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Old 08-12-2012, 07:11 AM   #5326
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This Mountain Man phenomenon

re-enacting buckskin-wearing, musket-loading, tee-pee living is some serious business.



We definitely made the right choice of campgrounds. This one was chock full of mountain men and their mountain kids,



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Old 08-12-2012, 07:40 AM   #5327
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As we continued

up the canyon road, I remember thinking, "Well isn't this pleasant"



The thing is, I knew there were tons of FS roads back here, and if we had to reroute to something a bit longer it should be no problem.



Every so often we'd see a camper tucked into a site next to the creek. We had the holiday weekend coming up, so that explained that.



Pretty in here.



Our first go-around access point:



Checking the maps, that would be our ONLY go-around access for quite a while.



No matter, the road we're on looks pretty easy, we should be good.

Dave & LDF take off, and as I'm waiting for the dust to settle, I look down and see this:



and I think "Oh, Cool, motorcycles are allowed."



I told you there were signs.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space

DR. Rock screwed with this post 08-12-2012 at 07:56 AM
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Old 08-12-2012, 07:59 AM   #5328
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I mean really,

How hard does this look?



So a short while later, when we saw this sign,



and the road beyond looked like this,



we just figured they were crying "wolf".



Sure is pretty in here,

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Old 08-12-2012, 08:08 AM   #5329
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I think this

might have been the summit,



it seemed like we were about halfway, anyway, to the next junction where we'd have go-around options.



The trail started to get a little more technical,



Nothing obscene, it just demanded a bit more attention and throttle control.



Then we met our first real obstacle. A little water crossing with an off-camber turn-out.



No biggie, just made us stop and assess before going.



The stream had merged with and was contained by the trail for quite a ways.



It worked well to wash any residual Bunnyville off our bikes.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 08:13 AM   #5330
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Around the bend

there was yet another sign of things to come.



We'd come this far, let's at least get properly stopped. If we have to go back, let it be for something truly insurmountable, not just these speculative signs.

Well, this was clearly rougher terrain, but doable.



right around the next bend, we hit the wall.



Yes, that's the trail. No go-around. No take-backs. Shiite.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 08:25 AM   #5331
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A few more photos

so you can get the full perspective:

from above, looking down,



about midway, looking up:



We contemplated our options. It had become a LONG way back. We had only 2 miles to the next junction from here. Hiking up, it looked like it flattened out, though still rocky and technical.

We decided to unload Honeybee, and I'd try and ride up the wall. If that was possible, we'd leave the other two bikes at the bottom, and I'd scout ahead to see if I could suss the trail condition for the next two miles.



Ranson spotted ahead, and LDF photo'd from below, and I rode.



In a matter of speaking. Incredibly, there always seemed to be one single doable line for each micro-section.



Move a rock here,



A little boost there,



and I managed to bounce my way up to the top. Not so fast with the endzone touchdown dance, cowboy. We've still got two more bikes and 2 miles to go.

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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 08:40 AM   #5332
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I reloaded my tools

and we agreed if I didn't return by 11am they'd start to worry. I'd get as far as I could in 15 minutes, and then turn around.



I left them at exactly 10:35. For the next 20 minutes, I hammered through some of the nastiest stuff I'd ever ridden. Totally (well, mostly) in control, I was riding with a purpose. I dabbed a few times, didn't fall, and when it came time to turn around I was so close to the junction, I just had to push through. When I got there, I breathed a sigh of relief.





Where we'd be heading:



OK. So at least now we know what we're up against. But I've got to hustle to get back to them before they start hiking after me, or hit Spot.

I didn't stop to take photos, I figured we'd have plenty of time for that later when we'd be riding this all together. But as I got closer, the arm pump got so bad as I'd have to take a little rest, so I did a video update.



Fun, eh?
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 08:53 AM   #5333
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I gotta say

the DRZ is a much different bike without luggage. We pack light, but after pushing that trail just with the tailbag off, I am even more committed to not carrying extra weight.

Back at the wall, we unloaded the other two bikes, and carefully bounced them up the hill.



By the time we reloaded and were ready to tackle the 2 miles of hell, it was past noon. They'd asked me how bad were the next two miles, and I showed them the photos from the end where I'd turned around. "Oh, there are a few rough patches." I said.



Gotta keep morale up, y'know. Honestly, THIS is adventuring. This was where we were tested, and no one freaked, or crashed (hard, anyway), no one decompensated or melted down, not even when... well, we'll get to that, but first, the slog begins.



We decided that to get everyone through safely, Francine and I would leapfrog, which meant I would be riding these two miles a total of 4 times.



Hiking it wasn't much easier. I did that once too.

But it sure is pretty in here.

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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 08:58 AM   #5334
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Is this

petrified wood?



We'd spot one another,



give boosts, or relocate rocks here and there,



ride a small section at a time, the intercoms were very helpful, and we were making progress.



Strangely, at this pace, the trail didn't seem familiar even though I'd ridden it already both ways.



They'd ask: when is the next easier section, and I'd say, "Oh, right around this bend", and then we'd get there and it'd be more misery.

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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:25 AM   #5335
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And then,

there was one section where Dave was concerned that if he had to put a foot down it wouldn't reach and he'd have a hard fall. No problem, I'll ride your bike, I said.

And I did, and it was no problem. I hit the kill switch, got off, and rode my bike up the next section. As I'm hiking back to fetch Blueberry, I think that's odd, usually I meet Dave as he's riding up.



I get back and LDF says, "We're not going anywhere, Dave's bike won't start." Turns out, he'd once had an issue with the kill switch where the bike wouldn't start for a while after he'd used it. So he stopped using it. It was like a booby trap. A literal kill switch. Meanwhile, I use mine all the time, even if I'm just stopping to take a photo, I'll kill it, and then restart with the button, I pretty much only use the key at the end of the day.

We turn his key, headlight on, hit the starter button, nothing. Shit.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:52 AM   #5336
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We flick the switch

in and out, nothing. We disassembled the switch.



it's packed with dirt. Phew, we think. Problem solved. We reassemble it, turn the key, hit the starter and... nothing.

Damn. Escalate troubleshooting... disassemble and bridge contacts, bypass kill switch...



turn key, hit starter. Nothing.

Damn. Escalate troubleshooting. Gear off, expose wires, trace starter circuit. Utilize multimeter and tester...



Idly start brainstorming contingency plans... No cell service, hmmm. Tow the bike out, through that?



We start pulling relays and trying to test what they do when powered. None of this is making sense, the kill switch is just a switch, we've bypassed it, made it irrelevant. It's got to be something else.

Well, we figured, there's three things that will disable the starter circuit by design: The kill switch, the kickstand switch (bypassed, still nothing), and... the clutch switch. (bypassed, and...) bingo, she turns over. Whew. 2 hours to troubleshoot that. I think we were sidetracked by the red herring kill-switch connection.

Back to the slog,



I'm sure Dave and LDF have their own take on the morning's adventure... I was having a blast, we were fully engaged using all our faculties in riding, troubleshooting, fixing, survival, prioritization, judgement, thinking, teamwork, woo hoo! Good stuff.
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:58 AM   #5337
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And then we were out



I think we each had visions of sleeping in that canyon at various points. It was good to be moving again.



It was almost 4pm and we had only ridden 15 miles.



No worries, though, since our route from here would be easy, unless we had any big hill climbs ahead, like this one.

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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 10:04 AM   #5338
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Our route

surprisingly didn't take us up that hill. whew.



It seemed the high road was open, so we took that instead of descending out of the NF onto pavement.



it was quite nice, bike wash,



As we climbed higher the temps dropped, and we started to see patches of snow,



Yikes, I hope we don't get turned around by snow after all that...



a few bigger patches,



and then right at the top...
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"I came into this game for the action, the excitement; go anywhere, travel light... get in, get out... wherever there's trouble, a man alone... Now they got the whole country sectioned off; you can't make a move without a form." --Robert De Niro as Archibald 'Harry' Tuttle in Brazil, 1985. The Mobius Trip index | Spot tracking live 4/18-5/4/13 | AdventureLoft™ Tent Space
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Old 08-12-2012, 10:07 AM   #5339
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Couldn't have been open

for more than a few days. Finally, we're catching some breaks.



We'd made it, now on the downside of the range,



we rejoined HWY 89 and descended into Bear Lake / Garden City.

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Old 08-12-2012, 10:13 AM   #5340
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Before we knew it

we were back in ID



We'd be making a short jog into Wyoming, but for the time being, we needed to start thinking of food and shelter. It was getting chilly.

Since we'd already been to Rome on this trip, I thought we might want to stay in Paris,



But we'd set our sights on a slightly bigger town, Montpelier. You know the one... "Give me an 'M'!!"

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