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Old 07-05-2012, 08:29 AM   #1
F250Pal OP
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Nevada: Riding the Big Empty

This thread is dedicated to rides that start, stop, pass through, or reference the State of Nevada.

Please share your thoughts, photos, and rides.
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:26 PM   #2
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Nevada: West to East. East to West

Sunday July 1, 2012.

Five bikes. Six riders. This trip has been loosely planned for a couple of months. Four co-workers/friends/riding/racing buddies and two wives making the ride. Two wives, two kids, one neice, two pickups, one enclosed trailer for a support staff.

Crew consists of:
KTM 690
KTM 950

No real plan. No route set in stone. Barely enough money. Plenty of time.

The bikes will carry only rider(s), full camel-bak, trail food, and extra gas. Going to need extra gas.

We leave from my driveway in Stagecoach, Nevada, 7:30ish in the AM. We go east on US Hwy 50 tof two miles then hit dirt. Ten minutes later, we have our first, and only, breakdown of the trip.

Thr XR6 was outfitted with an Acerbis 6 gallon tank shortly before leaving. A small amount of varnish loosened up in one of the lines below the petcock, causing some blockage. Carb removal, float bowl removal, new fuel line, clean jets, and back on the road. The XR Valdez is running just fine.

We continue east along the Carson River to US 95A, slab it for a mile, then back to dirt. Twenty five miles of graded road and we are at Top Gun Raceway. A few more miles of slab to the south. Ah, back to dusty dirt. A quick look at Lee Hot Springs.

Not much more than a small hole in the ground with boiling, bubbling water in it.

Oh yeah, and some kind black duck that had too much to drink prior to slipping into the boiling water.

Riding again. Now is where the vastness of the Silver State becomes obvious. No pavement. No people. We leave behind a fenced area belonging to the Fallon Naval Air Station. A bombing range. No bombing going on at the moment. Heading toward Rawhide, NV. The old town no longer stands due to modern mining expansion. Lots of old mining sites everywhere we go.

We get on a "road" constructed for the installation of an underground gas line. What do you know, it's called Gas Line Road. Get it? It is in pretty good shape considering it has not been maintained in years. There are a few sections covered in a couple feet of blow sand. Steering with the back tire through this shit. Lots of room to ride. No fences, no speed limits, no rules, no traffic, no people. This is exactly why we do this. Everyone is having fun and the bikes are running just fine. Our only planned gas stop for today is in Gabbs, NV. Going to need more juice to continue. Gabbs comes into view, and it takes a long time to reel in. Man, there is a lot of room out here. One gas station in town. Let's get some.

Rats. It's Sunday. Dilema. Lunch time.

We take advantage of some nearby shade and eat. After a short conversation with the innkeeper at the local bar, he assures us that our chances are good to purchase some fuel. Sigh. After church, of course.
The nice chuch lady who owns the gas pumps just so happens to own the shade we are borrowing while lunch is being consumed. She pulls up in her car, gets out sensing an ambush, and offers us fuel before we ask. With a smile. We ride across the street to fill up. Nice church lady is taking notes, keeping everyone's purchase seperate because there is no cash register at the gas station. It is across the street at the store. She explains there is not enough fuel sold to justify another employee or another register. She takes cash or debit card. Nice church lady is cool.

Riding. A short slab ride over Brunton Pass. Mountains. Woods. Nice. On the way to Berlin-Ichtyosaur State Park. Giant sea-beast fossil/skeleton. Did not stop. Back to dirt. Ione, NV next stop.

The Two-Headed Monster riding the XR600R is happy to be in Ione.

Not much going on in Ione. Onward. Up the canyon toward Ione Summit. We are in part of the segmented Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, gaining elevation, temperature is dropping, all is well. Ione Summit is behind us, we are heading toward Yomba Indian Reservation, then north up the Reese River Valley. Ranching. Pasture. Cows. Open range. Antelope. Dirt roads. A lot of dirt roads. The wonderful thing about Nevada is that there are adventures all around you. It would take a lifetime to explore all the roads, canyons, springs, creeks, mine sites, ghost towns. No worries now, hours of uninterrupted riding. Have not passed a car or pickup. Have not seen a human. Cell phone is off. Don't have monkey butt. Fuck yeah.
We need to turn east. We need to cross the Toiyabe Mountain Range. We head up Big Creek toward Kingston Summit.

Looking west to Reese River Valley from west of Kingston Summit. 8680'.

The pass is crossed. Best views of the day. Kingston, NV is reached.

We have more to see today today. Next stop, Spencer's Hot Springs. We hit the pavement again for a few minutes and head North on SR376. Guess what? Only two cars in ten miles of state highway. We considered camping at the hot springs tonight during the planning stage. Sounds good, right? Tired dirty people, free camping with benefits, soak, food, sleep.

We arrive at Spencer's Hot Springs. Wind is cranked up. No sign of the support babes. Water is way hot. Shade is nonexistant. Options. We back track to the Hwy 50/SR376 Jct. Perfect timing, we find the babes. Camping is only a few miles away at Bob Scott Campground. We invade the group site. Many tables. Running water. Flush toiltes. Shade. Bike prep area. Only 8 bucks. Winning.

Menu is chili, hot dogs, fruit, green salad, bread, cookies, cold milk, gatoraid, water. More water.

Trip odometer tells me we had fun.

Day one. Done.
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Old 07-05-2012, 07:37 PM   #3
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Looks like a great couple of days you had! I bet the XRL was lovin it!
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Old 07-05-2012, 07:51 PM   #4
bout a dollar 3.98
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:25 PM   #5
just passin' through
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Originally Posted by F250Pal View Post

We invade the group site. Many tables. Running water. Flush toiltes. Shade. Bike prep area. Only 8 bucks. Winning.

Well said sir and hilarious styling smeared on top !

Actually laughed out loud.

Yeah there's no good riding in Nevada (just south of Battle Mt.)

We ride down there every year but decided to make this year's trip in the fall for a change of color - here's 2010:
What's next? More action!
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:13 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by wachs View Post
Well said sir and hilarious styling smeared on top !

Actually laughed out loud.

Yeah there's no good riding in Nevada (just south of Battle Mt.)

We ride down there every year but decided to make this year's trip in the fall for a change of color - here's 2010:
That doesn't look like any fun at all!!!!
one day I will learn, until that day... fuck it.
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:57 PM   #7
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If you had a hundred gallon fuel tank I doubt
you would see anyone for months.

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Old 07-07-2012, 12:27 AM   #8
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Nevada: West to East. East to West 2.0

I really need more comfortable camping equipment. The sunrise could not have come soon enough, I've been thinking only of coffee and increasing my carbon footprint for the last few hours. Breakfast was good, coffee was great. We pack up the camp and load the pickups so the babes can head east. We also head east. Slab it downhill from Bob Scott Summit to Big Smokey Valley. Dirt again. Won't see pavement for a while. We mob it across the valley, the morning air is still cool, on the pegs and on the fucking gas. I really love gasoline. Up Pete's Summit we go, quick look at Toquima Caves. Nothing more than a hole in a cliff protected by a chain link fence. Dropping down into Monitor Valley, to the Monitor Ranch. We wave to two people on quads. We are only a few miles from the geographic center of Nevada, a very unremarkable aluminum cap on a piece of rebar pounded into the brush. We need to check out a few things down south from here so we head for Dianas Punch Bowl. It is a hot spring. It is a very strange hot spring. A big pimple in the middle of the valley, standing alone. A volcano?

We estimate the water to be about 40 to 45 feet down, and the diameter of the hole a squish bigger. It is hot. You can feel it. You can see the steam. Sheer walls. Not going down there without climbing gear. Deep, too. Seems bottomless when you toss a rock in, you can watch it sink for a long time.

You can see a long way. The bikes are off and it is quiet, The solitude is smothering. And liberating.

Back north now, to Potts Ranch. No one living here anymore, but a very active ranch. Lots of old buildings and barns, sheds, etc. Not far away is Potts Hot Spring. This is bitichin'. This alone would have been worth the trip just to see. Clean, fast moving water, perfect temperature. I didn't want to leave.

Cows. Horses. Space.

The Captain approves.

OK, we need to get over the Monitor Range via White Sage Canyon, over the summit and down Rye Grass Canyon. This was really fun. Really good dirt with no rocks in the road. Twisty, turney, water bars, rollers, in the trees, tall brush. It was like a twenty five mile amusement park ride. Our crew was bisected by a spooked antelope herd. We watched about 40 of them go between us. It took about a minute and they were only twenty yards away max. That was a perfect time to mention among ourselves that we were all on paid vacation leave from work for the whole week. Riding. More fun. We get down into Antelope Valley and find an obscure wagon trail of a road. I go ahead to take a few pics and find some props. Laughing now.

This goes for miles. It's hot now. The inventor of the Camel Bak is worthy of Knighthood. We pass Fish Creek Ranch and keep on keeping on, heading toward Red Rock Summit. Options. During the "planning" stage, a possible route through Duckwater was discussed. Duckwater to Currant to Lund to Ely. We decide trees and high country sounds better. I'd rather have swamp-ass in the mountains than on a dusty playa. Doesn't make me bad. We fiddle our way through the Pancake Range up in the trees then head for Green Springs Ranch. More flat bottom desert riding. From Green Springs, it gets good. Back in the segmented Humboldt Toiyabe National Forest gaining elevation, temperature dropping. Sadly, we missed the turn to go up Cathedral Canyon, but we got on a well marked Forest Service road with signage leading us toward the Hamilton Mining District, home to many ghost towns, mill sites, cemeterys, and random oldness. A lot of miles so far. Food.

Peanut butter and jelly somewhere near Hamilton, NV. 8000' ish.

Heading down the old Hamilton-Pioche Stage Line Road now and liking it. Trees. Water crossings. Cows. Have not seen a vechicle on the trail for hours. Sputter. Cough. Sputter. Out of gas. We stop. Dang,
4 gallons out the pipe already. Rather than flopping over to reserve, I dump the contents of the Kolpin can in, as does the rest of the crew. Three Kolpin 1.5's, one two gallon lawn mower can, and two 22 oz MSR canteens are emptied. The two headed monster on the XR Valdez is confused by our behavior. It smells like Cheech and Chong. Oh, it is just the two headed monster. Passing the USFS Ellison Guard Station now, getting down into some ranches. Pavement. Haven't seen you in a while. 5 minutes of slab on US 6 to the SR 318 Jct. We find the old highway paralleling US 6. Watch out for the oh shit dips. Asphalt up Murray Summit to Ely, NV.

Rooms waiting for us at the Prospector Hotel and Gambling Hall. Parking lot out back is unoccupied, serving us well as bike prep area and camp kitchen. The babes are working hard. We love the babes. Tri tip, beans, bread, fruit, more green salad, more cookies.

I'm looking forward to a shower and a bed. Filters cleaned and oiled. Chains lubed. Tanks filled.

Trip odometer agrees this is better than working.

Day two. Done.
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Old 07-07-2012, 05:30 AM   #9
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Really great ride.
I want to go there but it
is far away from me.
2008 KLR rider
Lets ride !
"The poets down here don't write nuthin' at all
They just stand back and let it all be." Springsteen
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:12 AM   #10
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Seems like an awesome time. What a great way to spend vacation time. Thanks for the stories and pics so far.
2013 Honda NC700X
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Old 07-07-2012, 08:36 PM   #11
Found:Gideon's Bible
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Great country, awesome ride, nice write-up!

Here's what Kingston Summit looked like on Memorial Day weekend.

It's only a scratch.

“It is a far, far better thing to have a firm anchor in nonsense than to put out on the troubled seas of thought.” -- John Kenneth Galbraith
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:48 PM   #12
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Caliente, NV

Great ride report / thread you have going here. Nevada -- the big empty. Well named.

RedRockRider - WR250R, TW200, Versys, Vulcan 900 LT, Zuma 125

Southwest Utah: Dual Sport Riding from St. George
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:04 PM   #13
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Nice stuff! I've been eyeing your trip for a while, makes me want to give it a try!

But, Nevada sucks. No need to go there. It's hot. It's dry. It's lonesome. That's how I like it.

A few shots from a 600 mile solo loop from Bishop, CA to Eureka, NV and back one summer solstice...

Benton Hot Springs, CA - each campsite gets a tub


Monitor Valley

Pine Creek, Monitor Valley

Near the geographic center of the state

Farrington Ranch

Peavine Canyon

Silver Peak

Fish Lake Valley

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Old 07-09-2012, 09:39 AM   #14
Burnin' daylight...
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Originally Posted by Clydascope View Post
Monitor Valley
Wallpaper material, right there. Any chance you've got a larger version of it?
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Old 07-09-2012, 09:51 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by ghostdncr View Post
wallpaper material, right there. Any chance you've got a larger version of it?

Prov 3:5 & 6

300+ mile Paisley OR day ride
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