Habit Creek - Deadwood Reservoir, ID
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Thread: Habit Creek - Deadwood Reservoir, ID

  1. #1
    Senior Member BkCntryCrwlr's Avatar
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    Habit Creek - Deadwood Reservoir, ID

    Well, it all started with an insatiable curiosity and a topo map about 10 months ago. Sitting 2 ½ miles back in the steep mountains is a large basin about a mile long by ¾ of a mile wide with a little dotted line traversing the southern edge leading up from Deadwood Reservoir. The trail is called Habit Creek trail and is a hiking, horse or motorcycle only trail.

    Then it took a lot of cajoling and convincing my 18 year old son that I was a lot more fun to spend a weekend camping with than hanging out with his girlfriend. Gaahhhh! Girlfriends! What a distraction to great adventures…

    …I must be getting old! I do remember when girls were the adventure!!

    Since there was one other place I wanted to explore up in that area, we camped about 18 miles to the east from the trailhead. Trying to stay warm and riding to the trailhead, my son disappears behind me on the forest service road so I stop and wait, and wait. Hanging a U-turn, I shoot back up the gravel road to find him two corners back with a perplexed look on his face, “the rear tire just locked up, it won’t go forward!” I’m thinking, “Crap! End to the adventure before it even started. Transmission failed? Chain…?” Turns out the previous owner had installed an aftermarket LED taillight on a homemade STEEL bracket. Flimsy Yamaha taillight mounts, heavy steel brackets and wash board gravel roads are a great combination for failure, the taillight mounts had snapped and the bracket wedged itself between the rear tire and swingarm locking up the rear tire. Fortunately, there was no damage to anything else. Who needs a taillight anyway, deer & elk don’t care! Adventure back on!


    TW tracks at the trailhead:

    TDub Tracks.jpg


    IMG_5147.JPG


    By the way, I did finally figure out a good use for the front Cyclerack, it's a great place to tie down your rain gear.

    Starting up the trail, it is a nice single track winding its way up a ridgeline through the trees with a beautiful view of Deadwood Reservoir in the distance:

    On the Trail.JPG


    Then, the first switchback and steep, rocky climb. Okay, I remind myself, this is an adventure. We make it up the first part, keep traversing along the single track with a pretty steep drop off the left, downhill side. I do manage to have a brain fart at this point and get a wee bit off balance. Of course, Mr. Murphy is not pushing the bike to the uphill side. Dropping the bike and leaping clear, as I sail through the air, I start scanning for what pointy branches will be impaling me as a tumble down the slope. Fortunately, I keep my feet and manage to stop about 30 feet down slope. My bike is laying on it’s side, unharmed still on the trail. Whew, that could have been a lot more exciting. Sorry, no pictures here, I was too busy flying through the air trying to maintain some semblance of composure in front of my son!

    Next comes a steep climb, hmmm, this time with rocks (also known as Big A*# boulders) and big tree roots mixed in for about 50 feet. I made it about ¾ of the way before losing the correct line and stalling. My son, in his infinite wisdom pipes up, “need some help?” while still comfortably sitting on his TW watching…

    …“Hell yes!” are the words that slip out of my mouth at this point. With some pushing and lifting from behind (it really helps to have a young, very strong back for this part), we get my bike to the top. I ask my son if he wants to try the climb, maybe being the smarter of the two of us, he “lets” me ride his TDub to about the same spot before stalling again…refer to the strong back comment above.

    Once we are on our way again, we repeat this process two more times as we continue the climb up to the basin. After the last climb, stall, repeat as above, we are riding along and I start thinking about going back down…hmmmm, remember, it’s an adventure I keep telling myself.

    The reward is a beautiful view for lunch as well as few mosquitos lunching on us:

    Tranquil Basin.jpg

    Tranquil Basin - Lunch.jpg


    The ride up is about 2.5 miles to the saddle where you can first see the basin. This trail will keep going along the south ridge line of Tranquil Basin through a saddle (about another 2 miles) and wind it’s way back down to Silver Creek (about another 7 miles) before dumping out at the Peace Creek Trailhead about a mile NE of the Silver Creek Plunge area. This would probably be a great weekend ride with camping overnight along the way just to keep it slow and enjoying why you’re doing this. We did not ride the rest of the trail, just rode up to the basin until we found a nice overlook. This is not a trail for the inexperienced and will take some physical effort. At some point, I would like to ride all the way over just to see what the rest of the trail is like. I can see another series of cajoling and convincing with my son, gaahhhh! Girlfriends!

    The ride back down, was not as "exciting" as I thought it was going to be, the "steep" parts were a lot easier going down than up. It took a lot of rear braking with some light feathering of the front brake. I'm liking the thought of the extended swingarm, Cero's tire and a 60 or 65 tooth rear sprocket for the lower granny gear all the time. This trail really got me thinking about the lower gearing with the larger tire, would it help and get me up the steep parts without the need for the young, strong back? I know if would help coming down. Next project!

  2. #2
    Senior Member TopPredator's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your ride with pictures. Wow you have a cool place to ride
    littletommy likes this.

  3. #3
    Senior Member BkCntryCrwlr's Avatar
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    Cool Habit Creek - Part 2

    Here's a snapshot of the Habit Creek portion of our ride from my iPhone Gaia GPS app on the return trip. Yep, forgot to start it on the ride up! Brain fart, again. This Gaia app is a great app with the different map layers you can download, I have been able to find just about any trail or view I want with this.

    Habit Creek Ride.jpg


    As for the rest of the camping trip, it turned out to be exactly why I love to camp. We had an amazing camp host:

    Camp Host2.jpg

    The first night we had two small bucks nosing around our camp, then two does. One came within 8 feet of us while were sitting by the campfire. I know, I know, it didn't happen if you don't have pictures:

    Doe.jpg


    You can't see it if your not out there doing it! That's what I love about the TDub's!!


    The last night we had four does that just hung out with us feeding all around. This time of the year they are just curious and interested in what we are.

    Sunset Moon.jpg


    It was a little chilly the next morning, about 1/2" of ice in a cup of water:

    IMG_5163.JPG

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  5. #4
    Senior Member admiral's Avatar
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    We must think alike but on the opposite side of the hill! 3 years ago I took 2 of my son's with me and we were gonna ride up Peace Creek down to Deadwood on the other side. I guess my thought at the time was to ride back over the trail as we didn't know any other trails back then. Unfortunately, it rained and rained and we only headed up the trail a 1/2 mile at most.


    This is what it looked like when the trail started up.



    What gearing are you using on the TW's? You mentioned stalling and I was curious. I had switched to 14/55 and this was really good on the trail...but I wanted more, so I switched again to 13/55 which is what I used in Moab this year. I had really good granny trail success with these gearing combinations compared to the stock gearing.

    I recently put a Ceros tire on. While I haven't ridden it long enough or in a lot of different trail conditions, I can tell it's gonna be better than the stock tire for trail riding. Currently riding with 13/50 sprockets but will put on my 55T when I do some more serious trail riding. It's been fine on the forest service roads. Have not compared the 13/55 Ceros numbers with the 13/55 stock tire numbers but if I have too, I will go 13/60 or higher if need be.

    This is what got me interested in the Peace Creek - Habit Creek trail: http://www.trailimage.com/trails-around-deadwood

    2 years ago I rode Silver Creek Trail>East on Bull Creek Trial to a saddle below ride peak. We then backtracked a 1/4 mile or so and rode Telephone Ridge Trail to Stolle Meadows area. There are a lot of other trails off or near these trails but if you rode Habit Crk up the trails I mentioned, you could then take it easy and return to Deadwood via Warm Lake>Landmark>Deadwood on the FS roads.

    Do not ride 16:1 (16 to 1) trail unless you have overnight gear! This is the trail I got hurt and my son fell off his bike down into a creek. We made it back to the Peace Crk trailhead at 5:30 the next morning. Adventure yes, easy, no way!

    I'm still looking forward to riding the peace creek trail down to Deadwood on Habit Crk trail. I'm glad you and your son had a good ride!
    TWilight and littletommy like this.
    Hidden Content A ride in the woods helps me relax and release tension. The fact I'm dragging a body should be entirely irrelevant?

  6. #5
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
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    Wow, that sounds like an epic ride with lasting memories. TWs sure seem to make good Father/Son and Hubby/Wifey machines.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member BkCntryCrwlr's Avatar
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    For this trip I was riding my 2000 and my son his '94 TW. Both stock gearing. I'm hoping to get the seat upholstery finished on my '94 this week and run it around a bit, it also has stock gearing. I have everything I need to build up an extended swingarm, I'm thinking a 2 1/2 inch extension, then add the Cero's tire you and Wrench Puller used. I just like the look of that tire. Then I'm going to add a 60 or 65 tooth rear, keeping the stock 14 front to see how it works. All of this will go on my '94, I'll sell my 2000 once my seat is finished up.

    Thanks for the trail image link. That was a heck of a ride they did. How was the Silver Creek/Bull Creek trails? I've never been up to the north where you rode. Looks like some great riding. Definitely not up to Sixteen to One yet. If you noticed my large pack strapped to the back, that is my survival gear, a leftover habit from growing up in Alaska...take nothing for granted and always pack what you may need. Help may be a long way off.

    We're very lucky to have all the public land and trails to ride on that are so close to home! Wish I didn't already have plans, I'd love to go to the South Hills with you!
    Fred, TWilight, admiral and 1 others like this.
    You can't see it if you're not out there living it!

    '94 Rainbow Warrior - not so rainbow any more - Clarke XT350 tank, Lizrdbrth's seat mod, Beer Trap Pegs, Ricochet skid plate and more.

    Going through withdrawals, sold my other two TW's, down to one....Uhggghhh! Hidden Content

  8. #7
    Senior Member admiral's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BkCntryCrwlr View Post
    Then I'm going to add a 60 or 65 tooth rear, keeping the stock 14 front to see how it works.

    How was the Silver Creek/Bull Creek trails? I've never been up to the north where you rode. Looks like some great riding. Definitely not up to Sixteen to One yet. If you noticed my large pack strapped to the back, that is my survival gear,
    You're gonna love 14/60 or 14/65 for trail riding. I was loaned a 65 to test with and it was very stout on the trails. 45mph was pushing the engine pretty hard in 5th. This is the main reason I went with 14/55 so I could ride the highway at 55/60mph if I had too. I've not tried a 60T rear with stock front.

    Silver Creek: from the trailhead gate to the summit is the remnants of the old logging road. It's pretty easy with a few ruts here and there. From the summit down to Bull Creek Bridge is easy as well. There are a few downhill curves but nothing too bad at all. Stock gearing would get you easy to Bull Creek bridge and back. This trail used to be an ATV trail so it's fairly wide most of the way. ATV's are not allowed on it anymore or not at least when we rode it.

    Bull Creek Right: From the bridge up to the jct. with Telephone Ridge trail is pretty easy as well but there are a few steep spots which you may struggle a little with stock gearing. There are several places early on that have some log bridges and logs over some swampy area's but easy. Again, this used to be an ATV trail so not too tight. The map shows 2 trails branching off this before you start the climb up to Telephone Ridge Trail/Rice Peak Saddle. One I could see and it takes you back to Deadwood road. I want to try this trail one day. I could not see the other trail but I think it's hiking only now anyway if it still exists.

    Bull Creek Left: A short distance up the trail from the bridge as you head to Telephone Ridge you will come to another Junction. If you take a left on this trail it takes you too 16:1 trail. While I don't think this trail is as bad as 16:1 I wouldn't look forward to riding this one again either. We did ride it in the dark and that didn't help and we rode up from 16:1 back to the main trail we took earlier in the day. I think there is some places with extreme sidehill exposure (don't fall off the TW in places) and one really bad swamp area that the logs didn't help much. Of course, I was hurt and my son had to do almost all of the log/trail fix and ride both bikes through...in the dark. I also remember one very steep spot.

    Rice Peak Saddle: The climb from Telephone Ridge Trail Junction to here is steeper and I barely made the last 50 yards to the saddle with 14/55 but the rest of it was fine. There are two trails branching off at the saddle. One goes up to Rice Peak Lookout and by all accounts is steep. I've seen video's of people riding down from the lookout and mentioning how steep it is "downhill". The other trail sidehills down to the lake and eventually a road once past the lake. I personally don't think I'll ride either one of these trails.

    It's because of my overnight adventure I now carry more equipment with me when in the backcountry. I have a spot beacon now along with a saw and water filtration. We ran out of water and had a lot to start. Water filter would have come in very handy.

    Well, that's my scouting report for you. Maybe we'll catch each other on the trail one day or be able to ride together. Good luck sailing!
    littletommy likes this.
    Hidden Content A ride in the woods helps me relax and release tension. The fact I'm dragging a body should be entirely irrelevant?

  9. #8
    Senior Member BkCntryCrwlr's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update Admiral! We'll have to ride some of these one day. One that looks interesting is the trail that kicks off of Bull Creek Trail to the east and drops into Stratton Creek to Deadwood River. The Bitter Creek trail just south of here, starting by the Deadwood River has one mother of a steep spot. My son and I hiked up this for a couple of miles about 5 years ago. I don't think I would want to ride up this part of Bitter Creek Trail, maybe down it.
    admiral and littletommy like this.
    You can't see it if you're not out there living it!

    '94 Rainbow Warrior - not so rainbow any more - Clarke XT350 tank, Lizrdbrth's seat mod, Beer Trap Pegs, Ricochet skid plate and more.

    Going through withdrawals, sold my other two TW's, down to one....Uhggghhh! Hidden Content

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