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Old 05-21-2012, 07:26 PM   #1
silverspurs OP
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A touch of Idaho... 2012 Challenge

Update 3/13...
The IAMC challenge for 2012 was a blast... we saw some great country in Idaho, Nevada, and Oregon... but I've decided since there is still a lot more of Idaho and environs to show off... I'll continue this thread as we explore more of our area in 2013 and beyond... I'll be posting rides as time allows... and if you've got rides in Idaho to share, feel free to post em' up... hope it's worth something to folks who want to see a bit more of Idaho...


I'm not with the Idaho tourism board... I'm just happy to live here and take advantage of what's here... one of those things is great riding Idaho is without a doubt one of the best places in the world to ride a dirt or dual sport bike... thousands of miles of trails, FS roads, logging roads, BLM roads and ranch roads with varied terrain that ranges from around 700 feet above sea level at the port of Lewiston, to over 12,000 feet for several mountain peaks in the state.

Boise is Home to an Idaho based adventure riding club. the Idaho Adventure Motorcycle Club or IAMC... you can check them out at "motoIdaho.com"
http://www.motoidaho.com/node/827

for the past couple of years, the IAMC has issued a "challenge" to it's members to "get out there and ride". They post a number of sites in the region around Boise, some in Oregon, some in Montana and other surrounding states, but most in Idaho. Then challenge the members to get out and visit those sites and while there, get a picture and post it up on the club website. This year there are 48 sites to visit, some of them requiring multi-day trips to complete, while others will be simple day rides...

I'm starting this thread to document my quest to visit at least 45 of the 48 sites in 2012... and in the process, give those interested, a "touch of Idaho"... I hope I don't bore you to death, but we'll see how that goes... feel free to comment, post your own rides in Idaho and bordering states, offer suggestions on places to ride and sites to visit... Idaho and surrounding environs is really a nice place to ride. I hope this thread will show that... enjoy...



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Old 05-21-2012, 07:35 PM   #2
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The IDA-NEV High Desert Ghost Town Tour... #1

5-6-12
My friend Trent and I originally planned to go to the Grand Canyon this past weekend and ride down to the Toroweap overlook and environs... but family issues changed that plan, we still had the time scheduled off from work, so we decided to take a few days and do a local ride... and while at it, pick up a few IAMC challenge sites...

We decided on a tour of the IDA-NEV high desert to visit some of the IAMC challenge sites which would take both of us to some country we'd never seen... We were all set to head out at noon Friday... only problem was... it looked like this!!




This was not good!... we waited a couple of hours, even considered calling the trip off,
the High Desert roads get extremely slimy when wet and we didn't feel like fighting the gumbo for three days... finally we came up with a solution... we'd change our route... and give those desert roads some time to dry out... so instead of starting out toward Jarbidge like we'd planned, if we had to ride in the rain, then we'd do it on Tarmac... we had to go Wells NV on this tour eventually, so we decided to head for Wells first... here we are ready to leave and get a good drenching...



We battled the rain down past Mountain home and then the rain started to lighten up, finally by Glens Ferry, it stopped, only problem was, the wind didn't stop... it was blowing steady at 40mph with gusts up to 50mph... lots of fun if you like riding your bike at a 45degree lean for miles on end... it was also friggin COLD..., by the time we got to Jackpot,we were frozen and considered just stopping there, but decided we would push on to Wells... when we got there, we were hammered and wussed out... instead of camping per plan, we went to Motel 6 and ate at Subway!! total cop out!! we were ashamed...

When we got up on Saturday morning, it was 25degrees... hmmm, maybe we made the right decision after all! We were heading out to an abandoned town called Metropolis... it is about 15 miles North West of Wells, we put on all the clothes we had and headed out... on our way, we passed the old California Emigrant road that ran from Fort Hall Idaho to California by going past the City of Rocks, down the Humbolt river and over Donner Pass...




just as we pulled up to this California Trail marker, Trents exhaust fell off!!
fortunately, the bolt was stuck inside the inner heat shield of the muffler, so all we had to do was bolt it back on... lucky!! we had it back together and were on our way in short order... while we were repairing Trents muffler, a guy in a jeep drove by and asked if we needed any help, we didn't but thanked him for stopping to check, he said his grandfather had been born in Metropolis in 1910 and had built the monument marking the old town site... pretty cool... here is the monument his Grandfather built...



here is a pic of Trent standing on the second floor of what is left of the School...




and looking from the school towards the Ruby Mountains...




Then it was on to Elko for gas and to prepare for the next leg... we knew we had about 190 miles from Elko to our next available gas at Jarbidge NV... that's if the roads were good and we had no detours or closed roads... so we each took a small emergency supply just in case... this would turn out to be a life saver!... more on that later.

After Elko, we headed for an old gold and silver mining town called Tuscarora...




it had a very old cemetery that had some interesting head stones, some not stone at all, but the original wood markers more than 100 years old...




the climate is so dry in Nevada that the wood has lasted that long... pretty amazing...




some of the grave sites were very ornate with imported wrought iron fencing and fancy marble stones




the town had over 5000 people in the 1880's, but just a few now...




a relic from the past...




From Tuscarora, it was on to Charleston... more here:

http://www.ghosttowns.com/states/nv/charleston.html




Charleston is kind of a creepy place... there is this old building there that is part ruin, part new(er) construction, and totally funky... it is built over a creek, and is furnished with an array of odds and ends... there was a sign out front that said "come on in" we did, no one was there, but you could tell someone had been or still does live there... very weird... not one lock or door knob on anything...




bridge across the creek to get to the building... rickety!!




the interior decorator must have worked in a Vegas lounge??




maybe this was someones dream of building a motel in the middle of no where... dream gone bad??




anyway, this place gave me the creeps, so it was time to move on to our next objective, Rowland... but we weren't sure if the road we planned on taking (NF road 67) was passable... conflicting reports from the NFS and Elko County Sheriffs office... more on that in part 2!!

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Old 05-21-2012, 07:36 PM   #3
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The IDA-NEV High Desert Ghost Town Tour... #2

5-6-12
When we set up our route for this tour, we saw a road on the maps that would take us directly to Rowland. The problem was, that when I tried to route it on Google maps, it would not take it as a route... hmmm something wrong there, perhaps abandoned?? I called the NF and also the Elko Sheriffs office to see what they new about NF rd 67... the gal at the NF said there had been a washout some time past and that the road had never been repaired, but that she thought there had been people get through on dirt bikes, the Sheriffs office just said the last they heard the road was closed... hmmm


if we didn't take NF 67, then we had to two other options from Charleston to Rowland; the first was the Charleston/Jarbidge road which was closed due to snow, the other option was to back track out to the hi-way and Mountain City then try to take NF rd 37 to Rowland. Problem was that we didn't have enough fuel, even with our emergency fuel that we carried... we needed NF rd 67 to work, so we could go to
Rowland and then to Jarbidge where we should be able to get more gas...

so we have just left Charleston and it was decision time... do we try NF 67 with the possibility of being turned back?... We decided to go for it.

The intersection of decision... left is back to the Hiway (30 miles) or right on NF 67 to Rowland (22 miles... Maybe...)



We decide to take NF 67... there can be no "adventure" without some risk!...



looks good so far!!
after about a mile, the road goes through a Ranch yard, then a closed but accessible gate... it then becomes a much narrower and less traveled road...



NF rd 67 parallels the Bruneau River for over 22 miles... it is a beautiful ride



NF rd 67 doesn't get much traffic, we saw no fresh tracks as we headed North for the first 15 miles, in places it's more like a jeep trail...



we are starting to fall in love with this road... hope it goes through!!



22 miles of this!! even if we don't get through, it is worth it!!



we're starting to get a bit nervous at this point we have come upon a few troublesome spots, but nothing we couldn't handle easily...



but it gets better... we're starting to have hope!!



maybe this is why the road is closed! maybe for a car, but no problem for a bike!



we did find a spot where a canyon had blown out and there was a large mud mound over the road for 30 yards or so, but it was easily passable on our loaded KLRs... we also found a creek crossing that has large basketball size boulders in it, a rough crossing, you have to pick your route carefully, but doable...



as it turned out, while NF rd 67 is a level 3 road due to a few rough spots, it is passable on a fully loaded DS, and it is 22 miles of the best DS motorcycling I have ever ridden!! Highly recommended!!

Since we had last filled up 180 miles ago in Elko... we were glad we had made it through, after visiting Rowland, we had about 30 miles over the mountain to Jarbidge where we expected to get gas...



Rowland



Now on to Jarbidge... a very pretty ride... this is the divide between the Bruneau and Jarbidge river drainages



heading toward Jarbidge...



wide shot...



Sooo it's been 200 miles since our last gas... We're finally at Jarbidge we need gas!


Oh nuts!! They have Diesel, but no Unleaded!! we are screwed!! each of us are getting close to going on reserve... fortunately we each are carrying 1 gal of gas as emergency backup... question is, will that be enough to get to the next station which is at least 60 miles away??

It's been a long day, it's 8:30 pm and we need to find a campsite... we go down the road toward Murphy HS and find a nice spot along the East Fork of Jarbidge River about two miles From Murphy HS...



we find a nice site, set up camp, heat some water and eat our Freeze dried dinners...



it is very cold tonight... we both have good gear, but my toes are cold all night and water left out is frozen in the morning, really glad I brought that down jacket!



first time I've tried this instant oatmeal from Quaker... it's good stuff, highly recommended...



we finally get our frozen gear packed up and head East toward Three Creek... hoping we can make it out on the gas we have...



topping out of the canyon with the Jarbidge Wilderness in the back ground



we are having a tough time finding Three Creek Store... the coordinates on the IAMC site take us to a ranch, not Three Creek, Frustrating!!



we come to a ranch that matches the coordinates posted for Three Creek, they are gathering cattle to brand the spring calves today, so they have all their relative over to help... these kids wave as we stop and are very interested in our bikes... cute kids!



they are all cousins having a good time seeing each other



gotta love the hat! and the smile!



having done some buckarooing earlier in my life, I was tempted to stay and help out! Here's the crew bringing the herd in...



but this nagging worry about whether we were going to make it to a gas station wouldn't go away... so we pressed on... we debated between Rogerson or Buhl as the best place to go, we ended up taking the 17 mile road to Castleford hoping to find fuel there, but the station was closed because it was Sunday... I put in my extra gallon of fuel at Three Creek, and had to go on reserve about halfway to Castleford, by the time we got to Buhl, I had gone 25 miles on the reserve... I put 5.7 gallons in a 6 gallon tank when I filled up... whew!!

finally with full fuel tanks, we could breath a little easier... Trent had never been to Balanced Rock, so we decided to go that route on our way home to Boise



Even though it was a pretty cold ride with freezing nights, it turned out that the roads in the Desert were fine... we found no muddy roads and with the exception of NF rd 67, all roads were level 2... a great ride, great new country visited and riding with a good buddy, can't beat that with a stick...

with all our concerns about NF rd 67, it turned out to be the highlight of our trip... we highly recommend it if you get out that way, you won't be sorry... happy trails!....

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Old 05-21-2012, 07:39 PM   #4
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Afternoon ride 5-12-12

had to get the sprinkler pipes out into the fields this morning on the ranch, so I didn't have much time to ride this weekend. Fortunately I got a couple hours this afternoon to get out... good afternoon ride. I did a lot of mounted orienteering rides in this country back in the 90's... It was good to get out there again...

Baseline Rd


Danskin Rd

















fun ride, too bad it was so short!!

going to do an over nighter out to Birch Creek next Friday and Saturday if the weather is decent... anyone interested in comin' along?? plan to leave about 3pm Friday and be back Saturday evening...
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:43 PM   #5
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Great stuff. Thanks for taking us along.
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:44 PM   #6
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tour of Eastern Oregon... fun ride 5-19-12

We posted this ride up on the IAMC site but had no takers... (couldn't do spec ed's ride, have to work those days) anyway, my friend Gaylon came with me and we had a great time... our attempt to take back roads from Birch Creek to Inskip Station, was quite an adventure, we got through ok, but didn't quite get the route we had planned on... ended up exiting at Arock... great weather and fun ride... ya'll come along next tiime!!

meet up at the ION station, junction of hi-way 55 and 95


rockville


MacBride Creek




heading into Birch Creek




I've floated the Lower Owyhee and Birch Creek is the take out site... it's a nice river trip...




Camp at Birch Creek Ranch




Jordan Craters


the back way to Inskip Station




Gaylon is out there somewhere...


In some places the road kinda fades in and out...


Lava pavement... actually the best road we had on the trip!!


Charbonneau and other pioneers memorial...


The Jordan Valley Big Loop Rodeo was on today, we had planned to attend, but our bad route finding delayed us and it was 1/2 over when we got to Jordan Valley, so we missed it... Dang! we had to settle for a late lunch at the JV restaurant and then head for home without seeing the rodeo... we had a great ride and saw some new country... yahoo!

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Old 05-21-2012, 07:46 PM   #7
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Lucky Peak migratory bird center... 5-20-12

Took a short ride up to the lucky peak migratory bird center this afternoon, I guess they hang nets up in the trees and snag the birds as they fly down the boise front range on their way south in the fall, they band them and let them go etc... there's also a radio tower up there and some nice views of the treasure valley... the road surprised me in that it was actually a bit of a challenge... deep washouts and ruts with loose rock and sand on some moderately steep sections had me standing on the pegs for traction and balance... it was unexpectedly fun!!

here is some info on what they do up here:
http://www.idahobirdobservatory.org/...lise-Faike.pdf

there are three gates on this road, the first two were open, but when you get close to the top, there is a locked gate, I guess they keep this gate open from July to October when they are catching the birds... they give lectures and stuff in a small amphitheater place up near the top, the rest of the year you have to stop at this gate and walk up... it's a couple hundred yards to the top... this pic is from the tower site on top of Lucky Peak, that's my bike down there by the gate


view of the treasure valley from the top of Lucky Peak


the bird study area is in a saddle just below the tower, it has some seating for lectures, but there aren't any buildings or anything...


this last part of the road is only open July to October


looking south at Lucky Peak Res. the road was more challenging and fun than I had expected... good practice!
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:54 PM   #8
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Great thread. I'm looking forward to more and seeing you complete your challenge. IAMC picks some great places for the challenges.

Jarbidge is an interesting town. I see the welcoming committee is still greeting visitors. You know if you throw a stick for this pup over and over and over it never tires......


Keep the good stuff coming and don't forget to stop and enjoy the flowers. You get extra points for pictures of those flowers you enjoy along the way.
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:09 PM   #9
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5-21-12 day ride

took a short day ride North of Boise today to pick up 3 challenge sites and to visit my small ranch near Letha Idaho to check on the stock and water... fun ride

Pearl Idaho, an old mining area that is experiencing a revival with the high prices of ore these days... and old mine that is mostly collapsed


The road to Quartzburg, another old mining area North East of Boise that is experiencing a revival of mining, they are working there now and so the road is closed... when the club posts up the challenge sites, they are not always sure if the areas are going to be open... you take your chances...


the third site was the most fun... a butte about 30 miles North of Boise that has the profile from certain angles of an indian women's face... hence the name Squaw Butte... there is a lookout and several communication towers... a fun road and great views from the top... the road going up


nearing the top


view of the Payette River, Black Canyon Res. and the Sweet Valley


the lookout


the Emmett Valley and Treasure Valley way out there...


that's Bogus Basin on the horizon, the local Boise ski hill


you can see the Sawtooth Range on the Eastern Horizon... this place has great views...


there is a trail that goes North off the Butte, I've heard nasty tales about this trail, it's tough and when you are just about to the good road a locked gate! I didn't try it...


it was a fun day, great scenery... after 4 days of riding, now I've got to get back to work... will post up the next leg of the challenge when we get er' done!! ride safe.

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Old 05-21-2012, 08:14 PM   #10
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Great thread. I'm looking forward to more and seeing you complete your challenge. IAMC picks some great places for the challenges.

Jarbidge is an interesting town. I see the welcoming committee is still greeting visitors. You know if you throw a stick for this pup over and over and over it never tires......


Keep the good stuff coming and don't forget to stop and enjoy the flowers. You get extra points for pictures of those flowers you enjoy along the way.
Your right!! i got tired before he did!!
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:29 PM   #11
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Great stuff. Thanks for taking us along.
Thanks... I hope it will be informative and useful to those interested... rick
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:35 PM   #12
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Excellent thread silverspurs... It's been tough for me to get out there this spring so It's nice to see more local reports. Keep em coming!
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:52 PM   #13
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Excellent thread silverspurs... It's been tough for me to get out there this spring so It's nice to see more local reports. Keep em coming!
being from Boise, you know there are more miles of dirt road and trails within a couple hundred miles of Boise than most folks can ride in their lifetime... yet most of us don't ride many of them... I'm glad for the challenge...

it get's me out there...
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:57 PM   #14
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Nice Touch

silverspurs,
Nice start to a RR dedicated to an area I would like to explore for whole summer!
But,I live in Oregon and have seen all of it yet!
Decisions, Decisions
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Old 05-21-2012, 10:13 PM   #15
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silverspurs,
Nice start to a RR dedicated to an area I would like to explore for whole summer!
But,I live in Oregon and have seen all of it yet!
Decisions, Decisions
Oregon has great riding... the tarmac roads in the West are awesome! and central and eastern Oregon has fantastic dirt riding... the Steens Mountain Loop is on my bucket list...
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