Well so far we had an incredible trip even with the problems we had on day 2. We were excited to get back on the trail to see some of the spots we had missed the day before.
For our last ride of the weekend Zane and his wife joined us. They had driven out the night before so they could hit the trails before the weekend was over. Zane brought his Can-AM Outlander 800 and his wife brought her Can-Am 650 2 up. With no spare tire for the RZR, Jim decided to ride his Suzuki 450 motorcycle and I, of course, had my Polaris 500. We all hoped we would have better luck finishing with today’s ride.
We decided to do the same loop we did the day before but in the reverse order. On the way to the dam we stopped at the start of a trail called Elvis to play on the rocks as a warm up. Not more than a few minutes into it we were joined by a large group of riders so we decided to move on.
There wasn’t a lot of water flowing through the river so we had no problem crossing it. The mountains look so majestic when you add flowing water.
Jim and Zane know this area well and just had to go up this nasty hill climb we pass. A couple of years ago Zane took off up this hill without really looking at it and ended up trying to hold the handlebars of his quad when they were over his head. That time he did not do so well as his quad flipped a few times after he let go of it. Luckily, they both made it look easy today.
As we continue down the trail it turns into bedrock. This surface is really rough and nasty.
Here is a great photo as we came out of one of the washes. I always love the view of the railroad bridge along with the remains of this old house.
We actually rode under the bridge this time on a small trail just wide enough for us to make it through the trees.
As we come out on the other side of the tracks we can see the tunnel from the other side of bridge. From what I understand the tunnel is about a mile long. That would be a long dark ride in a train.
After one more water crossing we made it to the Coke ovens. The ovens were built in the late 1800’s to make charcoal for the mining smelters in the area. This group of 5 ovens is 25 feet across and 30 feet high. It is an incredible historic site.
The Coke oven area was loaded with riders. One of the Rhino’s we saw had a broken front axle so there were a few guys working on taking it apart. I imagine the Rhino driver had to head back in 2 wheel drive.
After our break we headed to Walnut Canyon. Here is a look back at the Coke Ovens from the top of a very nasty, rutted, loose, rocky hill climb.
The mountains in this part of the back country are fantastic.
We headed between the 2 large mountains on the far left of this photo. I know the mountains don’t look that big in this photo but they’re pretty good size. There are some pretty steep switchbacks that show the scale a little better below.
We passed a couple of mines along the way and stopped to look around. I am always amazed to see how much equipment and cement they were able to get so far back into the desert with primitive equipment.
The further we went the higher we headed up the mountains.
If you look real close to this photo you can see a trail a little below the straight up rock face. We went from the bottom of this mountain up a switchback road along this narrow trail. It then went along the side of the other mountain before dropping back down into a canyon. The view is outstanding from the top.
Well we made it back to the highway where Art and Janeen broke down the day before. We took this road for 8 miles to the edge of the town of Superior.
It was getting late in the day so we decided to take the easier way back to camp as we still had about 30 miles to go.
We pulled into Superior and headed a couple of miles down US60 to the west where we again hooked up with a dirt road that runs beside the highway. From here we jumped across the 60 where we made our way through the twisty trails back to camp.
It was another beautiful day to be out riding. This loop is one of the most scenic you could ever go on. The majestic mountain views make this trip well worth the effort.
We made it back to camp in time to have happy hour with the whole group before a fabulous dinner. Then it was time to again sit back and enjoy the stunning sun set as we sat by the camp fire.
We all had a great time camping and riding in the beautiful deserts south east of Phoenix AZ for a few days. It is always nice to be able to get together with good friends for a camp out.
Remember to take the time to get out and enjoy the great outdoors as much as you can. Life is short.
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