Re-riding a Dream - Grand Canyon Backcountry

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by dave6253, Oct 14, 2019.

  1. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Day 8: October 7th, 2019

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    We watched the sunrise at Twin Point...

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    ...then hit the trails.

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  2. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Twin Point trail was a fun way to start the day.

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    We dropped down into Hidden Canyon.

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    Today will be our last on the GCBAR.

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    Even though we have only about 100 miles left, we've got lots of great riding remaining.

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    Paul doesn't believe it yet (even after the first 30 miles), but I know it will take us much of the day.

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  3. Pete Pilot

    Pete Pilot Been here awhile

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    Have read from many sources that COPPER CAYNON covers more square miles and is deeper than the Grand Canyon. It is also extraordinary in every way. VERY BEAUTIFUL!!!! Also excellent riding in the area. Have done numerous Mexico rides. A truly wonderful country.
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  4. scfrank

    scfrank Old farts riding club. Supporter

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    Dave. Amazing pictures and ride reports!
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  5. breeno

    breeno Adventurer

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    Stellar report! Gotta go ride this soonish. Wife and I just hiked the Confluence from Havasu last week - pretty amazing area!
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  6. rtwpaul

    rtwpaul out riding...

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    Actually, small village in northern Norway, was around $13 a gallon years ago...:kboom

    Grand Canyon Vs Copper Canyon, both are equally spectacular, there are more accessible vantage points for the GC, but you can ride to the bottom of Copper Canyon on your bike, and they have burritos and beer down there.
  7. Shaggie

    Shaggie Unseen University Supporter

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    01D95B0E-92F1-4325-B720-198523E933E0.jpeg

    :clap:clap


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    Wow just wow

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    How cool is this??? Awesome!!

    Cheers Dave!

    Shane
  8. Pete Pilot

    Pete Pilot Been here awhile

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    Much agreed on the beers at BATO Copper Canyon. Paul did you venture in the road to BATO before it was paved and straightened? I have done both before and after pavement. But the before pavement did tend to keep one focused. Funny, that narrow , rocky road gone forever and at the time we rolled across the bridge I was some glad it was done and already dreaded riding back out 2 days later. Turned out that the ride out was much fun. Bloody scary going in,great fun going out. Paul all that’s keeps me from wandering the world is a wife that I share an enormous love with. I well know how lucky I am. But have know doubt I would be a skilled wanderer. Knobs down and live large. Merlin
  9. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Hidden Canyon RD drops in elevation and repeatedly crosses rocky washes.

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    We leave the forests behind for the Mojave Desert.

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    The temperatures...

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    ...scenery...

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    ...and amount of rocks continue to increase.

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  10. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Probably the most challenging short section of the entire GCBAR are these steps on Nutter Twists RD.

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    Last time I rode through here without walking it or stopping for photos, so we walked this section first.

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    It is fairly intimidating...

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    ...and steep...

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    ...but it is ride-able.

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    It is possible in either direction, but...

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    ...easier to drop down the steps.

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  11. cactus_reese

    cactus_reese Been here awhile

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    Is Paul trying to see how close to the edge he can get?
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  12. rtwpaul

    rtwpaul out riding...

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    No, just giving him space as he gets his Jarvis on

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  13. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    We reached Mud Mountain RD. Neither of us had been looking forward to the long section of deep, fluffy sand.
    Paul needed practice for other Continents next year, so here we go.
    Man! The 690 is so much better than the 990 in sand! We made short work of that 15 mile section at 40-50 mph.


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    We reached firmer ground.

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    I couldn't be happier with the 690.

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    We rode over Lime Kiln Pass, which is not difficult, but easily the roughest, bumpiest section of the entire ride. Bone-jarring!

    Before reaching Mesquite, we came quite close to fisticuffs with a dick in a sideXside.

    Mesquite marked the end of the GCBAR. I had loose plans of where to ride and camp over the next couple days, but Paul had plans to head to Vegas and ended up convincing me to tag along. It didn't take much convincing as the promise of a hot shower and no tent sealed the deal. We rode the freeways all to way to west Las Vegas and stayed indoors for the night.
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  14. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Day 8: October 8th, 2019

    Not much riding today. I ran a few errands on the bike around Vegas as the shop gopher.
    Paul did a bunch of maintenance on his machine.

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    Paul directed some social media appearances for Mike of the TacoMoto.co.
    My bike was clean!

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    Mike is a wealth of knowledge for KTM thumpers.

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    Two different RTW KTM 500 EXC's were in the shop today getting prepped. A Spanish rider, Pablo was there with his and is currently riding in Mexico.

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    Thanks to Mike of the Taco Moto Shop and his family for the great hospitality.
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  15. DesertRatliff

    DesertRatliff Tinker Tinker Ride Ride

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    You had me at Taco.

    Motos, too? That's pretty cool. Great shots, Dave.
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  16. dave6253

    dave6253 GCBAR Explorer

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    Day 10: October 9th, 2019

    After 2 nights in Las Vegas, Paul and I leave for the long ride back to Phoenix.
    The plan was to break up the boring highways with some fun dirt alternatives we both know.
    We head south and west out of town as Paul leads us over the Spring Mountains and towards Sandy Valley.
    We had one very dusty road that along with a new oil leak from the countershaft seal, made my bike filthy again.
    We stopped in Nipton, CA for snacks and lottery tickets.

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    Just as we were about to turn onto Christmas Tree Pass RD for some dirt fun, disaster struck. The bolt that holds the shift lever onto Paul's bike broke. Problem was, the bolt snapped off inside the shaft and we didn't have the tools to extract it. Paul can't shift, unless stopped.

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    I race ahead a few miles to the depressing Cal-Nev-Ari casino/bar with the broken part. The locals jump into action to try and get the tools needed.

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    We struck out in Cal-Nev-Ari, so the decision was made to ride to Bullhead City to find tools.
    We rode the shoulder at 40...

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    ...until the downhill to Laughlin. Paul could now take off in a higher gear and we ran 65 down the hill.

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    In Bullhead City, we found a mechanic at a bike shop that agreed to loan us the tools needed - as long as we hide across the street where his employer couldn't see. Long story to short; We couldn't get the broken bolt extracted...

    ...our plans for a fun ride were busted...

    ...so the decision was made to ride the highway back to Phoenix. We only stopped in Kingman for fuel. Ask Paul what it's like to ride 200 miles of highway on a 500 EXC in 6th gear!



    That's the end of my story. It was quite different this time for a few reasons. First, I was trying to re-live a dream ride. As expected, the riding was great, but I wasn't as interested in completely documenting the ride in the way I normally do. I was often just riding and enjoying the trails without feeling obligated to photograph everything. I left my smaller camera at home - the one I use for shooting while on the move. I had to stop to shoot each photo, and with Paul chasing, I often didn't want to ruin the flow. The lighting and conditions for photography were mostly dismal for this trip.


    Don't forget to check Paul's RR. He hasn't caught up yet, but should be along shortly for his take on our ride. https://advrider.com/f/threads/ktm-500exc-rtw-on-as-much-dirt-as-possible-the-test-rides.1377398/

    Thanks for following along!
  17. rtwpaul

    rtwpaul out riding...

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  18. Pete Pilot

    Pete Pilot Been here awhile

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    Post 114 is an excellent photo of a true moto shop. Something that seems to be getting harder to find. The owner of Moto Taco has created a place where riders like being to talk motorcycles. Well done.
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  19. cactus_reese

    cactus_reese Been here awhile

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    I assume Paul will tell us that he successfully extracted the bolt?
  20. rtwpaul

    rtwpaul out riding...

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    sadly no