I’ve tried twice this year to ride my ATV from my house in Price to Nine Mile Canyon. The first time was in January, and there was too much snow to get past Coal Creek Road. My second attempt was last month, and I was stopped by mud that time.
Today I gave it another try and made it well into Nine Mile Canyon. It was a boring and uneventful ride between Price and Coal Creek since I’ve done it twice before–I didn’t stop for any photos during that part. The trail between Coal Creek and Soldier Creek that gave me so much trouble the last two times was dry and well-traveled today. It looks like perhaps a lot of people were riding in that area on Easter weekend–tire tracks everywhere. When I got to Soldier Creek Road, I wasn’t quite sure whether to keep going. The road is paved for a couple of miles between where I hit Soldier Creek Road and where the gravel starts just past Soldier Creek Mine. Beyond that, it’s a relatively long way to Nine Mile Canyon, especially considering how little time I had left in the day.
I decided to keep going and just see how far I could get up Nine Mile before it was time to turn around. The only traffic I saw on the road was a few a few gas field workers in their pickup trucks. I stopped to check out Soldier Creek in several places. Down low it was flowing over some short falls in the Book Cliffs, and higher up near Whitmore Park it was flowing under big slabs of snow. I saw a lot of deer near Nine Mile Ranch, and seemingly long before I expected to, I got to the first major rock art panel in Nine Mile Canyon. I took photos of the rock art, even though I already shot it all several years ago. When I was done, I checked the time and realized it was actually pretty late and Traci would be expecting me home very soon. I didn’t have cell service, so I booked it back toward home and checked my phone occasionally to see if I had service. When I reached the divide between Nine Mile Creek and Soldier Creek, I had barely enough service to get a text to Traci just to let her know I was ok, but running late. After that I took it easy getting home. It was colder in many areas because the mountains blocked the low sun.
By the time I got home, 4.5 hours had passed and I’d traveled 67 miles, which is the longest ride I’ve done on an ATV. I had enough fuel to go another 30 or more miles, and I think I’ll try doing this ride again when I can take my time and see more of the rock art.
GPS Tracklog and Waypoints (Google Earth .KML Format)