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May Moab Meandering 2021

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by ScotsFire, May 26, 2021.

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  1. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a drifter rode into town... Supporter

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    This is the fifth year in a row that I've met @simbaboy and friends in Moab for some spring riding. He'd already been to Moab a few weeks earlier, but we're gonna stretch ourselves on this trip. We stay in Moab and do day rides out and about. Small group this time, but different folks in and out depending on the day.

    WARNING: This will be a picture dense thread, so feel free to make comments so there won't be too many pics per page to bog down the loading of it.
    #1
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  2. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a drifter rode into town... Supporter

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    May 21, 2021: Rain?!?!

    At @simbaboy 's request, we made a run down to Lathrop Canyon. It's part of the White Rim Trail, several miles in past Musselman Arch. This was surprising in Imu usually isn't the one to suggest new routes. I think it helped that this was an offshoot from the WRT which he's very familiar with. Also he's probably tired of me bugging him about it after he's bagged out a few times while doing the entire WRT before. Just three of us on this ride, with John getting fully exposed to these antics, though he'd been to Moab in the past.

    Left Moab a little later than normal, but not late enough.
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    Steady rain, with some periods of sleet, combined with strong winds. Made the entry to Long Canyon pretty miserable.

    We had discussed trying to wait the rain out, but Mr Big Shot threw down the machismo card.
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    Of course he was the one hogging the dry spot at Pucker Pass.

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    We'd stopped to try to warm up a little, but the howling wind kept that from happening.

    I was really disappointed with the amount of damage done to this (and other) trails this year.
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    The picture doesn't show it well, but the drop offs at Pucker Pass were much more difficult than in the past.
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    The lines were quite messed up seemingly by bigger tired rigs spinning out some and messing up the aproaches. A person coming down would have a real tough time sticking the drop off due to the rock pile at the bottom. Used to be a lot simpler if still a fair drop.

    We ran up to the visitor center to get a WRT permit as we'd be fifteen or more miles into that route to get to Lathrop. The ranger issuing the permits made us listen to a laundry list of rules and suggestions. It pretty much boiled down to "Stay on the roads, and don't be a nimrod."

    It cleared up while we were there making the rest of the ride much more fun.
    [​IMG]
    Starting towards Schafer Switchbacks.

    Looking down at the bottom of Schafer.
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    Imu and John on the first switchback (if you have your reading glasses on anyway).
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    A little further down.
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    And on the run out.
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    Literally a goat trail (at one time anyway).
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    John is a welcome new friend! Competent rider and a reserved but brutal wit.
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    My kind of guy.

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    The Colorado River
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    The Washer Women looking from the eastern side.
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    John had never been to Musselman Arch, so a stop there was pretty much mandatory.
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    "You're mocking me, aren't you?"
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    Said landmark.
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    John proves that there's one upstanding individual among the reprobates.
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    Technically we didn't break any rules as Musselman Arch is actually a natural bridge, not an arch.

    It's a big place.
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    For big personalities.
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    John rolling along.
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    A serious face for a serious place.
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    Or he's thinking, "Does this guy ever NOT stop for pictures?"

    Success!
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    The ride down Lathrop Canyon to the Colorado River was without incident. The rain which we had been cursing had firmed up the sand quite a bit over some of my previous trips down.

    River was running higher than I'd seen before, but obviously not as high as it could.
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    Some of my favorite views are from riding out Lathrop. The passing cloud cover was playing havoc with the lighting for pictures.
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    The overcast did help keep the temperatures down.
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    Yeah, that view.
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    Back onto the Rim.
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    Spring in the desert.
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    Workin' our way out.
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    We came out Potash Road.
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    Wildly differing lighting all day.
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    Zoom zoom.
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    I tried to hasten our retreat seeing this coming. Wet and miserable once a day is enough.
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    Not so much in a hurry that I didn't stop for some more pics though.
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    It did try to catch us though.
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    Fortunately we turned westward enough to miss the moisture.

    Pretty sweet ride for a first day, plus a new friend. Getting Imu on a bit of dirt he hadn't done before was just the icing on the cake.
    #2
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  3. UtahGuido

    UtahGuido Long timer Supporter

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  4. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Amazing photography. :clap
    You got some mad skills in riding and in gathering pixels.
    Looking forward to more.
    I have a folder of pics for you.
    Really great job capturing the sentiment and beauty of Day1.
    Imu
    #4
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  5. wilddoktor

    wilddoktor Been here awhile

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    WoWzA...I gotta get me to Moab some day!!
    #5
    Chillis, simbaboy and ScotsFire like this.
  6. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a drifter rode into town... Supporter

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    I describe the area as “otherworldly”, and agree you should if you haven’t.

    I love traveling and have many, many places I want to see. But Moab has a magic that brings me back every year.
    #6
  7. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a drifter rode into town... Supporter

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    You just like being Mr Big Shot.
    #7
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  8. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    @ScotsFire Robert has been a fabulous friend, guide and coach.

    [​IMG]

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    While turning my bike around so I could take a picture of these two coming around I dropped my bike. After the guys helped me pick up my bike (I am still having trouble picking it up) I then took this picture.
    [​IMG]
    #8
  9. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    Just found your RR @ScotsFire and really look forward to following along. Have to admit I'm kicking myself in the arse (and pissed about life in general) that I didn't take you up to head SE. The grand plan I had for kissing the first half-century goodbye has been culled by work and life; not looking like I'll actually be able to do much of anything in my hoped time frame. But hopeful something will open for later in the fall...

    Fantastic set of opening pictures amigo, so cool you guys have gotten together for the last 5 years to do this!
    #9
    simbaboy and ScotsFire like this.
  10. Dirty bird

    Dirty bird Slightly off-camber

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    Did they drink some Gatorade and take a picture before they helped you? :lol3
    #10
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  11. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Always.
    Already planning Moab April 2022.
    I hope you join.
    Imu
    #11
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  12. Dirty bird

    Dirty bird Slightly off-camber

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    Count me IN!
    #12
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  13. UtahGuido

    UtahGuido Long timer Supporter

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    See you then bro(s).
    #13
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  14. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    We got our Brother real happy.
    @ScotsFire and @NotaYinzer are reunited after a few days of absence.
    "Reunited and it feels so good"
    "cause we understood......"


    Boy is feeling it.....
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    So much so that he is showing me his best side
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    In the meantime John is like "Lets go effing ride and screw this romance crap"
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    Ok John, lets go ride but one more picture while we are waiting (again):
    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Gemini Bridges.
    [​IMG]


    Normally, Robert is gone. But this time he is staying behind @NotaYinzer
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    On "hey Joe Canyon" or as John said "Oh No Joe" we hardly saw much of the two Idahoans.
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    After a noticeable absence we got them back:
    [​IMG]
    #15
  16. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Apparently, it's the Girls 'job' to open and shut gates. That I like:
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    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    Great set of pics @simbaboy, and thoroughly enjoyed the commentary that goes along with 'em...lol.

    You guys had a great trip, awesome to have such memories :thumb
    #17
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  18. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a drifter rode into town... Supporter

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    May 22, 2021: Lockhart Basin

    I'd wanted to take @simbaboy on the Lockhart Basin route for a couple of years, but (unlike some other places) haven't pushed TOO hard. It's a challenging route, and I knew a couple of spots would be above Imu's skill level. But when HE suggested we do it, I immediately agreed offering to help get him and his WR250 through the worst bits. I expected this to be chiefly in the last mile or so before emerging onto the Chicken Corners Road as that's where it was the toughest when I did it a couple of years ago. John decided to pass on this ride, so it was just Imu and I.

    But first, we did some intel. We loaded our two bikes into my truck and with Mrs. Simba along swung into the Needles Overlook.
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    I'd not been there before, so it was a real treat to take in the views.

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    The road visible in these is the Lockhart Basin Road.
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    We also stopped by Newspaper Rock to look at the petroglyphs.
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    Pretty neat history, but too many people visiting it for my taste.

    Unloaded the bikes, still full of fuel (the main purpose of trucking them south). Imu "helped" me.
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    All I'll say is that I'm glad he's not a surgeon.

    And we were off! Thanks to K for driving the truck back to Moab. It really didn't need to be fueled up.
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    The sign at the trailhead says 58 miles to Hurrah Pass, but that is actually the distance into Moab. The first half or so is mostly not technical.
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    But it is beautiful.
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    Imu had never been out this way in his eleven years of visiting. I knew he'd really like the scenery which is the main reason I wanted to bring him out this way.

    He's a damn fine riding buddy too.
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    One thing I like about the Moab area is that it's a big place.
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    In 2019 when I rode this the first time, we got a bit pressed to be off the trail before dark, so I had to quit taking pictures to make time.

    I may have overcompensated this year.
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    But it's so darned pretty to go with the fine riding.

    We came all that way (and more)!
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    It got rougher as we progressed.
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    The skies were sometimes as dramatic as the landscape.
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    We got sprinkled on once, but no hypothermia issues like the day before.

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    Imu mostly kept a good pace.
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    There was a surprising amount of traffic.
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    Several side-by-sides too.

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    Most of the 4x4's were good about letting us by.
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    Especially at the obstacle features.
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    A little after this, there were four jeeps abreast at a small pass. They were kind of dicks about blocking the entire route. Otherwise everyone out there was friendly and helpful.

    Did I mention it got rougher?
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    We were a few hours into the ride by now and getting a little fatigued.

    And the weather continued to threaten.
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    Riding Imu's WR up a hill with a couple of decent shelves.

    He was a real trooper though, taking on the majority of the tough spots.
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    This guy on a KTM lapped us pretty hard.
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    One of only four other motorcyclists we saw the whole way, and the other three were pretty early.

    I was fine with our pace.
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    And the company.
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    The riding was pretty good too.
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    Scenery was passable.
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    The jeeps blocking the road are in the center of this picture.
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    For all that Imu felt challenged by the difficulty of the route, he kept taking on tougher and tougher spots. "Just take it slow," I yelled at him here.
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    To which he stopped and fell over about half way down. I kick myself for not getting a shot of that. "Not that slow," I helpfully offered.

    The last few miles before the Chicken Corners Road got a lot tougher, much more than I remembered from before.
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    Still photos never show the difficulty well.

    Usually.
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    This jeep had given up trying to climb this hill (I'm standing on the nearly three foot ledge taking this picture). But they were pointed the wrong way to get out. I helped ground guide them while turning around. I'm convinced that it's way easier to find one line through obstacles than up to four.

    Turned and pointed the right way.
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    You can see a scrape mark on the center rock from their rear differential. Not that I'm throwing stones as a guy that's broken two skid plates before.

    The last stretch to Chicken Corners Road.
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    Imu breathes a big sigh of relief.
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    Nice view of the Colorado River.
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    As much as I whine about wanting a newer bike, my '05 WR450 has gotten me to a lot of awesome places.
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    If it only had a sixth gear...

    Pretty good second day of riding with a lot more to come.
    #18
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  19. Dirty bird

    Dirty bird Slightly off-camber

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    Great photos Scotsfire! I'll have to try to ride this my next trip to Moab. As for your WR, I just sold my '03 WR250F, it was an awesome bike. I hated to sell it, but the garage will unfortunately only hold so many!
    #19
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  20. AZ TOM

    AZ TOM Long timer Supporter

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    Have you done Kane Creek?
    #20
    simbaboy likes this.