Sunday, September 17, 2017

A Sneak Peek

Gopher Flats
Moab, UT
September 13, 2017

With storms forecast later in the week, Dee and Joe and I decided it was a beautiful, cool morning to take the LaSal Pass.  We could tell the south-west peaks were not so colorful from Moab, but the north-east side, however, piqued our interest so off we went to take a peek. 

Rose hips had taken the place of wild rose flowers.

 Not a lot of color here...but the cool breeze was nice.

Aspens teased with hints of yellow.

The Manti and LaSal Forests were combined in 1949. Today it covers 1.4 million acres.  These forests have beckoned people for hundreds of thousands of years. 


As far as colors go, a tease is all we got.  What we did enjoy was a peaceful retreat, solitude, and quiet.  

The relaxing sound of aspens clapping,
 shadows dancing, 

and beautiful landscapes is always calling.
Until next time, 


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Summertime in Moab !

Gopher Flats
Moab, UT
Summer 2017

This has been a fantastic summer. Joe and I have enjoyed staying put for awhile.  Of course, we have great friends here to spend time with, have made lots of new friends,  and our new toy, better known as Wile E. Coyote, has been a blast !  Yes, it has been, make that toasty warm...but that has not deterred us from getting out early in the mornings and enjoying the trails. In fact, we added 222.6 miles of wheeling to Wile E's odometer.  

Here are some highlights from June, July and August...

Ber and Carole sharing maps and discussing options on Polar Mesa.

Ber and Charlotte at the over look on Polar Mesa.  Ber led Polar Mesa Trail and shared lots of stories about his dad who drove a mining truck on this very trail back in the early 1900s.  We love his stories and history!  Ber had just turned 93 years old the day before.

Following Ber on Onion Creek to Thompson Canyon then Polar Mesa.

Onion Creek is very colorful...and lots of fun.  We crossed the creek 29 times.

Awesome fun following Jeff on Cliffhanger.  Here we (Jeff, us, Glen and Dee) are parked at the overlook.

Jamie on Metal Masher...
Following Dee on Moab Rim is a treat ! Here we just climbed Devil's Crack on the cliff edge and are headed to the Z Turn.  This trail starts out with a bang...and scary fun ! 

We had Moab Rim all to ourselves except for a couple of hikers.  This was a bit scary...for real !  Our brakes gave away just as we descended Z Turn.  Thank goodness for this boulder and a huge "whew moment" this happened before we got to Devil's Crack.

Hell' Revenge remains one of my favorite trails.    
Thanks to Dee, we met a great group of Canadians led by Jay Malo.  We joined them on several trails during the week they were here.  
The first trail was Behind the Rocks...

The Rocks

Another day, we joined them on Pickle and Mashed Potatoes.  I love this short and narrow canyon with lot of ledges called Pickle...
Wile E wiggles his way around and up through a very narrow spot.  Locals say this is the spot that gave the Pickle its name. 

And lastly, we joined them on Rusty Nail.  Here Dee spots Jay up Riff Raff.
Driving down the switchback on Gemini Bridges Road after Rusty Nail.

Dover enjoying a cool morning on Willow Springs Road.  

Part of the trail in Arches NP is in a wash.  Sometimes, it looks like the plants are tip toeing.

Another day on Cliffhanger Dee took this picture just as we were descending the Cliffhanger Obstacle.  It shows how really close to the cliff edge it is.  Going down you can hug the wall, but going up on the way out, you hug the edge...yikes!

Our only sunset ride was on 7 Mile Rim.  This was a scheduled monthly ride for Red Rock 4 Wheelers and always a popular ride.  

The late day lighting was perfect.

The sunset only so-so.
We always park below the Merrimac Butte...
...facing the Monitor Butte.

Until next time...


Friday, July 14, 2017

James Drives Wile E

Gopher Flats
Moab, UT
July 5&6, 2017

Wednesday morning we were up and out the door early to meet Dee and Adrienne to run Hell's Revenge.  Hell's is a wild rollercoaster ride over slickrock domes or fins.  It's 6.5 miles of scary fun offers steep climbs and descents with some areas very narrow and close to the edge of high cliffs, several named difficult optional obstacles, and spectacular panoramic views.  Today, James was driving !

Dee led driving Blanche , followed by Adrienne driving Pibble, and James bringing up the rear in WileE.  
Dee gets a mirror shot of our small group.

A sweet picture at the dinosaur tracks. 

I'm not sure who had the most fun...James or Joe and I.

Dee and James at the river overlook...

James rides along with Dee on Hells' Gate...

Another mirror shot...thanks Dee !
When we reached the top of the Dragon Tail, a very steep descent, I snapped the following picture.  The driver of the vehicle on its top misjudged the line in the dark.  Both driver and passenger spent the night and hiked out at daybreak. 
Thursdays trail of choice was Metal Masher.  Red Rock 4-Wheelers rates this trail a 7 out of 10.  This 11.7 mile loop follows around Arth's Rim and offers up some difficult named obstacles, and lots of fun.  Dee (with passenger Rob) led our trusty band of wheelers followed by James, Scott (with passenger Adrienne) from Texas,  Jim from Texas, and Glen bringing up the back.  
The first couple of obstacles are unnamed tall ledges.
Joe and James discuss options for tire placement...
James gets lined up...
and crawls right up !   

Dee's photo captures how tall Rock Chucker is.

A great warm up for what is coming next...Rock Chucker...a tall, gnarly, ledgy climb.

Glen spots...
Dee's photo as James gets lined up.

and James climbs.

A happy mom !
Thanks Dee !
Once Rock Chucker has been conquered, there is a loop that connects back to the main trail.  It's pretty hairy too.
Glen stands by to make sure all four wheels stay on the ground.  It's tippy...I like tippy !
A great photo Dee !
I just realized I failed to get pictures at Arth's Rim...a spectacular overlook about 5700 feet above Hwy 191.  MM is a favorite so I'm sure there will be a next time !

It was so much fun having James here.  Five days...five trails full of scary fun filled with lots of laughs, WOWS, spectacular views and wonderful memories !  

I want to send a huge thank you to Dee who organized trails and led us on Hell's Revenge and Metal Masher.

Another huge thank you to Glen who led Kane Creek Canyon and joined us on Cliffhanger and Metal Masher.  He always manages to be in the right place at the right time just in case.

 And lastly, a huge thank you to Jeff who works hard all week in his buggy fabrication business, Dirt Squirrel Motors, LLC and still came out to play on Sunday...and led us on Cliffhanger.


He also got up early on Monday to weld breaks in Wile E's front coil over mount enabling us to enjoy the rest of the week wheeling !    

Ahhh...the memories !

Until next time,
 Happy Trails !