Friday, January 27, 2017

A short ride to the Royal Arch.


The Last Time.

About a week ago I lead Sue, Denis, Lise, Frank, Jo Ann and Dave over Red Rock Pass and made a loop through the Hovatter Ranch.
I tried to find The Royal Arch on that drive but it was getting late and I wasn’t sure if I was on the correct trail at that time so decided to turn around and head for home.

Lets Go Back.

I talked to Denis later and he expressed a desire to go back and find the arch. We decided to go there on Thursday (yesterday). We decided to meet at the Arco Station at 12:30.

New People.

Patti is still sick with this bad cold she has been fighting for almost a week now so I had to go alone.

I got to the Arco around 12:15, topped off the fuel and went across the street where three jeeps awaited my arrival.
I didn’t recognize one of the jeeps, a red four door XJ.
This jeep belonged to another French Canadian couple, Marcelle and Pierre. Also there was Lise, Frank, Sue and Denis; all speaking French.
This is going to be a long “short” day.

The Ride.

Once we were introduced we headed out.
We took I-10 to Vicksburg Road where we stopped to air down.
Once we were done with that we continued south on Vicksburg Road for 7 miles to the pipeline road. Here we turned east and followed the pipeline for about 3 miles. Here we turned south and drove to the Bob Crowder Dam.


Counting the Miles.

I know that the trail I want is 2.6 miles from this dam so here I zeroed my odometer.
After a short break we continued south on Hovatter Road.
At 2.6 miles we came to BLM trail 04. Here I reset the odometer again. I knew that the next trail we wanted was 3 miles down this trail. We turned east and followed this trail.


At 3 miles we were supposed to find a trail going south. When the odometer got to 3 miles I looked for a trail going south and found one so I turned right and followed this trail for a little ways. As it turned out this wasn’t the correct trail so I turned around and went back to the trail we left.
While I was looking for the trail, Frank called on the radio and said that he had found the trail about 50 yards back.

Back on the Trail

We turned south on the trail that Frank had found.
We followed this trail south for a few miles and I could see a small arch in the distance.


The Royal Arch.

I knew we were on the right track and once we drove around that mountain we came to the Royal Arch.


We stood around here for a while taking pictures and eating peanuts.

Heading Home.

After a bit, we left the Royal Arch and continued on the trail until we came back to Hovatter Road. Here we turned north and headed back to the intersection of Vicksburg Road and I-10.
We aired up here and headed west on I-10 to Quartzsite.

It was another fun ride with lots of nice scenery.


Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Wednesday Ride 01/25.


This time we met in front of Freda and Gene’s house at 9:00.
They live at the north west end of town.
This time there were six jeeps and Dennis M is the leader.

As soon as we left there we turned north on Boyer Gap Rd. It is a wide graded dirt road.


The road goes by the golf course.
A little ways past the golf course we turned west on a smaller trail.


We followed this trail through the rolling desert hills.


Eventually we got onto a ridge and followed it toward the mountains in the west.


As we approach the mountains the trail gets rougher.


The trail goes through some interesting rocks.


This spot is a drivers choice. The hard way is through the rocks,


The easy way is around the rocks.

Most of us went through the rocks.


We continued along the trail…


Past the Marble Quarry and into a wash where we stopped for lunch.


After lunch we headed north toward the Darling Mine. Along the trail we saw some Bighorn Sheep grazing on the mountainside.


The trail to the mine is kind of rough.


We all made it to the top.


The most interesting thing about this mine besides the rugged trail is the colors in the tailings.


On the way down Dennis K got hung up on a large boulder in the trail.


We were so involved in getting Dennis’s jeep off the rock that I forgot to take pictures.

Once we got back to the main trail we continued north to visit another mine.

I don’t know the name of this mine but it has tome cement foundations…


and a couple of deep dangerous looking shafts.


From here we headed south and drove around the mountains and over Diablo Pass.


We dropped into the La Paz Valley and the west side of Quartzsite.


Another good day and a fun ride. I’ll sure be glad when Patti gets better and can go with me again.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Another Ride in California.


Three Jeeps.

There were only three jeeps going on this ride.
Frank was leading us today.
Patti is sick with a cold so I am by myself today.
Sue and Denis are also with us.

We met at the Carl’s Jr. on the west end of town.

On Our Way.

Once we were all there we headed west on I-10 to Blythe, CA.


We took Intake Blvd exit and headed north on US 95.


The Intaglio.


When we got to the trail to the Blythe Intaglio,we turned left and drove to the parking area for the Intaglio to air down the tires.


We were here last year so I didn’t take any pictures of the Intaglio this time.

After airing up we continued along this trail for a mile or so then turned left onto a small two track trail that went up onto a ridge.


The ridge overlooks a large wash on both sides.


On the right side you get a nice view of some rugged mountains to the west.


We crossed the deep wash on the left side.


After crossing the wash we continued to head west.


Wilderness Areas.

These trails skirt the Big Mary Wilderness.


There are a lot of signs but they can be a bit confusing as to which side of the sign the wilderness is on.
The above sign is a little less ambiguous than most.

We continued along the trail heading for the mountains.


The trail eventually drops us into a wash which we follow for a mile or so.


A Play Spot.

As we wandered along we came to a place with some large stones in the way.


There is an easy way around the rocks but we  subscribe to the mantra… ”Its only a rock. Get over it”; so we did.



We continued up the wash and eventually climbed out of it and ended up at a large Quarry where we found a place that was kind of out of the wind to have lunch.


After lunch.

After lunch we drove back into the wash…


where we continued in a more or less westerly direction trying to find our way through the mountains.

Patton’s Army.

Back during the second world war Gen. George Patton had a immense training facility here in the desert both on the California side and the Arizona side of the Colorado River.

We came across an old camp area for the army. The only thing left is a rusty pile of concertina wire. The tin cans are tied to the wire to make noise if some on tries to get through it.


A little further along I saw some old bed frames which I didn’t get pictures of.

Eventually we climbed out of the wash toward the Mountains.


After a while the trail smoothed out so we could move right along.


A Calcium Carbonate Mine.

We wandered along for a while and eventually climbed into the hills where we came to a place where they were quarrying Calcium Carbonate.


There is quite a wall of the stuff here.


Heading For Home.

We hung around here for a little while checking out the rocks and the view. Then headed down the mountain.


In less than a half an hour we were back to the pavement. We came out onto Lovekin Blvd. on the north side of Blythe. We stopped to air up the tires and then headed for home.


By the time I got home it was starting to rain.

It was another fun ride but I did miss having Patti with me. Hopefully she will be feeling better soon.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

A Short Ride to the Plomosa Mountains. Old and New Trails.


Lots of Cold, Wind and Rain.

It has been raining for the last couple of days and it has been very cold with a cold wind blowing from the southwest.

We haven’t been doing much, due to the inclement weather. Fortunately, yesterday (Saturday) the sun came out and the temperature warmed up to the high 50’s.

I’m bored; lets take a ride.

Around 11:00 I couldn’t take it anymore and told Patti that I was bored and needed to take a ride somewhere.
By 11:30 we went to get gas in the jeep.

An Old Trail.

Several years ago we took a ride through some red rock hills just a short distance off Plomosa Road at around Mile Marker 11. I have tried a couple of times to find that trail without success.

I was determined to find it so yesterday we drove out  Sunkist Road…


and followed it to Plomosa Road where we turned northeast.


We drove on Plomosa Road to just past mile marker 11. Here we turned west toward the red rock mountains.


When we got to the hills we turned right and followed a trail that goes along the east side.


We tried a side trail that looked like it might got through the hills.


Unfortunately the trail ended here so we turned around and went back to the original track.

The trail went up off the valley floor and we had a nice view of the mountains to the east.


Eventually we found a trail that went into a narrow canyon.


We followed this trail passing some interesting rock outcrops.


Eventually we came out on the west side of the rocky hills onto the rolling desert.


We drove through a wash that went around the west side of the hills.


We drove through another gap in the rocky hills and drove around the north end of the range.


Taking a Break.

We stopped for a short break and decided to head for the Four Peaks. We would go through the pass there and head for home.


I always enjoy riding around in these mountains as they are so beautiful.


Sand Dunes.

On the west side of the Four Peaks the trail goes through some sand dunes.


We noticed that the Ocotillo’s were starting to get their leaves.


The sand dunes looked like they were pretty torn up.


But with the recent rains they were packed down and pretty easy to go through.

A New Trail.

I have noticed a trail that can be seen along the hills in the east while going through the dunes.
I have often wondered how to get on this trail but never found a track going in that direction.
This year the BLM has been putting new trail signs and while we were going along I happened to notice one off to the left a ways.

I didn’t see any tracks going toward the sign but drove over to it anyway. The sign read 42A← 42 →. It was hard to see the trail but we took the right 42 and found it going into a wash. We followed this trail to where it forked; we took the left fork and ended up at this interesting rock.


We went back the way we came and followed the other fork to its end at a saddle with a nice view.


We turned around and found another trail going along the hillside. This is the one that can be seen from the sand dunes. We followed it for a while and came to the end above a big wash.


From here we went back along the trail and around the hills. This trail took us into the wash.


We followed this wash west and eventually came back to the main trail where we turned left and after about a mile came to Plomosa Road  where we headed for home.

It was a fun ride and was nice to just be Patti and I on our own.