Recently in Trish Category

Moab in February

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For the past few years, we've tried to remedy our cabin fever by either heading to Logandale, Nevada or some other warm destination. This year, the wife (Trish) and I decided that we'd head to Moab for a relaxing weekend.

What we discovered was that Moab really doesn't open for business until the 20th of February. Virtually none of the stores were open for business and the restaurant prices were double their normal cost (Bucks Steakhouse was asking $32 for a 13oz steak - based on their "Winter Menu" ).

Via Groupon, we secured a reservation a the Sunflower Hill Inn (Bed & Breakfast)). The room and location were perfect. Our room (The Sunset Suite) had an awesome balcony facing East.


We got settled in, explored the area (by truck) for a bit then went on the search for dinner. We settled on Buck's Steakhouse (because there are only two food groups as far as I'm concerned: Steak and Meat).

The next morning (Saturday) the temperature was only 32F, so we decided we'd find a location to hide the "Bogley Stash". I determined that the area around Fins -n- Things, Poison Spider, etc. would be a great location. Off we went in the dually to 4wheel our way through the park. I found an easy enough location to stash the ammo-can and back to town we went.


Once temperatures started to warm, we decided to go in search of hiking opportunities. Our first stop was Corona Arch (now made famous by a viral video found here). The hike in was an easy 2 mile rock and ladder crawl. Fortunately, we arrived before what must have been a school-bus unloaded a ton of kids.DSCN0104


We hiked back to the truck and went into town for a quick lunch (thanks, Eddie McStiff's!). Once lunch had settled, we agreed to head to the Moab Rim trailhead. This trail is mostly used by huge rock crawlers and less so by hikers (due to the vast amount of rocks that need to be traversed). The hike up was about 2-3 miles of straight vertical gain; Trish really struggled with this hike and asked me repeatedly if I was trying to kill her.DSCN0119


About half-way to the top of this hike, I placed my 123rd geocache hide in a small outcropping of rocks.

The hike back down was grueling. Gravity wanted to tear our toes off, but we obviously managed to make it back down.


Back to the B&B we went to change, clean-up and inspect the nearby hot-tub.  With a bottle of red wine in hand, we enjoyed the hot-tub, clear star-lit sky until at least 11pm.

What a great escape. We'll definitely be doing this trip again later in the year (but this time, with our two boys).

Unfortunately, the drive home was pretty hairy. The route from Price to I-15 (about 80 miles) was snow packed, slick and hadn't seen a snow plow. I had my helmet cam nearby, so I put it on and started filming. The drive home:

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Fillmore and 5th wheel saga..

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On Friday, October 21st (2011), we departed Salt Lake City for Fillmore. Our goal was to get in one more camping and ATV'ing adventure before the weather turned cold and snowy.

On the first Fillmore exit, we stopped to hit Carls Jr. for a quick lunch. Just as we parked, we noticed a guy on a golf cart inspecting every trailer that pulled into the lot. At first, we didn't think much of it.

A few minutes later, this guy was looking at my 5th wheel tires with much interest. He came over and told me that my tire tread was separating and that if I pulled my rig to the service station a few hundred feet away, his guys would gladly mount my spare. I pulled to the service station and was immediately told that all six of my 5th wheel tires were coming apart.

Initially, it looked very likely that I was in a very dangerous situation with my trailer. I was quoted $2100 for 6x Cooper "Provider" tires in 235/80 R16. I declined and we made the 2-3 mile tow to the Fillmore KOA.

Google was fired up and I researched Cooper tires. To my dismay, I learned that Cooper doesn't carry a brand called "Provider", nor did they carry my tire size. Clearly, these guys were pedaling Chinese knock-off tires at twice the price I could source replacements from Discount Tire/Sears/Walmart.

To compound matters, upon arriving at the KOA, we determined that the front electric motor for the levlling legs was not working. We had to manually crank to lower (and then raise) the legs. Additionally, the rear garage door was not sealing completely, allowing both sunlight and bugs to come through.

We settled in that Friday night and for dinner, drove the ~50 miles to Hoovers for another awesome meal.

The following morning (Saturday), we decided to sleep in a bit. Overnight temps were near freezing, so nobody was really inclined to get out into the cold morning air.

My 11am, we had the ATV's loaded and were ready to roll. Destination: Marysvale (just shy of 60 miles one-way across two mountain ranges (Pahvant & Tushar).

Our route would start at the far North/East corner of Fillmore via the Paiute 03 trail through Chalk Creek.

Somewhere near the middle of the Max Reid trail (Paiute 01), the Honda Rancher lost all brakes at one of the steepest sections of trail. My tactic: Get my ATV and my sons in front of the wife and have her just coast down using the two front ATV's at brakes. Success!

Hunters were everywhere in the woods. How they managed to spot a deer is amazing considering how close they all were to each other. Deer to hunter ratio had to be 100:1 (100 hunters for every deer).

We returned to camp after sun-down with temps in the 40-50F range.

That evening, we discussed the situation with the 5th wheel tires. I went out and inspected and determined the tires would be able to handle the 140 mile return trip home.

We departed early Sunday morning and didn't exceed 55mph the entire trip home. We arrived without incident. Seems to me that tire center in Fillmore has a pretty interesting (and unethical) racket: Scope out every trailer, spread FUD (Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt), then when they hook somebody, they increase their tire prices by $600-800 over normal retail.

The quest for replacement tires is underway and the 5th wheel goes back to Motorsportsland for service on Friday. What an eventful weekend. It would be nice to have one outing with the 5th wheel not end with maintenance/repair issues!

Although we've never been big fans of the sand dunes, we somehow found ourselves there this weekend. Going with friends (even after spelling out our dislike for the dunes), they nonetheless still found a camp spot right in the sand (White Sands camp ground).

The weather was terrible. We only had half a day without rain, snow, sleet or hail. We had to make every minute count and went riding and exploring as much as the cold wet weather would allow.

While on a quick morning outing (30 mile round trip), those of us riding discovered an abandoned settlement of some kind. It must have been hastily abandoned a few years ago, because clothing, books, bills (some in Dutch) and two pickup trucks were still there.

En route to Eureka (or so we thought):
Wife, youngest son Nick, Neice (Megan) and her friend

The lovely wife (she hates cameras and is very camera-shy):
DSCF0017.JPGMe, of course:

One of the abandoned trailer homes found:
Now, it's not unusual to find abandoned dwellings in the desert, but it is unusual to find them still loaded with clothing and other personal effects. These still had toys, kids bikes, clothes, food, kitchen-ware and two pick-up trucks. Also scattered throughout were books on astrology, generating solar power and various science studies.

Closets still full of clothes. Vermin have thoroughly invaded the location:

Yet more personal stuff laying about:

The neice and her friend were clearly spooked by this location:

On Sunday, a group of friends wanted to be led to this location. The weather was looking grim, but we pressed on anyway. About 3/4 of the way to the location, we entered a cloud layer and it began to rain, then snow and finally hail. I turned the group around and had to stop, setup an emergency fire and get everyone somewhat warm and dried out:


After a grueling 45 minutes of driving through rain, hail and snow we finally made it back to camp. Everyone (myself included) were tired, wet and miserable.

An hour or two later, the weather broke, a bit of sun peeked through and I decided to ride to the mountain to the South of Little Sahara.

Here's our camp or RV/5th Wheel trailers:


The mountain to the South, overlooking Little Sahara:

Overlooking Sand Mountain and the dunes:

All in all, and even though the weather was gloomy cold and rainy - it still beat sitting around the house over the weekend. I hope to get back out to this area and explore the Jericho area to the North of Little Sahara. Seems there still much to be seen and many trails to be enjoyed.

And.. I'm still no fan of the sand dunes!

8250' climbing and TB recovery

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If the snow isn't impassable (it's snowing right now outside), then I plan on making an attempt on this peak on Sunday.

When out in this area over the weekend, the elevations above this are still covered in deep snow, but this location may be passable (I can take snow shoes with just in case).

The wife, dog (12 Gauge) and I made an attempt at this one last November, but summited at the wrong location:



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This page is an archive of recent entries in the Trish category.

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