RR tunnel between Helper and WildcatWhat started out as daydreaming about a really long 4-wheeler ride has slowly started becoming a reality. A couple of weeks ago, I began thinking about some possible destinations for a long-ish day-ride that I could reach by riding directly from my house in Price, but there’s really nothing close by that’s worth spending the better part of a day riding to. I then considered the possibility of spending the night on the trail and making it a longer ride, meaning I would have more time to reach some more interesting places. Looking in Google Earth, I started planning out routes, and eventually came up with a 266-mile long ride that could be done in two or three days. I’ve got Chris on board, and hopefully Cortney will be able to miss some work and ride with us, and it’s looking like this will happen the weekend after next if everything goes according to plan. I’ve gone on a couple of rides over the past week to check out parts of the route closer to home that I hadn’t ridden before. I went to Consumers Road at the Wildcat Loadout after work one day, and on Saturday I rode through Wellington and made it to Mounds before turning back.
The ride will start in Price and take gravel roads east out of town and then south to Wellington. I was hoping to top off the fuel in Wellington, but it would require riding on the shoulder of US-6 against traffic for several hundred yards to get to the gas station. I looked at that section of highway on Saturday and don’t think I would feel comfortable riding it, so we may have to skip it and carry some “just in case” fuel to get us to the next stop. From Wellington, we’d take Farnham Road to Mounds, then cut through the northwestern San Rafael Swell, crossing the San Rafael River at Fuller Bottom and eventually landing in Ferron. In Ferron it won’t be a problem getting to Gilly’s for fuel, then we’ll head west out of town and up Ferron Canyon until reaching the Black Dragon trail which will take us north to Joe’s Valley Reservoir. From Joe’s Valley we’ll head up toward Skyline Drive, and hopefully camp for the night near Grassy Lake. The next day, we’ll continue up to Skyline Drive, then follow Skyline north. We’ll have to drop down into Mt. Pleasant for fuel and maybe supplies, then go back to Skyline and continue north toward Tucker. From Tucker we’ll turn south on the Starvation Road and stop for fuel again in Scofield, then take the road over the mountains to the Consumers area and finally end up back in Price.
There are still some issues to work out, such as a couple of short stretches of pavement that may not exactly be legal to ride an ATV on, and whether the distances between fuel stops are within the fuel range of my ATVs. I may be overly optimistic in thinking that the whole trip can be done in two days, so I’d like to hope for two but plan for three days to complete the ride. This week I’ll be changing the oil and cleaning the air filters in both ATVs, and inspecting them closely for any other problems. I already test-fitted my gear on the back of my ATV, and I should be able to carry everything I need except the fuel, which Chris can carry on his front rack (since Torrey will be occupying her usual spot on my front rack). I’ll probably spend a lot of my free time over the next week or so getting ready for this ride, and I hope it turns out as well as it sounds in my head.

Photo Gallery (from the past week’s rides)

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