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Old 12-10-2009, 08:39 PM   #31
skierd
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Love the watch pics.
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:40 AM   #32
Monty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krabill
That's hilarious

The funniest part is you being packed up and ready to ride at 8am. Don't think I've ever seen that before. Must be a new trick you just learned
It was an amazing feat. I was so stunned, I almost forgot to have a cup of coffee. But it only happened that one morning. Remember the first morning when my bike was all apart? Guess who was ready first. The second morning at the motel? Guess who was ready first. Don't make me bust out the pictures to prove it.
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:08 AM   #33
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great report and pictures
Man I need get back to visit that area. '97 was the last time I think? R11GSA days.
love the watch shots. First time Monty is "That Guy", we get published photos of it. Love it.
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:10 PM   #34
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The rest of the morning was spent making the long trek through the West side of Big Bend Nat'l. Park. Passing by Pine Canyon, The Basin, and many other enticing areas begging to be explored (add those to my Bucket List for next time). We push onward through fog, rain, and cold until we finally exit the park into the quaint little town of Study Butte.

Being well overdue for thawing out, we opted for the local hotdog stand for lunch:



Mmmmgood! Nothing quite like Mexican food, right on the Mexican border. I could eat it every day!!

Heading West we make a little detour into the old Ghost Town of Terlingua:



Lots of cool "Old West" stuff here to rummage through. Must have been quite the place....back in the day.



This was the home base for folks working the Chisos Mine....where they were mining Mercury, I think.



But you'll be glad to know we found some nice cabin rentals....should you get a hankering to hang your hat in this old town for a few days:



Now folks....as Monty is my witness....I ain't lyin bout them there Cabin Rentals.

Onward mush, we've got 80 miles to cover to get checked into the "Ranch" before dark. So, we push on through Lajitas, racing along Hwy 170 paralleling the border along the mighty Rio Grande.

*******Special News Flash********

The stretch of Hwy 170 through this area is absolutely one of the prettiest roads I've ever ridden in my life. Huge, gorgeous canyon walls....up & down, full of twisting winding road in immaculate condition. Best of all....no traffic on this day!

I've lived in Montana....gone to the Sun. Ran the Blue Ridge, and even the Chero-Hala Skyway. They are all fabulous. Highway 170 along this southern border of Texas, as crazy as that sounds, is one of the most spectacular I've ever seen. Book it!

********************************

We did find a couple of spots along the river to take a nice photo of the border:





These shots are before we got into the really good part of Hwy 170. Not sure why, but we never stopped for a really spectacular photo in the canyons. Oh yeah....it was because we were in a hurry. But this time, we really were.

We did find this one place where we could drop off the road and ride down into the middle of the Rio Grande. This was cool....so being the dashingly daring riders we were, we did it.



As best we could tell, my bike was splitting the border at this point. Then suddenly...without warning Monty exposes his wild side and throws caution to the wind:



Mercy Sakes...Amigo! Be El Hombre Mas Macho....con Huevos ! ! !

HF
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:44 PM   #35
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We fill up our supertankers in Persidio, then make a dash for the park in pouring rain. After a long....looong....dirt road ride, we're finally getting closer.



Formerly the headquarters for a series of privately owned ranches, La Sauceda today lies at the heart of Big Bend Ranch State Park. The original ranch was founded in 1884 by William Woodworth Bogel, and with his 3 brothers, they operated a huge Hereford cattle ranch. The Bogel's sold out to Edwin & Mannie Fowlkes in the early 1930's, and the operation gained 500 head of angora goats. They also expanded the land holding to 500 sections of land.

The ranch passed through other ownership a few more times until the Texas parks and Wildlife Department began purchasing it in 1988. Covering nearly 500,000 acres the park is half the size of Rhode Island. But I'm not sure why they like to make that comparison....so far away in south Texas.

No paved roads here. And I didn't see any Park Rangers hiding behind a bush with a radar gun. Though, you really won't want to go very fast as you'll just miss too much fascinating stuff.....like these caves we found along the main road entering the park:





These excellent natural shelters were all over this particular canyon, and appeared to have been the housing for native inhabitants for several primitive centuries.





Wow....the stories these old walls could tell.



This is an amazingly cool area to explore. I could easily spend a day snooping around here. Please add that to my Bucket List...

We were pleased the rain had stopped, at least for a while, as we made our way up to La Sauceda Headquarters.



We quickly agreed (with Ranger input) on some hidden remote campsite and then set out to find it before darkness swallowed us. We made it....just barely. And the rains returned. Cold freezing rain. It pretty much soaked are tents inside out as we setup our camp between two giant rock slabs....hoping for a little wind protection.

Then all we could do was huddle by the fire. But we had FIRE! Just as Monty had promised ! !



And made darn-tootin good use of it...





Aaahh....steak & baked potatoes cooked over real aged mesquite wood. Honestly, it doesn't get any better than this. We almost forgot the weather...almost.

Things were looking up for tomorrow. I had a feeling...

HF
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HighFive screwed with this post 12-11-2009 at 06:53 PM
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Old 12-11-2009, 07:10 PM   #36
boogn1sh
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fashionably late (again), but glad to finally be here....
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Old 12-11-2009, 08:20 PM   #37
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Day 5

We eventually awoke to greet the lovely weather.



Still cold....still wet. The temperature was a frigid 26 degrees. Before leaving, I had purchased a nifty little thermometer from Aerostitch that snaps onto the handlebar. Now....I'm having to repress my urge to throw that thing into the bushes as far as I could. I've always said "checking the weather brings bad luck".

But we have this really beautiful mountain view from our campsite:



Really....we do...you'll see....maybe.

Monty rises and guarantees me this will be a beautiful day! One we'll never forget. I love his perpetual optimism......cause it works. The rain stops & the sky soon to clear up.



While waiting for the view to improve, we discover some more cool, ancient stuff around our campsite.



Natural spring-fed water tanks



Fancy automated grain feeders



And petrified dead cattle that apparently couldn't find the water or feed only 50 yards away.

The deck is lifting and its almost time to RIDE!



Let's go find out what is hiding over here on "The Other Side of Nowhere".



Some good stuff, Maynard. Some mighty good stuff!







We don't know where we're going. We just keep going....and going!



500,000 acres and we're the ONLY guests on the ranch!

Como se dise' "Total Desolation" Oh...what a feeling!

And there are lots of big hills to climb, if you're so inclined.





With plenty of loose bowling balls to make Monty pucker...




This park is truly a geological wonder. There are all kinds of fascinating rock formations.





Being a Petroleum Engineer by degree, I'm half geologist. And the exposed "details" in this park just blows my mind. A real big volcano once uprooted this area. Turned it over like a farmer's plow. Its kind of like the 8th Wonder of the World (to me).

Late in the afternoon, we decide to search for something called "Madrid Falls". We did an awful lot of rough riding, but I never made it to Madrid. However, Monty did have some success finding the Falls...



What a terrific day! Think the temperature even made it up to 40F. Promising....very promising....
HF
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HighFive screwed with this post 12-11-2009 at 08:38 PM
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Old 12-12-2009, 05:40 AM   #38
BigDogAdventures
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Great ride

Hey Guys !! Can't wait to hear the rest of this.

High Five had graciously invited me to join him and Monte on this ride.

I opted to go back to Southern Arizona and New Mexico for some unfinished riding. I rode solo down along the border again on my WR250R. I too, had freezing weather a lot---but add 16" of snow to that.
I did make it too a place on the North side of Guadalupe National Park called "DogCanyon"---it was really "BigDog Canyon".
I had tried to go there the last time I was down there.
One more place off my "Bucket List"

well that's another story------please continue with yours.

Thanks guys !!

BigDog
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Old 12-12-2009, 05:53 AM   #39
Monty
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What an amazing place.

The Solitario...



The Chisos Mtns of the national park...





The riding here is better than the national park...



Of course it does not look it, but this was a pretty large hill.



There are a lot of unmaintained roads. Oh yeah!





The rains begin again.







But, it didn't seem to bother these guys.

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Old 12-12-2009, 06:09 AM   #40
Monty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDogAdventures.com

I did make it too a place on the North side of Guadalupe National Park called "DogCanyon"---it was really "BigDog Canyon".


BigDog
That is another one of my favorite places. I stumbled across this area a couple of years ago, and have been back several times. Some great riding in the area if you know where to look.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:15 AM   #41
fotobo
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Hey guys, good job on the ride report as always. Really enjoying it. Know what you mean about that stretch of 170. One of the coolest roads I have ever been on.

Did not know about that state park. I am going down there in Feb. Will have to check it out.

More please.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:19 AM   #42
fotobo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDogAdventures.com
Hey Guys !! Can't wait to hear the rest of this.

High Five had graciously invited me to join him and Monte on this ride.

I opted to go back to Southern Arizona and New Mexico for some unfinished riding. I rode solo down along the border again on my WR250R. I too, had freezing weather a lot---but add 16" of snow to that.
I did make it too a place on the North side of Guadalupe National Park called "DogCanyon"---it was really "BigDog Canyon".
I had tried to go there the last time I was down there.
One more place off my "Bucket List"

well that's another story------please continue with yours.

Thanks guys !!

BigDog
Mark, did you did a RR on this ride?
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Old 12-12-2009, 10:14 AM   #43
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All to soon, we were clothed in darkness....and a beautiful night it was indeed.



While the sky had cleared, the Temperature plummeted, but at least it wasn't raining.


Day 6

The first truly gorgeous day of the whole trip has arrived. And, Monty is packing his bags to go home.





I'm all alone now.....on The Other Side of Nowhere.



No support, no backup, no cell....No Plan, NO Schedule, & NO PROBLEMS!

First things first: its laundry day. Got to dry out everything!



Soon enough, I'm off into the wild yonder. And just can't help feeling so puny....all by myself.



Ran into a LOT of deer this morning. This Mulie was a nice one with a really big rack!



I'm always amazed by this scene. I'd be riding along and see a lone hardwood tree. Very sparse through the park, but there would always be just one tree, with a spring of water near the base. Makes me wonder if the Ranchers of old, planted these for markers....back in the day?



Being solo is nice. Its a real FREE feeling. I'd rather Monty be here and not miss today's adventure. He's one of the best Adventure Mates you could ever hope for. But being so alone....so deep in the back country....so far from civilization or any support....well, it just gave me a feeling that I can't describe adequately. And I liked it.

I started noticing things that I hadn't before. Maybe because of the weather. Maybe because we seemed in a hurry. But probably because in that Pie of All Knowledge, my slice is so small, as I've acknowledged. And today, my piece of the pie grew a bit bigger!

For instance, I didn't know there were so many different kinds of cactus. I knew about the green prickly kind.



But I didn't know it was available in Purple!



Then I came across the remnant of the last Solo rider in these mountains of the Chiuahuan desert.



A bit unnerving, I'll admit, but I didn't let that stop me. I pushed on....deeper....



and....deeper....



10 miles...15 miles....20 miles....

Feeling punier with each rocky mile.

TODAY was THE DAY. I could just feel it. Something special was going to happen.

HF
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Old 12-12-2009, 12:33 PM   #44
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There is a stubby little puffy kind:



And a skinny short spiny kind:



Soon, I approach a crossroads. Decision time....I choose the "Guale Mesa" direction, because it looks like it hasn't been maintained in over half a century, and because....well....I like guacamole. I'm the Trailboss now. I can make any decision I want without any debate.

About the time I'm feeling lost, I come across these pair of interesting relics.





I ponder these for a good while, and conclude it must be some kind of ditch-digger.....back in the day. But I'm gonna have to recruit some help from the BigDog.....to get his buddy Randy to give it a looksee. He'll know what it is. He knows everything. He got one of those big slices of pie.

Deeper yet, I continue to drill into these desolate formations. That's when the feeling comes back. A real strong HF feeling. Some of you know about that. Something down there is drawing me like a magnet. I can feel the pull...



The hills get so steep and the road so rough, I start having 2nd thoughts about being soooooo remote, all alone, where know one ever ventures, and know one knows I'm here. I mean, after all, those workers still haven't come back to get their ditch diggers, eh?

So, I do what any responsible Solo rider should do when deep in the back country....I continue, no retreating. And my feeling was right.

Ho-chi-momma....what is that?



Hhhmmmm.....this definitely warrants a closer look. To infinity and beyond! The old trail ends very close to the edge of a sheer vertical cliff that was probably 2,000 ft to the floor.





So, THIS is the "Guale Mesa". The photos don't do it justice. It just takes my breath away! Well, time for a lunch break, so I climb to the top of the highest rock pile on the sheer edge of the Mesa wall.



Got Monty's tuna. Got Monty's home-grown onion. Even brought an extra drink for him. But Monty is not here. Oh....poor Monty! I can't believe you missed this. But I sure did enjoy your lunch. You're a good Mate, no matter what the inmates say.

I stick around here for a couple of hours. This is the only point in the Big Bend Ranch State Park that I found cell coverage. Three bars too! Remember that if you're ever out this way. But its a long, loooong ride on the roughest road in the park that I found all week. ALL I wanted on my KLR....and I'm no novice. FWIW. Anyway, called the wife, first time we've spoken in about 3 days. Told her "no...I'm not on my way home yet. Monty bailed. Me...I'm gonna have to stay a few more days. Just can't leave this place. Luv & hugs...over & out."

Got to give this spot: two thumbs up!



Just hope I can get out of here alive! Gonna be a long hard climb 12 miles through those big hills.

HF
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Old 12-12-2009, 03:56 PM   #45
fotobo
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Definitely gonna have to do more splorin around down there on the USA side. I have been there several times but have only ridden in Mehico except the one time we rode down to Lijitas.
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