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Old 09-27-2010, 02:38 PM   #1
hajime OP
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Location: Las Vegas, NV
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Sheep Range - Las Vegas - Wife Ride

Route: Las Vegas west side of town - 215 North - Durango - 95 North – Corn Creek Road (dirt) – Mormon Well Road - Peekaboo Canyon – Unamed road (to a very private campsite ~7000’ ASL) – Mormon Well Road – 93 South – I-15 – 215 South – Home. (150 miles with 55 on dirt and 95 on paved highways).

We started out with our bikes loaded with minimal clothing and gear. Our food items consisted of frozen fish, homemade tortillas, fresh corn on the cob, beer, coffee, three bottles of water, and oatmeal. For camping gear we carried head lamps, cooking and eating gear, baby wipes, matches, charcoal, a tent and a couple of sleeping bags. The only thing we would be missing was our dog. She stayed at the dog spa and relaxation ranch where she would wade in the slimy pond to stay cool. Maybe a side car should be on the to get list....


We left the house in the early afternoon. It was hot (90s). We were sweating profusely in all our riding gear and slowly becoming more and more irritated with the traffic lights along Durango Road. It was my fault that we decided to ride during a Las Vegas heat wave. Work has gotten in the way of this new passion for too long. We headed north taking highway 95 past Mt. Charleston. Then we turned east onto a boulder strewn dirt road. I didn't know where we were going, but that didn't matter. We were off the highway.


As we began to climb the temperature dropped and we felt better. I bounced and skidded along while my husband delicately glided his way up a gorgeous valley. After about 10 miles we stopped to rest. Oops I had lost our food container. Argh! What a fool! One of us had to ride his big KLR 650 back down that dusty rocky road 4 miles before finding it. While he did this I drank water and rested in the shade of a Joshua tree. I felt guilty.


Now it was time to find a camping spot. We like to camp in places that are completely quiet and we wanted to gain enough elevation for a cool night. We rode on and through beautiful Peek A Boo Canyon. Although there were some great places nothing fit our stringent criteria. We had a goal, but were not in a big hurry. Riding was sheer pleasure now. It was cool and the area was interesting. Eventually we found it - a path winding its way up a canyon. It was only a half mile to our very private campsite.



It wasn’t long before we had the bikes unloaded. We drank our beers while setting up camp. Then we went for a short discovery walk. We cooked corn in foil and grilled fish for a fish taco dinner. It was delicious. We also had more beer.



The night turned cold, but camping in the open with a beautiful moon shining down was serene. There was no sound except a few birds to wake us in the morning.

On the way home the next day we found a beautiful campground in the pinion pine forest. It could be a good place to bring family.


The road turned rockier challenging my limited skills. It was difficult to stay upright and maneuver slowly. It was fun to try until I fell over. That is when the trouble started. I had hurt one hand and lost my nerve and the bike had a problem.

The bike ran good until I dropped it on a rocky section of Peek A Boo Canyon Road. It refused to start. We could push start it, but it was idling too high and it wouldn’t take throttle. Prime seemed to work better. Something had to be wrong with fuel delivery or maybe it wasn’t getting spark. We loosened the drain screw from the carburetor and found that the carburetor had fuel.

We wanted to check the spark plug but could not fit the wrench under the gas tank. Off came the tank. When we pulled the hose from the petcock off at the carburetor we noted that fuel was flowing through it constantly. That's not right for a vacuum operated petcock. We also noted that there was no fuel in the vacuum hose. We started the bike without the tank in place and it ran better – almost normal. It would take throttle again.

We decided we didn’t need to check the spark and that the problem was probably in the fuel petcock. We put everything back together and the bike ran okay for a while.


I was a little shaken about falling and didn’t ride that great on the rest of the rocky parts of the road. In fact there were several times when I almost fell and once more when I actually did. Good thing I had a very patient partner.

When we got to highway 93 we were cruising at ~60 mph. The bike hesitated several times and died. I pulled over and put it on prime. After a couple of tries it started and ran great. It had to be run on prime all the way home. It looks like I need a new fuel petcock, a spark plug socket and wrench that fit under the tank, and a new drain screw for the carburetor. During the ride my right leg was getting burned at the top of my boot. The exhaust pipe was extremely hot. It actually burned my skin through the riding pants. My seat was too hard. Ouch sore butt and sore leg and hurt hand. I will also need a heat shield and a softer seat.

We made it home in the hottest part of the day (2:00 P.M.) during another heat wave. We were tired, dirty, scorched and happy.
A celebratory Sierra Nevada Pale Ale helped as we unloaded our gear and prepared to rescue the dog from her incarceration at the dog spa and relaxation ranch.
More photos:

hajime screwed with this post 09-27-2010 at 02:47 PM
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Old 09-27-2010, 05:28 PM   #2
Skowinski
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Looks like you had a good time... mostly!
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Old 09-27-2010, 08:47 PM   #3
Discojon75
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Great trip! I always wanted to ride up north of 95 when I lived in Las Vegas! Maybe I will when I visit or move there.
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Old 09-27-2010, 08:48 PM   #4
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Old 09-27-2010, 11:28 PM   #5
ViperJustin
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Ive driven those roads in my Jeep a few times during the winter. Great pics!


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