08-14-2008, 12:18 AM
Joined: Feb 2008
Location: Pleasant Grove, UT
We find where we are on the map and decide we want to go south so we turn around and follow trail 48 in the opposite direction (southwest) and plan on getting out to road 159 then to road 83 to the Brockman Guard Station. I decide after 30+ creek crossings that I need to dump my bike in the creek and get water in my engine. We take off my seat and gas tank. We then remove my spark plug and get the water out of the cylinder. We put it all back together and run my battery dead trying to start it. I then pull out my tow strap and have Curtis try and pull me to get my bike started. Iím sure there was some water in my carb not to mention everywhere else. After 2 hours (from the time I dumped my bike) we finally got my bike started and started again down trail 48. We get back to the trail 42/48 junction and I am out of water in my camelbak. I decide I would rather have diarrhea than be thirsty so I fill up my camelback with water. Curtis fills up a 32 oz. powerade bottle with water, but refuses to put any in his camelbak and decides he isnít going to drink it unless he is going to die. I decide if Iím going to get sick drinking creek water, I am going to make it worth it and I drink all that I can stand. We then get back on our bikes and get moving up trail 48 again. Trail 48 was pretty crazy. At one point we are going through 8 foot tall willows and canít even see our front fender they are so dense. We are feeling our way through these sections by our tires being pushed by the ruts. There were some nasty creek crossings followed by near vertical shale rock climbs that took both of us to get our bikes up. After spending quite a while riding down this trail we run into a perfectly maintained section and get all excited again thinking we are almost out. About a mile later the perfectly maintained trail comes to a dead stop. There is no way to keep going so we reluctantly turn around and head back. By this time we are getting very tired and it is getting close to dark.
We then decide to go up trail 42 and hook into trail 130 (where we thought we were when all of this started and we went down the hiker only trail) and then into 157 which would drop us down into Caribou National Forest and some dirt roads. We were tired, dehydrated and not thinking clearly. Anyone looking at this map will wonder what we were thinking, but hey, neither of knew where we were going and when we made the decision we didnít have all of the information you have from reading this, some of the info I have given is hindsight info. That was my attempt to justify our stupidity in the last set of decisions we have made.
Anyway, we head up trail 42 in the dark. I had to hook a flashlight onto my front fender tube pack so that I could see in front of me. This was my first ride in the dark with my new bike and my headlight was pointed to high. I could see great now that we put the flashlight on my front fender. At this point, think in your mind of the time your were the most tired in your life and imagine getting on a motorcycle to ride uphill in the dark for an hour and a half. We finally get to the top of the trail and I run out of gas. The trail ends and doesnít hook into trail 130 like the map shows.
At this point we decide to make camp and sleep on it. I call my wife (since we are on top of the mountain and have coverage) and ask her how she is doing. She says, fine, how are you doing. I tell her Iím fine, but really low on gas and we arenít anywhere near Soda Springs. She says ďI know, why have you been driving in circles all day?Ē This is the first time I second guess my purchase SPOT. It is now 11:30 PM and we have been riding since 6:30 AM with a break for food at 10:00 Am. The lack of food would also help explain our bad decisions. I break into my trail mix and jerky in by backpack and eat it as fast as I can. Curtis decides he will now drink his water. He was smart, he waited 3 or 4 hours to see if I would get sick from drinking the water before he drank some. This was good for two reasons. The first was so he didnít get sick, the second was that so both of us wouldnít be sick, that could be really bad. I tell him Iím not feeling well, not even thinking about the water. I just wasnít feeling well because I hadnít eaten and he freaks out thinking that we are both going to have giardia. I freaked him out on accident, it was great! We decide the trail will be easy to find in the morning and we go to sleep with no mosquitoís!! I take my feet out of my riding boots. After riding all day and getting my feet wet, I started to get sore pinky toes. When I take off my boots I expect to see huge blisters. I wish I would have, there were no blisters, just bloody toes. They hurt so bad, but being out of my boots made them feel better.
We are awoken at first light to the sound of an army of mosquitoís swarming around out sleeping bags. I get up and get dressed and am forced to put my feet back into my boots. I had some bandaids and antibiotic ointment so I was hoping that would help with the pain. It didnít, I could hardly walk, but we had to hike all over looking for a trail. Curtis has a little bit of gas left in his tank and I have a 32 oz. Gatorade bottle full of gas. We look at our map and it gives us some numbers to call in case of an emergency. We decide we have a small emergency and need some gas. We call the Bonneville County Sheriffís Department and ask them how many millions of dollars they are going to charge us to bring us up some gas so we can ride out. They ask if we are hurt, we tell them no. They ask if we need food or water, we tell them no. They ask how long we have been back here and we tell them this is our 3rd day. They say ďThat is perfect! We will do a practice mission and bring you guys some gas for free!Ē We love this idea and take back every bad thing we have ever said after getting a speeding ticket. They then tell us to call 911 and they will get a fix on our GPS signal and figure out where we are. We tell them we can save the hassle and give them our GPS coordinates. We also have my wife email them the link to the SPOT locator so they can see exactly where we are once we leave the mountain top on our way out to meet them. We tell them we will head down trail 42 hit 48 and go north east until we run out of gas. We did and ran out of gas at the junction of 48/40. Here is Curtisí bike leaning against the tree where I ran out of gas (again) and we decided to wait for search and rescue to bring us gas.
Here I am waiting for gas.
Here is me (notice the orange SPOT gps tracker on my backpack) following one of the search and recue guys out. They rode in with one gallon gas cans strapped to their XR 200ís.
This is me again behind both guys who rode in.
Here is a pretty rough section on the way out. Again me following both search and rescue guys out.
Here we are out of the canyon next to the Search and Rescue trailer. Notice the search and rescue guy bending over and looking at my backpack. He wanted more info on the SPOT tracker. They all that was great. There was someone at the Swan Valley ranger station relaying our position to the basecamp (this picture) and they would radio ahead to the guys on the bikes to let them know where we stopped. They though everyone traveling in the back coutnry should have to have one of these things, it would sure make their job a lot easier!
This is a pic of our bikes in my truck at my parents house in Idaho Falls, ID. My wife drove up to get us and bring us home, she must really love me!
We were pretty bummed to not make it, but all said, nobody got hurt and we had a good time (for the most part). I hate not making it, but I guess thereís always next year to try again.
If you ever have a chance to ride the single track in palisades, I would highly recommend it. If anyone has ever ridden trail 130 or trail 157 on the map, please let me know. Iím pretty sure they donít exist any longer. The map we were using was printed in 2001 and reprinted in 2005 so you would expect it to be accurate, but it isn't.
Thanks for reading!!
nada_scurb screwed with this post 08-14-2008 at 08:54 AM