Tuesday, October 7, 2014



I clocked ~ 325 miles across six days.  All on single air filter.
We had 4 big rides ranging from 45 to 95 miles, that totaled 250 miles.


Attendees : ( I think it was a stealth dental convention )
Location -CHEMEKETAN CAMPGROUND, ID   in the Sawtooth , NF.

Tuesday 9/30 – Travel Day


I drove through Fairfield and Sun Valley for a change of scenery .
There was fresh snow on the mountains and 3- 5 inches in rain on the valleys .  I got out at the turn off of HWY 75 and heard elk bugling . 

Scott had driven in Monday just as the FS was finishing up  remodeling Chemeketan  campground.
Compared to the new layout , it use to be wide open, easy to get toy haulers , trailers , etc in and out. Now  it’s more laid out for tent camping.

One of the FS crew told Scott the ICL  petitioned the changes to “mitigate erosion”. 

The good news was there still is an older, out of spec outhouse with no locks , still stocked with TP !

After selecting a camp site and a basic set up I was itching to get on the bike. We decided to ride over  to the “old stand by” campsite along
Rainbow Creek. Good news - official ATV trails established on old two tracks.
                                  Bad news – the road into the old campsites has been removed, along with the campsites.



FaceBook post :
“I’m at Smiley Creek.
   Your not.  “

Wednesday  10/1

Wednesday  did two shorter loops that totaled ~60 miles.
In the morning Scott and I did a 25 mile loop down Big Smokey > WF Big Smoky > Chicken Creek ( aka  the mine road).
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We got back to camp just as Brent and Shane were parking their toy hauler.
Soon afterward Arin and Steve pulled in.

I looked over Brent’s new tire and noticed his the rear wheel bearing was shot.  I had a front and rear set in my
supplies. Scott was planning on staying the afternoon in camp to meet Shelby, so he offered to replace the bearings.

Brent realized his front wheel bearing was just as bad so they replaced it as well.

About ~2:30 PM I lead Shane, Arin and Steve on another short loop , ~35 miles.

Big Smoky> WF Big Smoky > Smiley Creek > then FS roads and two tracks back to camp.

Smiley Creek has been rerouted as a side hill since the last time I rode it ( 6-7 yrs ago ).
Nice easy trail , but I still managed to bobble in an easy wide switch back.

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Summit of West Fork of Big Smoky
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Thursday  10/2  Frog Lake Loop


Thursday was one of the Big Rides – 95 miles and 11 riders.
FS Road > Corrals ATV Trail > FS Road> Germania > East Fork of South Fork Salmon River Road> Big Boulder Creek > Little Boulder Creek > Salmon River Road > Bowery>
Grand Prize > Roads & two tracks back to camp.

I packed ~ 1/2 to 1 gal of gas in a bladder that I dumped in the near the end of Germania.

Andrew Kane joined us, a young fellow who is fast , strong and tireless – great asset to have on a ride.
He help pull bikes up rock steps, chucked logs off the trail , etc …………
Dave , Brian & I crossed paths with him last fall on Presidents Trail .

Three Cabins Creek trail head , the start of Germania . It was an 18 mile ride to get to the trail head from camp.

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At this point I figured out my front tire was low. Gerald and Brent helped me pump it up. It was amazing how much better the bike handled.

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About three quarters the way down Germania, amazing colors.

Bottle neck at a tight little switch back.

Germania trail head on  the East Fork Road

At a stop on Big Boulder we noticed bubbles on my front tire. Found the leak !
Arin showed me how to repair with plug kit. ( I’m running the TUBLISS SYSTEM). Pretty slick , a lot quicker than a tube repair. He also said to look a Cycle Gear for a better plug kit.

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Castle Peak
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Dropping into Frog Lake

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Lunch stop on Frog Lake
On the way out of Frog Lake there was a tree across the trail. There wasn’t an easy path around it , but there were enough people to slide
it off the trail.

If you look real close you can see a couple of hunters on horses back in the trees.

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Gate to Bowery Guard Station. The gate was locked but the fence was down so we could take the bridge over the Salmon River
and the Bowery Trail to Grand Prize. On Grand Prize I took a spill in some rocks and scratched my helmet (:

Friday 10/3   Casino -  Williams Creek


Loop – 45 miles ( 6 hours ) , 
Andrew Kane was trail boss ,  13 riders

Boundary Creek > Little Casino > Big Casino > Martin Creek> Warm Spring > Williams Creek > Hwy 75 ( 5 miles)

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We parked just off HWY 75 below the Boundary Creek trail head

View of Red Fish Lake and Sawtooths from Little Casino

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Little Casino , it’s really been buffed out since the first time I rode it, bridges , wider tread , mud rut is gone ………… but there were several trees down.
I walked my bike over most of them.

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Lunch break at Mormon Bend Campground . 

The climb up Big Casino was grueling all of it in 1st and 2nd thru boulders and over trees.

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Tough rocky , rooted switch backs at the top of the trail. Ben stayed at the bottom and helped everybody over the first rock garden.

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View from Martin Creek. We were on the over side of those mountains Thursday.

Steve and I were riding together in the rear.  Near the bottom of a rocky side hill , I sat down after riding through a rock garden
on a hairpin turn.  I cased on the skid plate and high sided. I slide down the rocks in the back ground and the bike was upside down off the trial.
If I was still standing  I would have saved it or at least been able to step off the bike and save myself.

Steve was long down the trail. I decided I would need to right the bike and get it on the trial. I tied the swing arm off and worked on maneuvering
the bike so I could lift it up right. Eventually Greg and Steve came back looking for me. They lifted the bike and pushed it back on the trail for me. 

The rest of trails to the highway were smooth and fast.

After the ride we stopped at Smiley Creek for dinner. Hoped we would see the Iron Butt crew but we missed them.

I had Jon snap a photo of my backside, no cuts or scraps , maybe it’s not that bad.

Saturday  10/4  , Snow Slide- Paradise – Big Smokey


Chicken Creek > WF Big Smokey > Snow Slide > Paradise > Big Smoky 

Loop 52 miles    ( 6 riders )  

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Scenic ridge off of Chicken Creek.

Snow Slide Climb
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Top of Snow Slide

Arin bobbled on side hill to Paradise
Lunch break at Canyon Campground.
After lunch 7 of the guys split off to ride Lick Creek , Big Peak and Bluff Creek which added another 20 miles to the day.

Scott , Jon , Eric , Arin , Steve and I elected to take the more direct route back to camp up Big Smoky.

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New rock slide on the Big Smoky rock slide.


Sunday 10/5


Sunday we hung around camp to rest. Did ride up the French Creek canyon to explore a bit.

Had lunch at Smiley Creek then went back to camp to nap and watch TV.

Monday 10/6

Got out of camp about 9:30 AM. Decided to head through Stanley , Lowman and Idaho City.

On Banner Ridge I stopped for break and found  I had flat tire. I drove back to a SKI & Park area. Had to unload everything to change the tire.
Took a couple of hours.

My spill on Martin Creek produced a deep bruise.

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