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Old 09-18-2008, 08:22 PM   #16
CJohn
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Nice report and pictures, gotta love the whiskey bottle mounted on the handle bar
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Old 09-18-2008, 09:18 PM   #17
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That is a 1.5 Lt of the finest original "Soar Mash Whiskey" strapped to the front fender as well. Starting this trip out right.. To bring more Whiskey than water is the goal.

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Old 09-18-2008, 10:01 PM   #18
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Now this is my kind of ride!

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Old 09-19-2008, 05:38 AM   #19
SteveRed
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Very Cool.. Nice country too!
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Old 09-19-2008, 12:23 PM   #20
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Looks like fun!!!
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Old 09-19-2008, 12:34 PM   #21
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...gawd, what a beautiful place...U R so lucky!
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Old 09-22-2008, 08:17 PM   #22
Joe Motocross OP
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The next morning we pack it up and bid farewell to our comrade who must head for home. He picks a route through Green River, UT and heads for Price then over the Strawberry Ridge and down to home. My partner and I, however, are just getting warmed up. Today is when we start getting into more challenging and fun routes.



We take a quick peek at the Colorado River and head east through Grand Junction.



Next we start climbing onto the Uncompahgre Plateau.



We’ve never been here and don’t have a map so we’re just on gravel to start.



We work over the top for a while until we come to a very detailed map along the road. We choose some single track routes that’ll take us in the direction we want to go and……



Here we go!!



This was a nice trail using mostly second gear.



It flowed nice.





There were a few spots where we had to make a few moves but nothing major. This is where these nimble bikes are VERY nice.



You could push bigger bikes through here but you’d work a lot more. These bikes are made for this stuff.





More single track with the La Sal Mountains in Utah in the background.



The trail opened up a bit more and we’re using 3rd more now.



We spit out of the single track and it’s time to follow a gravel road down to Gateway.



This view about blew our minds.



Down in Gateway we got fuel, food and water. We saw a couple of guys pull up on these bikes so we thought we’d find them and shoot the shit. When we found them they said they had been up on the Plateau as well during the day and got into some single track that was getting a bit technical for at least one of them on these bikes. The two of them were hanging out with a married couple that was doing a route from Durango. They were all people who are on this forum. We can’t remember what they call them selves here except for the gal goes as “Fat Wife”. The men were smoking cigars and spilling as much beer on the ground as they were getting down their throat!! Fat Wife had obviously had her lips wrapped around a bottle of Chardonnay for some time before we arrived. We liked their style. Hopefully we’ll cross paths again.



He headed down the pavement a few miles and started working up a valley.



Our map showed a few routes that would take us up to the La Sals out of this valley.



After talking to a couple people that we ran into, we found out that the routes didn’t go through due to private property. This section took a little concentration late in the day.



We followed this trail out to an overlook where we camped and planned on heading back down to the pavement in the morning.

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Old 09-23-2008, 08:10 AM   #23
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Sleeping in the dirt is the best!!! Here’s what our camps all look like.



This little bench we were on was a perfect place to stay the night.



Our minimalist approach doesn’t allow for much of a mess kit. It includes a metal cup to drink, eat, and cook with over a fire; a spork; a little tin foil; and an “adjust-a-fork” (more on that later) for cooking various meats. The routine in the morning is to heat up some noodles or oatmeal first. Then some water and coffee with just a splash of Old Crow to sweeten it. We refer to this as “croffee”.



After enjoying our croffee up on the bench it’s time to back track down to the road. We’re not happy that the route didn’t go through but this happens when you’re on an adventure. This stretch of pavement was not the worst by any means. It was a very scenic 10 to 15 mile stretch.



We find a bridge that takes us to a gravel route heading in the direction we want to go.



This road ends up being really stunning running along the river.



Not sure what was up with the old bracing up on the wall. Maybe an old mining trolley.



Our next stop was this place to restock on water, food and Old Crow.



Now we’re getting into the thick of it. Our shaky map indicates a route that will take us down into a valley that we want to cross. This area is littered with old mining roads. We think our route is the one that you can see running parallel to the cliff through the Junipers in the background. We’d find out later it wasn’t the route we wanted.



A typical problem is there are a ton more roads then many maps show. This makes it tough to choose the right one. Lots of these are not well traveled and potentially washed out beyond passable.



Here we are heading in the direction we want.



Not much left of this old route. It’s amazing how the desert reclaims itself.



The route dead ends here giving us a view of the valley we want to get to.



We back track a bit and try another route that proves to get us a little closer to our goal.



We again end up on sparsely traveled routes, just what we’re looking for.



However, we spend the majority of the afternoon wrestling these old roads only to find dead ends.



I’m in my element ‘cause I know the route goes through. My partner is starting to question my sanity. I figure if we don’t find it this time I’ll come back a different day. We about exhaust all our options when we find a route that will take us down. The only problem is it’s about 150 feet down from this road we’re on and there’s a few cliffy sections separating the routes. I suggest we take off the gear and walk it down then remove the tanks and bring them down. We can then walk and belay the bikes with a length of nylon webbing. At this point our democratic method of route finding quickly turns to a dictatorship and my partner announces this is not going to happen. I think his quote was “it’s not like we’re discovering America!!” We are discouraged and getting tired and we are coming to terms with backtracking through a long section of demanding terrain. Now we’re really on an adventure!!!



After a little miscommunication, we get split up for a few minutes. My partner unintentionally stumbles onto the route we’ve been searching for. This was just what needed to happen to him as he was getting pushed to the brink. We regroup and start down.



Here’s the old cut that’s on our map.



It’s steep, rocky, loose and difficult. PERFECT!!!!



It doesn’t get much use these days but it’s still there. You always take a little chance that you may have to climb back up something like this if the route doesn’t pan out.



This route does pan out and we’re feeling that our strenuous afternoon payed off. I drew the route in yellow in this photo. These routes are not only physically demanding but mentally taxing as well. It’s a good test to see what you’re made of.



I think you know the scene here. We think we’re minimalists but there’s still one more category to go. I’ve heard of guys who don’t bring sleeping bags or pads. They just put on all their clothing, put their helmets back on to act as a pillow and lay down in the dirt for the night. We’re not quite there yet but we’re striving for it. Maybe next trip.

Day 5:
Mileage: Unknown
Difficulty: Quite
How good does the bourbon taste: the best we’ve had yet!!!

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Old 09-23-2008, 08:30 AM   #24
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You guys rode all the way to Park City to pick up that poor guy on the WR??!?! How much of your 'Ol Crow' did he consume or did you make him bring his own?? You will have to ask him about the 'top shelf Pendelton tequila' we got at the Fairway bar in Green River this spring.


Great report, keep it coming!!!
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Old 09-23-2008, 08:49 AM   #25
Ledge End Hairy
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Not sure what was up with the old bracing up on the wall. Maybe an old mining trolley.



It was a hanging flume built back in the late 1880's. I passed it from above this summer riding hwy 141.







Great RR too - I hit most of the paved roads this summer where you are hitting the dirt. There is a dual sport in my future - someday
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:18 AM   #26
Joe Motocross OP
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Thanks for the tid bit on the flume TDC.
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:28 AM   #27
FatChance
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Motocross
Down in Gateway we got fuel, food and water. We saw a couple of guys pull up on these bikes so we thought we’d find them and shoot the shit. When we found them they said they had been up on the Plateau as well during the day and got into some single track that was getting a bit technical for at least one of them on these bikes. The two of them were hanging out with a married couple that was doing a route from Durango. They were all people who are on this forum. We can’t remember what they call them selves here except for the gal goes as “Fat Wife”. The men were smoking cigars and spilling as much beer on the ground as they were getting down their throat!! Fat Wife had obviously had her lips wrapped around a bottle of Chardonnay for some time before we arrived. We liked their style. Hopefully we’ll cross paths again.





It was great meeting you guys in Gateway! That was FatWife (left) and me as well as Colorado Uli (third from left) and Unaweep (behind me, spilling his beer). Those were their bikes, we had the GSs. Thanks for the incredible pics, it looks like a great trip!
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:36 AM   #28
New Trick
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Minimalist pilgrimage

You're killin' it Cowboy! Keep it comin'!

Here's you last year.
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:47 AM   #29
UpST8
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Great RR!!! Love the minimulist approach. Inspiring report! A DS and trip out west have to be in my cards someday. Keep it coming
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Old 09-23-2008, 09:59 AM   #30
Jimmy the Heater
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Great pics and RR! Thanks for taking us along. Kudo's to you on the minimalist camping, I know I could NOT do that but to those who can.

Slightly off topic, is the tire on the rear of that WR a trials tire?
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