GPSr tracks for the entire 5Mile & Eureka area found here:
It's New Years weekend and its 10F outside with much snow on the ground. I've been cooped up for 5-6 weeks due to work, then illness.
The sun will be out (sort of), but temps will be cold. I decide that a ride (solo) from 5 Mile Pass to Eureka is in order. The Polaris has new Elka Stage 4 shocks, new gnarly tires and I'm ready to get outside.
The ride starts off with trails that have been run many times and the snow has turned to ice, so staying in a straight line is tough.
Once I get toward 12 Mile Pass, however - its a whole new ball game and the snow is virgin. No tire tracks at all. Somewhere along the route from 12 Mile Pass to the West of Allen Ranch Road, I slide just enough to hit a rock. I didn't realize my tire had gone flat for a few miles because this tire is TOUGH (despite the sidewall gash). I pull over, retrieve the air compressor and proceed to inflate the tire in hopes of finding the leak.. it didn't take long to see and hear the air escaping from the massive gash. Bummer. Literally, BRAND NEW tires.
After 30 minutes of trying to get 5 plugs to hold, I proceed through deep snow via Chilius Pass and down into the West side of Eureka.
It's not near 1pm and I'm ready for lunch. HWY6 Diner is in order. The food and view are both nice.
The return route was uneventful.
Whats the lesson to be learned? At 10F and in deep and frozen snow, even the best tires can fail. Always be prepared to address the issue.