Wednesday’s ride was up a well used mountain road–lots of pickup travel (and we got the distinct impression the truck drivers were not happy the ATVs were on their road) which tends to make you a little nervous on narrow, switch-backed mountain roads. The top of the mountain was apparently the take off spot for hang gliders–we saw two different ones floating through the air. We started later that day and my photos were just not good–washed out from the sun. Thursday was a different story all together!
This ride involved lots of logistics. The USFS in its infinite wisdom seems to randomly chose which trails will be 50 inch. This is just MY opinion, written tongue in cheek–I think a bunch of those guys sit around a table and think up ways to make things difficult for the public. Why put ONE fifty inch trail right at the beginning of MILES of sixty inch trails???–that ONE fifty inch trail added miles and lots of map and GPS reading to our trip. As you can see in this photo we were a mix–four ATVs which are 50 inch and two side by sides which are much wider. Ours is about 54 inches wide but we are still illegal on the 50 inch trails and this area of the country takes its rules seriously.
I almost stayed home on Thursday, Emmi and I were exhausted but the Cowboy encouraged me to go and am I ever glad I did. Once we found the sixty inch trails we climbed and climbed some more getting above tree line. The scenery was absolutely breathtaking. We all could not stop saying, “WOW!!” Phyllis and I were determined to get some group photos on this last day of riding and we did–two great ones!
Peggy riding up to join the rest of the crew–it was extremely dusty on the Paiute–probably more dusty than any trail we’ve ever ridden. We all rode way back from the rider in front of us to lessen the dust–it helps. One ATV rule is each rider waits at the intersections for the rider behind him so no one misses a turn. We were waiting for Peggy and Charlie at this intersection which just happened to have a very clean pit toilet–always a bonus! 🙂 This is the Paiute Trail symbol–it always made me smile when we spotted one.
Our highest elevation on Thursday. Kenny saw a bull elk on the way up to the top of this mountain and when we pulled off to take a photo and rest a bit–Greg and Charlie spotted these white blobs way up on the side of the mountain–a whole herd of mountain goats–a whole bunch!!!!! Left to right–Lesley, Nellie (sweet, calm dog) , Kenny, Charlie, Lacey (Emmi’s friend), Peggy, Greg holding big Dawg (a sweet Rottweiler), Phyllis kneeling holding five month old Gus, a lab, the Cowboy holding Emmi and lastly me. As I said in another blog–the dogs were a large part of this trip–they cheerfully rode many a mile with us. Notice our attire–it was a touch chilly at over 11,000 feet!
And one last sunset over Paiute Lake on Thursday night after another outstanding meal. Time to pack up and head home.
Bright and early–8am–the north bound rigs were heading out and this southbound rig was right behind them. We aren’t going far, just to North Ranch to see friends and can you believe the Cowboy stopped for the day just west of Flagstaff–WOW–a record for the Cowboy!!!
Our friends are traveling hard, one couple is all ready at home having driven through the Salt Lake City zoo–the other couples will make it home to Montana Saturday or Sunday having taken a longer route to avoid the SLC zoo. It was an outstanding trip with a great group of people–we are so glad we were asked to come along!