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Old 05-05-2013, 04:53 PM   #31
zekester63 OP
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The OAT passes "Frog Rock" an interestingly shaped rock formation that has been painted green, and remarkably resembles a frog.






Overlooking part of Keystone Lake:



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Old 05-05-2013, 04:55 PM   #32
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I stopped by Keystone State Park for a look and snack break. It had been a few years since I'd been camping here. Nice enough camping, but bring your ear plugs because there are obviously trains in the local area that you can hear throughout the night.



Just below the Keystone Lake dam there is a place for ORV riding. It is primarily sand, so the majority of visitors are on four wheelers. I've seen several 4x4s and a couple sand rails out here playing as well. It's not the best place to ride a dirt bike, but does in a pinch. And actually if you find the trails along old highway 51, riding there you will find a lot more dirt and mud trails in the woods.

Here's the only shot I grabbed of the area.

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Old 05-05-2013, 04:56 PM   #33
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Unfortunately no screen shot of my final trip stats, so I just grabbed the info from Basecamp:



As always, I enjoyed the few hours I managed to sneak in for the ride, in between fatherly duties and other activities that so often take priority in our lives.
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:56 PM   #34
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Stay tuned!

Happy Riding!
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:21 PM   #35
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great info, thanks for sharing. I can't wait to try this area out.
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:03 PM   #36
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Great report! I was suprised to find a pic of B & J's Restaurant in Tahlequah. Glad you liked the Rueben.
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Old 05-09-2013, 04:27 PM   #37
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frog rock is looking a little rough. may need a new coat of krylon.
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Old 05-19-2013, 03:33 PM   #38
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Out and about...

... in progress - stay tuned!
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:48 PM   #39
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Out and About

So Iím sitting at home on Saturday morning, no pressing chores to be done, mowed the yard a couple evenings ago, wife out with the youngest doing their thing, and me suddenly realizing I had a few hours free. She suggested that I go for a ride, so after determining it wasnít a trick , it took me about 2 seconds to decide I would seize the moment. I knew the forecast for the day was hot and humid, but I figured as long as I kept moving it wonít be too bad, and Iíd have water to keep hydrated, and a couple snacks, and that the uncomfort of the weather would be worth getting a chance to ride for a few hours!

I started scrambling to figure out where to ride. Fortunately, even when I donít have rides planned, I often look on maps to see if I can find new or interesting places to ride that are within a reasonable distance from home. If I rode a big ADV bike my options would open up somewhat, but riding a ľ liter ďdirt bikeĒ and only having a few hours, the thought of riding an hour or more of slab just to get to anything more exciting doesnít exactly thrill me. But Iíll take what I can get and know Iíll enjoy it anyway!

I jump on the computer, convert some of the Google maps I've played around with to GPX files, and then load them into Basecamp for some finalizing. I don't have a special route planned this time, but instead have several places that I thought might be worth checking out. The tracks I had created were somewhat piecemeal, but I figured Iíd decide on the fly, and if I hit a dead end, then Iíd just try to connect to another track I would have loaded.

I grab some snacks, a couple bottles of water and stow them in my tank & tail bags. Iím still running my 606s from when okraider81 and I did our ride to Natural Falls, so I knew Iíd be safe if I got into any sand or mud. I do the once over on Roxy, check tire pressure, gear up, and head out on my way.
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:57 PM   #40
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Here is a map showing the route I ended up riding:

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Old 05-20-2013, 01:01 PM   #41
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About 3 miles from my house is where the pavement ends. Surprising actually, because there arenít any (or at least many) other unpaved roads that Iím aware of this close by. Iím glad I found this road, because it gets remote real quick and makes me feel further away from the hustle and bustle of the city than I actually am.



There are several miles of this type of gravel road, very well maintained (although sometimes a bit excessive on the loose gravel, making things feel a bit squirrely at times), and somewhat straight and flat - the typical Oklahoma grid with stop signs every mile.

After a few miles on this gravel road I turned west, south of Keifer and towards some hopefully interesting terrain that I havenít explored before. At least Google maps make it look more interesting! Speaking of Google maps, as I am about to find out (and have experienced several times before), you just cannot trust them (probably any maps to be honest, but since I use Google, thatís who Iíll call out) to plan a ride. Iíve found that there are a whole bunch of roads that are clearly marked as roads, numbers and all, but then are either private, gated or just donít exist at all except for faint tracks in the grass later when viewing from Google Earth. When I have the time, I typically like to look fairly closely on Google Earth before I go anywhere so I donít waste a bunch of time hitting dead ends. This time I didnít have the time though, so I knew it was going to be a gamble with many of the places I had planned to go to.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:07 PM   #42
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About 15 minutes into my ride, I find myself on a very narrow, but paved, road. It wasnít very well maintained, but there werenít any indications of it being private either, so I keep pressing on. There was a gate, but could tell it hadnít been used in many, many years. It also looked like there were more than just one house/farm ahead, so I didnít feel like I was in someoneís driveway. The asphalt soon ended, and before I knew it I was on this really nice road/trail.



While stopped to take the above picture... as Iím putting my phone back in itís place, I see a single headlight approaching quickly in my mirrors. I had noticed a GoldWing at a farm a little ways back, so that was my first thought, but didnít think this sandy road was much of a place for a 700+lb bike. I kill the engine and wait for his arrival. He pulls up next to me and turns off his bike. Heís interested in what I was up to and where I was headed. I told him that I was just out exploring, and asked if this was private property. Sure enough, it was the property owner. I quickly apologized, telling him that if there had been any signs indicating that it was, or closed gates, that I wouldnít have even considering passing. I showed him my GPS, telling him that at least Google thinks thereís a road through his property, and then discussed my planned route. We actually talked for quite awhile - real nice guy. He asked me where I was from, about my ďrigĒ and then told me I was welcome to proceed and explore his property. He said there was a gate at the other end (where I was headed), and it might be locked and have to backtrack, and if so, just to stop by his place on my way out so he knows I made it out safely. He said his main concern is lawsuits - if someone comes onto his property and gets injured... and that itís sad our legal system has made this such a common practice.

He pulled up ahead of me and amazingly proceeded to turn his bike around in this stuff. He managed just fine, thanks to his handy dandy reverse gear.

I take off then, thanking him again and headed out, following my tracks. I never made it to any gate - one dead end after another. Where my Garmin was telling me to turn, there wasnít even a trail, just a foot or two of grass (I think power lines ran through there), and I wasnít sure the landowner actually intended for me to go offroading to that extent, even though he seemed familiar with where my tracks led to, taking me past a couple large ponds in that direction, etc. So I turned around for the last time and headed out, feeling somewhat guilty about being there in the first place. I stopped at the place with the GoldWing out front, and saw him and a couple others doing some fence work. I talked to him for several minutes again. He told me he liked my rig, talked about living in the country, farming, and grass root values (he said most people donít even know what that really is...). I told him I grew up on a farm with all the typical animals, 20K broilers every 10-12 weeks or so, milking cows (by hand), haying, you name it. It obviously scored brownie points with him, as I could tell he knew then that I understood what he had been talking about and wasnít just some city boy. He told me that Iím welcome to come back and ride and get as muddy as Iíd like on his property any time I want to. Donít know that I will, but it was nice that he offered.

Another shot of the trail on his property.

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Old 05-20-2013, 01:09 PM   #43
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Iíve seen this place before - most of the structures are built as domes, including a greenhouse and some of the outbuildings. What I hadnít seen previously was this sign on their gate, indicating that it was a snake farm. No clue if it actually is, and donít really want to find out! Iíve always thought that the only good snake was a dead snake.

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Old 05-20-2013, 01:10 PM   #44
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I passed by this church. There wouldnít be any worship services this weekend...



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Old 05-20-2013, 01:11 PM   #45
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Mile after mile of roads like this. Anything that's not on the grid layout makes it so much more enjoyable too.

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