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Old 03-15-2012, 10:07 PM   #1
TheAdmiral OP
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Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Sand Hollow, Idaho
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Decaf and Snively Gulch Siphon

Last Friday I went for a little ride on the extreme northern part of the Owyhee Ridge near Adrian, Oregon. Blackjack Butte is a little closer to where I was. This ridge is basically located between the Snake River on the east, and Owyhee River/Reservoir on the west. The terrain is high desert grassland, which transitions to rugged lava flow canyons. Sometimes the riding was in mildly soft sandy 2 track, and sometimes a bit rougher.

Though I took a trip last year to the Owyhee Dam, I've never ridden on this ridge before. I was mainly going to just roam about the country, but did add a geocache to sort of give me a general destination. I didn't really care if I got close enough to find it, but it gave me something to do. Of course I discovered some obstacles along the way!

Shortly after departure, I get this nice view of the Snake River from atop the ridge. Photo sucks, but it looked good with the naked eye.

Wide open spaces.

Heading west towards the Owyhee River Canyon, terrain starts to get rougher.

As I decend into canyon country, I come across my first obstacle. An irrigation ditch which originates from the Owyhee Dam through a series of tunnels, canals and siphons.

With the "Decaf" just a 1/4 mile away on the other side, I ponder trying to cross here. It doesn't look very good, but it's a long way around if I don't try. In the end I decide it's not worth it, so I will go the long way.

Here is one of the irrigation tunnels from the dam. Hard to see, but this one reads "USR 1934" I saw another one later on that said 1932. USR stood for United States Reclamation Service, the predecessor to the Bureau of Reclamation.

This is one of the irrigation bridges just outside the tunnel.

This canal one reminds me of an Olympic Bobsled track. The dam was completed in 1932 and at the time was the tallest dam in the world. When Hoover dam was completed a couple years later, it became the tallest.

And here's one of the reasons for the long go-around. Use to be a bridge across the canal. So close and yet so far away.

Snapshot of the Snively Gulch Siphon taken from the video. The siphon is still part of the main canal system. Siphons were used to span gulch's, while the tunnels went through hillsides.

Past Snively Gulch Siphon, I reach the Owyhee River. Look no bridge. I sit here for a few minutes contemplating whether I should try to cross or not.

So I did! And Georgie appreciated it.

And finally my coffee break. Decaf, that's the name of the cache.

Georgie had some fun climbing the bluffs around the cache.

Got a little exercise in. View of the mighty mule from the cache.

Oh, and just a short distance from the cache, yep it's the other side of the bridge by the canal. But with the bridge gone, it was worth it.
I got to do a river crossing.

All-in-all, it was another fun ride. I shall not complain one bit.

And the video, with a little fun feature I captured on the way.
For the record, I hate snakes!

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Old 03-17-2012, 08:00 PM   #2
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Joined: Aug 2011
Location: St. George, UT
Oddometer: 1,480
Nice river crossing. Always gets your attention!

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

Southwest Utah: Dual Sport Riding from St. George
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