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-   -   Dolores Triangle 16-20 Oct 2012 (http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/forum2/showthread.php?t=18680)

MountainGoat 10-22-2012 09:12 PM

Dolores Triangle 16-20 Oct 2012
 
Had a great adventure out in the Dolores Triangle last week. Left Conifer on Tuesday morning and headed for Grand Junction first to visit my brother and hopefully collect him to go along with me. No dice. It was to be a solo trip into the great unknown.

After a brief visit I went over my itinerary with him and left GJ about 3:30pm, starting the first leg, GJ to Dewey via Glade Park on DS Road. The plan was to find a good campsite on the Colorado River before dark.

Here is my off highway route for Day 1:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dt/dtday1.jpg

Here are some shots from this portion:

Grand Junction and Grand Mesa from the Monument:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-1.jpg

First look at the La Sal Mountains from DS road, about 45 minutes from GJ:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-2.jpg

Some of the varied landscape en route to the Colorado River on DS Road:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-3.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-4.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-5.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-6.jpg

At about an hour 20 and minutes from GJ I came to the river and started looking for campsites:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-7.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-8.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday1-9.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-10.jpg

After hitting many dead ends I finally found a killer campsite right on the river:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-11.jpg

Some views from camp:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-12.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-13.jpg

Camp even had a crapper!
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-14.jpg

A few more shots in & around camp:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-15.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-16.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-17.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-18.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday1-19.jpg

Had a good night’s sleep listening to the river. There was, however, some odd splashing going on out there. It was strange camping alone. I fell asleep with visions of Gollum crawling up the bank toward my truck …

To be continued.

Caribou Sandstorm 10-22-2012 09:26 PM

Nice scouting run and Solo... Impressive.. Glad to see you at City Market on Friday. You did not stick around long enough for me to buy you a Starbucks..:D

Fishy 10-22-2012 10:36 PM

Wow Dan! Nice job on the solo run! Man, there were some awesome trips this week. Makes the SNR pale in comparison......:(

Jacket 10-23-2012 08:40 AM

:popcorn:

jonharis 10-23-2012 02:18 PM

Beautiful!

CardinalFJ60 10-23-2012 02:26 PM

what a cool trip!
 
looks like a fantastic time! From what little we saw last spring, it seemed pretty un-tracked. Was it still quiet out there?

and! Great pics!! :thumb:

MDH33 10-23-2012 06:41 PM

:cool:


Lucky you! :D

MountainGoat 10-23-2012 10:31 PM

Thanks guys. Yes Shawn, I only saw the road grading crew out there until Friday. Deer season started on Saturday, so the west side was lousy with hunters Friday evening.

On with the report.

Day 2 – Colorado River Camp to Dewey Bridge to Grand Junction via Kokopelli

I woke up early, had to wait for it to get light. Grabbed a cup of coffee and heard a hubbub on the river.

It was just some ducks:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-1.jpg

A few minutes later something moved on the river. I saw it out of the corner of my eye:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-2.jpg

WTF? There were 2 of them:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-3.jpg

They were otters!
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-4.jpg

That explained the splashing in the night. It was not in fact Gollum fishing.

Alright. My plan for the day was to make my way south to the Lake Bottom ford and cross the Dolores. Proceed to Dewey and determine my best next move depending on the time. Get cell service to check in and communicate my itinerary before proceeding. Priorities change when you are going it alone!

Here is my route from camp to Dewey:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dt/dtday2.jpg

Here are some shots from this portion:

Looking back toward camp:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-5.jpg

Same shot zoomed in on campsite:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-6.jpg

My route paralleled the river, so I did a bit of side road exploring:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-7.jpg

Found a decent desert campsite off the river:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-8.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo...t/dtday2-9.jpg

And a few nice ones on the river:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-10.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-11.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-12.jpg

Then I hit the mother lode. This spot was right on the river and could easily house 20 or 30 trucks:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-13.jpg

And it comes with a tire swing:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-14.jpg

And a ready stock of firewood:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-15.jpg

Don’t forget the fire pit (bigger than my truck):
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-16.jpg

Some more shots of Mega Camp
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-17.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-18.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-19.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-20.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-21.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-22.jpg

Reluctantly I headed back out to the main road and continued south:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-23.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-24.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-25.jpg

Arrived at the intersection. Left to Granite Creek and Gateway via Sheep Creek, right to the river and Dewey Bridge:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-26.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-27.jpg

Some shots along this stretch:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-28.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-29.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-30.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-31.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-32.jpg

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-33.jpg

Crossed the Dolores at Lake Bottom in the usual spot. Water was only about hub deep.

Arrived at Entrada Bluffs next to Dewey:
http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uplo.../dtday2-34.jpg

Based on the time and fuel gauge I determined that my best move would be to run the Kokopelli backwards to Grand Junction, refuel and spend the night there. I took zero pictures on this leg mainly because a) I was trying to make time and b) my iPhone GPS decided to demonstrate its inability to lock a signal if you are driving any direction except south. Route finding was difficult and there was a lot of guesswork involved. Lesson learned.

I did find most of the route and ran it. It seemed a little too close to civilization after my time out in the Triangle. I even saw people for the first time since leaving GJ! Anyway, I bailed off the Kokopelli at Harley Dome, which is the first I70 exit in Utah. It was getting dark and I didn’t want to chance it on fuel running solo. Made it back to GJ and planned up for the next day: GJ to Moab via Granite Creek, Sheep Creek, Gateway and John Brown Canyon. Hopefully I can get that section posted up tomorrow. :hill:

Jacket 10-24-2012 08:44 AM

Damn. I think you found the future spot for a pre-Moab gathering. Nice!

wesintl 10-24-2012 09:26 AM

ah.. another area I need to explore.

Nice one MountainGoat :thumb:


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