Today I went for a cold and windy 4-wheeler ride on western Cedar Mountain. I didn’t even decide to go for the ride until after I’d woken up this morning, and even then it took me a while to decide where to go. I chose Cedar Mountain because it’s close to home, and easy to bail out on if the weather turns bad. I haven’t explored the western side of the plateau much, except for a short jaunt from the Buckhorn Reservoir area two years ago. The only people I saw on Cedar Mountain all day was an older couple changing a flat tire on their Jeep about a quarter-mile from where I parked the truck and unloaded the ATV at the lower end of the mountain.
I rode up the main gravel road about seven miles (and nearly froze while riding at full speed) before taking a right turn onto a dirt road near Bob Hill Spring. I parked above the spring and hiked down into Bull Hollow, following a prominent cattle trail down past several watering troughs. In the bottom of Bull Hollow the trail ended in a clearing with a pond nearby, which is where I turned around and headed back up to the ATV. I rode around to the south of Joe Jensen Spring and then north of Bob Hill Knoll, and explored a couple of roads between the left and right forks of Bull Hollow, including a short stop at Mud Spring.
I eventually rode south on the west side of Bob Hill Knoll, then turned west and followed a long, straight road for a while. I took a relatively short but really fun mining track southwest down off the plateau, and explored a couple of old, rarely used mining tracks in the area. I ran into a couple of dead-ends, and hit a big washout on one track that kept me from going farther, even though I could see that the road continued quite a bit farther. While stopped at one of the dead-ends enjoying the view, I saw two deer sprinting across an open area about half a mile away. I have never seen deer run so fast ever, but I spent a few more minutes watching and didn’t see anything pursuing them. It kind of freaked me out to see them hauling ass like that, and my imagination went wild pondering what could have scared them off like that (maybe a kitty cat?). I had the most fun in this area, and wouldn’t mind returning some day to hike around and see what I missed.
After returning to the top of the plateau, I continued west and then northwest until the road ended at the edge of a small canyon. The map in my GPS showed that the road crossed the canyon and continued for a bit on the other side, but in reality it didn’t. I stood on the edge of the canyon and took in the view for a while, and a huge owl silently glided along the canyon, just above the tree tops below me. Since there was no more road to explore, I turned around and headed back for the main road. I cruised over to the overlook and picnic areas near the point of Cedar Mountain, then followed the main road back to the truck, and I got really cold doing 35 MPH most of the way back.