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Old 09-14-2006, 03:34 PM   #61
DockingPilot OP
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So we ride back out to Panther Creek/Morgan Creek Rd and head south towards Challis Idaho. This road was to become one of my favorites. The terrain changed dramaticly as we rode south. Word and pictures will never do this route justice.



In fact we were wicking it up pretty good on this road. I think Gobi hit 95 briefly. I came around a cornor and there was cows right smack in front of me. I came very close. This is "free range" territory and the cows roam, well freely ! I understand if you wack one, you own it.

We pulled into Challis for lunch and fuel. Our plan was to head down to the Custer Motorway and the Yankee Fork Gold Dredge. I knew before leaving NJ that there was a fire in this area and the Custer Motorway was closed. As we approached Challis I saw the HeliTack smokejumpers office, so I quickly pulled. That is were I met this nice smokejumper and his family. He told me they had the fire out and the route was re-opened ! They were so nice and asked about our trip. A few Napoleon Dynamite jokes and we were on our way. Thank you guys !
See his hat ? It says USFS Challis Idaho "HELITACK"
He gave me one


The start of the Custer Motorway


A beutiful meadow along the forest road. I just had to stop.



I should mention that nearly every backroad we rode had a stream, creek or river running along it. Idaho is loaded with creeks. Heres one we stopped to check out. I cant tell you how clear and clean it was.







We ride on for another 10 or 20 miles and stopped for another creekside rest. This is were saw these trout, lots of them ! As nearly long as your arm. Get this: DK slowly walked into the creek and approached one. It did not swim away but styed right there. He then reached down slowly and gently touched it, it still remained there. We did not disturb them further.



We saw at least a dozen. Beutifull. Just swiming in these pools of crystal clear water undisturbed.







Jim and DK relaxing by the creek. Temp around 72'


And Gobi on his quest for a rattler siting


Well we finaly move on, heading for the Yankee Fork. We stop to see the old tombstones on the miners and their families. Very cool



And then the Yankee Fork Dredge



Well after that we head on back out to the blacktop and ride back up north to Salmon Idaho for the night in a motel.


We pull into the motel at Salmon around sundown. We go out for a nice meal and hit the rack. We have quite a way to go yet on our journey.

NEXT UP:
STAGE 3
OVER THE DIVIDE VIA LEMHI PASS/BANNACK MONTANA/ THE ULTRA COOL & LONG "MEDICINE LODGE CREEK RD" (WITH WATER CROSSING) WHERE WE CROSS BACK OVER THE DIVIDE INTO IDAHO & THE CHARCOAL KILNS
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DockingPilot screwed with this post 09-14-2006 at 03:41 PM
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Old 09-14-2006, 03:57 PM   #62
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Eh? Huh!?

Trout with no natural fear of people. Very strange.
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Old 09-14-2006, 03:59 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottr
Trout with no natural fear of people. Very strange.
We thought so. Maybe they are not used to people unlike here in NJ ?
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Old 09-14-2006, 04:07 PM   #64
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Ah, grab your pals, the camping gets better, food gets better and the ride gets ... well , you will see.
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Old 09-14-2006, 04:13 PM   #65
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Great report, you make me want to take a week off and head to the hills.
Particularly THOSE hills, as they are very special.

My grandfather worked on that dredge, my mother and aunts were raised up there. The place is filled with fond memories, as it was our favorite family campground destination. One summer I worked with grandpa giving guided tours on the dredge. Still one of the best summers of my life. He explained every aspect of the dredge operation, and taught me to pan for gold, which I then demonstrated for tourists. We cheated a bit, having salted an area of the creek with gold prior to the demonstration. I still wonder how much kickback we should have recieved from the Sunbeam store for all the gold pans he sold because of those demonstrations.

I go up there several times a year now. The place is emotionally powerful for me, with the family history, it's where my sons ashes were spread, and where I wish for my own to be placed someday. Few places are more beautiful than the central Idaho wilderness.
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Old 09-14-2006, 05:40 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DockingPilot
We thought so. Maybe they are not used to people unlike here in NJ ?
I thought that as soon as I put my hand in the water they would be outta there. I was totally surprised that it let me touch it and didn't move at all. I've never had an experience with a fish like that before. Oh.. I take that back. I've petted lots of groupers in cleaning stations. Also some of the ones that have been feed and are used to people. I also hitched a ride from a turtle once. I was trying to be the Croc Hunter and look what happened to him while we were away. So now I only touch fish with small teeth.

dk
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Old 09-14-2006, 05:43 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tankboy
The place is emotionally powerful for me, with the family history, it's where my sons ashes were spread, and where I wish for my own to be placed someday.
Really sorry to hear of your loss. I can understand why it's such a powerful place. Also a place with some really good memories.

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Old 09-14-2006, 07:55 PM   #68
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Newbie John Boy Journal Entries

Hey all! John here. I was the newbie on this ride.

When Frank sent the first email out announcing the ride I knew instantly that I had to do it. It sounded fantastice and a once in a lifetime opportunity. I was not disappointed.

I will share with you my personal journal from the ride. A bit different from a ride report I hope you will find it informative and entertaining and provide a perspective of Adventure riding from someone new to the experience.

I'd never ridden off road until @ 3 months prior to this ride. I bought the XR650L expressly for this ride with the idea that I would sell it after the ride. No way. I'm a committed adventure rider now.

Thanks to all of my compadres on the trip. I can't imagine a better group to ride with. Thanks to Tony Huegel for providing the routing. And a special thanks to Docking Pilot for leading us on a fantastic adventure.

Follow us on the ride of a lifetime.


John
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Old 09-14-2006, 08:18 PM   #69
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Day 1 - Monday 28 September 2006

The day started a bit slow. Weíre all in Missoula by 1pm. Will had all the bikes unloaded from the trailer. We just needed to get them loaded up and hit the road. Duane is a bit unhappy because Tim has not purchased exactly the groceries Duane wanted. I have my bike loaded and ready to go in @ 40 minutes.





The rest of the group takes @ 90 minutes, fiddling with GPS & transceivers and this and that. We get rolling @ 2:30. Bid Will & Lorrie goodbye and head out of Missoula on Rt.12. Stop for fuel at the start of the Lolo Motorway. Duane wants olive oil and more pasta. This turns into our first small problem. Weíre gassed up and ready to go and Duane is worried about olive oil. Tim & I run to a grocery store across the street from the fuel stop and get the olive oil and additional pasta. We tell the others to go; Tim has the route on his GPS. When we come out of the grocery store everyone is waiting for us at the car wash across the street. Surprised. Out of the grocery store Frank heads one way and Duane another. Not a good start. Most of us follow Frank as he is the leader and has spent a year planning the route. Less than a mile and its obvious weíre not on the correct road, weíre in a residential neighborhood. No problem, just need to go to the next street. No real problem, but definitely an inauspicious start. At the fuel stop Jim is worried about his bike. Doesnít feel right. Heís shaking the handlebars and the whole bike seems to be flexing from the steering head. Looks to me like the Happy Trail panniers are acting like a huge lever on the frame and the least movement or wind turbulence on the panniers is going to be magnified at the handlebars.

We make our way up the Lolo. Beautiful ride and we are soon off-road. Elk Meadow Road. A great road to start the journey. We exit Elk Meadow Road back on to Route 12 and look for a campsite. We stop at White Sand campground in the Clearwater National Forest. The campsite has a pond. I am caught completely off guard by the campsite arrival procedure. Iím new at this whole adventure riding and camping thing. Immediately upon dismounting from the bikes everyone has grabbed their tent and is scouting for a site for the tent. I find it almost comical, like itís some sort of competition. Who can get the best campsite?



I decide itís far easier to go to an adjacent campsite where the folks have a trailer parked. I ask if they mind if I take a spot in the campsite that is flat and seems ideal for the tent. They are gracious and helpful and offer us the entire campsite as they will be in their trailer.

There are 5 or 6 campsites in this little park. Behind the park is a beautiful stream with rocks and stones.



The opposite bank is heavily forested. There is a pond adjacent where many of the campers are fly fishing. Weíre not sure of the fire restrictions in the campsite so we poll the neighbors. Everyone agrees we can have a fire in the fire ring.

Everyone has their tents setup within 10 feet or so of each other. Iím 40 yards away in the adjacent campsite. Feels kinda bit strange but no one comments. As it turns out this will be a good thing. I wake up a couple of times during the night and hear what sounds like snoring. I canít imagine what it is. In the morning when we wake up we find Tim out of his tent, in his sleeping bag near the campsite table. Joe hasnít slept all night. Jim is complaining of the noise. Turns out DK snores ďlike a locomotiveĒ and has kept the others awake much of the night. Lucky me, Iím 40 yards away and donít hear much.

After the tents are up Tim sets up the shower, a clothesline and the bear bag, breaks out a portable sink. Tim is definitely Professor Gadget. We start a fire and Duane starts the spaghetti dinner. Weíve got some ground meat, sauce and the spaghetti. It turns out great. This will be the least impressive meal of our journey.



During the night Joe has some intestinal distress and has some difficulty making it too the latrine. A rock hides the evidence of Joeís 4am nature call. Itís a source of morning laughter.

Iím a bit concerned about the Honda. Itís taking a bit longer to start than Iíd like. Iím worried about starting in the cold. As it will turn out this is ill founded. The Honda starts reliably and readily the rest of the trip. My hydration bladder leaked and ruined the maps including my Benchmark that I was carrying in my backpack.

Frank is having fuel problems. Fuel leaking from his bike. Seems to pressurize when he fills the tank.




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Old 09-14-2006, 08:18 PM   #70
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Welcome Johnny, you really set the bar pretty high if this is your first off road tour... How in the heck can you top this man? but if you try... let some Jersey boyz know and i bet you'll be beating them off with sticks...
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Old 09-14-2006, 08:23 PM   #71
johnpitts01
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First ADVRide

Believe me I'm looking forward to the next one.

If Docking Pilot is leading I guarantee it will be fantastic.
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Old 09-15-2006, 04:45 AM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tankboy
Great report, you make me want to take a week off and head to the hills.
Particularly THOSE hills, as they are very special.

My grandfather worked on that dredge, my mother and aunts were raised up there. The place is filled with fond memories, as it was our favorite family campground destination. One summer I worked with grandpa giving guided tours on the dredge. Still one of the best summers of my life. He explained every aspect of the dredge operation, and taught me to pan for gold, which I then demonstrated for tourists. We cheated a bit, having salted an area of the creek with gold prior to the demonstration. I still wonder how much kickback we should have recieved from the Sunbeam store for all the gold pans he sold because of those demonstrations.

I go up there several times a year now. The place is emotionally powerful for me, with the family history, it's where my sons ashes were spread, and where I wish for my own to be placed someday. Few places are more beautiful than the central Idaho wilderness.

Small world. I used to play on that old dredge when I was a kid back in the 1970s. We used to go up Jordon creek frequently so my dad could do some panning. And I agree, few places are more beautiful.

Yellow Jacket: Not to far from there is a great backpacking spot (different type of adventuring) It's called the Big Horn Crags. There's a nice ridge road from the turnoff to Yellow Jacket that goes up to the crags campground. But I digress, you could spend a lifetime exploring the backcountry of Idaho.

Looking forward to the next part of your adventure!!!! oh, that trout looked like a good dinner to me.

Dan
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Old 09-15-2006, 05:53 AM   #73
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Here we go: STAGE 3
Here we will take you over the divide (Lemhi Pass) to the ghost town of Bannack Montana then south along a really cool road (one of my favorites) Medicine Lodge Creek Rd. where we cross the creek. We will be "primitive camp" that night then proceed over the divide again at Bannack Pass and re enter Idaho.
* IDAHOJOE, This is the road I showed you on the map that day.

We load up after breakfast and head for Tendoy.


The Tendoy Store. A must "Stop" before heading over Lemhi Pass.

This is the sweetest, nicest lady who owns the store. She will provide you with all the info you want on the Lewis and Clark expedition.



On our way to the ghost town of Bannack via the Lemhi Pass





Here comes Gobi looking bad !







After Lemhi Pass we balst off to Bannack. High speed dirt roads are super fun ! We had antelope running across the lanscape parreling us !


Bannack






The preacher




After Bannack we head for the blacktop and just a bit north to Dillion Montana for lunch, fuel and provisions. We know we will camping tonight somewhere as we are back into very remote country.
Lunch


DK's got competion !


We head south for Medicine Lodge Creek Rd.




We get on Tonys route. This road was unbelievable. The autocomms got very quiet. The majestic beauty and the grand scale of the lanscape do not even begin to describe this area. BIG SKY COUNTRY indeed. We were in awe





The crossing of Medicine Lodge Creek

Here I go



Gobi's turn





It just doesn't get any better fella's
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Old 09-15-2006, 06:20 AM   #74
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We ride on. We are now looking for a place to camp. Fire wood is scarce so we need to find a tree line.


And we find one. Nestled up into trred cove we make a fire ring and settle in for the night.


Shiskabobs !

complete with baked potato

Morning dawns. Another beautiful day



We now turn onto Warm Springs Rd. heading for the Charcoal Kilns


We stop by a spring fed watering hole to fill our Camelbak bladders



Big Sky


Jims turn




And the charcoal kilns. Very cool.




From here we head back out to the blacktop and north back to Salmon and a motel for the night.


NEXT UP:
STAGE 4:
THE UPPER PAHSIMEROI VALLEY/LUNCH IN MACKY WHERE GOBI GETS TO MEET MR. SHERIFF AND THE UNBELIEVABLY COOL BURMA RD AND THE MAGNIFICENT COPPER BASIN WHERE WE CAMP.
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Old 09-15-2006, 06:42 AM   #75
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It's getting better all the time!

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