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Old 08-03-2004, 09:38 PM   #76
lacrestadr
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divde route

Hey, L2L did you guys go around that Mount Fleecer portion, the abandoned railroad track portion south of big springs to mesa falls. Did you bypass all the "trail" sections as indicated on the Adv. Cycling Maps? Did any of you guys fish? I'm going to leave Helena, MT and do 5 days worth heading south Deaprting the 18 of Aug. If anyone out there is bored and needs something to do, I'd like some company! Thanks for the great inspiration and report!
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Old 08-03-2004, 10:07 PM   #77
luv2lean OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lacrestadr
Hey, L2L did you guys go around that Mount Fleecer portion, the abandoned railroad track portion south of big springs to mesa falls. Did you bypass all the "trail" sections as indicated on the Adv. Cycling Maps? Did any of you guys fish? I'm going to leave Helena, MT and do 5 days worth heading south Deaprting the 18 of Aug. If anyone out there is bored and needs something to do, I'd like some company! Thanks for the great inspiration and report!
We went around Fleecer Ridge on pavement to Wise River based on recommendations to avoid that section if any. We didnt go into any non-motorized sections, but did a few sections of trail and 4WD road. A lot of what is shown in the book as trail is actually 2WD dirt road. Jim took a pole, but didnt have time to use it. We saw a few fish in montana and heard some big fish stories in Wyoming
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Old 08-04-2004, 07:03 AM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktmnate
Thanks, I knew I could count on you to rub it in.
Any time, Nader!


Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2lean
...You need to come out with and do some DP with the Sac RRRiders....
Definitely! When's the next one? There appeared to be a bunch of trails around Buck's Lake, off Oroville-Quincy Hwy, that Phil and I saw last Friday. Time to explore.... There's also the Cherry Lake Road-Cottonwood Road area around Tuolumne....
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Old 08-04-2004, 10:56 AM   #79
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Originally Posted by ktmnate
are we going...when is the next ride...I am ready, just give me 10 minutes.
I'm thinking of a dust ride from Forest Hill to Soda Springs on 8-14-04. I'll post more info soon.
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Old 08-04-2004, 07:04 PM   #80
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This was VERY bad!

There is one very challenging section just north of Wise River MT. you get off of FR 4009 onto 1878-D1. It is listed as a very rough 4 wheel drive road(on the Adventure Cycling maps). (I'm not sure that anyone would try to take a 4 wheel drive up it and down the back side). Anyway 11 miles into it you come to Fleecer ridge and the downhill is listed in the book on the Great Divide ride as "extremely steep" believe it- it is extremely steep

We were one day ahead of Jim C and crew with better weather. This section was a real bear and we had to turn back near the top. Didn't make it to the "Lava Mountain Trail #244" which we heard from guys on bikes and a tow truck driver (another story), was a hand over hand, bush to bush downhill "cliff."

Our group, me on '03 GS Adv, Rich on a F650 GS and Alan on new R1200GS had a ball, also. I'd do it again in a minute.

I hope this works as it's my first login and response.
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Old 08-05-2004, 09:15 AM   #81
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"Very Bad"

Chuck:
Yes it was a heck of a challenge. Right after the Lava Mt. Trail # 244 sign there are 2 downhills that the best rider in our group said " darn glad were on the right track because we would not be able to get back up either one of those". He rode down Fleecer ridge and didn't fall doing it.
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Old 08-05-2004, 03:10 PM   #82
lacrestadr
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lava mountain/fleecer ridge

Chuck/12ride, Are you talking about the lava mountain just south of helena after the frohner meadows turn off? North Fork of Quartz Creek which is where 1878-D1 is??? And then another portion of the trail quite a bit further south just north of wise river and west of Divide, near Fleecer Mountain? On the adv. cycling map both of those route portions are designated as "trail", compared to "forest service gravel". Trying to get as much info as possible before I make the trip. Thanks for any info/insight or even wisdom!
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Old 08-05-2004, 06:18 PM   #83
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"more info"

lacrestadr:
I am talking about the southern portion near Fleecer Mt..
When we came south to Hwy. 12 north of Helena we did not take the pavement into Helena. Instead we went straight across Hwy. 12 and followed the dirt road to 1 mile before Rimini we turned left and went by Chessman Lake and reconnected with 4009. (oh if you follow this route the turnoff looks like it goes to a nice ranch house on the left- we went by it about 3 miles before we figured it out- there is a sign for Chessman but it faces the other way and we didn't see it). 1878-D1 turns off 4009 toward Fleecer Mt. it then forks right after about 2 miles and that is when the rough stuff begins. When you get to the Lava Mt trail #244 sign you have climbed the worst sections but still have 2 very nasty downhills to negotiate. Then you come out into a large open area and must go to your right front to find the old rail fence that the 2 track goes around and down Fleecer Mt. (called John's hill by the locals). good luck. 12ride.
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Old 08-05-2004, 06:52 PM   #84
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I remember now!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ride
Chuck:
Yes it was a heck of a challenge. Right after the Lava Mt. Trail # 244 sign there are 2 downhills that the best rider in our group said " darn glad were on the right track because we would not be able to get back up either one of those". He rode down Fleecer ridge and didn't fall doing it.
12ride.
We tried to do the "rough four-wheel-drive track" after 1878-D1 and had to turn back. Alan's crash happened past Beaver Creek Campground towards Jerr Creek. The graded road was mushy with rocks and Alan low-sided to catch a rock with the left valve cover. We left the bike there with my extra passenger seat luggage and put Alan on with me for a two up ride out. Rich thought we could get back to I15 easier buy coutinuing up the road and going left to Fleecer Ridge. With Alan on the back of my GSA I felt frozen on the controls and we made it up the ridge to a faint cut to the left. The Continental Divide route had continued to the right, behind/below us. The left trail "seemed" the best way back. If only we had known! Soon it became a faint two track, little used jeep, hunting trail heading straight down through rocks and roots. I continued two up for as long as I could, as Alan had really hurt his ankle and could only limp. Soon it's "sorry,Alan" we might die if you stay aboard. Jeez it was tough. Probably only lasted 5-6 miles but I was whipped at the bottom. After a while our only choice was to go down. Pat way along, Rich looks at us sheepishly and says this way will be longer than the graved road we rode in on. I was to tired to kill him.
Never did see Lava Mountain trail #244 sign. Probably got lost before it and missed it. From what you say I would have remembered it.
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Old 08-06-2004, 08:04 AM   #85
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I was in the group that had luv2lean, JimC, Skwerl, and the rest. We camped just before the 1878-D1/Lava Mountain Trail portion, at Park lake(?) campground. Very cool campground, BTW. JimC and I dropped our saddlebags at the campsite and scouted forward, as I had done the trip last year, and my riding partner had decided that the Lava Mountain Trail was too steep, rough, and rocky to tackle at the end of the day. JimC and I were on F650GSD's with knobbies (TKC80s and Karoos), and we had stripped off our hard bags. We got to the first really steep downhill fine, though we were in first gear and on the pegs basically the whole way. Upon seeing the first downhill, however, we decided that it would take better riders than us to make it down the hill with bags on, and making it back up, bags or no, would be nearly impossible for any but Scot Harden, Gaston Rahier, or Jimmy Lewis. JimC took a pic or two of the slope, but I haven't yet seen them.

So how did Fleecer ridge compare in terms of difficulty to this part of the trail?

Robin
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Old 08-06-2004, 08:55 AM   #86
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Fleecer ridge

r crabb:
Fleecer ridge was really challenging. It was so steep that I shut the Lc4 off and used compression and brakes and essentially walked my bike down it (I am long legged and could straddle the bike). Every time I stopped and then let off the brake the engine would turn over 3 or 4 times. The LC4 640 has pretty good compression so that lets you know how steep it is. Two of us walked the bikes down and two rode them down. One of the riders fell and managed to pick it up and ride it on down. The rider who made it down without falling said that he was concerned that if he fell the bike would roll all the way to the bottom.
There is a lot of loose rock in the 2 track and it is washed pretty good which makes it even more challenging.
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Old 08-06-2004, 10:13 AM   #87
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Thanks for sharing, nice photos and story. One day I will do it as well. From the photos you included the terrain looked pretty easy is this true and would you do this ride two-up?

Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2lean
A few months ago I was invited to participate in a 2 week ride from Sacramento to the Canada/US border and down the Great Divide Mountain Bike trail as far south as we could make it, and back to Sacramento. I had heard of and even seen sign of the continental divide, but what the heck was the Great Divide TRAIL? I was told it was route put together by mountain bikers on the US continental divide from Canada to Mexico and a few nuts have done it on motorcycles, in fact some famous guy named something like Salvatore Clement had done it and called it the best ride he'd ever done. I also read an account of 2 guys doing the trail last year, but was still not getting a clear understanding of the adventure we were about to attempt and pretty skeptical this route could be enjoyably navigated on a motorcycle. I couldn't make a decision on whether to attempt this trip or not and didnt commit to the plan until just a few days before leaving Sacramento. The convincing factor was the other riders commitment and enthusiasm for this trip.

The plan was to meet the other riders at the BMW rally in Spokane. Since i was pressed for time at work i made that 900 mile trip alone behind the other riders who left a couple of days earlier. Unfortunately, I had trouble on the way to spokane, when my 95 GSPD decided to become a thumper rather than a twin. No BMW dealers in Walla Walla but after much fiddlin and anxiety I was able to finally figure it out. Turned out to be a long HOT 4 hour delay in Walla Walla Washington caused by some grit clogging one of the air passages in the right side Bing carb. What a relief! I was having major ride failure depression!


Thanks a lot to this guy who spent a lot of time trying to help in Walla Walla(more to follow)
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Old 08-06-2004, 10:20 AM   #88
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Dang, after reading all these replies, I'm really disappointed that we didn't get a chance to ride Fleecer Ridge!

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Old 08-06-2004, 11:52 AM   #89
12ride
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"Up Fleecer Ridge"

We met this couple at Elkhorn Hot Springs the day after we came down Fleecer. They told us they had a website and one of the riders with me on this trip found it.

Here is a view from two peddle bike riders who thought they would ride up Fleecer.

Oh looks like they went around Lava Mt. Trail #244 (not sure but think they would have had to carry up it too.)

http://topofusion.com/fusion3.61/comments.php?id=169
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Old 08-06-2004, 09:13 PM   #90
luv2lean OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmo
From the photos you included the terrain looked pretty easy is this true and would you do this ride two-up?
Most of the terrain was easier than I expected. But as discussed above, Fleecer ridge and a few other spots were very difficult. Even with routing around the most difficult spots, I wouldnt ride it 2 up because we couldnt have ridden nearly as fast (or had near as much fun) with that much weight.
But I like to test my limits on the dirt and never ride 2-up off road.

On another topic, one of the ride mysteries were the large hand made log contraptions we saw in the high plain fields of montana. These things looked similar to large metal rock sifters used in earth work, but they were made of stripped tree branches. None of the city boys in our group knew what these things were. Anybody know?
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