Robnoxious goes spelunking in AZ
Well, a rabble of AZ inmates managed to organize for a ride in the Sierra Ancha Mountains on Sunday 3/30/08. Robnoxious has graced our presence for the last few weeks and we managed to send him back to Wyoming with a proper farewell ride.
Pictured L to R: ChopperCopper (640), Robnoxious (950 Super-E), DOD (950 Super-E), Crilly (KLX250), and myself (DirtyDog, KLR) departed Mesa, AZ at 730am.
We hit Apache Trail (AZ 88) for a nice, morning dirt ride without much traffic. Apache Trail is a 40 mile, twisty, scenic, dirt highway which follows the lower Salt River. We drifted through the turns like pros and even managed to stop for some pics.
The weather was crisp and sunny. Wildflowers were everywhere. Traction was good. We reached pavement at Roosevelt Dam and headed NW to Punkin Center. Yes, that's a real town name. From there, we got back on the dirt and took one of my favorite rides through Greenback Valley (Tonto NF, FR 71 to 609). This road climbs over 4,000 feet through desert and forest and includes all types of terrain from jagged tire-biters to high-speed hardpack to twisty, narrow two-track to 18" deep mud ruts. Fortunately, the tracks were dry and the whoops were plentiful. There was only one significant water crossing...
Photographic tip- make the water look deep by photographing the smallest bike.
Water crossing video HERE.
Out of many "near-misses" with disaster (several acrobatic attempts were made by yours truly), only one victim was had by the terrain. Crilly biffed once and bravely endured a sore foot/ankle for the remainder of the day. Luckily, he had the lightest bike, so Robnoxious gladly offered assistance.
Ok, DOD, go left then...
We gather on the trail to tell stories and ChopperCopper relates a tale of a mystery cave nearby...
He requires that we swear a vow of secrecy as to the cave's location, so we comply.
It does exist. Right next to the trail, even. I have ridden by it numerous times before.
We had our fun spelunking, but we were hungry and anxious to get back on the trail. We zipped over to 288 and headed up to Young for food, fuel, and ice for Crilly's bum foot. We enjoyed coffee and "Antler Burgers"- patty melt with diced green chiles. Good as usual.
Next on the agenda was a run up Aztec Peak to see Workman Falls. Apparently, these are the highest waterfalls in the state. Too bad we were a bit early. Road closed till tomorrow.
Oh well. After much pleading, the guys agreed to jettison the bikes and proceed on foot. Crilly stayed back and guarded things, as his foot was aching. Interestingly, he was the only one not whining. "Are we there yet?" "How much farther is it?" It hurts to hike in motocross boots?"
One half of an agonizing mile later, we reached the payoff- Workman Falls. Like a bunch of dorky tourists, we all carried cameras and replicated every shot four-fold.
Video Yes, that's ice at the base. We were over 7,000 ft and there was a bit of snow left.
"It's SOOOO much easier hiking DOWN."
Finally, we left Workman Creek and headed S on 288 homeward. But not without a few photo ops. We parted ways with Crilly here. He did a great job hanging with the big bikes today, and despite his injury, he was a trooper.
And, the uber-photo. Here is a pic of Robnoxious who is simultaneously taking a pic of me. It's a delicate ballet, really.
We again took Apache Trail to get back to Mesa. It was exhilerating for some (DOD), and terrifying for others (me). Traffic was exponentially higher than our morning ride, but we all survived. Got home at about 6pm for a decent day's worth of fun on two wheels. Till next time.
Happy trails, Robnoxious.
Nice riding you've got there!! Looks like a fun ride! Thanks for posting :thumb
Great pics, looks like an awesome ride guys! :thumb
Nice ride report, looks like you guys had a great time. I'm definitly interested in that road to Workman Falls - looks interesting.
AZ is one of my favorite states....would love to actually ride there some time...but its a long haul from Michigan.
A perfect ride! Thanks for showing me Arizona. Here are a few more pics of the ride.
ChopperCopper getting ready for the 300 mile day.
Not sure if this is an optical illusion or not, seems that DOD is a touch taller than Crilly. Great Cave!
DOD keeping his feet dry.
DOD, ChopperCopper and DirtyDog
After we all caught our breath from the hike, we took one last photo without falling off the edge.
The views were outstanding!
The perfect ride for the day
Some staightaway groomed runs made for the 950.
Some logging roads for fun
Some water to cross (DirtyDog)
and some pavement. As DirtyDog posted, me taking a pic of him,
taking a pic of me, taking a pic of him, taking...you get the picture.
Anybody who like to ride a wide variety of terrain and have good company should take a trip to Arizona and RIDE.
These guys are great riders and great guides.
Without this forum, I would have never met so many riders and seen so much of the back country.
Thanks for the pic Chopper!
Great Ride Report!
Awesome job on the ride report! Crilly (Dale) I hope you chime in here so we know you made it home safely:D . It was good to meet Doug and I definitely want to explore Wyoming a little more some time soon, so keep in touch. Doug-I love what you did with that photo! Take care, Mike T.
I was trying my damndest yesterday to recall the name of that scenic overlook (where Robnoxious struck those alluring poses). Today my boss reminded me- Parker Canyon.
He also reminded me that he has a key to the gate which also opens the Forest Service towers on top of Aztec Peak:evil . I'll have to take him up on this soon. If anyone is interested in going, Asbestos Point is also on my short list of destinations in the Sierra Anchas (a rough road to access, but apparently the view is spectacular and deep mineshafts abound). Last time I started to head up there, I turned back because the trail was technical, I was alone, and nobody knew I was there.:cry
Good pics Az dudes:thumb
Looks like a great ride with great guys. Thanks for posting!
N I C E !!
:thumb Great ride report. Next on my to do list.:ricky
Oh so good! :thumb
Looks like you have a good time with a good bunch of ADV-ers. :ricky
Thanks for taking the time to take the pictures and write the Ride Report.
I nominate this for front page
just looks .... good!
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