Recently in Eureka Category

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. 


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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.



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Early fall in the Tintic Mountains

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Labor Day weekend, 2016 and I find myself working the entire weekend. During a lull, Aaron Serr and I decide to load up the ATV's and get in a couple hours of riding. Originally, the goal was to ride the Skyline Drive out of Fairview, but with foul looking weather, we instead decided to run into Eureka.

Winds were easily 40-65mph the entire time, so it made eating dirt a necessity.

My intent was to run the entire 2015 Tintic Elks Poker Run route, with an emphasis on "the secret trail". Sadly, about 14 miles into the ride, Aaron's machine decided that anything over 25mph was asking too much and we made our way down the mountain and back into Eureka.


Considering its only 4 September, the fall colors were already showing themselves!

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Over the weekend and on June 21, Eureka City via the Elks BPOE 711 facilitated yet another great Poker Run.

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A friend of mine and I took off pulling my 43' 5th wheel. Sadly, on the steep climb up toward Eureka, my trucks transmission decided to give up the Overdrive clutch pack and valve body, leaving me with 1-3 gears.

We got situated in the High School parking lot and went for a short ride around the Tintic Mountain. Just prior, we hit the 3 Prospectors and were the last guests just as we overheard that the folks who owned the adjacent gas station were doing a "hostile take-over" of the restaurant and converting it to a BBQ place. The current tenants/proprietors were being made unemployed. Sad.

The next morning, we hit the 3 Prospectors again for a great breakfast before setting out for the Poker Run. Although the run wasn't supposed to start until 0830, we were told that a few machines had already hit the trail 30 minutes prior.

Before the first station, I had already come up on the first machines to hit the trail. They were rolling at a leisurely 5mph (or so). At an intersection, they paused and I managed to get around and ahead of them. Sadly, my two riding companions weren't quite so fortunate and continued to be "stuck" behind them for most of the remainder of the run.

I completed all five stations and had a great time. The locals and Elks that were manning the poker & fun stations were all very nice and polite.

On Saturday evening, I waited until just around 11pm before hitching the 5'er up and making the very slow (35mph) trek back home. Being locked in 3rd gear, it took almost 2 hours to do the ~40 miles home. As of this writing, my truck is already at J&G Transmissions.

Rattlesnake trail / canyon.. easily the best trail of the day:


A few photos and GPSr tracks from the day.

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Derek, Shawn and I after completing the Poker Run.

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A view from the mountain directly South of Eureka.

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A view from the peak directly North from the top of the "Rattlesnake" trail.

Tracks from our route that day, to include a large loop past Vernon Reservoir and through Cherry Creek:





On 12 April, I decided to stage at the traihead (North side) of Israel Canyon. From there, I rode straight to the top of Lake Mountain, scouting all the trails in/around the top to determine if I could find a route down toward Five Mile Pass.

I found a canyon trail/road that dropped me down toward Soldier Canyon and proceeded due South, just using basic orienteering to determine the correct route south toward Eureka (where I'd stop for fuel & lunch).

GPSr tracks for the route and the 5Mile Pass area are found here:  

A view from the top of Lake Mountain:

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From the valley floor, I found a route that kept me on a ridge line paralleling the main US73/Redwood Road South. Eventually, I made my way into Little Moab, dropping right into the area where all the offroaders were rock crawling.

From Little Moab, I proceeded East until I found my route South along the east side of the Tintic Mountains, finally dropping into Eureka from the East side.

Lunch at the 3 Prospectors was great, as usual - followed by fuel at the gas station adjacent to the cafe.

From there, I continued South, up and over the mountain and toward Silver City. Surprisingly, the trail was mostly dry - with small pockets of snow off to the side where there's plenty of shade.

My Spot tracks:

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The return route also kept me to the East of the Tintic Mountains. I was determined to climb back up Lake Mountain from the South - that may have been a mistake. The south end of Lake Mountain is steep and strewn with rocks. At one point, I hit a rock so hard on the underside, I was positive I had damaged the machine.

YouTube video of the ride back up the South side of Lake Mountain.



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Yet another 5Mile to Eureka run..

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Yesterday (7 Oct 2012), I was asked to ride with my brother-in-law and his wife, and lead them on a run from 5Mile Pass to Eureka, Utah.

We agreed to meet at 10am at the far South/West staging area. Morning temperatures were easily 38F with a light breeze. To say it was brisk would be an understatement.

Our route was fairly easy since my sister-in-law isn't an experienced rider. Normally, I'd hit some of the tough climbs just south of 5Mile. For this route, we simply paralleled the mountains until with hit Black Rock Canyon, cut through the canyon, rode a bit of Allen Ranch road, then hit Chilius Pass where we came into Eureka from the West side of town.

Garmin track for yesterday's run can be found here:  5Mile-to-Eureka-via-BlackRock.gdb

A video of the ride through Black Rock Canyon:


After spending the previous two weekends and many long days at work, I decided to leave work early yesterday (Wednesday, June 8th) to get outside an do some hiking and riding.

My adventure started by taking my Dodge Dually offroading to the East side base of Black Rock Canyon and making an attempt up my self-named Pine Cone Canyon. This trail (loosely called a trail) is easily the most technical in the area and probably hasn't seen activity in years.




A bit of video on the way up (or down) the "trail":






5 Mile to Eureka

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In early May 2011, I led a group of ~17 ATV's approximately 85 miles round trip from 5 Mile Pass to Eureka and back. My friend Bill recorded much of the ride and posted it online:



5 Mile Pass to Eureka 1 from Bill Zumwalt on Vimeo.

5 Mile Pass to Eureka 2 from Bill Zumwalt on Vimeo.

5Mile Pass to Eureka

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I've been asked many times to provide a Garmin track for my route from 5Mile Pass to Eureka. Two weeks ago, I took a group of 17 ATV & Motorcyclists on this route and decided to capture a track route. Unfortunately, I powered the GPSr off before saving the entire loop, but got a partial.

A few photos from the event.

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What a great day it was. Even though we lost half our group on the West side of the Tintics (just after leaving Black Rock Canyon).

Partial GPSr tracks from the ride:5Mile-to-Eureka.gdb
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On Saturday at 0900, around 200 ATV's departed the Deseret Peak sports complex. Final destination, the Nugget Casino in Wendover, Nevada.

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Interesting things to note about the event. In the end, over $24,000 was raised by this group and well over 100 people participated in the ride, with several dozen additional in support (trailering drinks, port-a-potties, extra trailers, etc). Ages ranged from late teens to folks in their 70's. Average speed for both days was easily 45-105mph (depending on the vehicle driven). My average speed was 53mph along the salt flats with top speeds exceeding 64mph.

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Virtually 100% of the terrain was flat open desert and the vast expanse of salt flats adjacent to the Great Salt Lake. Nothing overly challening except maintaining full throttle. Since the winds were excessive, we were able to avoid most of the clogging dust/dirt that usually accompanies 200+ machines going full throttle in the desert.

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While en route, we took a break at the Knolls offroad area. After a few moments, one of the Make-a-Wish children (there were two brothers suffering from the same ailment) approached me in his wheel chair and said "you have the coolest and meanest looking machine out here, can you take me for a ride". We tossed an oversized helmet on his head and I had him start the machine. As soon as the engine fired, Noah hit the accelerator to the point of blowing the motor. Fortunately, we were still in Neutral.. that launch could have been disastrous.

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On the last 40 mile stretch before reaching Wendover, we hit the salt flats. Even though some machines were easily 1/4 mile ahead, they threw so much mud/salt in the air, it coated every inch of us. We had to stop to wipe our goggles every 2 or so miles, because it was impossible to see.

Reaching Wendover, we were escorted through town by several Tooele County search and rescue vehicles. Full lights and sirens. Tourists and passers-by stopped to gaze and photograph the long procession of machines coming into town. It was quite a sight.

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We then spent Saturday night donating our remaining money to the Nugget Steakhouse, slot machines and roulette tables.

Sunday morning was spent raffling off a ton of items donated by local companies, to include ATV ramps, ATV tires, medical supplies, first aid kits, fire extinguishers and the only 12V auto vacuum cleaner (which I won).

We preceeded back to Tooele on the same route, fortunately most of the previous day's rain had dried up and we didn't get nearly as salt coated on Sunday.

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Total mileage was around 185 miles. Total for the past week is now over 800 miles on my Kawasaki. What an August!



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We went out again yesterday (Nick, Alex, Megan and I) to explore this hastily abandoned camp. Seems far more vandalism has taken place since last year.

Still a fun area to explore:

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A gopher snake that decided that if wanted to sit under my ATV:
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