Make Booty Your Favorite! A Death Valley Treasure Hunt with BigWan and LittleWan

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by LittleWan, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Haha, BigWan thought it was pretty funny :lol3
    Hi Joel!
    I hope the nOObs enjoy seeing Lippincott, we were thinking of them.
    Pro surfer?? More like this


    Thanks, Blaise W! :D

    Hi TwilightZone!
    I love me some happy little rocks! :rofl
    BUT....I'm all about William Alexander, the guy who taught Bob Ross.
    I used to watch his show when I was a kid. Bill is the one who started the whole "happy little..." thing
    and Bob Ross ripped him off. :dirtdog

    Here's Bill

    OK, the racetrack is next....

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  2. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

    Aug 16, 2004
    CA dez (it's a dry heat)/West Yellowstone,MT
    Thanks for coming back. Great sense of fun in your report makes it a joy to follow along.


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  3. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    12/9/20 Saline Valley Rd --> Lippincott --> Racetrack --> Hunter Mtn --> PSR

    Okey dokey - racetrack next.


    That must be bird poop on the sign?


    So, I guess I should have taken a photo of this sign so you can read it.
    Hopefully it's covered here, at the park website: The Racetrack
    (partial quote below)

    ...In December 2013, Norris and co-author James Norris (of Interwoof and Richard's cousin) arrived in Death Valley to discover that the playa was covered with a shallow pond no more than seven centimeters (three inches) deep. Shortly after, the rocks began moving.

    "Science sometimes has an element of luck," Richard Norris said. "We expected to wait five or ten years without anything moving, but only two years into the project, we just happened to be there at the right time to see it happen in person."

    Their observations show that moving the rocks requires a rare combination of events. First, the playa fills with water, which must be deep enough to allow formation of floating ice during cold winter nights but shallow enough to expose the rocks. As nighttime temperatures plummet, the pond freezes to form sheets of "windowpane" ice, which must be thin enough to move freely but thick enough to maintain strength. On sunny days, the ice begins to melt and break up into large floating panels, which light winds drive across the playa pool. The ice sheets shove rocks in front of them and the moving stones leave trails in the soft mud bed below the pool surface.

    We didn't look at the rocks this time.
    I assume they are pretty much the same as they have been in the past.


    This was the first vehicle of the day.


    Now we had the road to ourselves.


    Along with all the glorious washboard...


    Back in january, Matt had serviced my forks and installed emulators and heavier springs.
    He used this kit (.40 kg/mm spring rate).
    Now, he wanted to see his handiwork in action!

    BigWan always tells me that washboard feels better if you're going 50 mph
    (or 60 mph+ on the 990)
    But I just can't get the XT up to 50 on washboard.
    I can do 40-43 mph and then I start worrying that the bike is going to break apart.



    Luckily, we were only going as far as tea kettle junction.


    So many tea kettles right now! A ton.



    There's so many, the rangers might be cutting them down soon...


    This caught my eye. Space Corgi!


    Is this a thing? dogs in space with garlic on their heads?


    Space Corgis shower curtain




    Back to Earth. :lol3

    Next we were heading to Hunter Mountain.


    Hopefully, with no snow!

    Oh, we saw our second (and last) vehicle here at the junction.
    A friendly guy and his dog in a pickup.
    They were also going to Hunter Mountain, but he waved us ahead.
    I hope they didn't get stuck in the silt!

  4. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Hiya, jonz!

    Aw, thanks for reading!
    I love making you guys look at water skiing squirrels and dogs in space. :D
    Hope you and your buddies have a good DV trip!
    (as mentioned in the DV conditions thread)

    12/9/20 Saline Valley Rd --> Lippincott --> Racetrack --> Hunter Mtn --> PSR

    So, I did a crap job of taking photos today.
    And matt only did 2 videos (lippincott and racetrack).
    I have nothing to show you where the silt was.

    I can say it was in the usual spot, but that doesn't really help someone who has never been there.
    Guess it will be a surprise. :hide

    I can tell you that it looks like this:
    (baja, on the way to Mision San Luis Gonzaga)

    Ugh. No fun.

    There were 2 sections of silt on Hunter Mtn Rd,
    stay right for the first section (no ruts on the right side),
    and go around the second section (there are lots of other bike tracks to follow).
    The second one is really bad.

    Deep silt sucks,
    but the upside is - no snow!

    If you remember last time we did this loop (page 28),
    we had lots of snow and mud.


    I probably dropped my bike 7 or 8 times.

    This time, it was a breeze.
    I hardly recognized the road without all that white stuff everywhere.
    Only saw a tiny bit of melting snow on the side of the road.


    We stopped at this hill for a photo.
    It had been too steep for me to ride up in the snow/ice, so Mr. Honey did it for me.


    Now it would be easy-peasy.


    I asked BigWan what he was looking at up there :up
    He said he thought he saw some petroglyphs.
    Wow, he has incredible eyesight!

    Here are the rocks he was looking at.
    They were across a gully, so I couldn't really get closer.

    P1000991 (1).jpg

    I think you can see the marks better in black and white.


    zoomed in



    Pretty neat.
    Anyone know anything about them?

    So, I made it up the hill, haha.
    And the rest of the ride was uneventful. Almost boring.
    We stopped at the overlook for some pics.





    And one slightly different view around the corner...
    I was trying to see if that tiny blob is Lake Hill (from the sign) but I can't tell.


    And that's the last of my photos.

    This loop goes a lot faster when you don't have to deal with miles of ice and snow!
    Hours faster. :lol3
    We decided that next time we want to ride Lippincott, we would go up and then turn around and ride down,
    going back the way we came instead of doing the whole Hunter Mtn loop again.
    Lippincott is the best part of the ride.

    We were cold and ready for some hot decaf :*sip*
    Instead of going home via Darwin, we just took the hwy after saline valley rd.

    Steaks for dinner. :dukegirl


    OK, I did it.
    Day 3 complete!
    Only one more day left to recap! Wooo!

  5. Ol Man

    Ol Man Long timer Supporter

    Sep 17, 2010
    Apple Valley, Calif
    Little Wan, from the videos you are a really smooth rider and you must have strong legs, because you stand up the whole time. You make nice smooth transitions from one side of the trail to the other and maintain a really nice speed.
  6. larryboy

    larryboy Stable genius.

    Jan 9, 2005
    Über Alles,California
    Those are the petroglyphs at Jackass Springs.
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  7. outdoorsman

    outdoorsman Lets Ride! Supporter

    Jan 19, 2011
    Elk Grove, California
    Thanks for the Lippincott video, Kelly! I think I can do it with a dozen dabs.:muutt lol!:lol3:lol3:lol3
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  8. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Thank you, Ol Man!
    Slow and steady wins the race :D
    I definitely feel more comfortable standing up (trials).
    Sometimes I forget to sit and rest.

    Wooo! my DV reference librarian always comes through! :clap
    Thanks, Rob. I thought you might know. :nomystery

    Darren, you got this! And probably with a lot fewer dabs than you think.
    Your XT will take care of you.
    I'm excited, hope you get there at DVNR!

    So, I'm going to do something weird now.
    I'm going to get in the Wayback Machine and do 1 post from February 1, 2020.


    We rode the South Park --> Rogers Pass --> Pleasant Canyon loop 2 times during that visit.
    Both times in the same direction.
    That's probably why I flaked out on the last 2 days of recap.

    But, we saw some burros in the canyon the second time and I want to use the photos.
    Also, we took a slightly different hill for rogers pass and it was covered in snow.
    For my Day 4 update, we were back on that hill (but snow-free).

    This probably won't make any sense to anyone (but me),
    so you can skip it if you want.
    I just want to use the burro pics. :-)

    2/01/20 South Park Canyon ---> Rogers Pass --> Pleasant Canyon

    Five days earlier we had ridden Ballarat/goler/mengle/geologists cabin/megle/goler/south park canyon/rogers pass/pleasant canyon...
    in one ride. It was exhausting.
    I didn't feel like I did a great job with South Park because I was so wiped out.

    So, for our last day of riding, I wanted to go back and do it again.

    The climb up South Park Canyon was good. I felt a lot better than I had on monday.


    Right when we got to the step, we found these guys hanging out in the canyon.


    I stopped to take a pic.
    Magnificent Seven?


    The cuteness! :raabia


    We rode slowly, letting them leisurely find a spot to get off the road.


    We didn't stop at either cabin this time.
    This go through was just for the riding.
    Approaching Chicken Corner....


    Trying a pick a line.
    (man, I hate looking down the side there...)


    I had been hoping for a clean like last time,
    but no joy.
    Made it up the big rock...but had to put a foot out because I didn't have a plan.
    Oh well.

    After I collected myself, the rest was fine.

    Matt cleaned the outside line, of course.

    This is slightly blurry but I'm too lazy to go look for another one.
    But, lots of ice and snow near Rogers Pass.


    We took a different way to Rogers Pass than we had taken on monday.
    It was just as snowy :bluduh
    I tried to get as far as I could, but I ran out of talent here:


    Matt had to ride my bike the rest of the way. Thanks, Mr. Honey!


    It was quite the hike in moto boots.


    OK. So we'll revisit that hill later.

    And, that's it.
    The rest of the ride was great. A perfect way to end our visit to DV.

    Apparently, I have hit the image limit, so we're done.
    Next post - Day 4 (December 10, 2020). :deal

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  9. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    12/10/20 Pleasant Canyon --> World Beater cabin --> Rogers Pass --> South Park Canyon --> Nadeau Trail --> Defense Mine (BigWan) --> PSR
    about 110 miles

    So, as I explained in the wayback post,
    last time, we had ridden the loop 2 times in the counterclockwise direction.
    This time, we decided to do it clockwise.
    Look! a map!


    I found the map HERE if you want your own.
    (no idea how accurate their green route line is, I am too lazy to check that)

    Pleasant Canyon was very moist.



    Lots of water flowing and some mud further up.
    Splashy puddle.



    And then the canyon opens up.
    Funny to see something orange in here.



    Some mining stuff to the right



    This is Clair Camp. It always creeps me out.
    (there are some pics of the stuff in the link above)


    There's a bit of a loose climb...


    I thought those rocks on the left were neat.


    Going this direction, it's easier to see the turn for World Beater...

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  10. advrockrider

    advrockrider Long timer

    Jan 17, 2009
    Awesome report as always! When things open back up and there is another noob rally I will throw my name out there to help out. I've spent a little time in DV and have ridden most of the cool stuff.
    LittleWan likes this.
  11. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Thanks, advrockrider!

    :clapJust contact @NSFW - I'm sure he would love another volunteer.
    DVNR is a huge undertaking.

    12/10/20 Pleasant Canyon --> World Beater cabin --> Rogers Pass --> South Park Canyon --> Nadeau Trail --> Defense Mine (BigWan) --> PSR

    The last 3 times we had ridden this loop, we blew past World Beater.
    It's harder to see the turn off the main road when you're going down the canyon,
    and we're always too lazy to go back.



    The view from the deck.




    Aw, man.
    The first thing I noticed inside was that these portraits were gone:


    This interesting Tiki guy was in their place.
    He does have a bit of a scary clown vibe, though...:arg



    Do you think the brown paint splotches are covering up graffiti?
    If so, that's lousy. Who would go to cabins and do that? assholes.


    Those partitions are new. I wonder what they're for?
    Hanging a hammock? :scratch
    EDITED to add - Matt said they are probably for rigidity/structural integrity.
    Oh, that makes sense.

    how it looked in 2012

    That painting in the upper right corner ^^^ is now behind one of the partitions.


    There's a new front door now. It looks nice.

    ( I know this pic is tiny. Photobucket. :rolleyes Either this or a gigantic one)

    The notice with the blue tape was notifying visitors that the cabin would be unavailable for public use.
    Some time in November 2020. I didn't bother zooming in since the dates had passed.


    Not a ton of supplies on this shelf. I didn't open the cabinets.
    Didn't see a guest log, but I didn't look too hard.


    These pics aren't clear because the lens of my camera was all fogged up.
    We've had the same issues with the GoPro and Prism on this loop.
    I wonder if has to do with elevation change? The rest of the pics later were fine.
    Sorry it's so gigantic. I had to do this one on photobucket.


    This mirror is hanging right by the door.
    I didn't even mean to get the scary clown tiki in the reflection. :lol3


    There's some kind of contraption out front, is that for shooting at stuff?
    Also, there's the outhouse. Didn't look inside.


    OK, off to rogers pass next.

    Attached Files:

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  12. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    12/10/20 Pleasant Canyon --> World Beater cabin --> Rogers Pass --> South Park Canyon --> Nadeau Trail --> Defense Mine (BigWan) --> PSR

    Heading to Rogers Pass - most of the way looked like this.
    Lots of trees.


    You can probably read most of the sign.


    This pic is from Feb. (hence the snow), but you can see the next hill behind me.
    It's loose and rocky...





    It just goes on and on...




    Right about here, if we had looked left, we would have seen this:


    I'm sure BigWan enjoyed the view, but I was busy.



  13. redog1

    redog1 KTM 690R

    Sep 4, 2009
    Magalia, CA./ Butte & Siskiyou C.
    awesome! I was down there with lionsrroar and another friend and their girlfriends. I had my dog with me:clap. We were in the cages and had a great time dragging a stock RAV4 and slightly modified Subaru crosstrek over Mengo Pass. One bud had his Tacoma and I had my Explorer. A little carnage but nothing serious until I punched a hole in my gas tank. More good memories. We all admitted that we missed being on the bikes down there
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  14. TwilightZone

    TwilightZone Long timer Supporter

    Dec 2, 2008
    Behind the Redwood Curtain
    Yup. Shooting bench.

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  15. rider914

    rider914 Agnostic Adventurer Supporter

    Feb 28, 2005
    Alta Loma, CA
    Hiya Kelly :wave

    Just getting caught up with your report :*sip*

    Excellent as always :thumb


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  16. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Hi redog1!
    Oh noes, a hole in your gas tank is bad! really bad. :cry
    Glad you guys had a good trip. And your dog got to go this time. :D
    Bikes next time!

    Looks comfy!

    Hey M!
    We were super bummed we didn't get to see you at DVNR 2020.
    Thanks again for the info about Mary. What a fun area to ride! :ricky
    I thought of you when we were doing swansea/salt tram.

    12/10/20 Pleasant Canyon --> World Beater cabin --> Rogers Pass --> South Park Canyon --> Nadeau Trail --> Defense Mine (BigWan) --> PSR

    BigWan had been so happy I made it up that loose hill at Rogers Pass.
    Me, too. Whew. My bike really suffers at high elevation. No power. :(:

    Now we were making our way towards Middle Park.


    Here I come!


    Instead of going straight, up that hill, we were turning right.


    Side note - if you do go straight there, it takes you to this cool overlook
    (that's Striped Butte on the right) We did it back on page 27

    But this time, we turned right.
    This section was covered in snow last time, and Matt had to ride my bike up the worst part.
    It was weird to be riding it without snow.


    There are so many trees and shadows, it was hard to get good screen captures.
    Can you see how the road undulates? There are big ruts full of loose stuff.

    I found a good sized one here,
    and managed to smear the starboard side of my bike against the dirt. :bluduh




    Middle Park



    We saw a bunch of burros in here.
    Two large groups, each was about 20-21 strong.
    My pics didn't really turn out, those guys were too far away.
    Here's one that shows part of the first group. Teeny little dots.


    Now you see why I wanted to use those burro pics from South Park Canyon!

    And that's where we were headed next...

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  17. redog1

    redog1 KTM 690R

    Sep 4, 2009
    Magalia, CA./ Butte & Siskiyou C.
    Been to Death Valley twice. 1st time April 2011 on bikes and this past November the second time in cages. Both times had to use KwiK Steel. Good stuff, don't leave home without it:D
  18. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    Most def - Kwik Steel, duct tape and zip ties can fix almost anything! :nod

    12/10/20 Pleasant Canyon --> World Beater cabin --> Rogers Pass --> South Park Canyon --> Nadeau Trail --> Defense Mine (BigWan) --> PSR

    When we rode down into South Park Canyon on the 990,
    I remember feeling like we were riding off the face of the earth...
    Just dropping, dropping, dropping...

    For some reason, I didn't get that sensation this time.
    Matt didn't either.
    I was re-watching the video and didn't even see the same shots.
    We were probably going much faster on the big bike...
    I really don't know. :dunno

    I wanted to find the frames in the video that matched these 2 pics, but I failed. :bluduh
    Somehow, the video just didn't look like this. Weird.


    Oh well.

    Hey, I forgot this sign used to be up there:

    I guess it was because of that old scary log bridge?

    Back to 2020...


    Pretty soon it was loose and rocky.


    Once it started, it would stay like that until Chicken Corner.


    This one is close-ish to that second photo up top...


    I like this shot. :D

    It's always so wet in here. [​IMG]


    And it seems like there's always ice. :vardy
    I was happy to have remembered that - stay right!


    I don't like going up this part, it's so loose and jumbly. Hard to keep momentum.
    Happy to be going down today.


    Even down wasn't super fun. This is steeper than it looks.


    Whew. Descent is almost over.


    Hey, you guys.
    Guess what?
    That's right.

    It's almost time!





    I don't think I've watched that since last time I put it in a RR.
    It might be happening today.
    I still have some last minute knitting to do.
    This year is so forked, I told my family that I'd be mailing their gifts next week. :hide
    They were cool with that.

    Here's one of the things I've been making...


    toilet paper ornaments. :D

    I had made a scarf version for @catfish for one of his Downieville birthdays
    (2014, the year of the broken foot :kurt)

    here it is:


    Anyway. Off to do some knitting.

    If you don't like PeeWee,
    here's 45 minutes of Ron Swanson drinking whiskey by the fire.


    See you tomorrow with a Chicken Corner video.
  19. joefromsf

    joefromsf Dark Happens Supporter

    Apr 28, 2005
    San Francisco
    Add morphine and it also makes it a compact first aid kit. :lol3
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  20. LittleWan

    LittleWan You can do it!

    Aug 21, 2009
    up on the pegs, in CA
    yep. :thumb

    Morphine? I like your style. :choppa
    We have some old vicodin and percocet in our first aid kit.
    (expired, of course)

    OK. Gotta make ride reporting my favorite today. :pierce
    Must. Finish. Report.

    Merry Xmas, you guys!
    I'll be back in a bit.