May Moab Meandering 2021

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

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  1. Dirty bird

    Dirty bird Slightly off-camber

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    Hey, they gotta be interested in you for something!
    #81
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  2. ScotsFire

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

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    That’s why I have a woman with a nicer bike than I do.
    #82
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  3. liv2day

    liv2day Life is about how you handle Plan B Supporter

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    :lol2 :lol2 :lol2 :lol2

    Effin' fantatsic @ScotsFire! You charmer...LOL.

    Seriously man, great update. The pics are killer, as are the descriptions you craft for each of 'em.

    Keep them coming amigo, look forward to them and need the good side of life :-)
    #83
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  4. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Happy Fathers Day To All.
    Imu
    #84
  5. ScotsFire

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

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    May 27, 2021: No Joe Road

    I'd wanted to provide @NotaYinzer a good primer of Moab riding, without it getting too technical and challenging, as she'd not been riding there before. Also to give her a chance to build a little familiarity with the conditions before jumping into the White Rim Trail the next day. The plan that I came up with was Gemini Bridges going up, the Hey Joe Canyon Route, and Potash Rd coming back into Moab. I thought she'd be a little challenged by some of the rocky spots, but not too much so. The descent into Spring Canyon, on the Hey Joe, is in my opinion one of the more picturesque rides in the area, if a little shorter than some.

    At the start of Gemini Bridges.
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    John, Imu, and Vicki.

    Gemini Bridges Rd really isn't any worse than many of the forest roads we regularly ride in North Idaho.
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    Easy peasy.
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    John following his plan of keeping the Michigan plate in view.

    Nice easy ride with good views.
    (Video 45 seconds)

    I was chatting with a guy in a brand new Land Rover Defender.

    Old hat for Imu.
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    This is probably his favorite ride in Moab.

    Vicki took to the rocks pretty quickly.
    (Video 15 seconds - Vicki's footage)


    Up on the slabs on the upper part of the road.
    (Video 35 seconds)


    We stopped at the Gemini Bridges trail head and took the short hike out.
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    She digs bouldering.
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    Not sure her mom will appreciate this picture, but I love it.

    Walking to the far side of Gemini Bridges.
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    We could see the road in Bull Canyon.
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    The bend in the side canyon hid the arches from us when we rode by down there a few days prior. If you look close you can see the road crossing the wash.

    A little arch in the rocks.
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    The twin arches of Gemini.
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    The things I do to get a shot.
    (Video 31 seconds)


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    We finally got to the rim of Spring Canyon and dropped in.
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    (Video 6:12 - Vicki's footage, no music)


    Everyone made it down just fine.
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    I went ahead of the others to make a run out to the mine site. Nice ride along the Green River.
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    Starting up (the actual) Hey Joe Canyon.
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    At the mine site.
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    There's a bit of single track that continues up the canyon past the mine. It's real sandy as it runs in the wash quite a bit. I started up, but didn't go far as the others were waiting for me and it'd been longer to get here than I remembered it being. I bombed back down stream as quick as I could. When I get my computer back, I'll compile the ride upstream into a video. It was a blast.

    Which was why I had a shit eating grin on my face when I got back to the others. Unfortunately this was the wrong expression to have. Vicki had indeed done fine through the rocks, but struggled in the sand.

    Despite this, going back up out of Spring Canyon went fine. After a quick stop at the Canyonlands NP Visitor Center to get permits for the next day's ride on the White Rim, we headed down Schafer Switchbacks to get onto Potash Road.
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    About to start the descent.
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    There was quite a bit of traffic all the way back to Moab.
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    Not quite as bad once we got onto Potash.
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    I've ridden this section of road at least a dozen times, and Imu many more than that. Yet both of us found views we hadn't noticed before.
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    We've both always stopped at the next point overlooking the Colorado River.
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    Another Moab area activity I wouldn't mind trying out.
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    Chicken Corners across the river.
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    NOTD (Nimrod of the Day)
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    I think this is a future arch.
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    I'll try to see in a million years or so.

    The river and Chicken Corners from another viewpoint.
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    For the day, mission mostly accomplished. Everyone ended up having a good day of riding. And no one was deterred from running the WRT the next day.
    #85
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  6. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    After Hey Joe we went to The Visitor Center at CNP to pick up our WRT Permits.
    When I did the same thing in April a month before it was free.
    This time the young Ranger says $6.
    So I start arguing with her that getting the Permit in person was supposed to be free but online was $6.
    She kept saying that the Permit for the same day would be free but for the next day it was six big bucks.
    So we kept going at this and it was getting embarrassing. Other tourists began looking at me like the dumb foreign tourist that I was acting like.
    So I decide to give in and pulled the cash out. Nope - -that ain't gonna do it. They don't accept cash. It's gotta be a credit card.
    I started protesting that and in walk in Robert and @NotaYinzer .
    I tell them that The Federalis had gone nuts on us and wanted $6 from each of us and wanted a Credit Card.
    My two good 'friends' look at me like I had gone loco and they pretended they did not even know me.
    Every single member of my family would have done the same thing by pretending they did not know me.

    Imu

    [​IMG]

    It clearly says that 'THERE IS NO FEE FOR PERMITS ISSUED IN PERSON'.
    I want my $6 back.
    #86
  7. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Though I am still pissed at the lack of support by my friends when The Young Ranger was abusing me and making me pay the $6 (yes, I am still reeling from that and I am vowing that I will cheat on my Federal Taxes by the same amount in 2022) I will say:

    great pics and videos @ScotsFire .

    Imu
    #87
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  8. ScotsFire

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

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    The best part is that @NotaYinzer and I had to go through the clown show again instead of cutting to the chase and issuing us permits the same way @simbaboy got his. Another 15 minute rigamarole, exactly as he’d gone through.
    #88
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  9. UtahGuido

    UtahGuido Long timer Supporter

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    Imu who? Nah, I don't know the guy.
    #89
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  10. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    @ScotsFire

    This is how it should be done. However, I have zero patience for this...... No way I am gonna spend 5 minutes per strap.

    #90
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  11. ScotsFire

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

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    May 28, 2021: 'Round again - White Rim Trail

    This was my fifth time on the White Rim Trail. For me it's the defining Moab route. Not that there aren't some equally long and scenic routes, and there are many that are more (or less) challenging. But the combination of the just over one hundred miles of backcountry(140 total if you ride from/to Moab), amazing views, fun riding, and (with the folks that @simbaboy collects for these group rides, great company make this ride a real blast every year. This year was a tad abnormal as there were only the four of us. John rode with us one last time and @NotaYinzer finished breaking in her KLX in a solid way.

    The previous day's ride on the Hey Joe had prepared Vicki for the challenges of the WRT, though it will likely take a few more trips to get her at ease on the cliff side switchbacks. But she looked pretty comfortable by the time we got down to Mineral Bottom.
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    Vicki just about to meet up with Imu and John.
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    As is often the case, I'm hanging back for pictures. I really don't mind the need to play catch up.

    Vicki's brother calls her pink riding jacket her "Power Ranger" outfit.
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    She didn't like it because of the color at first (but it was clearance priced) but has come to embrace it over the last year or so.

    The mandatory "Green River Morning" shot.
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    Not as good as my previous attempts. (Perhaps Imu got a better one he'll post.) This view is a big reason I like riding the WRT counter-clockwise rather than clockwise.

    Same spot but upstream.
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    I believe the "scum" on the water surface is cottonwood fluff.

    For a change, it was Imu needing to catch up after photos.
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    Looking up the Green River from the first part of Hardscrabble Hill.
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    Yeah. I stop for pictures a lot.

    Success on the first tough(-ish) climb for Vicki.
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    In truth, it wasn't as bad as we'd warned her it would be. Overall the entire WRT was in pretty good shape (with a couple exceptions we'll discuss.)

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    Oh look. I'm behind again.

    The far side of Hardscrabble.
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    I have found that I stop at a lot of the same places for pictures.
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    I don't think this is a bad thing as those spots provide tremendous shots (that my minimal skill barely captures.) And this one has a bonus Power Ranger cameo.

    Out on the sandstone that gives the White Rim it's name.
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    Someone is pretty pleased with the new scooter.
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    For this being the fifth time, I still see new things each ride.
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    The view from Candlestick Campground. One of the last views of the Green River on the route.

    Probably the actual last view of the Green River as the trail approaches Murphy's Hogsback, where the Colorado River will get closer.
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    We take frequent breaks on this ride, and not just for pictures.
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    Putting in the miles.
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    I was inspired by some shots that Joe Motocross takes to attempt to capture "catching air" on some of the whoops.
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    Story of my life: Not nearly as impressive as I think I am.
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    For this I've been carrying around a mini tripod for the last thousand miles...

    Views near Murphy's are pretty awesome.
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    It might get tiring...
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    But it never get's boring.
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    La Sal Mountains in the distance.
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    Every year I see these and think that we must be about to make the turn towards Schafer. Every year I ride another thirty or forty miles before that happens.

    Not that I really mind.
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    More "new" details.
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    A lone "needle". I probably have a couple of pictures looking down this drainage and hadn't noticed it standing by itself there.

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    I sometimes wonder about people on the viewpoints above the route, in the Island in the Sky area in Canyonlands. Do they get a charge when they see us down here like I do when I see bikes from up there?

    Then I feel a little sorry for them, as most of them won't ever get these close up views and/or perspectives.
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    Speaking of perspectives.
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    Mixed bag on traffic this year. There were of course bicyclists passing through.
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    Half the trucks and jeeps on the trial were support vehicles for the pedalers.

    One non-support jeep forced us to pay attention to it. Some nimrod was really hot-rodding along, coming right up behind Vicki. When the jeep looks huge behind another moto in the small mirror on my WR, you know they're following too close. I pulled us over to let this guy past and he quickly ran out of sight. Till he came back into view a half hour later stopped and changing a flat tire. I think I kept most of the sarcasm out of my voice when I stopped to ask if he needed some help.

    But I digress.
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    Vicki really attacked the last third of the route.
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    As I followed her for a while, I was hoping she'd slow down as I was getting wore out keeping up.

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    We had to stop at Musselman Arch to allow Vicki to check it out.
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    She proved that John was the only rule abiding person on the ride.

    Vicki also pointed out the most appropriate place for pagan sacrifices.
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    Gee. I wonder why I hadn't thought of that before.

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    I am way better at flower pictures than "jump" shots.
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    The Colorado River meandering out along Potash Rd.
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    Just gotta say.
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    This doesn't suck.

    We went back up Schafer and out to the parking area at the Mineral Bottom turnoff to complete the loop where we'd left my pickup. I don't know why I hadn't thought of it before, but trucking the bikes out the 20 miles from Moab (and back!) was pretty sweet, never mind saving the extra fuel range.

    It meant a lot to me to share THIS ride with my girl, so she could better understand why I keep coming back here. Getting her eager to come back and ride more was an added bonus.

    (Video 5:27 - with music)


    This was the last ride of the trip, but we still had a couple of other things on our to-do list while in Moab.
    #91
  12. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    @ScotsFire
    Fantastic as usual. Now I can post a few pics as well.
    To avoid The Pagan Sacrificial Rocks I will convert.
    Imu
    #92
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  13. DCTFAN

    DCTFAN 2019 CRF1000LD | 2016 CRF1000LD | Supporter

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    "Overall the entire WRT was in pretty good shape (with a couple exceptions we'll discuss.)"
    I don't mean to rush, but
    What were the exceptions?
    #93
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  14. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Great pictures! I don't know why some people get twisted with music in video's but I found your track to be very relaxing watching this one. I've ridden WRT once in the same direction as you and by the time we got to muscleman arch, I was pretty worn out. We did ride Lathrop Canyon which added some miles but well worth it.
    #94
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  15. ScotsFire

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

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    D'oh! Put in the teaser but not the substance. Sorry.

    The worst spots were near Murphy's Hogsback, the eastern most of the two biggest ridges the WRT climbs over (the other being Hardscrabble). Approaching Hogsback from the west, lower than there normally are any issues, was a pretty rough spot. Vicki had me ride her bike up it, and walked up to the top based upon my statements that the top of Murphy's is usually a lot rougher than where we stopped. In reality, this short (maybe fifty feet?) climb was the only bad spot on the west face. The climb at the top was actually pretty mild for that hill. You can see Vicki walking up as I ride my bike (the second trip) in the compilation video.

    But the toughest spot was coming down the other side of Murphy's. We ran into this obstacle last year when we rode the opposite direction. There's a bit of a shelf across most of the road. There is a line around it but it's still damn steep and loose and goes right up to the outside edge. Fortunately we came down it this year.

    Video of coming down this obstacle when I scouted it.
    (Video 25 seconds)


    And here is going back up to get back with the group for a break.
    (Video 1:06)


    An interesting aside was that I had met two guys at the campground I stayed at that were riding the WRT the day before we were. Their plan was to go counter-clockwise and camp overnight on the trail. They were both Italian citizens with permanent residency in the US. They hit this obstacle and were unable to get a loaded KTM 990 up it. They had to turn around and return to Moab after attempting it several times over a couple hours. The other bike was a DRZ400 that was able to get up it, but it wasn't as loaded.

    Other than these two spots, I'd say the WRT was in about the best shape I'd ever seen it. Hardscrabble Hill had a couple sandy spots coming up the north face, and the entire route IS a backcountry route so is not exactly smooth. But there were very few areas of loose rock and baby heads as was common three or four years ago. I rode my F800GSA the first time around and wouldn't hesitate to take a bigger bike again given the current condition, though likely would suggest going counter-clockwise.

    I don't understand why some have issues with music in videos either (unless it's something totally lame like Rock-a-bye Baby or some such) but try to give folks a warning when I put it in. For me a soundtrack brings more of the experience into the video. Songs I use are usually related to that day's ride, often something that I listened to or was rolling around in my brain (I turn that up sometimes to drown out the voice in my head. That guy's a dick.)
    Sometimes, such as with this year's WRT video (and the last couple for that matter), I have a song in mind for the video I plan on producing. I'll look for shots that flow with that song. For whatever reasons, I feel like the WRT videos I've done are among the best I do. Possibly because I put more thought and work into them, but also due to how much I love this route.

    (2019 WRT Video - 6:10 with music)


    (2020 WRT Video - 4:48 with music)


    I will normally include Lathrop Canyon in my WRT ride too. But we knocked that out earlier in the week's riding so as to take the "I'm tired" excuse away from Imu where he wouldn't do the extra canyon. That fatigue is one reason we did the route clockwise last year. We wondered if it would be better to knock that thirty or forty miles of riding on the sandstone on the eastern half out of the way before we got fatigued. The consensus was that it was better to do the more technical pieces (Hardscrabble and Murphy's specifically) that are in the first half or so going CCW while fresher. Imu and I also agree that late May, and even worse June (when we did this last year) is too warm to fully enjoy the ride. Next year we'll go in April.
    #95
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  16. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    ........ and for your viewing pleasure (or not) the best drone footage at Onion Creek.

    #96
  17. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Love all your music choices to accompany the videos, especially like Dave Brubeck and Jazz in general.
    The first few 1080P blu ray concert discs I bought were Jazz video concerts.
    I strongly recommend the one below from a PBS series.

    [​IMG]
    #97
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  18. ScotsFire

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

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    May 29, 2021: This 'n that

    So, the following isn't riding, but certainly places you could ride to...

    @NotaYinzer and I got a pretty early start despite not going riding. I had hoped to do the hike out to Delicate Arch in Arches NP. We got in just fine at 0730, but were not allowed to turn onto the road to DA. Probably the parking lots were full. All the other turnouts we'd passed were also stacked with vehicles. F' that nonsense. I have a place a little more off the beaten path.

    We went out nearly twenty miles of badly washboarded gravel roads to the Tower Arch trail head. @simbaboy and I had ridden out there a couple of times in the past, but had never done the hike.
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    The first bit is more bouldering than hiking.

    Much better.
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    We'd just left the bikes loaded after the WRT the day before.

    It's a lot easier walking after the first climb.
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    There are some quite sandy stretches which make following the trail harder. One might even lose where one parked a couple of motorcycles if one were not careful. (i.e. last year.)

    Coming into the arch area.
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    There it is. Tower Arch.
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    The two guys that had hit the trail just ahead of us had already left the arch. Vicki and I climbed around for nearly 45 minutes and had the whole thing to ourselves.

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    Signs say don't climb ON the arches. Nothing about inside.

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    The hike out had some nice views we'd missed on the way in.
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    We passed five separate groups, between four and ten folks each, hiking in on our way out. We enjoyed our solitude, but it wouldn't have lasted long.

    Knowing the park was going to be a zoo for the rest of the day (and having forgotten to fuel up the truck before entering the park) we coasted back into Moab for a coffee (and gas). Then out to Mill Canyon. Imu has told me about this place for a few years but I'd never gone out there. Vicki and I are both interested in rocks and fossils, so...
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    ... this definitely was up our alley.

    On top of the footprints, there are fossilized dinosaur bones literally sticking out of the rocks nearby.
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    It's a pretty, if short hike.
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    After that, we did a quick run out to Onion Creek just so Vicki could see it.
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    Since it was getting pretty hot, and the foot prints were isolated at Mill Canyon, we went up into the La Sal's.
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    The Bull Canyon Overlook also has dinosaur footprints in the sandstone. And being more isolated, access is much less restricted.

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    Thirty degrees cooler and great views.

    We wandered around the La Sal's afterwards, completing the La Sal loop.
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    A lot different views from most of the week.

    With some familiarities.
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    Nice relaxing day simply checking out the area. Lot's I'd not seen even after a few years coming here.
    #98
  19. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    @ScotsFire

    Love all the pics especially the last one.

    Too bad V could not go on The DA hike. Next time!

    Imu
    #99
  20. simbaboy

    simbaboy Lansing MBS Supporter

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    Now that @ScotsFire Robert has posted 'May 2021' WRT pics I will post a few as well.

    Typical Narcissism from Simba!
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