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Old 07-07-2008, 03:29 PM   #1
gunnr OP
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Joined: Oct 2006
Location: Camas, not Washougal
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KLR's Ride To Moon Rocks

We did this trip the last weekend of June, figured I better get it posted. The trip started when my son said he was going up to Naches for NAXJA NWF, it's a Jeep thing. There is a rock crawling area called Moon Rocks and Funny Rocks. I have never been to the area so decided to plan a ride and check things out. I checked the maps, downloaded some tracks, read a few ride reports and put together some kind of plan. I called the FS and they said the higher areas were still blocked by snow. That would blow the loops I wanted to do, but figurered we would just go see anyway. Three of us, Martin and Gordon, myself rode section 3 of the OBDR last year. Last month a friend Jim calls and asks do I still have a motorcycle? Without much persuasion, he goes and buys a new KLR....600 miles on the clock so far. Another KLR joins the posse.

Martin showing off the new carpet! Homemade version of a sheepskin seat cover. He refers to us as Dorksporters, we don't quite fit the cruiser or sport biker image. Probably a KLR thing! Got some laughs over that on this trip and a good one at the end!

Locked and loaded. Martin, Me, Gordon and Jim. Back in 91 we were all working together, that summer we rode for whatever reason the Seattle to Portland bike ride. Thats 200 miles on a bicycle! This should be more fun!

Took off and hit the gravel up the hill towards Larch Mt.

Again my original options up through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest to Packwood were altered becuse of the late snow this year. The alternative is to slab it, you can get there N on I-5 and them East on 12 or East on 14 and N on 97 whichs cuts through the The Yakima Indian Res, so not too many options for backroads. Oh well we'll find a new route for awhile, just stay off the pavement. We dropped over to Bear Praire and down to the Washougal River road to Dougan Falls. Up the road past the falls we see a sign, "Logging operation ahead cables in road" Danger, blah, blah. We blast past and stop shortly at a bridge. No cables in the road. We could hear the equipment and what sounded like a cable pulling through the trees. After some thought we look up and see it bouncing above us. Not a good place to be.

On over to Stevenson and up to Carson. A month ago you couldn't get through here.

Bear Creek road.

66 Road, this skirts the east side of the lava beds. We were here a month ago, still snow and not open all the way through to the 60 rd.

On to Trout Lake.

Mt Adams.

We headed East towards Glenwood but took some roads that cut over to Laurel and the Glenwood -BZ corners highway.

Up Fisher hill road, we pretty much came face to face with a full log truck heading down. Adrenaline rushes are good on a KLR.
Get out the map. Seems like using a map makes it more interesting. We were basically picking roads as we went.

We turned off onto Wackiukus Heights road. Might be dusty.

Says Martin, "I feel guilty taking time off work when there is so much going on". Says Gordon, "What are you, stupid?"

Dropped down to the Klickitat River.

Saw these ears off to my right.

Crossed the river and head up the other side towards Goldendale.

No pavement here.

It's 3:30, lets eat and think about what to do.

Originally, I thought about heading East and NE on side roads towards Sunnyside and up to Yakima and Ellensburg, but somehow we decided to just bite it and hit the pavement to Yakima. Let's just get up to Naches area and find somewhere to camp.

This is alot of pavement and it's hot out. Finally drop down towards Yakima.

A few hours later we are at Whistlin Jacks. Buy some beverage and head up to camp on the Little Naches River.

We find the NAXJA camp, Jeep Cherokees all over.

Talked to Dustin, met a few Naxja guys and went to bed.

about 265 miles,

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Old 07-07-2008, 03:44 PM   #2
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Fantastic KLR ride!!

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Old 07-07-2008, 04:28 PM   #3
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Should be interesting to see non-wheeler pics. Take the KLR on any of those "Funny Rocks"?. Been there in the winter time. Want to go there in the summer.
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Old 07-07-2008, 05:37 PM   #4
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Would like to re-live my nw US days with a ds bike, keep the pics coming.
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Old 07-08-2008, 09:50 AM   #5
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Next morning we aren't sure what we want to do. We blast down to Whistlin Jacks for a nice breakfast and top our tanks off. Don't know where we are going but I hear never pass gas....Decide to ride up the Little Naches River and see how far we can get until we hit snow. Nice scenery, road turns to gravel and then finally we hit snow.

On the way down we run into these guys on the road we were going to head up. They were all on those TTW's? all loaded down. They were coming down and had run into snow about 10miles up. They had come down from Easton the day before on another road and were looking for a route back. Come to find out they had loaded the same route as I has from GPSXchange, PCKopp I think....thanks even though I didn't use it this trip. Anyway they were headed over to 1708, that sounded good. We thought we might go up and see what the Moon Rocks were about.

We blasted around down by the river and spied some potential camps.

Got up on top and started seeing the views. I need to play with my camera some to get the colors right. I take alot of pictures on the fly so really don't spend much time composing them. We kept going up until the road pretty much ended and turned to a wheelin road. Some Jeep came through and asked him where the Moon Rocks were. He said through there, turn right and second left will put you there. OK thanks.

Came to this hill and followed Jim up. Steeper than it looks but not a big deal...yet.

Got to the top and pulled in next to Jim on the uphill side and started yacking about something. I put my downhill foot down and realized it was a long way down. By the time I realized my mistake I was falling and Jim was in the way.

Domino effect, sorry Jim. Things are freaking heavy with all the samsonite.

Followed the ridge and dropped over the other side to Funny Rocks.

Sat and watched for awhile,

Martin on patrol.

THe Naxja forum had some cool pics if you're into that. Son Dustin took a basic route, not quite set up for the tough stuff yet but gets around good. Serious father/son project coming up!

We decided to get going, we wanted to get over to the 1701 and head down. One of the Naxja guys said take the 695 trail, go down something called Devils something....Hmm. We got here, shoud be able to get down. No big. We cruised over to Moon Rocks, watched a couple of jeeps picking their lines up. As one cleared the top, 2 guys on KTM's came blasting through and topped out making it look easy.

We got to the Moon Rocks but took the easy way up top, of course I get preoccupied with all the photo ops around me and high center on a rock, instant stop and down again. Freakin heavy, good thing I have a full tank of gas.

Looking back to Funny Rocks

These are some pics Dustin got, that canon sure takes nice pics.

We're on the ridge and heading down.

We want to get to that road, but need to start dropping down.

Farther down we get into a steep rocky chute. Very loose rock, slow going. It's hard to control your speed, the rocks are rolling as you brake. Was thinking should get a picture of this, then realized I shouldn't be thinking of other things. Tried to ride it out and down I go. Another 500 lb. deadlift and we're up again. Wow, adrenalines flowing but not enough to keep me upright, down again. Another deadlift, nobody even noticed, they were cautiously picking their way down.

Get down to the 1701, yup thats the 695 steeper than it looks.

We check the map and decide to head to Jim's folks house. Lots of nice scenery.

Nice place, all solar and wind power. Nice views.

At one time years ago we all worked for Jim's dad. A very innovative guy. He was building a peeled pole fence and built a big pencil sharpener to shape the ends of the poles to fit the posts.

Hand peeling the logs.

We get headed back down towards 410.

We stop at Whistlin Jacks again and head up to find a camp on the river.

Gordon and his big tent. I think you need to put your feet in first Gordon!

We only went about 100 miles today.........

The next morning Martin warms up with a few laps.

We head back to Jacks for breakfast, this place conveniently worked out pretty good. Top the tanks off, didn't need much. We are heading home and will head up 410 to Chinook Pass. We take a side trip to Bumping Lake.

Back on 410.

We saw hundreds of cruisers out on the pavement this weekend. None at the Moon Rocks. We sqeeze the dorksports in somehow at the pass. Quite a temp change.

Mt Rainer.

Waiting for snow removal, small avalanche on to the road.

Once we hit highway 12, we new it was going to be a lot of pavement home. 25 rd would have been a nice ride down from Randle but still closed. A few times on the trip Jim was having problems with his bike cutting out. We thought it might be the kickstand switch and tried to adjust it and even bypassed it. Vacuum line to petcock was barely on, that didn't fix it. While on 12 the problem worsened, the bike back firing. Higher rpm's and a load on the motor really made it bad. Seemed to be electrical, we stopped and started checking wires. We debated what to do and decided to limp to Mossyrock to a friend of Martins. He wasn't home and we couldn't get anyone to come up with a truck so Martin says they can leave Jim's bike and Martins gear and double up home. Jim will come back with a truck tonite.

Cute couple.......nice shag, pure dorksport.

650 miles.

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Old 07-08-2008, 03:14 PM   #6
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Talking fun

Thanks for the trip.
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Old 07-08-2008, 05:00 PM   #7
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Awesome report! I live outside of Portland and love the Gifford-Pinchot National Forest. Are all the roads you took open to everyone? Or did you need a pass? I would love to ride up there in the coming weeks.

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Old 07-08-2008, 05:38 PM   #8
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So beautiful up there!
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Old 07-08-2008, 06:23 PM   #9
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What a treat. Nice report,great photos from someone who is a Jeep freak and DS guy.
Thanks Pete
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Old 07-08-2008, 06:39 PM   #10
gunnr OP
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Location: Camas, not Washougal
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Thanks guys, yes to answer your question BW, all the roads are open. No pass needed in the GPNF. Most roads are melting out finally. The Naches area is the Wenatchee National Forest.
here is a link to GPNF road reports
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Old 07-22-2008, 09:15 PM   #11
Joined: Jul 2008
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Thumb dorky white seats rock

Originally Posted by roguesteelheader
What a treat. Nice report,great photos from someone who is a Jeep freak and DS guy.
Thanks Pete
Hello everyone! I had a blast riding this rout and would do it again in a fart beat. I'm the one with the fuzzy seat! I just like saying that. Hey the dude with the husky wrote in. We saw ya on that little road trip up to old mans pase. Were more into the dirt than I think they are but what the hell. I'm just writing on this forum for the first time so I'm not sure how well it will work. Can you hear me now?
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