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Old 06-03-2015, 01:12 PM   #1
tundradirtbiker OP
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Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Oregon City
Oddometer: 352
4 Days from Summer Lake Hot Springs

Bill (KTM 690) & Don (KTM 450)

We postponed May 15th for cold weather, May 21st departure for T-storms, and settled on the 26th as skies cleared. The track was green and in some places wet. The Alvord Desert was not passable by info from the Fields Station. Fuel is still good in Paisley, Plush, Adel, Fields, and French Glen.

Bikes had 6 gallon fuel tanks so we only topped off in Fields with a gallon safety in French Glen. Total mileage was 625 miles / 4 days. We did not find new postings of "No Trespassing" or new "Wilderness Study Areas". Existing signs had been there for a while.

The bikes ran great with one flat on the 690 front tire. Perfect vented jersey weather in 3 nights camping.

Day 1 Track - SLHS to Mud Lake

Duane had no problem with parking for a few days. We drove from PDX in 5 hrs and suited up.

Bill looking very stylish when clean

Lots of these

This was easy track to follow. Some it was solely "Devil Box" navigation. Nothing but the track pointer on our Montanas.

The Rally plate gives a rider more heads-up navigation. Bill added the shade box which doubled as a dust shield- til' it shook loose and he stowed it on his gear. He did a lot of AL fabrication on the 690.

Got this while the lad was still decent. The rack with rod-and-circle-springs was an impressive bunk.

I slept on the tent pan and cow poop.

Day 2 tomorrow

Day 2 Track - Mud Lake to Willow Hot Springs

Cell Towers in the Steens gave us access from all 3 campsites, No this is not a cell tower.

The Petroglyphs at Long Lake

and more of the same. The drawing wall stretches quite a ways

Rock carving might have a better survival rate than spray paint on rail cars.

The back country gets it's share of visitors, but not much garbage or trash. Hardly a pop bottle on BLM roads. You can get away from some population habits on bikes. We talked to a camping group before leaving.

Leaving Long Lake for a loop north to Beaty Butte

Recent rains for the wild flowers. News talks drought, but the marsh lakes were full up this late in the year, or is it just the news talking again.

I missed the shot of Bill taking the 690 up the hairpin hillclimb at Domingo Pass. He got it turned around where it gets steep with some tank sliding. After that it was blackberry milkshakes and burgers at Fields.

The Alvord was draining water big time. We fueled up and headed south for the road route to WHS.
Finding something flat and dry took some looking around.

Perfect temps, clean camp area and no one there after the holiday.

All happy today. Day 3 is a work day.

Day 3 Track WHS to Basque Valley

About 10 minutes into this track from WHS, we ran into Little Whitehorse Creek. Probing the north bank, and creek bottom, it looks fairly solid. Solid, that is for a dirtbike with a decent knobby. The jingle bus with a bald 908 Dunlop was suspect... I favor a quiet tire in soft stuff. The 690 turd whirler set my teeth.

Lots of throttle, with lots of weight, and lots of bald tire=parking

He's not done parking, but he is done digging.
A picture's worth a thousand words, I only used one. It's high centered on the skid pan and the rear wheel is sucking air when pulling.

We scouted a good line and the 450 went over to high ground.

We rocked the big bike to one side, Bill used an ancra 1" strap to pull that beast vertical and set the wheel next to the hole. Then he crossed over. I don't have enough back, or strength for dead lifting that much weight.

Heading into Basco Valley NV

Next bit of fun- flat tire on the 690. We weren't moving that fast and the 690 was cleaning the sliders full length. I didn't like it- but it's not my bike. Bottomed one time too many and snake bit the tube. A good tube might have survived, IRC wasn't much. We got a bead over the rim before removing the axle, popped the wheel, pulled the bead over the over side, and flopped out the wheel. In went the new tube, put the locknut on the stem and applied some No-Mar to wheel/tire bead- both sides. Dried quick and I though we were screwed again- Nope. Tire bead went on further than the spoon spot every time, the slack tire side slid to the well. Threw a CO@ 20 gram into it and Bill popped the last 8" of bead on the rim with a bicycle pump. Without asking, I popped the caps for 2 clicks more comp and added 4 Rbd.
Pick up after the work

Ridin' again, and we cut north on 140 to Domingo Pass toward Funnel Canyon and the Basque Hills. Loose gray gravel marks FC

Bill liked to stop and check it out now and then.

This was our favorite day- Valley cruising doesn't get much better. By now,chain lube fouled by mud, and AAA stop were history.

We were 160 miles into it at 6:30 and this looked like a great place to camp. Better then any campground.

Bill getting hotel construction started.

Isobutane for water and meal-ready when the circus tent was up.

Best/ and last night of the trip.
'05 450 EXC

tundradirtbiker screwed with this post 06-06-2015 at 07:33 AM
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Old 06-06-2015, 08:13 PM   #2
Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Sherwood, Oregon
Oddometer: 2
looks like a great trip, sleeping next to your motorcycle...nothing like it!
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Old 06-07-2015, 07:49 AM   #3
tundradirtbiker OP
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Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Oregon City
Oddometer: 352
Last day to post and a dirt choice to the 205 Catlow Valley Rd coming up.
'05 450 EXC
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:08 AM   #4
Formerly H20Pumper
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Location: Corral de Tierra CA, Ketchum ID
Oddometer: 2,725
Nice pics and loop, thanks for posting.
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Old 06-07-2015, 04:48 PM   #5
tundradirtbiker OP
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Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Oregon City
Oddometer: 352
Day 4 Track Basque Hills > French Glen > back to SLHS
Rock Creek Ranch - Ignorance beats judgement if they don't shoot you.

Several ADV rode reports mention running into locked & posted gates out of French Glen. Heading North on the green track we smoked through a wide open gate. Looked like a chain and lock was on one side- zero posting. Went North to the gate before hitting the county road and looked back - a No trespassing sign on it.

Thought the guy on a 4x4 did us a favor by turning his back.

Looks like we would have to start East sooner and get past Guano Slough to bypass RCR.

Finding a spot for the kickstand was tougher than the gate sometimes

A Day 4 flop. We both had a few. Last part of the Nasty (Dusty) Flat Road back into SLHS took a toll.

Rolled home about 1 AM. I'd do that part different if done over. 80 degrees and trying to rain when we left.

Navigation - Benchmark & 24K Garmin topo maps
'05 450 EXC
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:50 PM   #6
Gunga galunga.
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Joined: Aug 2006
Location: Minden/Gardnerville, NV
Oddometer: 3,664

Can't beat that section of Oregon.
2k4 Wee-Strom, black, farkled, smells like bacon.
Use this code when opening a Smugmug account and get $5 off! HkVR4XuSGKW46
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Old 06-11-2015, 05:33 PM   #7
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Joined: Jan 2008
Location: NP, ID
Oddometer: 3,393
Looks like Bill hit the same hole I found last year. I was going the opposite direction. I hopped off before I buried it and gave it a little push while working the clutch and throttle and got through. You guys should have watched this video before you went so you knew where NOT to go.

Wish I would have been on this ride. Thanks for the report!

Video from this report:

Explain to me again why enjoying life when I retire is more important than enjoying life now?

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Old 06-11-2015, 08:11 PM   #8
Day L8, $1 Short
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Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 157
Nice Don!
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