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Old 04-08-2015, 08:14 AM   #1
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I got the HNGR and the only Cure is 10 Days in Moab

Midwestern Weather as of late has been rather manic lately. We've gone from having essentially a 2 month long winter, to 70 degree days, back down to a sudden snow-storm, and now onto what looks more like we're in Seattle than anything else. Suffice to say, I need some reprieve from this nonsense. Thank goodness I've been planning this Spring Fever Cure for the past year.

This time last year my usual riding friends spent 10 days out in Moab. I due to work, and other obligations just couldn't make it happen. I told my wife right then that no matter what, I was making it out to Moab next (this) year. She smiled and said that I should make it happen.

Fast forward to today and it's T-7 Hours until launch. For this trip, we're tossing the bikes in a trailer, driving until we reach Moab, and riding wheelies into the sunset (well at least some of us ). I suppose I should rewind that back again though and make some mild introductions.....

Cast of Characters:




A bit of background on these guys here.

JetRep & I have known each other since I suppose we were in grade school, and have been spending the past few years racing Harescrambles & Enduros together. He's gotten to be quite the racer, but for whatever reasons opts to stick in the old man 30+C Class instead of bumping to the afternoon mans race. I've had to borrow his helmet once when I forgot mine on a race weekend. That is one bond that I'd like to never share again.

JZEE & I officially met a few years back at a ride put on by Skinner (more on that later). Turns out he lives just a few miles from me, and go figure, his wife was a teacher of mine. Small world. We've been doing rides to the UP almost religiously since I met him. He's always got a great story for around the campfire and no matter how fast I go on a trail, he seems to always be right on my rear wheel.

Skinner.....well I met this guy through ADVRider here at a winter Chicago Ride back in 2009. I am quite grateful for meeting Skinner. He's one of the most generous people you'll meet and as it turns out, he's one hell of a real estate agent (who helped me find me current house....and also currently list it). He is quite affectionately known as Mr. KTM, and I'm pretty sure is always the first person awake & ready to ride.

Myself, I am the not-so-recent re-KTM Convert. I don't know what else to say, partially cause my minds a blank, my sinuses have gone bezerk, and I've got 10000 things to finish before we leave here.

There is a whole other group of guys going out to Moab, so you'll maybe see some other stuff from them. I'll mostly\mainly be with the guys noted above. This should be some good riding!

I'll have my SPOT Tracker rolling, so if you're bored and want to see some guys ride in circles check out here:

I'll be sharing pictures here:

Hope ya'll will tag along from your desks this upcoming week. I'll update when we're on the road!

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Old 04-08-2015, 01:12 PM   #2
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Skinner! This should be good. Stay out of his roost zone.
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:07 PM   #3
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Along for the ride!
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Old 04-09-2015, 03:09 AM   #4
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I'm posting via Tapatalk, so if this gets messed up, forgive me. Or not. I don't care, its 5am and there's been little sleep 3

John and john loaded up John's bike. I watched the spectacle.

Somewhere at a random gas station we'd soon rather forget

That's all for now. We are just west of Grand Island, NE and JZEE is cranking out the miles here like a bad mother trucker.

As The Lawrence Arms would say.....Let Nebraska Disappear!

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Old 04-09-2015, 03:29 AM   #5
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No sooner did I post this that we got a flat on the trailer. All swapped in 15 minutes.....including a wardrobe change for JZEE 3
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Old 04-09-2015, 07:21 AM   #6
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Potential here!
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And remember, no matter where you go, there you are. - Confucius
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Old 04-09-2015, 08:42 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by andrewgore View Post
Midwestern Weather as of late has been rather manic lately.
"I spent half my money on gambling, alcohol, and wild women. The other half I wasted." ~W.C. Fields
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Old 04-13-2015, 06:21 AM   #8
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Internet is only soso. So tiny text update.

Friday - Lockhart basin. Around 140 miles.
Saturday - White Rim Trail - 140 miles.
Sunday - Kane Creek, Poison Spider, Golden Spike/Gold Bar - 85 miles.

Today I think we are doing Cliffhanger and some other more technical routes.

Mechanical casualties - JZEE destroyed a d606 and is now running a trials tire. I low sided in sand yesterday destroying my nomad rider bag which also had my canon g10 in it. Both are down for the count.

I'll have assorted pics going up on my phone on trail via instagram. Check that at

Revised spot link:

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Old 04-18-2015, 07:14 AM   #9
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Well, we're back from Moab. We ended up leaving a bit earlier than we had anticipated. We left Wednesday PM after seeing that the high for Thursday was low 50's, and like 90% chance of rain. On top of that, Colorado was set to get some nasty snow which would really screw up us being able to get through the I-70 corridor. We all felt we had done some great riding (and kayaking), we had no injuries (at least in our group), and all our machines were in good mechanical condition (tires and turn signals need not apply ).

I had obviously planned to do this as each day rolled on, but that is incredibly difficult. Heck, I have a hard time with just taking pictures while I'm out riding. I tend to live in the moment when I'm riding, and it seemed that during the trip, I was doing the best that I could to enjoy it all and enjoy the relative simplicity of sleeping, riding, sleeping, riding routine.

So I'll be doing my best to do this all from memory. We made some notes as we were heading home Wednesday night, but John T (JetRep) has those along with all our other notes\costs\etc from the yeah, you get to rely on my memory

Pre-Day 1 (Arrival):

Long story short....Arches View Campground (North of Moab) is a bit wonky. They're under new management, and may not be the best at handling campground logistics. We arrived Thursday afternoon (instead of Friday AM like we had reserved a site for). According to the campground, there were 0 sites available, and for whatever reason, their general store closed at 4pm....despite the hordes of people trying to get in and buy stuff (general store is also a 24/7 gas station). Despite us driving through the camp and finding at least 15 open campsites, they assured us....nothing was available

Not to worry, as all over Moab, there are places you can park on the sides of the road and setup your camp for a couple dollars a day\night. It took awhile, but we ended up getting things setup for the night.

We had been phoned by some others that a guy on a KLR may be swinging in by us. Turns out he had left on his KLR on Monday and spent 3 days on the road riding out to Moab. Apparently his entire portion through Nebraska was much like ours...Cold, and Rainy. In a truck, not so bad. On a KLR with what he described as inadequate gear......not so appealing. So, for the night, Ryan spent the evening camped behind our trailer.

(Ryan left)

Not much else exciting that first evening. When asked the following morning if he was feeling better....Ryan's response...."Nope, I don't want to touch that KLR ever again"

Time to Gear UP for Day 1!

Day 1 - Lockhart Basin

This was my first intro into riding Moab. I had my own thoughts on what I was to expect, but I was keeping those thoughts pretty open and loose, as I know the place can go from gnarly singletrack to wide open gravel\sand roads in the blink of an eye. As we were prepping to leave in the morning, JetRep was saying that Lockhart Basin was one of his favorite rides from the year before. I figured if I didn't like it....I was doing something wrong.

From our camp (10 highway miles North of actual Moab) we shot down 191, turning right at the McDonalds in town. We had driven into town the day we arrived, but I tell yah what, nothing puts things into perspective as much as being on a motorcycle. I was finding it difficult to keep my eyes on the road while trying to revel in the magnificent beauty around me. The stone is just absolutely incredible and like everyone will say, no pictures do it any form of justice.

After turning in at the McDonalds, you've got yourself a roughly 5-10 mile winding road ride to where the off-road portion of Lockhart Basin starts. This is a nice section of secluded switchbacks and twisty turns which follow the Colorado River. This eventually leads to a gravel road, which leads to a route to Chicken Corners....Which finally leads to your main Lockhart Basin.....Which is your off-road route to visit Needles outpost or another (JetRep or JZEE can clue you in here).

JZEE Ready to roll:

Not 3 miles into the off-road section...yours truly has to stop and take a picture:

The early part of this leg of the ride was pretty straight forward and simple. Flowing 2-track, with plenty of room, and nothing on any form of cliffs\bluffs\etc. This was good as I hadn't ridden in a few weeks, and both Johns hadn't ridden since sometime last year. I did notice that there are just a few rocks out here....who woulda guessed?

JetRep catching a quick break:

My 350 with looking off into the distance:

JZEE on the Left & another guy Ben on the right. He was a great rider on a KTM 450 who rode with us. If he sees this, great riding with you man!

Myself looking like I've got floods on.....FYI, Buttons holding your riding pants on is a bad idea. My waist pack (ok fanny pack) bouncing kept popping my pants open leaving me feel like some gangster rapper with his pants falling off on a KTM.....not cool.

JZEE Reflecting on the ride:

As we were into the Lockhart portion of the ride, I rounded a corner and had to snap a picture. The rock in the background had this beautiful bend\curve to it. Of course the sun was in the wrong spot for a good picture, but what the hey....I'll stop and smell the roses (or at least try to):

I managed a selfie on the ride with my phone, and managed to catch John, John, and Ben:

Unfortunately this was really the last of the pictures I took for the day. I really got into the track we were on or something. There was a great mix of smaller slightly more technical rock stuff, ledges, and high speed areas. I understood why JetRep really enjoyed this track. It ended up being 140 mile round trip for us (from camp to needles and back).

By the time we got back to camp, my shoulders were a bit tired (I partially blame my 100oz camelbak full of crap....and partially my fitness). I was really liking what we had ridden though. I was probably a bit quiet after this ride though, as the drive out had taken a mental toll on me, and I wasn't even the one driving.

Suffice to say, a great way to start the trip.

Day 2......Skinner joins:

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Old 04-18-2015, 11:23 AM   #10
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I'm heading to Moab in September, and this is great recon. Thanks for sharing Andrew

'14 KTM 350 EXC-F, '04 GS Adv, '02 DR-Z 400S
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Old 04-18-2015, 02:50 PM   #11
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Day 2 - White Rim Trail

Day 2 - White Rim Trail

Skinner had a doozy of a time just getting out to Moab. He was set to fly out on Thursday, but go figure.....Illinois had other plans. A tornado touched down not far from where I live, so that put O'Hare airport in a no-fly zone. After much delays however, Skinner arrived and was anxiously awaiting getting on his KTM 300xcw. Before we could go though, he would need to install his 5 gallon tank.

The entrance to run the White Rim Trail (WRT) was about 20 miles from our camp by road. Not too big of a deal. We were on the road by 830 or so and ready to do some riding. I should note that we were running the WRT in a clockwise fashion. This kept the sun out of our eyes for the majority of the ride.

The entrance and initial part of the trail were unassuming enough. I wasn't expecting anything technical on this, and was mostly looking to just have a leisurely ride for the day. Of course we always say that, and inevitably we end up having some form of race with each other at some point or another. After the initial trail leading in, you end up with your first real HNG factor


That's about 1/2 way down and I want to say the 2 bikes you can see are Skinner & JetRep.

The 350 looked mighty fine on the way down them:

First real site to see was the gap......Don't look down! Skinner watching as JZEE walks the plank:

Don't worry...the rocks below are plenty soft

The remainder of the trail is a whole lot of nice rolling and flowing trail. It's so fun to get in a groove on this stuff. Heck, you can even be right on the edge and still have a good flow going!

JetRep coming in:

Skinner thinking he lost his camelbak (it was under his coat )

I didn't take too many more pictures from like mile 40 - 80. I had a mild low-side in a slow sand corner. I was sitting down, relaxing and more or less let my guard down. Just a little too much pressure on the front and down I went. Bike OK, me OK....back to riding.

Near the end of the WRT, you end up following the Colorado River for awhile. It was getting warm, so all I wanted to do was roost as fast as I could off the trail and hope I'd land in the water. I did not attempt this....nor do I suggest it

Garmin 60cx GPS & Moose Mirrors suck FYI

From miles 80-90 (the end?) I took a few random shots. Snagged a shanzzy selfie:

Towards the end of the ride, I had gotten in a bit of a groove, and pulled away a bit from the rest of the guys. This was a bit of a blessing, as towards the end there is some of this darn moon dust sand. I came barreling into a section I thought was just dried up dirt. Nope. The bike sank to the skid plate in this puffy sand with me nearly going over the bars. I kept it upright and felt bad for anyone who was too close, cause that dust was incredible! As it turns out JZEE and Skinner both went down in this crap sand\dust\whatever. No injuries, but Skinner does have a nice picture of himself with some shrubberies attached to his bike.

Not far from the end, I spotted this cool wall with a giant arch in it. I couldn't resist a pic.

That's all I have for pics for the WRT. Keep in mind that there were a few good uphill climbs that had some challenging parts to them. Both ends of the trail have some fun switchbacks in them. I'd love to rail them, but with the drops on the sides.....I kept it well below race pace.

Final pic of the day for me was at the end. Cell Phone pic....I was too tired to grab the Canon at this point

Another note is that we saw a good deal of bicyclists on the WRT. To put things simply....They all looked miserable. I don't care how fit you are....I've ridden plenty of trails on Mountain Bikes, and the WRT....I'll save that for motorized vehicles. From some guides we've read, Jeeps\4x4's do the WRT in a couple days. Bicycles are 2+ days depending on the group (and how supported). Motorcycles....well, we weren't back in time for lunch, but there was plenty of daylight at the end of the day by the time we got home.

That said, it was still a 140 mile round trip on motorcycle, and we were all a bit tuckered out from the 2 long days in a row. We enjoyed some frosty beverages back at camp. I think we may have also grilled some burgers. I honestly can't remember. Funny how that happens.

Day 3 to follow....Kane Creek, Poison Spider, Gold Bar\Spike (I don't know if they're different\same, but we were on gold something)


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Old 04-18-2015, 06:37 PM   #12
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Sounds like a great ride. What did you do Bout fuel?
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Old 04-19-2015, 05:21 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by tedmarshall View Post
Sounds like a great ride. What did you do Bout fuel?
Hey Ted!
We all had oversized tanks. Almost not needed with how great these fuel injected bikes did with mileage.

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Old 04-19-2015, 07:20 AM   #14
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Day 3 - Kane Creek, Poison Spider, Gold Bar\Spike

Day 3 - Kane Creek, Poison Spider, Gold Bar\Spike

Day 3 started off a bit on the hectic side. As I noted early on, there was a large group of riders from a local meetup group who were all out in Moab. I want to say there were close to 40 riders total. As you can imagine, this amount of riders has the potential to make things interesting.

A large(r) group of us all met at a gas station just south of Moab. From there it was decided that we'd ride the road down to Kane Creek, ride the trail North and then take things from there. At the end where we started, there were probably 15 riders or so. It was obvious from the first obstacle that this might not be the trail for everyone. A handful of folks struggled on the first rocky drop, and then the following more gnarly rocky descent was the ultimate decider for several others.

By the end of the first descent, Skinner, JZEE, JetRep, Brian H, Igor, and myself were at the bottom. Brian H and myself waited at the bottom of the hill for a bit to see if anyone else decided to come down. We didn't see anyone, so he told me to catch up to the rest of the guys and let them know. He was going to wait a bit longer and see if anyone else came down & would meet up with us at the end of Kane Creek trail.

After that downhill, Kane Creek turned into one of the most fun and flowing rides yet. It was like riding a mini harescramble. I was having a blast. After a bit of riding, I caught up to the guys who had stopped ahead. Needless to say....things were getting interesting out on the trail.

Things mellowed out and Igor snapped a picture of myself, Skinner, JZEE, and JetRep

Unfortunately that was the end of my pictures for Kane Creek. Like I said, it was fast, fun, and flowing while riding. Our group apparently missed a little off-shoot of the trail which had some fun stuff. Some of the others apparently rode it and said we missed a great little part. Oh well, can't complain. It was still great riding.

Towards the end of the trail, there was a rocky climb. Skinner, and JetRep were already at the top. I came in in 3rd gear and went to hop from one rock up to the next. I should have been in 2nd gear, or a bit quicker on the clutch. My skid plate dropped right onto the rock leaving me to topple over on my side. JZEE was just behind me and said it looked worse from his angle. From my perspective it was no more than tipping over in my driveway.....not that I've done that before.

We ended up finishing the ride and waited for a bit in a small parking lot. Igor wanted to wait for a few of his friends to see what was going on. In the end the only other riders to come out of the trail were Brian Lacy, Brian H, and Doc Palmer. Igor decided to swing back to his condo to see if he could find some of the others he was there with.

We parted ways with Igor, and the rest of us decided to head on over to Poison Spider. It was a bit more road riding than I was hoping for, but what yah gonna do? The first climb had a family in Jeeps at the top, so I made a note to myself to not fall and look goofy. I succeeded and gave them a few wheelies along the way (have I mentioned this KTM 350 is magical?).

From here, the trip became the most technical of what we had ridden yet. It wasn't anything super technical, but it did require a bit more thought and thinking as you were riding. Brian H and I spent a good bit of time switching back and forth between us leading. Following him was nice as he is very smooth and chooses great lines.

In one section, I had taken the lead and was flowing nicely until I came into a sandy left hand turn. I came in too hot for the moon dust sand. I tried my best to go all Kenny Roberts in the turn, but it was not to be. I had an incredibly soft low-side which made me both hate and love that moon dust sand. I got up pretty quick just as Brian was passing me. I gave him the thumbs up and began my work to catch back up to him.

It was then that I noticed that something was hitting me in the butt over each of the bumps. I looked down and it was then that I noticed that my left bag was flopping in the breeze. My gut sank when I remembered that it was that morning I decided I would put my camera in my left side bag. I ignored it for the time being, and waited for an opportune time to stop and address my floppy bag.

All stopped for a lunch\snack break while I fixed my side bag:

While addressing my bag, I noted that my Canon G10 had bitten the dust. Lens Error.....Do not pass go. Do Not collect 200$. My wife had gotten me that camera in 2009 when we were dating. Sad day it was to find it was dead

But the ride must go on. I was a bit pissed about the camera thing, and honestly was not in any mood to take any additional pictures. Go figure too that literally 5 minutes after we finished our break, that Doc Palmer crashed, squishing a finger between his bars & a rock. His finger nail was essentially falling off, with Skinner reckoning he could easily finish the removal process. It was decided at this point to keep it taped on, and he'd seek medical attention after the ride.

The remainder of the ride was incredibly fun. There was some more difficult climbs, and some rock ledges you must be able to handle. These are all about commitment. Any hesitation and you're screwed from the start. Unfortunately this happened on one climb to Brian Lacy towards the end of the ride. Brian H & Myself stopped after the climb waiting to make sure everyone would get up the climb fine. Skinner and JetRep zipped up, followed by JZEE with his fancy pants Trials tire. Doc Palmer was the 5th up with all eyes being left on Lacy.

Lacy I should note is a bit like Gumby. JZEE has ridden with Lacy many times in Colorado, Utah, and we've all ridden with him a bit in the UP. He seems to take some gnarly falls and gets right back up and continues on.

But back to the climb....Lacy eyes up the climb, which is a pretty tall\nearly vertical wall. Jeepers put a few small rocks at the base to give a transition, but the real PITA part is that the run up is all sand. So Lacy eyes up the climb, loops around to get speed and begins his attack on the climb. All seemed perfect. He was on top of the rock.....and then lets off the throttle. Him and his bike veer off to the right a bit, and he literally drops off the side of the rock.

Everyone ran as fast as they could to make sure everything was OK. Lacy was lucky in that despite falling directly onto another big rock, his bike got hung up on a couple others, which kept it from squishing him. We fished him and his bike out and up the rock, and took a relaxed pace to the end of the trail.

We all met where the Gemini Bridges trail met up with Gold Bar. Lacy & Doc Palmer zipped off as quick as they could, as Doc wanted to get to a clinic to get his finger checked out. We all ended up calling it a day, and were informed later on that Doc had screwed up the tip of his finger pretty well. Luckily no joint damage, so he was OK. Lacy as issues.

We ended up taking the truck into town, and grabbed Pizzas and chatted a bit with some of the others who were staying at the Condos.

Sorry again for lack of pics, but I did have a very enjoyable Calzone full of delicious mozzarella, ricotta and pepperoni.

Day 4 (Monday) would be Hells Revenge, Fins & things, and my encounter with Potato Salad Hill

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Old 04-25-2015, 11:47 AM   #15
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So where were we.....
Day 4 (Monday) - Hells Revenge, Fins & things, and my encounter with Potato Salad Hill.

After a couple high(er) mileage days, I was looking forward to riding the terrain in the Sand Flats area. I had accepted at this point that my camera was gone, and had resorted to using the phone for pictures. Far more convenient, that's for sure. Shoulda done that from the get-go

The group was a slightly larger one for the day, but it seemed to work out rather well. Everyone had a good feeling of eachothers pace, and the layout of the trail just seemed to work well for everyone.

The group (partway through the ride):

The first section leading into Hells Revenge made we wonder what it had to be like for the big hummers out there that shuttle people around for guided tours. I wouldn't classify myself as a control freak, but hells horses, there is no way I'd sit in the back of one of those things with some unknown driving me through this stuff.

Our first stop on Hells Revenge was Hells' Gate. JZEE grabbed a nice pic of Skinner climbing the one side:

It's definitely one of those where the pictures do it no justice:

The climb that you come down to go up this is a bit gnarlier, with none of us really in the mood at this point to tackle it. From here, we went on over to the next fun obstacles....Hot Tubs. So where we rode, there were 3 main Hot Tubs. Small, Medium, and Not come out the way you went in.

The small one was more of a fun whoop\indentiation. Gives you a nice rollercoaster feel. The largest one......I wasn't even comfortable riding down into. This partially had to do with the intense scent of transmission fluid emminating from the thing, and the giant nasty puddle in the bottom of it. The other part is...well I know my limits, and that was a recipe for having problems.

The medium tub had some funk on the difficult face, but seemed more like fuel than something slippery. The thing with it was that the run-up didn't lend itself to being setup well for getting out. First attempt.....I dabbed twice....unacceptable. Second go, I cleaned it.

My 2nd go at Medium Hot Tub:

Skinner had a go, JZEE assisted in getting the bike back upright:

This one gives a better perspective of the angle of the face:

We relaxed a bit after this, I grabbed a selfie and since I had cell signal....sent it over to the wife:

Them 300's are some tough machines:

Skinner zipping out through the lead-up side...even that was hella steep (yes I just said Hella):

Next up was a nice rock ride on over to the Elevator\Escalator\Whatever you want to call it. Brian H was there the day before. He gave me some pointers on how to attack this.

So the first climb there, you can't see it, but it drops to a mini hot tub. This makes the next section a bit tricky to navigate. Brians suggestion was to keep left on the first climb, and go from there. I heeded his warning, and did my best to weave my way around the remainder of the climb:

I made it up....but dabbed. I wasn't overly motivated to clean the section, so accepted that I at least got up the obstacle .

Unfortunately that's all I have for pics for the day. I got caught up in improving my sand riding. Until this point, I felt like I was riding like a sand n00b. I kept tucking my front wheel, and just couldn't hold what I felt was good speed. I switched my bike to its low power setting when I was at the medium hot tub. I think part of my sand issues were cropping up from my roasted Pirelli XCMH:

After switching to low power, the sand seemed to get easier. Maybe I was coming to terms with it, and not loading my front wheel so much. I don't know, but once again, I was having fun in the sand. Next up we rode Fins & Things in the same area. A lot more sand, which I was OK with, because I was feeling more confident.

Not much else to say about this area, but it was good riding and I shoulda probably spent more time there screwing around. After another break, a group of us opted to go run back to town and grab some lunch. I made 2 mistakes at this point.

1 - I ate a giant cheeseburger, fries, and shake.
2 - I decided to go checkout Potato Salad Hill.

Ok neither were mistakes, but combined, made Potato Salad hill almost a Potato salad with cheeseburger on the side hill.

JetRep, Kenbob, and myself rolled over to the hill. I took a few looks at it, and knew it was doable, but it wasn't going to be easy. I'll let the video speak for itself:

I made it up the hill, just not the same time as my bike. I'm pissed I didn't get all the way up in one good swoop. Next year.

After that, I was pretty well zonked and just wanted to relax for a bit. That was about it for the day. My bike had some broken pieces (turn signals\switches\etc) and Skinner made mention that he was leaving the next day and wouldn't mind if his fresh rear tire was gone.......I took him up on that offer later back at camp

Thinking back, I think that JetRep & I also explored around Sovereign Trails (behind our camp) later on this evening. No pics, we were focusing on the singletrack, but long story short...I loved this area.

Teaser Pic from Sovereign:

Up Next:
Day 5 - Metal Masher and Moab Rim (JZEE forever kayaks the Colorado).

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