung for my weight and all the crap I packed on the bike. The shock is currently being re-done (new seals, new spring, etc), so I'm hoping it won't happen again. I threw another Trakmaster II on the rear upon returning home and did a ~250 mile ride to the coast and back without any issues (ran 24psi with lighter load, but before I pulled the shock).

    Need to get the day 3 report done as well as take some time for the 2nd day's riding video - best day of riding of the trip and I have a bunch of video from it.

    Thanks to all for following along :ricky:ricky
    #70
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  11. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    :nod
    I thought that was the tire looking at the photos. In my opinion that is why you had flats. I tried one of those on my DR650 several years ago and I would never use one again. The first thing I noticed when I got that tire was how wimpy it was built. I could take two fingers and squeeze the sidewalls together like it was a bicycle tire. I have never seen a knobby tire that wimpy. I burned the knobs off that one in Nevada in 900 miles and was lucky to not get a flat. YMMMV. :nod
    #71
  12. BMWs2Dave

    BMWs2Dave Been here awhile

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    Thanks for taking the time to post this nice ride report. SE Oregon is an area I am not familiar with.
    Getting 4 or more flat tires really sucks. Something is wrong that you got so many flats. That is not normal.
    #72
  13. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Although the 3rd day of riding didn't involve the amount of riding I planned, it was an interesting one to say the least (lol).

    Woke up before the sun crested the ridge across the Alvord and jumped into the hot spring to ease some of the aches from the day before. Talk about a perfect way to start the day.

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    Walked back to my accommodations from the evening prior, boiled some water for oatmeal and coffee, and enjoyed the view across the Alvord as I did breakfast.

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    My plan for the day was to try and get up "on top" of the Steens just south of where I stayed at the Alvord hot springs. It was a good plan, but didn't quite work out...lol. Prior to getting to the GPS tracks, I hit the dry lake and had a blast ripping around.

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    Unfortunately, the tracks I wanted to hit ran into private property gates at two different locations, so I decided to head back into Fields Station and talk to the folks there about an alternate route up to the Steens. They didn't know of anything and recommended I slab Catlow Valley Hwy until I hit the southern Steens loop. Not that big of a deal, be an easy start to the day...or so I thought.

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    8 miles outside of Fields (and out of cel service) I feel the back squiggle. Yep...damn rear is flat again. Suffice to say, plenty of expletives were flying as this was my spare 18" tube and now I knew I had to use my spare 21" tube. Pulled off to the side of the highway (not a good place to get flat BTW - no shoulder to speak of and not much flat ground (see what I did there...lol).

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    Shortly after getting everything unloaded and my spare front tube out, a couple of Beemers ride by...without even slowing (WTH??). A few minutes after that, a lone rider on a Kawi touring bike rides by and turns around to see if I need any help.

    Now that's what bikers are supposed to do! As luck would have it, this generous rider (Chuck) just happened to have won a patch kit at the Beemer rally he attended and gave it to me (as I neglected to pack one...who goes through 2 spare tubes in one ride...oh wait).

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    With my spare front tube now occupying the space in my rear tire, I decided to head back to Fields and patch my original rear tube, my spare rear tube, and figure out a plan. At this point, I knew something was pear-shaped with my rear end (lol), but wasn't really sure what it was. That being the case, I figured I would limp my way back to my truck and call it good - I didn't want to risk being out in the sticks with another flat and forced to rely on patched tube(s).

    I found a mostly direct route back to Summer Lake hot springs and started on my way. No $hit - 2 miles outside of Fields back on Catlow Valley Hwy and the damn rear is flat again. Talk about being seriously peeved. Rather than unload everything and put a patched tube that would likely go flat shortly thereafter, I decided to push my bike back.

    If you're wondering, pushing a WR250 with a full load of camp gear and flat rear tire is not something enjoyable. In fact, I'd go so far as to say it sucks about as much as swapping a tube in the hot sun for the 4th time.

    After a thousand feet or so, I gave up and called Fields Station. Once again, the great folks there came to my rescue. I can now say I've ridden in a horse trailer with my bike, horse crap and all...lol.

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    The folks at Fields Station had now grown accustomed to my sorry arse and woes, so much so that they comp'd me a cheeseburger while I got down to the business of pulling the tire off the rim for a thorough carcass inspection.

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    I checked every square inch of that goofy tire and couldn't find anything inside that was causing the flats. It wasn't until I returned home and compared the roasted tire to a new one that I figured the problem out. All self-induced - roached the tire to the point where the sidewalls flexed too much and kept causing pinch flats. More air and stiffer spring on the shock (work being done now).

    I put one of the patched tubes in and commenced riding like an idiot in front of Fields Station so I wouldn't have to push the bike very far if it went flat again. Road it unloaded, road it loaded, skidded through gravel and spun the rear up. Pulled back in and it had the same pressure as when I started.

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    Booked the last room Fields Station had and decided I'd limp my way back to my truck (again) the next morning.

    At least, that's what I thought I was going to do. Didn't quite happen like that...more when I get to the last day.
    #73
  14. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Great adventure to read. Probably not a great adventure to experience...at the time anyway. Enjoying this one.
    #74
  15. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Thanks @TheAdmiral! Glad you're still following along, I know it's been a bit since the last update (summers are always crazy).

    I finally had a chance to get another video crafted from all the footage from the 2nd day of riding. It's on the long side, but covers the full day's ride and has a mix of drone and helmet cam footage. I'm biased, but I like this one - shows the whole cross section of what riding from Fisher hot springs to Alvord hot springs is like. Was too spent to get any footage of changing the goofy flat 1.5 miles from Alvord hot springs...but that's not too exciting anyway...lol.

    Hope you enjoy the vid, I had a great time putting it together :D:D

    #75
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  16. PBRider

    PBRider Adventurer

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    Awesome Video Brad! Cant wait to get out!
    #76
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  17. tundradirtbiker

    tundradirtbiker Been here awhile

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    Brad, I think the back track from Juniper Springs leading to the 140 and NV was Rincon Creek Rd. A quick hit on Denio for the basics. Surprised to see the water in Jacob's Reservoir too.
    #77
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  18. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    I should have loaded the NV maps on my Garmin, had a nervous laugh when I traced the track south and it was suddenly blank. Had I known I was so close to Denio, I would have bombed down and filled up with water...was out by the time I made it up and over the climb and it was a long trek to Fields from that point (at least it felt hella long).

    I can't wait to get back out there and ride again :D
    #78
  19. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    ]

    Thanks Aron...looking forward to getting out on a rip with you and the rest of the usual suspects :nod:nod
    #79
  20. liv2day

    liv2day Is Anyone Here a Marine Biologist! Supporter

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    Time to get the last day of the adventure posted, though I have a bit of video to go through from ripping around on the Alvord and will put something together with that.

    I was up before the sun again as I was worried about the stupid rear tire. Headed out of my room while the sun was still behind the ridge to the east and sure enough - damn thing was flat :baldy:baldy. At least I had a chance to grab a couple decent pics.

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    I had spoken with the Dad of the family staying in the next room (whom I'd met when first coming through Fields Station a couple days prior) the night before and he said they might be able to give me a ride to Burns or at least get me closer to my truck than I currently was.

    They started loading their truck shortly after I was out and I asked if there was any way he could help as I didn't trust anything to stay inflated in the rear at this point. After a quick chat with his wife and family, they offered to give me a ride to my truck. Talk about the graciousness of strangers willing to help someone out.

    We threw my gear in with theirs and I jumped in the truck for the 186 miles to Summer Lake hot springs. Not only were these folks incredibly kind; but we enjoyed a ton of great conversation on the ~3 hour drive. Great people who I feel lucky in getting to know in the short time we spent together.

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    The drive back to Fields Station was nice too, although I would have preferred being on the dirt. I will say that driving Hwy 31 down to Hwy 140 made me want to get another street bike and start riding again. Awesome scenery along the way and I stopped by one particularly nice spot with a killer waterfall.

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    Made it back to Fields after ~7 hours on the road and loaded the WR in the back of the truck. Said my goodbyes to the awesome people of Fields Station, grabbed a milk shake, and jumped in the truck for the 410 mile drive home.

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    Rolled into our driveway right around 11:30, about 18 hours on the road. Not quite the adventure I planned or expected, but it definitely provided me with tons of smiles, swears, chances to be humble, and stories. I can't wait to get back out that way and ride again...sans flats :lol2:lol2
    #80
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