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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-30-2011, 11:57 PM Thread Starter
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the GreenBug takes a vacation

The plan is a fairly simple one: ride from Portland to central Wyoming via the most interesting new routes that can be squeezed into 2 weeks. My old friend Jack will be meeting me in Baker City, OR at the end of day 1 to help string together as many fun routes as we can come up with.

The dirt/gravel roads will come later, first day is all pavement through central Oregon, which happens to have many miles of most excellent twisties and unique high desert scenery.

Getting wet before I get to the end of my street.


The Columbia Gorge is socked in and it's steady rain for the first couple of hours. The only part of my riding gear or luggage that soaked through was my gloves, they'll be a custom fit as they dry while riding.


Clouds have broken up by Mosier, nothing but sunshine for the rest of the trip.


Curvaceous delight heading into Antelope, OR.


Rugged terrain of central OR doesn't lend itself to straight roads.


Sign should read "Journey through a Good time"


Unique geology makes for interesting riding.


Day 1 concludes in Baker City with a little sipping whisky and a good night's rest.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 01:11 AM
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This looks like an awesome ride!
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 01:56 AM
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Your right very interesting geology, great photo's
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 08:35 AM
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I am always amazed at the lack of trees and greenery out west. You can see forever out there. In the southeast it is like riding in a tunnel or one of those test rat mazes most of the time. Definitely going to get out west on two wheels one day.
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 10:50 AM
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 11:21 AM
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Thanks

Thanks for sharing your adventure with us! Look forward to more reports/pics. Enjoy and have fun.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 02:21 PM Thread Starter
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Day 2

The decision was made to check out Hwy 245 and the Mormon Basin, then wing it from there based on how the weather looked.

Who could pass up starting the day with this tasty bit of curvature?






Wasn't sure if this scenic route was paved or not, Not is pretty fun.


Meet Jack. Jack is a big dude. Jack needs a big bike. He has raised the seat on this already tall bike and can still flat foot both feet. Jack can ride the wheels off this huge beast, but fortunately for me he is willing to wait for my slow-pokey ass.


Who says there are no trees out west


A little curious if I have mapped the correct route for this scenic byway, not that it matters much.


Road conditions don't worry Jack much.


Not much traffic here, just what we like, of course.


After a little discussion in Huntington, we decided it was going to get far too hot in the Arco area, so we would head north into the mountains to try and beat the heat.
Exiting the high desert.


Donaldson Pass marks the transition to cooler temps.


There's Jack patiently waiting in the shade.


Looks like a nice place to camp and call it a day.


Big dude also needs a big tent.


Fire, cigars, whisky. We're gonna need more whisky.
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 05:42 PM
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I'm watching this thread like a hawk as it something I've always wanted to do. What was the traction on gravel like with a full load using those tires?
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrittB View Post
I'm watching this thread like a hawk as it something I've always wanted to do. What was the traction on gravel like with a full load using those tires?
I'm far from an expert on off-pavement tire performance, I can only say that these tires caused no problems on the 500 miles of dirt/gravel we rode on this trip and I was very pleased with the handling in many miles of paved twisties.
Unless you encounter a bunch of mud, I suspect most tires will work fine for a trip like this. Just get out there and enjoy where you live.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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Day 3

Out of the mountains and onto the highway to Horsehoe Bend, some dirt to Idaho City and north to Challis.

All of the lakes and streams we've passed are running unusually high water this year, Payette river is no exception.


This Forest Service road out of Horseshoe Bend repeatedly scared the bejesus out of me, the dry pancake mix consistency would get pushed into deep piles and get you sideways in a heartbeat. Scenic but too many ass clenching moments.


Mile after mile of chicken strip removal on Highway 21.


Sawtooth Mountains




Lunch with a view


Bighorn sheep on the Salmon river road headed to Shoup




High winds had us staking down the tents, helped keep the skeeters at bay, though.


Possibility of a storm blowing in, could make the 70 miles of dirt road to Shoup an interesting experience.
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 01:13 AM
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Looks like a Awesome ride.

Thanks for sharing and say "HI to Jack" too.

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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 01:08 PM
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 01:41 PM
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Talking Wow!!!!!!!!!!!...

we are with you guys!....
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Day 4

No overnight rain, clear skies and...frosty. No such thing as a warm summer night in the high country. Thank goodness for the longjohns and stocking cap I packed, cuz the micro light bag wouldn't have cut it.


Early morning temp was soon perfect for riding. headed for Shoup ID via Morgan Creek rd.


Then onto Panther creek rd.


The previous night's high winds left a lot of blowdown in our path. Fortunately this fisherman had cleared a path on most of the trees prior to our arrival. Jack assists with the handsaw while I, umm, take a pic.


Forest fire containment. Three helicopters picked up water here but this big boy was the coolest.




Crossing the Continental Divide at Lemhi Pass on our way to SW Montana.




Looking down onto MT's Horse Prairie


Bannack MT, the first territorial capital


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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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Day 5

Plan for today is about 100 miles of gravel up the Blacktail road, through the Centennial valley to Island Park, then pavement to Ashton ID to ride the Flagg ranch road into Teton National Park and camp somewhere near Jackson WYO.

A beautiful morning in MT along the Blacktail road.




Bicyclist gets a coating of dust in the Centennial valley


The only mechanical malfunction on either bike in the 3000 miles of this trip. Jack tightens a loose mirror in front of what's left of the 7L ranch. The rain gear is mosquito defense.


Another crossing of the Continental Divide


Grand Tetons on the Ashton-Flagg ranch road




Polecat creek


Setting up camp at sundown.


Road construction on Togwotee Pass appeared to run 24hrs.


Pretty nice view from camp
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post #16 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2011, 11:45 PM Thread Starter
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Day 6

Sunrise on Mt. Moran and the skillet glacier


View from the ascent to Union Pass near Dubois, WY


Remnants of recent snowdrifts at the summit


The advantages of standing while riding rougher terrain are slowly dawning on me




Tricked yet again by Mapsource


This is the road we wanted, eventually leading to Pinedale


Pinedale to Big Sandy and the Lander cutoff, freeway speeds on dirt, whoda thunk it


Incredibly fun road with great views of the Wind River range




The other direction gives a look at the wide open spaces of the big empty. A lot of history e.g, Oregon Trail in this area


This road takes me right to my parents doorstep and the turnaround point of this trip.
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post #17 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-24-2011, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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Day 7

Well it's taken a while to get back to finish up this report. Between settling back into a steady grind at work and making a bunch of changes to the V, spare time has been in short supply.

Day 7 of riding is now solo, Jack headed back to Montana while I visited family for several days. I'll be sticking more to the beaten path for the return trip so camping gear was packed and shipped home.

Crowheart Butte. Back when disputes were settled old school.




Badlands near Dubois


I hadn't intended on wandering up any dirt roads, but this road tempted with a clear view of the mountains on Togwotee Pass. About 15 miles back in the sticks I noticed some peculiar tracks in the road, having seen and heard innumerable bear warnings, it didn't take much effort to freak myself out Cowboyed up long enough to take a few pics and then hauled ass for civilization.



Panorama turned out pretty good for being so jumpy



Another scenic dirt side trip to Brooks Lake


Can't beat the scenery as you roll into Jackson, WY


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post #18 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-25-2011, 04:27 AM
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Terrific, thanks for posting.

Good luck exploring the infinite abyss
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post #19 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-25-2011, 08:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comments, folks

Found the time to squeeze in a GreenBug mini vacation before the weather turns to crap. Took 5 days to make a big loop around Oregon, the only real destination being the Steens Mts in SE OR.

A few changes were first necessary both to the V and to my camping gear. The stock setup wasn't working that great for standing up, mostly on long stretches of rough washboard gravel road.

Relief on that issue in the form of Rox risers, SW Motech pegs and switching to a smaller tank bag than the Wolfman Explorer.




My homemade mudflap made for tight clearance at the tire and it rubbed during the trip to Wyo and cracked the fender. Some JB Weld and raising the fender was next. Had to upgrade brake lines front and rear for good measure.


My ancient old eMap wasn't cutting the mustard either, hello Garmin 76CSX


Camping gear in need of update: thermarest pad and old sleeping bag. Replaced with an Exped and Big Agnes, more comfy and packed much smaller. Also added a lightweight camp chair from Alite, worked great.


Finished off the luggage/packing changes with a SWM rack and Sears top case.


Ready to go exploring!
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post #20 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-25-2011, 09:26 PM Thread Starter
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Day 1
Portland to Prineville

Many times had eyeballed a dirt turnout just past Antelope, Or with a "man, that looks like a fun road" thought from my street only bike. Time to check it out.


Grass fires and forest fires were rampant from recent lightning strikes, had to take extra care to keep the exhaust from the tinder dry grass/weeds.


Taking a shady break on Gosner road


Scoping out the road ahead, nice packed dirt, no worries.


A little lesson from nature, adapt to the situation and carry on






Cherry Creek ranch road. There is a little water crossing down in that gap that had me pretty sideways on the get-out. It was about then I decided to pack my electronics in ziploc next trip.


Painted hills


Camping on the Crooked River


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