Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Bunny trax and frozen water

 Welcome to the Christmas edition of my writing. As is usual for me and mine, we like to take on adventures for holidays and today is no exception. I have acquaintances that own large tracks of land in western Box Elder county so I had asked one gentleman about a certain road that I was sure went through his land. I was right and today we chose to drive his property just for the hell of it. We did that in record time, kinda boring, then we headed out west to Locomotive Springs. This area was a stop on the Central Pacific's rail line due to the fresh water spring. There have been buildings just beyond the spring I had never visited, so today was the day. Above is what I am sure is forge building of some type. It has a dirt floor and a huge chimney with a type of spark resistant cover on it.  
This other building appeared to be some type of office. It actually had carpet at one time and paneling on the walls. I honestly cannot say if these buildings were up when the trains were going by. There are 2 box cars on the grounds, but they are not of the age to be part of the era of trains from the late 1800's. This route was finished for the most part in 1904, I believe. At that time, they moved the line to a long-ass bridge across the Great Salt Lake. The rails were left in place till 1942, when they were pulled up and the steel was used to make tanks and planes for world war 2. The rails are gone, but it is an interesting ride to follow the rail bed from Promontory Point out across the desert to Nevada and beyond.  
 For those of you who love the hunt, there were thousands of bunny trax out there at the springs. I like to keep an eye out for things like this just because a great bunny hunt is a great time. So, if you are in th mood to shoot, by all means head out to Locomotive Springs and enjoy it!
I guess I can't talk about the springs without showing you a foto of them. This is where they come up from the ground and make the tiny lake. It goes out beyond sight to be nearly 1/2 mile long. There was ice covering the water, so I threw a rock into the ice and wow...... fish took off everywhere. I know it is stocked during the warmer weather months and these were tiny baby fish so come spring, I bet the fishing will be great. OK, so next holiday is new years and I wont be heading out anywhere..... cuz on Friday the 3rd, we are headed out to Wendover to see 38 Special! But, on Saturday morning, being as we will be so close to Gold Hill, we just might visit it! Happy Holidays and Jeep on my friends! 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Lets write about nothing in particular.......

 Well here it is November and there hasn't been an adventure in such a long time. Why you ask? Well probably because school has me tied up. All I do is work, go to school and study. Fun life huh? Not really, but you gotta do what you gotta do. Someday I hope to use this schooling to do something fun. Anyway, the above foto is the mystery machine. I looked up the manufacture and there were 2 companies with the same name. Go Figure??? Anyway, I sent fotos to each of them and both of them had no idea what it was or who made it. Even Penn State got into the act and couldn't figure out what it was. Someday I might just steal it and bring it home and dissect it.
 The above foto is a vehicle I would love to own. It is a genuine REO Speedwagon tow truck. I don't really need it as a tow truck, but it sure would be fun just to have one. This one was located in La Paz, Uruguay. It would be nice to be able to go back and bring it home. It is such a classic. 
This is my favorite Miss T and Bob on the tube at Bear Lake this past summer. It was Sam's birthday so we decided to have some fun on the lake. We had a great time considering the boat died for half an hour out in the middle of the lake. It made for a great adventure. We should do it again. 
The last and final foto is Little Red at the top of Black Bear Pass. It was taken in August and that is fresh snow from the night before. Ouray is such a fun place to visit and Jeep! I really love going there and exploring. It seems that Moab might be next years big adventure. We have been watching YouTube videos on all the trails there and Hell's Revenge is on the to do list. Also, I change the template of my blog. What do you think? Oh well, time for more homework.... Jeep on my friends!

Friday, October 18, 2013

A trip to the past, and the not so past!

 Today's trip was a rerun of sort. We headed back out the Devils Playground to find a mine we knew was there, but didn't know exactly where. We do now. As you can see, the opening is right there waiting to be explored. This mine was the modern one of the day we visited. I am guessing it was late 70's or early 80's. Why you ask? I used my powers of deduction. OK, I'm lying. There are many modern things at this mine site. There is an old trailer with a 1982 registration tag on it. 
 This is some sort of air tank for something. The hose went down into the black abyss of no return. There seems to be some sort of mine cart system. About 25 feet in, there was a set of hydraulic controls with a cable. There is also track on the ground that comes up and out of the mouth and rises up over the ground. I am thinking that they winched the cars out and then dumped them in to the carts in the foto below. 
 The ore cart above is an overhead tram type, so I am thinking that the ore cars came out and were elevated so they could dump in these cart and go down the mountain. There isn't much left of any type of tramway but I really believe this was the method of taking the ore down to the mini mill. The mini mill is really trashed but you can get the idea of what they did. Behind the building are 2 bins. One got filled by the tram and then fed the other via a conveyor belt. After that, I'm kind of at a loss to where it went, but, I do know its final destination.
 I screwed the pooch when I put the fotos on here so be patient with me. It's to big of a pain in the ass to change fotos on here so it is what it is. The final final destination is above. It is called a shaker table. It separates the heavy gold from all the other rocks and shit and you get rich, one hopes, when it is finished shaking. It is basically a large mining pan that is powered. Water flows over it and its a really neat process to watch. Especially when you see lots of yellow dust.
 Back tracking led us to the piece of equipment above. This is what is known as a crusher, a very tiny basic one. The miners would throw the ore bearing rocks into the opening, and then add some sort of heavy steel. Some used metal bars or round balls. What they used is long gone so I can't help you there. After it is loaded, it is turned on and the metal spins round and round and crushes the rocks into a powder that can be put on the shaker table. It is a very noisy process in a large scale operation. As for this one, I'm sure it made some noise but not a lot. Now, why did this site get abandoned?  I am thinking that they ran out of usable ore. Em has a busted foot so we couldn't really go to far into the mine. Someday we will return and see where the tunnel goes. Then maybe we will have our answer.
 Now for a blast to the past. This mine is located 20 miles from the above one and is a lot older. There are no clues to its age, But I am guessing it is early 20th century. This one is flat for the most part so we were able to go in a ways. It is quite interesting to go in and see the old drill holes and wax on the walls from the candles. What is even neater is turning off the flashlight and being in total darkness. I mean you can't see shit. Many people say, well I wave my hand in front of my eyes and I see something. WRONG! That is an optical illusion your brain teases you with. In total darkness, you can't see a thing. 
This last foto is us coming back out. There is another mine almost directly above this one. It too is another one to visit once the better half's foot heals. On a side note, we met the hidden cabin's owners great grandsons. They were out hiking around the mines and we chatted with them for a few. Seems there are even more mines out there I don't know about. I guess this means we have to go back and do some more exploring. We ended the day on a new road north of the playground. It took us up to Ingham pass then up to the top of the mountain. What a view! Gas was getting low so again, a return trip is needed. Anyone wanna go?  Jeep on my friends!

Monday, September 2, 2013

A trip back in time

 Welcome to another grand adventure as we travel back in time to the dinosaur age! This trip was the grand finale, so to speak, of our summer adventures. For those of you who don't know, we inherited another son a week or so back. His name is Wyatt and he is Em's nephew. He is big into dinosaurs so we decided to show him one of Utah's best places for adventure: Dinosaur National Park. We left early Friday morning and drove directly to the visitors center at the park. The shuttle was waiting and we hopped aboard for the quick drive to the quarry. Inside the building is a wall of fossilized dino bones and some very cool replicas of some of the animals themselves. I can't recall the above guys name so we'll just call him Frank.  The wall in the quarry has over 100 different bones of all types of dinosaurs and you can even touch some of them!
Upon leaving the main area of the park, we headed out to a part of the park named Island Park. Along this road there are a few spots where you can check out some of the ancient Indian writings carved into the rocks. Sharp eyed Noah spotted these ones and they were quite interesting to look at. I had a discussion with a professor Wednesday night who believes that these are religious drawings. I countered back with my belief that they are drawings of history. Let me explain. I think that after a special event such as a hunt or battle, the Indians recorded the event. Hell, we all do it today one way or another. Some of you write journals or diaries and some of us go public doing online blogs. That's my opinion and I am sticking to it.

 Day 2 took 4 of us out on a long hundred mile journey of exploration. Before I begin I need to say how shitty the trail markings are out in the area. Following the maps provided by the government were a joke along with very few signs marking the outer trails. That said, we headed out to Crouse canyon that the rangers swore required a high clearance vehicle. Ya, right. After finding a nice lady in a Jeep who knew where we were going, we began a long day of play. I was counting on the Gopro to do the Crouse canyon part of this trip but........ it decided it didn't want to play. So, I do believe this means another trip out there is in store. The highlight of Crouse canyon is after you finish it. You have 2 choices: left to a normal bridge across the Green river or right, where you get to cross using an old suspension bridge. We went right. This bridge has a sign saying that 400 sheep, 200 cows or a 3.5 ton vehicle can use  it. It is a very sturdy bridge but, it swings while you drive across it. It is a very odd feeling swaying above the river while you hear creaking noises coming from below the Jeep. Lucky for us, Emily had her phone out and we do have a record of us doing it.  After that excitement we headed out to an old historic ranch along side the river. The tiny museum there had the grave marker you see above. Wow, shot dead. Wild times in wild country.
 The ranch was neat visit. They had tons of cool stuff in the old general store there. And their bottle collection had me lusting like no tomorrow. The history of the ranch tells tales of outlaws who visited and sometimes worked there. The owner was a friend to them till a pair of crooks decided that hospitality wasn't enough and shot and robbed him. I can see why he stayed where he did. This area of the green river is so beautiful. I would have stayed there too. I wish I had brought a fishing pole. As you can see, the river is just perfect to wade out into and cast your line for dinner. I need to go back.
Further on, we ran into a sign that told of the "3 corners" area. In Utah, most folks know of the "4 corners" area: where UT, Co,AZ and NM join together.  The "3" area  is Utah, Colorado and Wyoming. This was the best off road trail of the whole trip. Had it been muddy, it might have proved to be a challenge but it wasn't so yah...... easy! After that we took the scenic route home to the hotel via Flaming Gorge. Wow! I never realized that this area was so beautiful. It sits high in the pine forests with some really nice rock formations for shore line. Again, this requires a trip back. I think a boat rental to explore and fish would be a great couple of days. 
     Sunday had us returning to the park itself and taking some of the back trails for more Indian graffiti. There were 3 great foto ops and a whole bunch of dirt roads that were begging to be explored. Ya, I have to go back. One last bit of info..... if you stop at the rest stop just before Duchesne, beware of the Nazi cleaning bitch. We stopped long enough to pee and grab some sweatshirts. There were 3 cars in the lot and I pulled down to the farthest end and parked sideways. Boy, talk about coming unglued at the seams. I heard about it going in the door, pissing and going back out the door. Hell's bells, she reminded me of the soup Nazi on Seinfeld. Other than that, the trip was awesome. I do recommend that you go out there and see what's there. You won't be disappointed. Jeep on my friends!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A trip to Providence

 Saturday afternoon found us once again at the base of the mountain in Providence Utah. I say once again because a week prior had found us in the same spot. The canyon had been closed for some time and I had decided that they had closed it to make it another Subaru trail. It seemed that was true. We arrived at the water fall on a Subaru trail. Life was good. The foto does nothing for the actual beauty of the falls, but I tried. As we left the falls and headed up the trail, my mind was soon changed. We had ourselves a good old, ass kickin'. rock crawling trail.  It was 4-lo from the get-go and hold on tight time. The rocks were big and very loose so we slipped and slid our way to the top. Well, being dumb, I had left the cameras at home so we couldn't document our trip. So, we did our re-visit yesterday with both the gopro and the picture camera. I only took 4 fotos  because the gopro was running the whole time. So, at the end, I will add the addy so you can see how it really was.
 The first trip up, we went over to Logan peak and then down through right hand fork. Yesterday, I decided to make it interesting and we came down through Millville canyon. It's a lovely canyon with it's own personality. The trail is steep and very narrow in spots. As you get about half way down, the above sign shows up. It is kind of ironic that they don't put one at the top of the trail. Oh well, it wasn't a big deal. Old Yellow had no problems with either trail.  

The views from the top of all these canyons are incredible. You can see forever from the tops of the mountains and it is so breathtaking. I guess most people would rather look online or in magazines to see these views. As for me and my better half, we would rather see them up close and personal. It's really rather nice that people don't want to see them up close: it leaves more room on the trails for us......
Jeep on my friends!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

A new discovery!

July 24th, a day off and a holiday. So, you know what that means....... Jeep trip! We began the day stopping at Sam's house to drop off her wedding gift and finally meet Daisy..... that dog is gonna be huge! Then it was off to the Oquirrh mountains and the Dry canyon trail to Jacob city. As you may recall, we tried it earlier this year and got cut off by snow. Not this time. It was a balmy 84 degrees and mostly overcast, so  it was perfect weather to Jeep. I did manage to find one lonely mud hole and cover all 3 of us in it. The mesh top saved us from total annihilation. The canyon was quiet and we made it up with no problems. I've been visiting this place for many years and it is slowly going away. The above ore dump is pretty much all that's left.
With all the rain we have  had the last 2 weeks, the flowers have begun to bloom. I have no idea what this is but it's kinda pretty. There are a lot of purple and yellow flowers showing now. Along with the flowers comes bee's, and I mean big bee's. Some of them were as big as my thumb. I tried to get a foto of them on the flowers but I just didn't have any luck today.
 This pile of lumber and steel was once the dump chute for the hidden treasure mine. It was one of the structures that was still standing when I first started visiting the area. Between mother nature and I'm sure man, you can see it no longer stands as a testament to the men who mined here. It's really sad to see the past disappearing. I really wish I could have seen the area in it's heyday. There were supposedly 3000 people working and living here. It would have been a sight to see.
 Up above the mine, way up the mountain, you can look down upon Rush valley and the chemical destroying depot. If you ever go up there at night, sit some place you see the valley below. As soon as darkness falls, the plant turns on the lighted fence and it is an awesome site. It is so big that you can watch the lights turn on and encircle the place. It is hard to describe, so I suggest you see it for yourself!
We took a trail I hadn't ever finished and did we score big! I hit a home run. This trail will take you over the top and down into Ophir. A miner once told me there were a whole bunch of mine buildings above there and sure enough, there are! The trail went from piss poor to shitty, so I didn't venture down into the area but, as MacArthur once said......I will return. The views were so incredible from up there. We could see Rush valley completely as well as southern Utah county and Utah lake. I wish somehow the fotos could project this image but alas, they just don't do it.  The trip down was uneventful until we up with Ass-Munch Chevy driver. As is known in the the Jeeping and 4X4 community, the vehicle going up has the right of way. So, Ass is coming up, so I stop and begin to back up a single vehicle wide trail. Mind you, its a very steep drop off.... and instead of being patient, he rides my bumper all the way. I damn near stopped and taught him some manners but I figured why bother.... he drives a Chevy, that's punishment enough! I also filmed a lot of this trip but me and the video program are not speaking now. Maybe some later time we will agree on things and I will post the video..... Jeep on my friends!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A trip to the top!

 Welcome to another adventure ! Today was fathers day, so we decided to  head out to the top of northern Utah. This trail begins at Mantua and heads up to what is known as Inspiration point. The trail used to be a good rock crawling trail, but alas, the tree hugging, Subaru driving, head ranger lady bitch has made it into a boring trail. It's very sad when you see mini vans up where they shouldn't be. Though, they wont be going up soon..... there were a couple of nice deep mud holes that wouldn't take to kindly to mini vans at this point in time. Anyway, the above foto was taken on the trail up. It shows part of Pineview dam off in the distance. 
 Once you reach the top, the view is endless. This is looking back over the way we came. I have a few other fotos that I took but i liked this one. There are still patches of snow here and there, but nothing to bad. The one gnarly mud hole was a blast to play in and I really wished there had been more of them.
 This is Willard peak. It is the highest point in Box Elder county. Inspiration point is the the trail head to hike up to the peak. I have never done the hike and I really don't think I ever will. I am just too fat and old. From the point I was able to take fotos with the telephoto lens of Ogden, Logan and Tremonton. I also had the gopro video going, but the battery died before we got to the top. Stupid thing! So, we ordered 2 new batteries and a charger so this doesn't happen again. 
Down in the valley below the peak, there is a small picnic area with tables. We actually did it right this time and brought food. Nothing like a good meal while you are Jeeping. The trip down was uneventful and for once, we didn't see any animals, other than a few squirrels and chipmunks. Being sort of a holiday weekend, we did see plenty of humans. Not my favorite animal to see but what can you do?  'Twas a great day though and I cant wait to return and follow some of the trails that leave the main one. Jeep on my friends!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

To hell and back, with a side trip.........

 Buenas burritos and welcome to yet another summer adventure. Today's trip was out to hell, and back. OK, lets simplify this. The trip today was out to the Devil's Playground, thus the reference to hell. The Playground is an area in Box Elder county that had some of the strangest rock formations out there. If I remember correct, the stone is soft granite and Mother Nature has very little trouble shaping it in many odd fashions. I have posted other fotos on here of the area so go back and look at them. The oddest formation out there, that I forgot to take the foto of, is of solid stones with a cobblestone street in the middle of the rock. It is so amazing to see these.... it blows your mind!
 Due to last weeks rain, the area out there was nice and green and the wildflowers were in bloom. There were pink, purple, blue, red and yellow flowers all over the mountain. I took this foto by a mine because I thought it was pretty. Being a desert area, the flowers are not like they are over in Colorado. The whole mountainside can be covered there , while here in our desert state, they pop up in all sorts of places, and there is not as many of them. 
 This is a foto of the hidden cabin. It was built in 1941 by a family and its open for use to anyone who wants to stay there. It's on a first come first serve basis, except for hunting seasons and holidays. There was no one there today when we visited so we hung out for a few and read the guest book. My first entry in it goes back to 2004. I think I have like 5 little scribbles in it. I even read where Sam and Bob found it back in 2011. Even more interesting is the entry from my next door neighbor when I lived in Ogden. It's quite nice for being 60+ years old and it would be a nice place to hang out for a few days. Someday I might just do that. You should too....... if you can find it!
 For those of you who follow this boring blog, you will know what this foto is! For those that don't, this object, according to the state historians office is from the 1940's. I swear I have seen 4 of them , but I may be wrong because I only found 3 today. Anyways, this is a phone booth. There is a little shelf inside where you could write down a message or something like that. There is no visible wires left or anything else that would suggest this was a phone booth. This one is located at Lucin where there was a population of people living up till 1970 or so. The other 2 are out in the middle of nowhere with the only close thing to them are mines some distance away. Those have no wires or anything left either. I find it odd that there are no telephone poles either. My guess is that when they removed the phones, they took everything with it except the little building. 
While at Lucin, we or I decided I wanted to wait by the tracks and shoot fotos of trains. Well, I struck out there because in 40 minutes, not one train came by. As we were waiting, I noticed on top of a signal there was a huge nest. I didn't think anything of it, until we heard noises from the nest. There are 3 baby Ravens in the nest and mom wasn't to happy with us parked so near. She made the one pass and fed one of them and then disappeared to watch from a distance. The babies were squawking so much she gave in and made one more stop. I had the IPhone video going and filmed it the best I could. So, that was our entertainment for 40 minutes while we waited for the train that didn't come. Stupid Union Pacific. It was a great day...... I still need to return and go see a mine we passed by..... who's game?  Jeep on my friends.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

A day in the sun for fun!

 Finally another adventure that doesn't involve me getting stuck. We headed back up Beaver canyon to see how far we could make it today. The sun was out but it wasn't as warm as it could have been. But that was OK, I don't mind it at all. The trail had some snow down near where I had gotten stuck, but nothing like before. We made it up to the valley where you can choose to go to Preston Idaho or across the the top to  Franklin basin. I chose Franklin Basin and we headed up the canyon.
 This foto shows the snow still in the trees and how deep it still is in the trees. It also shows a beaver condo there in the center. There are so many of them up there and it kinda sucks cuz you never see any of them. I do believe that they are allergic to the sun. The river is full of dams from the start of the trail to where the river starts. I would really love to see some of them sometime. As we headed up the trail to go over to Franklin basin the snow drifts got bigger and bigger. The yellow Jeep did very well blasting thru all of them till we rounded the corner and found no more road. It was buried under a white blanket of slushy snow 2 to 3 feet deep. Since we didn't have the luxury of another vehicle with us , we turned around and headed back down the canyon.

The trip down was uneventful and a breeze for the Jeep. Going down hill thru snow banks is a lot easier due to the law of gravity. As we got back to the bottom of the canyon, the GoPro video camera decided it had had enough. It wouldn't stay on so I had to use the normal camera to catch our friend munching plants. She is named Melanie J Moose and she doesn't look very old. If I remember my zoology studies right, moose spend time with mom from birth till the next years baby arrives. Thus my thinking that she is probably a yearling. She was the 2nd moose we actually saw today. On the way up we saw one in the Logan river. We also saw 2 deer and a young badger today. Needless to say, we had a great time, though it was too short. But then again, most Jeep trips are. Jeep on my friends!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Finally, a new post

Wow, it has been a long time since I have posted anything. Sorry , but I have  been busy with school and work and being poor. But, I did have a chance to go out last Sunday and we had a great time, considering I finally got Old Yellow stuck. We headed up to Beaver Creek canyon, which was really the only trail open, and proceeded to see how far we could go. As we hit the trail head, I stopped to hook up my GOPRO HERO camera and as I was doing that, I noticed another Jeep had pulled onto the trail also. They sat there watching me and I had no clue as to what they were doing. I got the camera mounted, turned it on with my IPhone and off we went. The trail, as I hope you can see from the video, was a perfect mixture of mud and snow. We got to a spot that I was nervous about so since we were alone, I turned back. On the trip back down, you will notice that the other Jeep had followed us. We stopped and had a conversation that was pretty much me " you have a tow strap" they said yes and said "lets go"! I flipped a U turn and back up we went. We blew right thru the questionable area and got to a culvert bridge. Being stupid, I took the wrong angle and I got stuck. The rear slid down the embankment and I buried the Jeep. The snow was deep enough that I could barely get the door open to get out. Hmmmmmmm, that really sucked! Thank heavens for the other Jeep. They hooked their tow strap up to my rear bumper and within 5 minutes, I was out. I hope the video of the adventure is viewable on here. This is the 1st time I have tried posting one, so we shall see. Even tho we did get stuck, it was a great trip. The sun was out and I had the side windows out and the top folded back for our pleasure. The new tires fling mud and snow very well and I like it! The wife keeps saying its time to go to Moab, so I might have to do it. Hopefully the video works and you can enjoy my first stuck in Old Yellow. Jeep on my friends!