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Old 05-21-2012, 07:02 PM   #16
jglow OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mtn Man View Post
Thanks for sharing your trip! Heading toward Oklahoma in a couple of weeks on the TAT, wish this o
Was on the trail.
The central to Western section of the TAT through Arkansas will have some similar riding, and of course you have Warloop Rd to look forward to .

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Originally Posted by Motokirby View Post
Man I will be honest, riding the sportbike was fun up in north Arkansas but I think I would have rather been following you down some of these trails. There is always next weekend??

Jtmajors, buy a bike already!
Motokirby - the ultimate lurker ! You joined in April of 2011 and this is your first post. Thanks for popping your post cherry on my RR.

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Originally Posted by snakeears View Post
Nice report, I have the same body armor, do you find it unzips its self after while?
When I first got the Thor Rig it would unzip at the sides where the velcro belt attaches. Eventually it got so filthy that all the zippers have a good bit of drag now, and I haven't noticed the problem anymore.

Thanks for reading and following along... I am still working on day 2. My internet is a bit intermittent tonight .


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Old 05-21-2012, 07:28 PM   #17
OLEARY
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Subscribed! Good stuff Dude! Great looking trails. I am interested in routes or tracks and will PM you with my info. We do monthly camping events in Arkansas and I have ridden some south of Russleville and around the Hot Springs area in the Ouachita NF but that area looks really neat. Where would be a good spot to set up camp and ride a dayride loop or two in that area?
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:02 PM   #18
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Day 2

I had crashed out pretty early the previous night, so I was up early brewing some motel room coffee, and slowly getting everything ready to roll. By about 7:30 I was headed for a quick fill up at the gas station before dropping south back into the forest.


Cheap fun... and an average of about 62mpg




A few miles South of Mena I pick up the trail head for the Wolf Pen Gap Trail System.




I check out the trail map and try to locate some of the trail closures. This trail system is very popular and probably had the greatest risk of being shut down during preliminary hearings about the new "Travel Management Policy" due to heavy erosion and deterioration of the trails. Although some trails have been closed and others rerouted, still some 35 miles of trails are open, and I noticed signs of a ton of trail maintenance that has been taking place. It would be a big blow to the local economy of Mena to lose these trails. If you come through here on a weekend, be prepared to dodge some OHV's. I'm here early on Sunday, and should be gone before the traffic starts.


I am staying on the Northern outer loop heading East.




The majority of these trails are very easy, and you can still make decent time while traveling though on these trails.






I run the trail through to the East end and actually leave the trail system for a bit while I head south of some forest roads.




This little road turned out to be super fun. I had been on this road before, I just didn't remember how to get back to it. I was sure to drop a waypoint this time
.



This puddle was deep. I ended up soaking myself in it's murky brown funk.


Climbing out of the bottom.






And then it was time to go and pay a visit to a little corner of a mountain switchback that I had a little run-in with this past January.




On that day, this little, unassuming corner is where I figured I would drift the tail of the bike around. I wasn't going really fast, and it never looked super kewl
, but I ended up high-siding the bike right on to my leg and breaking my fibula. The evidence from back in January:



And the result:




And the resolution:




That was a little more than 5 months ago. My leg is pretty much back to normal (if maybe just a little weaker still).


I paid my respects to the curve...




But if I'm being honest... I know it's not Mr. Curves fault. I was just having a little bit too much fun and had a little bit too much confidence. It was a good lesson to take it easy, and ride smarter.


Then I turned around and headed West back into the Wolf Pen trails.


More to come...



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Old 05-21-2012, 08:16 PM   #19
Vinduroman
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Subscribed!!

Great thread and you're doing a super job on the photos!

This is literally just out our back door and down the road a ways!! (We live in eastern OK in Poteau.)

It's been years since I've ridden Wolf Pen. I recall there being some pretty neat stuff at that park, but like you said, pretty heavy use. LOVE some of the roads you're finding!!!

GOT to get me a GPS-thingie so I can download these tracks so the wife and I can explore/enjoy them!

Hey Oleary!

I up for doing something on these roads/trails, too! Likely more toward Autumn for us, though. (Hulk Hogan???)


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Old 05-21-2012, 09:20 PM   #20
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I paid my respects to the curve...



Lol. Love your sense of humor.
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:45 AM   #21
OLEARY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinduroman View Post

Hey Oleary!

I up for doing something on these roads/trails, too! Likely more toward Autumn for us, though. (Hulk Hogan???)


Vinduroman
Sounds good! I thought you lived close by the beginning of the thread. I was thinking about you and thinking about hooking up sometime and you could show me around. Lookin forward to it. I will download the tracks when they become available.
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Old 05-22-2012, 06:09 AM   #22
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OK... Back at it ....


I have an additional South Loop Option that will be in the route as well. It splits the Wolf Pen Gap Trails, and heads South from that split. It takes you over to the Albert Pike Rec area with an option for gas a few miles further in Langley. It used to utilize Forest Rd 512/Polk Rd 602. This was a must ride road for any DS rider coming to the area. I have some pics from when my wife and I rode it a couple of years ago.








This road had something like 30 creek crossings in like 10 miles. I guess I am really just teasing y'all now by showing you the pics and telling you about it
. Since about May of last year (2011) the road has been closed and gated .

But there is still a reason to head down to this area - Blue Hole:



Fun roads to get to it, and a very loose challenging climb to the top .

Have I baited any of y'all yet ?

Back to my actual weekend ride...

I was headed back into Wolf Pen Gap, and heading back West now towards Oklahoma.



It's still early, and it's still empty.



Out of the OHV trails and back on a forest road. There is a road that climbs up to the top of a ridge that I have never checked out, so I go to have a look.



At the top .



I think this would be a great place to come to in the Fall when the trees are all turning colors. The vantage point is huge!



And a small section of easement to ride on for the way back down.



The rest of the ride over to Hatfield, AR is fast gravel .









And here's one that Safari Tanks might be interested in .



FYI, Hatfield has gas, along with some places to get a bite to eat. I hit a small section of local Hwy before crossing back into Oklahoma and heading back through the forest on the East end of K-trail.



This is a long section on forest road. It is fairly rocky and rough in some sections, but is a very fun road.



Noting another side road I would like to check out some time:



When I reach Hwy 259, I opt to take the fast way over to Lennox Ridge Rd to climb back up to the Talimena Scenic Drive, and back to my truck that I have left at the state park.



I don't spend a lot of time in this area today, because I ride through here a lot, and I have a pretty good grasp at what roads are good. Except, there is this one road that I had never been on, and I really wanted to check it out today.

The road comes off of Lennox Ridge Road:



I always try to squeeze in one more thing at the end of the day. Most of the time, that's when stuff usually turns epic on me - not always in a good way. But this road starts out really fun.



And gets smaller and rougher as we get further in.



And I start to wonder...



What I am getting myself into so late in the day .



The road turns, and starts heading the wrong direction - I've missed a cut-off somewhere. But I am committed to the route I am on, because now it has turned into series of long steep climbs, and I can't get off this ride til I reach the top . No worries though, right? It's not like I am riding a fully loaded bike with worn out knobbies... Oh, wait... I am. . I end up dumping the bike once near the top, as I didn't quite spit a pair of large rocks like I had anticipated. But all the effort was rewarded when I reached a flat spot (not necessarily the top).



The trail led up to this outcrop of huge rocks. It was a pretty surreal place. I'm not sure why, but it sorta had a Middle Earth feel to the place. It may have been the adrenaline though .



There was a large tree downed across the trail just ahead of here, with no easy go around. I had no choice but to back track down the mess I had just come up.



On my way back down and out, I found the split off that I missed. The split linked me up with the CNT (Choctaw Nations Trail - Motorcycle Trail), which I used to loop me back to Lennox Ridge Rd, and ultimately back up to Hwy 1 (Talimena Scenic).





A few miles later, and I was back at my truck.



Looking the bike over.



Those knobbies won't go away.



This was an excellent little trip. I found a lot of interesting spots along the way, and rode a lot of tracks that will help me to finish up the Tour of the Ouachitas loop ride. The little WR has about 9,500 miles on it now, and just keeps buzzing along. I do nothing but change the oil in this bike.

Final Stats for the whole weekend.




jordan

jglow screwed with this post 05-22-2012 at 01:05 PM
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Old 05-22-2012, 06:27 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OLEARY View Post
Subscribed! Good stuff Dude! Great looking trails. I am interested in routes or tracks and will PM you with my info. We do monthly camping events in Arkansas and I have ridden some south of Russleville and around the Hot Springs area in the Ouachita NF but that area looks really neat. Where would be a good spot to set up camp and ride a dayride loop or two in that area?
Oleary, I got your PM. I've got a couple areas in mind and I will shoot them over to you in a bit. Thanks for coming along .

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinduroman View Post
Subscribed!!

Great thread and you're doing a super job on the photos!

This is literally just out our back door and down the road a ways!! (We live in eastern OK in Poteau.)

It's been years since I've ridden Wolf Pen. I recall there being some pretty neat stuff at that park, but like you said, pretty heavy use. LOVE some of the roads you're finding!!!

GOT to get me a GPS-thingie so I can download these tracks so the wife and I can explore/enjoy them!


Vinduroman
Hey Vinduroman . I read your report from when you just picked up your WR250r, and noticed that I was riding right through some areas you had just been. If you've got the desire, a GPS is really worth the effort. Just add it to the list of other things you are buying for your new bike .


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Old 05-22-2012, 06:41 AM   #24
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Those trails are looking pretty good! Thanks for putting this stuff together!
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Old 05-22-2012, 07:18 AM   #25
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Great report. How much of it "whale" bike friendly? It looked like some definitely was, some maybe not.

I've been running street bikes over Talimena and 259 for decades and now really want to go explore the unpaved parts.
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:48 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by jglow View Post

snip..

I'm just trying to keep you entertained while you wait for a new bike . You know that Orange bike would love to crawl over these rocks too!


jordan
Great report man! I just happen to have the orange bike he is pining over. I've had it out in Wolf Pen Gap and it does love it. I would love to help you out with this project if you ever need or want some help. I live in Dallas area so not that far for a weekend excursion.

JT if you want to see if the 500EXC will work for you give me a shout... I hope your getting some useful info over on the 500 thread.
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:00 AM   #27
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I don't really like to camp in the forest during the late Spring or Summer. It's too hot, and everything is alive - including ticks, snakes, chiggers, etc... .
Great report. It has me inspired and anxious to get another bike. I'm going to forgive you for saying this and assume that we will be riding lots this summer with the heat, ticks, chiggers and all.
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:07 PM   #28
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Nice ride, jglow. Lucky you survived.

I think you were flirting around some moonshine stills in that overgrowth, and maybe an Equesterian or hiking trail....or three. But, what do I know?

Its only my (formerly) private backyard playground. No thanks to you.....its a lot harder putting the cat back into the bag than letting it out.

O'Leary.....Waldron is a good centralized target for your supply needs. You can basecamp at Sugar Creek or up on Poteau Mountain (2,600 ft elevation). All the marked trails at Sugar Creek are now open to motorcycles (formerly Equestrian only). No Potable Water at Sugar Creek, its primitive camping only. Knoppers Ford has "city boy" camping spots, but still no water available, other than the creek. So, pack it in.

Confirming....Hawcreek Store has closed for good (it appears). That was our only remaining source for fuel, groceries, & burger grill among the sticks in these parts. Now, you have to hump it to one of the nearby big cities for a pitstop. So, you'all better just stay away. Stick to the safer confines with pavement, motels, & McDonalds nearby. Better chance of living to see another day.

HF
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:58 PM   #29
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More good stuff, jglow!

BTW, what is "TOTO"? An informal group ride? If an informal group ride, is it guided, or just GPS tracks and head out? When is it?

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Old 05-22-2012, 06:39 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by HighFive View Post
Nice ride, jglow. Lucky you survived.

I think you were flirting around some moonshine stills in that overgrowth, and maybe an Equesterian or hiking trail....or three. But, what do I know?

Its only my (formerly) private backyard playground. No thanks to you.....its a lot harder putting the cat back into the bag than letting it out.

O'Leary.....Waldron is a good centralized target for your supply needs. You can basecamp at Sugar Creek or up on Poteau Mountain (2,600 ft elevation). All the marked trails at Sugar Creek are now open to motorcycles (formerly Equestrian only). No Potable Water at Sugar Creek, its primitive camping only. Knoppers Ford has "city boy" camping spots, but still no water available, other than the creek. So, pack it in.

Confirming....Hawcreek Store has closed for good (it appears). That was our only remaining source for fuel, groceries, & burger grill among the sticks in these parts. Now, you have to hump it to one of the nearby big cities for a pitstop. So, you'all better just stay away. Stick to the safer confines with pavement, motels, & McDonalds nearby. Better chance of living to see another day.

HF
Hey HighFive... I figured you would know pretty much all the spots I was passing through. Heck, I was even using some of your tracks from an old Winter DS Ride .


Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinduroman View Post
More good stuff, jglow!

BTW, what is "TOTO"? An informal group ride? If an informal group ride, is it guided, or just GPS tracks and head out? When is it?

Vinduroman
The TOTO is not an organized ride. It is just a route that I am working on that will make a loop through the Ouachita National Forest, sampling all of what the forest has to offer.


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