Gordy's Hill OHV Area, Socorro,New Mexico Ride on a Hawg Ty

Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#1
As I posted in the teaser I showed up just after dawn driving 100 miles to the site. No other humans were there and it looked like I had thee whole 9,000 acre Area to myself!
Of course If I wrecked I was in deep do-do.I had one bar of cell phone.
The park is mainly High Desert with large Mesa's,Dry Washes, Flash Flood Run Off's and a dried-up prehistoric River Bed.( that ran for miles and miles) Most of the rock formations were Sandstone.
Millions of tons of gravel and plain old sand. In some places the sand was several feet deep.
As you climb Gordy's Hill you ascend several thousand feet up and along the Mesa's ridge line. The main trail on the ridge Line goes for over ten miles.
On the west slope of Gordy's Hill, just about the 5 mile mark on the hill, is the Sand Hill that you can climb. It is like any other sand dune in the world and has been climbed so many times the sand is very soft as you will see.
The view as you climb is typical S.W New Mexico and is quite scenic. You can see 100 miles from the top of the Mesa's. The weather was going to be in the 90's and the wind was due to pick up at noon.
The Area is maintained by the Bureau Of Land Management. And I can say they do a great job. Unknown to me a massive Grader plowed the Dirt Road just minutes before I arrived. I couldd see its dust trail several miles up the road.
I pulled up to the bottom of the trail head and got my act together. I wanted to ride as far as I could before it got too hot. There is no shade. And your at high altitude. The sun is intense and Sun Screen is a must. There are no facilities and no water. Services to provide these are 5 miles away. The Town Of Socorro is 6 miles away.
Socorro is the home of the Very Large Array. (VLA) that you see on the opening credits of " Ancient Aliens" as well as "Myth Busters" Explosive Bomb Range at NM Tech.
I fired up the Hawg Ty's engine and started up the first portion of the climb. It is very steep. You could walk it with a lot of effort.
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As I start to climb,the trail gets steeper and steeper. The rear tire spun a few times as I acceded the first portion of this climb that went on for miles.
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From the tire marks, it looked as though this was the END of the trail. The regulars must park here and drive the dirt road to the far end of the Mesa and ride back ridge line ending up at their cars when done. What did I not know? Huummm....
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I've got up 1/4 mile so far and the trail is still climbing. Traction is still very good and I'm doing about 15 MPH. The new TAV is working well.
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And I'm still climbing. The "hill" looked small from the road.
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I cleared the last portion only to go imedeatly into another steep climb. The TAV is very hot. The fan is blowing air off the engine you could cook a hot dog with.
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I made the top!.....
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Ah, maybe not. The trail goes off to the south East and is still climbing. Unbeknownst to me,the end of the trail is the rounded Mesa at my eleven o'clock which is many miles away.
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At my 9 o'clock,you can see how high I climber above the dirt road where my car is parked. were actually higher than that mountain ridge line in the foreground.
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What are those steps? No those are Moguls. I thought What Fun!
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Of course we have to climb higher. no lets add some front wheel lift as you blast over them!
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The bike handled them with ease. I did have to start to lean forward in order to keep the traction going and the front wheel on the ground.
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Look at the Moguls go out of sight! And a new twist has been added.
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And the Moguls keep going and going as I keep climbing higher and higher.
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The Moguls smoothed out but I'm still going up and up!
( I'm shooting dead into the sun. Sorry about the quality of the images)
End of Part 1.
 

Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#2
Part2
I'm still climbing and heading into the sun.
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And still climbing up the Mesa.
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Now the trail has turned to sand. Many folks have been stuck here. Someone left a broken "sand-ladder" along the trail.
I have never in my life trashed a trail.
I'm still climbing. The 4 PSI tires are doing well in the loose sand. Not being a "slick" tread I am spinning the rear tire on the steeper portions.
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Having not driven the balloon tires in sand before,I had to learn how to keep my balance at speed. I did not wipe-out.
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The loose sand went to a harder pack sand. Still going up.
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Now the trail was a gentle climb. I really could open-it-up for almost a mile.
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And then back into loose sand again. Still climbing.
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Then out of nowhere, the trail open up to a two acre sand pit. The edge off the Mesa is just yards in front of me.
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The edge of the Mesa is so worn down after 70 years of use it looks like a gentle ride back down. It's not! The wide angle lens on my camera does not catch how steep it really is. There is at least a 600 foot drop to the staging area which is 500 feet higher than the parking area.
The dirt road at my 12 o'clock will be ridden in a later part section.
I sat there debating riding down the sand hill or keep heading East into the sun?
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I decided to go down and plotted out my route. I knew it was going to be fast and a "D" Ticket ride to be sure.
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You can see tire tracks where folks could not make it up and turned around. I'm going to try to stay in a tire track if possible. The sand is very loose and any movement of the handlebars is a real handful to keep one's balance. I'm am flying down this hill.
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As I wrote, the hill is MUCH steeper than the camera makes it look. I'm about 1/2 way down and has taken many seconds so far.
If I wipe out only my pride and a sand filled butt-crack will be hurt.
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Almost to the bottom. I have a death grip on the handlebars like you won't believe. I only have 40% use of my right hand. I cannot close my fingers into a fist. I bet I'm close to doing 50 here. The rear brake has no effect on slowing the bike down. Another 100 yards or so to go... GH28.JPG
Although the sand is fairly loose at the bottom, it has been packed for 70 years or so and brother was it rough at 50 MPH!
I stopped and got my wits about me again. What a Dumb-ass thing to do....it was a blast though!
All that climbing shot in a 30 second ride.
It now 9AM and I could use a cold drink and I wanted to check out the bike before riding further.
I'm going back to the car 5 miles down the plain.
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you can see the plain sloping down hill towards the parking area.
END OF PART 2.
Much more to come.
 

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Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#3
PART3
I rode back to the car for some cold water and check-out the bike again to make sure all was well.
Tires were doing well and holding 2 PSI.
I decided to go back up Gordy's hill and pick up where I left off after descending the Sand Hill.
I pick up climbing the hill and then jump forward several miles as I continued to climb to the top of the Mesa.
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Back up the hill, turn to the East and retrace what I have already done so far.
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Unbeknownst to me the trail up the Mesa was to climb over another 1,000 feet to reach the top of the Mesa.
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Every time I climbed and cleared the top of a rise,there lies another steep climb. It was like a giant series of Moguls. The bike was running like a Swiss watch and did well in this section.
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I reached one plateau and paused to let the TAV cool down and take in the view. As I looked to the East, the trail continued to climb up.
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A short climb later and there was a "flat" section that went over a mile which was nice for a change.
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And then a section of the trail that was really steep,as in you could barely stand upright,let alone walk up it without slipping.
Some poor soul left his tracks in the dirt and they looked like he was looking for a lost part? The foot-prints went on for a few miles.
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Up-and-over with a descend of a few feet as it looks like I'm close to the top of this Mesa.
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But it turns out I was to climber even farther up the side of the Mesa.
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And then more Moguls. They stretched for long way, They reminded me of the song " Stairway To Heaven"
You'd think you could see the trail level off,climb or descend, but you really can't until you are upon the next hurtle.
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Moguls and another steep section. As I got closer to the pinnacle at my 12 o'clock I was not expecting what I was to run into...
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As the Moguls thinned out the trail got steeper and steeper by every foot of travel.
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As I posted before, the camera just cannot capture in 2D just how steep this is. I had the throttle wide open and the TAV was trying it's best to find a ratio to get power the the rear wheel. The bike was beginning to throw up a rooster tail as I lost traction.
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Now I had my doubts if I could climb this portion of the trail. Torque was not the issue, I just could not get good traction. It was way too steep to stop my forward momentum, too steep to turn around, too steep to stop and walk the bike up, I had to keep going if possible,
The rough section just in front of the handlebars had a couple of stones embedded into the harder packed soil and the rear tire was able to bite into the ground. The bike's front tire came off the ground and I had to shift my body weight over the handlebars to keep from flipping over backwards. This one little section of the whole ride was the toughest to traverse. It was the steepest climb I have ever done on this bike.
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And just over that steep section was another climb with Moguls. All this and I was still not at the top of the Mesa! But surely I had to be getting closer to thee top?
END OF PART 3
Much more to follow.
 

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Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#4
Part 4
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Oh look! more Moguls, It looks like I'm on the top of the Mesa. I mean, you can't see anymore areas to climb?
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After several hundred yards of Moguls, I see I'm no where near the top of the Mesa. The climb just keeps adding more Moguls and the summit is no where to be seen!
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I was moving out pretty good and had to make a choice, go right or Left?...I went to the left.
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Man, there was no way of telling that this section was also going to be really steep. I also noticed there were not any "fresh" tire tracks from anyone else recently.
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The trail just kept on climbing higher and higher. I just could not imagine how much higher I needed to go to reach to reach the top of the Mesa.
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Then I see what looks to be the last real rise on the top of the Mesa. More moguls of course as this seems to be the norm on this trail.
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I'm so close to the top. The ride has been climbing for 8 miles. My car is 10 miles away and out of sight. There is not another living soul out here.
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Still more climbing to do. This looks like the last bit. It will be a workout as the Moguls are closely spaced together.
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Getting closer, it just has to be the top.
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Just a few hundred feet more to go....
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The Mesa is not going to let me reach the top. It seems the farther I go,the farther the summit is!
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And just as fast, I reach the top of the Mesa! What a view!. I had driven almost 10 miles and climbed to over 9,000 feet. I am miles South of the main road you could see in the previous post. The road is out of sight.
Now I have to drive down the Mesa to the river bed for some really fun "level" riding. What fun so far.
I took a break and drank 2 quarts of water. It was starting to get hot. I'm looking forward to a few miles of riding "downhill".
END OF PART 4
Lots more to come.
 

Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#5
Part 5
Now that I reached the summit of the Mesa it's time to descend back down to the bottom of the canyon. The trail was to ride on a ridge that dropped the couple thousand feet in less than a 3/4 of a mile.
It would be the steepest descent I have done on this bike.
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I rode over to the edge of the drop off to see what I was up against.
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This didn't look too bad.
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This was going to be a nail biter. As you can see by my shadow this was pretty darn steep.
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This section was steep enough that the rear tire locked up as I tried to slow down. I slid for about 200 feet until I was able to get the bike back under control. The trail was canted to the right and I could see where some unfortunate souls went off the edge. You can just make out two white plastic poles that have been driven into the soil. It is a tradition in NM that you leave a "remembrance marker" where a loved one has died at that spot. That was something I did not want to have done for me!
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By now the rear brake shoes were screaming from heat and were starting to fade. The good news is I'm much closer to the bottom of the canyon.
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I reached the bottom in one piece and found that I was now in a feeder to the prehistoric river bed. Loose gravel and for the most part a nice level ride. GH74.JPG
I was still descending but nothing like the ridge.
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And I reached the river bed itself. Gravel was several feet deep.
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I could see where skinny tired dirt bikes were having trouble riding in a straight line in the loose gravel. The Scorpion balloon tires just floated over the gravel. It was a very nice ride.
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Water always wins, so I was to see some interesting erosion of the sandstone landscape.
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There were areas where the river bed ran along the canyon with the signs off Flash Floods even today. Lots of greenery along the banks.
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I wound along the canyon walls for several miles. I needed cool water so I was going to buzz back to the car for a breather and then return to the river bed for more riding.
END OF PART 5
more to come.
 

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Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#6
PART6
As I was riding back to the car I saw something shiny in my path. It turned out to be a run over container of BB's that was full. Always use more BB's.
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I stopped by the sand dune hill climb to show you the what it looks like from the bottom.
Now I going to jump back to the river bed. I'm now 3 miles from the car and heading North East up the river bed.
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I heading into another canyon. I followed the river bed through and around many bends.
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The area was flat for the most part with some rock fields. It was dead quite. This was so pleasant of a ride I was just putting along at 15 MPH or so.
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There were many shear sandstone canyon walls to pass.
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And there were areas that were so smooth they looked like a grader had been through them. You could really open up the throttle for awhile.
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Local plants covered the banks in some places.
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Around every bend there was always something new to see.
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It was nice to drive through a shaded area.
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A slight breeze was going down the canyon which was nice to ride in.
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There was several caves the rushing water had blasted into the rock.
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The ride was easy to do. A six inch rimmed mini could do it with no problems.
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The river bed meandered North and South for miles and miles.
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I was now 9 miles up the river bed. I rode another mile and turned around. Remember there is not another living soul out here with me.
I did not want to "push" my luck any further.
END OF PART 6
more to come.
 

Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#7
PART 7
I traveled up the river bed for more than a mile, it's easy to just forget how far you are going when the scenery is so nice and the weather is cooperating.
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I was just tooling along having fun.
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Every few hundred yards there was a nice wall of rock and caves.
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I did not see a whole lots of tracks from other riders. The trail had gone to my right and cut off this large bend I was riding. I liked it here and stayed the course.
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Every now and then there would be a rock/boulder field that had washed down.
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And right after that there would be this long open stretch. I ran up the RPM's for a bit. And then turned around. I had ridden over ten miles. It was time to head back and see what other trails were worth trying.
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"Watch out for falling rocks" zone I guess.
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You can see my bike does not leave much of a footprint. I try not to tear up the land if possible.
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Just a nice ride back to the car. Taking mental notes for my next trip out here in the fall.
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Now that I knew what lay ahead, I opened up the bike a little.
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The 2 PSI tires could blast through the rocks in the wash with no effort. The ride was smother than you'd think.
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Now that the sun was no longer in my eyes, I could appreciate the canyon walls a little more.
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I kept waiting to see a ghost of an Apache Warrior standing on the rock edge watching as I rode by.
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The breeze had stopped and the air was heating up. I could feel the heat radiating off of the large boulders.
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I was flying along and noticed the rear tire was making a sound I had not heard before.
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I stopped and gave the bike a once-over. There was nothing wrong. The tire was normal. It may have been the sound of the tire tread echoing off of the canyon wall. The soil here was hard packed.
END OF PART 7
lots more to follow.
 

Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#8
Part 8
The ride back to the car. I going to jump the ten miles back and show you the more interesting sites along the way.
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The soft gravel really smoothed out the ride. The sunlight was over my shoulders now and shadows were less.
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The air was dead silent except for my mini. There is a small lake about 10 miles away and the birds must have been there for water.
I did not see so much as a lizard on this leg of the ride. Just me and the great outdoors.
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The sandstone cliffs were nice to see as I passed by.
The air is very dry here. I was reading 14% humidity on my phone. Its about 80 degrees F and dead calm.
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I stayed off the beaten-path which was a quarter miles to my left. Winding around the canyon walls and through the rock falls was more fun.
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Lots of caves to see and large boulders.
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You can see where the main trails is coming in to my left.
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I'm 5 miles from the car. The bike knows it's way to the car.
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In the home Stretch so to speak.
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Caves for Rattlesnakes.
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Getting closer to the car.
END OF PART 8
Still more to come
 

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Rapidrob

Well-Known Member
#10
PART9
I was almost back to the car.
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I was going to stay on the river bed rather than skirt the canyon walls.
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I'm two miles from the car. A cool drink of water and a dust off of the river bed will feel nice.
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All conditions were normal with the bike. I had driven 30 miles so far according to my Garman. Lots of gas left and the tires held up with no punctures
( Kenda Scorpion ) Still not another soul around.
I will be riding the dirt roads to the top of two Mesa's. A fast and fun ride that were made for 4-wheel drive vehicles to stretch their legs.

END OF PART 9
More to come.
 
#11
What a great ride. Thanks for sharing. I am thinking about buying kenda scorpions when its time to replace my tires. Did you get 19x7-8 or 20x7-8?
 
#13
Part 10
There are two dirt roads the go for many miles both East and North. I planned on going up 5 miles on both roads. Since it is just me riding a dirt road, I'm just going to post the interesting portions. I will be jumping several miles per photo.
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Thee roads are well maintained and wide.
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I'm on the East road. It climbed up the Mesa about 800 feet.
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A Grader had just plowed the road a few hours before I rode it. There had been no traffic since it was done.
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I open up the throttle and was able to climb the steeper parts faster than 25 MPH.
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The road wound up the mesa for several miles.
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There were several "S" turns as I climbed up the mesa. 131.JPG
A note of the Gordy's Hill page said you do not want to ride the dirt road after a rain. I can see that as the soil was very soft.
I left a cloud of dust in my wake that went for a 1/4 mile.
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Still climbing but close to the summit.
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I made the summit. I was 8 miles from the car. A parking/camping area was to my left.
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On the top looking West. 135.JPG
I'm now 12 miles away from the last photo. I just turned onto the 2nd road to see where it goes.
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Turns out the road goes to a "Desert Science Area" and it was just open desert. Not much to see. I turned around and headed for the Hill-Climb.
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The trip back down the 2nd road was pretty steep. I coasted for over two miles.
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After reaching the bottom of the 2nd mesa I drove the few miles to the hill climb area. I thought I'd give it a try.
 
#14
Part 10 ( contd)
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I was going to try the hill climb! The ground at the bottom of the hill climb is so heavily packed over the years it was not possible to get a good run-up on thee hill. It tried it for a few yards and the ride was so rough,standing on the foot pegs I was afraid I would bend them!
So I was going to try it from a dead stop.
The sand was going to be deep and very loose as I knew from riding down the hill in an earlier post.
I gunned the engine and started to move up pretty good.
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With a rooster-tail of flying sand off of the rear tire I was climbing the hill.
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I was moving out pretty quick, keeping the bike straight took some effort. The rear tire was starting to sink in the sand.
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I was 1/2 way up the hill but the bike was slowing fast! The rear tire was digging more that pushing.

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I could see the top of the hill but I was not going to make it. The rear of the bike was down to the frame,buried in the sand.
Had I had a balloon "slick" tire I may have made it.
I had to think quick in order to turn around and not tumble down the hill.
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I was able to make a "Bat Turn" and kept the bike upright.
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I made the bottom. No pride hurt as my bike Does have the governor still on it, no cam,no billet flywheel, no large bore carb. It's as stock as it comes,sans re-jetting the carb for high altitude.
The fact it went farther than 1/2 way up the hill impressed me.
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I drove the three miles back to Gordy's Hill. One more ride before I called it quits. I would ride the ridge line a couple of miles to my West and come back to the barn.
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I climbed the 1,000 foot hill and noticed someone either lost their oil plug or cracked the engine block. Bummer.
You can see a couple of the trails I rode as well as the dirt road climbing the 2nd Mesa in the far distance. at 12 o'clock.
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The ridge line was nice. Nothing special. Any minibike could do it.
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The trail had a couple of good climbs. You can see the road under my brake cable going to the 1st Mesa of the dirt roads.
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The start down Gordy's Hill and back to the car.
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Almost to the main road to the parking area.
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A nice one mile run to the car and then home.
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Back at the car and the staging area. It was in the 90's now and dry as a popcorn fart. Dead calm. I had drank over a gallon of water.
The tank still had almost a pint of gas left! Time to go home.
Gordy's Hill Area was just so much fun to ride. I never did see another living soul. According to my Garman I had ridden just over 50 miles.
Other than the pebble blocking the throttle I had no problems what so ever. The trails were challenging and well thought out.
You could spend the week here and not ride all the trails on a minibike. I have to hand it to BLM that they do a great job of maintaining the access roads and keep the area free of trash.
If your ever in Socorro,NM you need to bring your bike and ride Gordy's Hill.
Thanks for reading my long post. I hope you enjoyed the photo's.
END of this topic.
 

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