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Thread: Boulder Mountain

  1. #1

    Boulder Mountain

    I spent the better part of yesterday behind bars. Handlebars, that is. (See what I did there?) Our group of eight, led by Lyman, explored Boulder Mountain on dirt bikes. I'd previously hiked with all of the group members on different occasions, but this time it was a pleasure to spend some time with and learn from Lyman. Alan and I loaded our motorcycles into his van the previous evening and then left Price early the next morning and met up with some others at Wade's house in Ferron. We staged near the Aquarius Guard Station at the base of Boulder Mountain where we met Lyman and Josh. We got rolling at about 9:45 and headed generally south until picking up a road that led east onto Boulder Top. There were a few interesting stops along the way, including one by me when I dropped my motorcycle while trying to climb out of a rut in the road. Luckily it was my only major mishap of the trip.




    Staging area near the Aquarius Guard Station



    Cabin at the bottom of the Miller Creek Trail



    Dark Valley



    Half-Track at Row Lakes



    Field of dandelions





    This trip was actually supposed to happen the previous weekend but the Forest Service hadn't yet opened the gates onto Boulder Top due to snow drifts. The one-week delay made a big difference and we climbed up onto the plateau without encountering any snow on the road. We lunched at Spectacle Lake and then continued across Boulder Top on the way to Bown's Point. One part of the road along the way crossed through Bakeskillet Lake. Wade braved through it first and then everyone followed. At the next major road junction we ran into a couple of vehicles, one of which was piloted by a good friend of Josh--another one of those "small world" moments.




    Sign at Boulder Top near South Point



    Cabin at Spectacle Lake



    One of several beetles that landed on me



    Spectacle Lake



    Alan and Paul riding through Bakeskillet Lake



    One of these things is not like the others



    Talking to some of Josh's friends that we bumped into



    Stink Draw



    Pot leaf carving



    Cabin near Oak Draw



    Mosquito feeding on me



    Nearing Bown's Point





    The view east from Boulder Mountain is unparallelled. You can get a good taste of it from Highway 12 on the eastern flank of Boulder Mountain, but that's 1,500 to 2,000 feet below where we stood. From Bown's Point we could see Capitol Reef and the Henry Mountains and beyond. Almost every color imaginable is visible in the vegetation and geology for as far as one can see. To get a better view to the north we hiked the Great Western Trail for a short distance.




    Top of stock trail at Bown's Point



    View across Capitol Reef toward the Henry Mountains



    Capitol Reef in the foreground and the San Rafael Reef faintly visible in the distance



    Lower Bown's Reservoir



    Trail sign



    Long Lake



    Blazed tree along the Great Western Trail





    It took some backtracking to the northwest until we hit another road leading east to Chokecherry (Tantalus) Point. It rained for much of that part of the ride, and I think the thunder had at least a few of us worried. The rain eased as we stopped for another hike along the Rim Trail to Chokecherry Point. At the point was a visitor register in a tea tin, but historically there was a different register that was visited by explorers, hunters, sheep and cattle herders, and other pioneers. The view from Chokecherry Point was much the same as from Bown's Point, except one could see farther north from Chokecherry.




    Road across a meadow at Oak Draw



    Road across Oak Draw



    Intersection at Stink Flats



    Road near Chokecherry Point



    Rim Trail leading to Chokecherry Point



    Visitor register at Chokecherry Point



    Cluster of Asteraceae growing in basalt rocks



    Part of the survey tower from 1934



    Fins in Capitol Reef



    Jorgenson Flat





    We took a more direct route back to our vehicles, with a quick stop to hike Bluebell Knoll, the highest point in Wayne County at 11,317' in elevation. It turned out to be my 10th county high point in Utah--only 19 left to go! The mosquitoes were at their worst on Bluebell Knoll, and I'm glad it was late enough in the day that nobody wanted to spend much time there. :) It was an easy gravel road from there back to our vehicles, but we'd seen a huge variety of road conditions during the day. From gravel, dirt, mud, snow, and rocks, we'd seen just about everything except sand and ice. My previous motorcycle experience hadn't prepared me at all for this trip. At the beginning I felt uneasy and always on the edge of control, but by the end of the trip I was cruising easily and feeling completely comfortable on the rough, rocky roads.




    Beef Meadows



    Group photo at the Bluebell Knoll sign



    Gentle uphill climb to Bluebell Knoll



    Geocache at Bluebell Knoll



    Pond southeast of Bluebell Knoll



    Mosquitoes attacking



    View southwest off Boulder Mountain



    GPS at the end of the ride





    Photo Gallery: Boulder Mountain
    GPS Track and Photo Waypoints:
    [Google Earth KMZ] [Gmap4 Satellite] [Gmap4 Topo]
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  4. #2
    Awesome! Looks like a great ride. Excellent photos!


  5. #3
    SHIT U dink now I have to eat my stupiud words with the ATV thing. THe cool part is out on motos nobody gives as rats ass . Now I feel like a real dork.Ask me if I care?
    So can you keep up or are you just getting started?
    WOULD love to show you the other end of things if your up for it. Bikes can go so many more places that an ATV. It just gets more real is all.
    If you want to ride let's ride and if you want an attitude well we just need to do some more ridding.
    Life is good and life is fare.

  6. #4
    Great TR. Sounds like a big day for sure. Those trails down to spectacle lake and out to chokecherry are good stuff. I'll be there in a couple of weeks spending 12 days in August up there. We'll be staying at Posey Lake and day tripping each day on our dirt bikes out to various lakes to fish. Hoping to fish 25-30 lakes over 10 days. Do you have a gps track of your route? I'd be interested in seeing it. Were there any areas that were sketchy or hard on a dirt bike? My brother is fairly inexperienced on a dirt bike and I don't want to get him onto something nasty. How was that 4 wheeler trail between blue bell knoll and spectacle? How was the Dark valley trail? What route did you take from Dark Valley to the Row Lakes?

    Thanks.
    beefcake. BEEFCAKE!

  7. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by nelsonccc View Post
    Great TR. Sounds like a big day for sure. Those trails down to spectacle lake and out to chokecherry are good stuff. I'll be there in a couple of weeks spending 12 days in August up there. We'll be staying at Posey Lake and day tripping each day on our dirt bikes out to various lakes to fish. Hoping to fish 25-30 lakes over 10 days. Do you have a gps track of your route? I'd be interested in seeing it. Were there any areas that were sketchy or hard on a dirt bike? My brother is fairly inexperienced on a dirt bike and I don't want to get him onto something nasty. How was that 4 wheeler trail between blue bell knoll and spectacle? How was the Dark valley trail? What route did you take from Dark Valley to the Row Lakes?

    Thanks.
    12 days on the Boulder sounds awesome! There are links to my track/maps at the bottom of the TR.

    I'm pretty inexperienced as well--this was the roughest terrain I'd ridden. The only parts I remember being difficult were the climb from Row Lakes to Purple Lake and the descent to Chokecherry Point, which were both steep and rocky. The road between Spectacle and Bluebell wasn't bad at all. Dark Valley was pretty easy, though that is the only place where I dropped my bike on this trip while trying to climb out of a rut. From Dark Valley we went through Rock Spring Draw to the 154 road, then up the GWT to Row Lakes.
    Blog | FB

  8. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Udink View Post
    12 days on the Boulder sounds awesome! There are links to my track/maps at the bottom of the TR.

    I'm pretty inexperienced as well--this was the roughest terrain I'd ridden. The only parts I remember being difficult were the climb from Row Lakes to Purple Lake and the descent to Chokecherry Point, which were both steep and rocky. The road between Spectacle and Bluebell wasn't bad at all. Dark Valley was pretty easy, though that is the only place where I dropped my bike on this trip while trying to climb out of a rut. From Dark Valley we went through Rock Spring Draw to the 154 road, then up the GWT to Row Lakes.
    I totally missed the gps tracks. Thanks. Looks like you pretty much went were I thought you had. I'm super excited about the trip for sure. Lots of fishing and scouting for hunting. Should be a good time.
    beefcake. BEEFCAKE!

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