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Just returned from another great trip to the Alvord Desert, one of my favorite places to ride and explore! This year we will be meeting up with a group of Powered Parachute pilots and will camp, fly and ride the Alvord and surrounding area. Fun Stuff! This is a collection of everyone's photo's from the trip.



We left the Tri-Cities at 3:30am and headed south. We made good time until we were just about there, I pulled up the hot springs on the Garmin 478...told it to take us there and went back to playing with my phone while my father drove. I wasn't really paying attention and by the time we turned off onto the gravel road and started heading down it a ways I finally looked up and thought why are the Steens way over to the West of us? Dohhhh....I had accidentally picked the White Horse hot springs instead of the Alvord springs and we just drove a long way out of our way. :baldy We turned around and headed back down the paved road and to the Alvord Lake bed...a couple hours late now.



Here I'm holding the GPS unit....My bad :augie









Then we had to turn the motorhome around, good thing it has a little ground clearance.









We set up camp for the night and played around out on the Playa for awhile. Felt great to be back on the lake bed again! :clap





The next morning we woke up and decided to head north to Mickey Hot Springs since the weather wasn't favorable for flying.



My cousin James had brought along a vintage 1971 Suzuki RV90 to ride on this trip. This bike has been in the family for a long time and is a Veteran of many desert trips. Although it's always been reliable in the past this time it made it about 10 miles from camp and seized up tight. Here James poses for a picture right after it locked up. We left the "fat thing" here, waypointed it so we could come back with the truck and James hopped on the back on Mikes TW200. On our way again.









I stopped here on the way to Mickey Springs to get a couple pics.









Mike and James on the TW









Parked at the Springs.









Mickey Hot Springs









Q checking out the Springs









Another Hot Pool. There are no soakable pools here.













This forum only allows a small number of photo's to be posted at one time. I'll break it up into smaller posts.



continued below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Continued From Above....



Small Fountain Mud Pot.









On the way back to camp Q took some great shots of these bones laying out on the Playa.













After checking out the hot springs we worked our way back to camp for some lunch. My father and I hiked up above camp to check out a small spring and old cabin? ruins.









My father posing with the rock ruins. No noticeable door opening, not quite sure what this was used for.









Looking back at camp.









With some time left before Dark my father took his minibike out on the lake bed for a spin. These are little chinese minibikes that came with 2.8hp engines, my father and I installed 6.5hp engines and torq converters on them and they flat move now! Fun fun... I linked up with my father out on the lake bed and took this picture.













Once back at camp I decided to play with the RC aircraft a bit. I brought 3 RC's this time, the lake bed makes a great airfield! This is my home built Wild Wing, it's running a $9 china brushless motor and a 2100mah lithium Poly battery. It was pretty windy which made for a lot of fun, you could really bring it in for a slow landing.







Here's a video of the WildWing in action.



CLICK HERE FOR RC VIDEO





Lots more to come!



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Continued from above...



The following morning we managed to get a flight in with the powered parachute before the wind and occasional rain showed up.



Mike getting ready to warm up his Six Chuter Powered Parachute. This is a two place machine, cruises about 28mph...Low and Slow :thumb









Getting ready to become airborne. I'm circling in the background playing camera duty on the 530.









In the air!









Shot of camp from the air.









More flying and video footage later.



After the flight we all gathered up and decided to head to Borax Hot springs for a nice soak, then we will head to the old abandoned Mogal Mine, then onto Fields for a world famous burger and shake!



On our way to Borax Springs.













I took out my canon camera and snapped these pictures as I rode past everyone.



Here's a shot of Q on his Lifan 200cc duel sport. I've never givin much thought to chinese bikes but Q has 20,700 miles!!! on this Lifan and has yet to have any problems with it! Pretty cool for a bike that is $1300 delivered to your door!









Molly on her Lifan powered Honda CT90.









Leah on Q's custom Honda CT90 Conversion. It has a Lifan engine and a Honda XR100 fuel tank and front forks. Home Brew...Very Cool :thumb Leah just started riding on this trip, this shot was on her second day of riding and she was really hauling, I told her she's a natural at riding and should consider taking up ADV style biking. :deal









Mike and his new to him TW200. Not going to miss him in that riding outfit










Continued Below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Continued From Above...





Going around a herd of cattle on the way to the springs.









This is the abandoned open pit Borax mining operation.









And here everyone comes.









The KTM sitting on the old loading ramp. There are two large steel tubs on either side of the ramp. I would love to see some pictures of this back when it was in use.









Group shot up on the loading ramp.









Q Checking out one of the tubs.









Molly and Leah getting ready to leave the loading ramp and check out Borax lake.









Q pulling up to Borax Lake.









This is a rather large lake. It's luke warm bath temperature and is great for swimming/soaking on a hotter day. There is a large deep funnel out in the middle of the lake. The water at Borax springs/lake contains 25 times the safe level of arsenic so while its ok to soak don't drink/filter any water here.









The underwater funnel out in the middle of the lake. I assume this is where the lake is being fed from.









Continued Below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Once we checked out the lake we walked over to the Borax Hot Springs. The springs here are true Yellowstone quality!









Q brought along a digital thermometer so we decided to check out the different pools to see how hot they were.









198 deg F. at this pool.









Q took this great shot.









The deposits around the pools was very interesting.













My father Dan and James checking out a pool.









We continued further down the string of hot pools to find the soakable pools at the end. 101 Deg F. Just right for a mid day soak :thumb









Mike floating in the pool. These pools are very deep and have pretty steep banks, only a couple spots at the end allow sitting and soaking.









Leah and Molly in at the Borax Spring.







Continued Below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Q sitting on the side and taking a soak.









Everyone Smile




Continued From Above...













A close up shot of Q's custom Honda CT90. :thumb









After the soak we headed south again to the old abandoned Mogal Mine.



Lots more to come!



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Continued from above...



After leaving Borax Springs we headed south to the Mogal Mine. Here's a panoramic shot of the mine.









The steel head frame is still standing above the mine, along with narrow gauge rails for the ore cart, the Wakashaw winch, a single throw rock crusher, and a large smelting unit.









The Crusher









Looking down the upper audit.









Molly getting ready to fire up the winch.









A different angle.









Tag on the winch..."US Navy Property". Must have sold surpluss.









Molly and Leah posing with the winch.









This is the lower audit. There is very little tunnel here at this mine.









Q and Molly looking in the mine.









Continued Below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Molly and Leah at the back of the mine. The tunnel only goes in maybe 20 feet and ends at the upward grade heading to the head frame.









Here's a shot of the Smelting unit. This is a rather large unit for such little tunnel area at the mine. Maybe they built such a large smelting unit thinking that they had a really rich vain of ore and once they started mining the ore quickly ran out? Or maybe they had other mines in the area that they brought ore from to this smelter? Hmmm...



Not sure exactly what was mined here. Looking at the way the smelter was set up I would guess maybe they were mining cinnabar to smelter and recover Mercury from.









One of the two collection points.









Looking around you can find small pieces of coal on the ground. Looks like that's what they used to stoke the furnaces.









After checking out the mine we headed to Fields for some world famous food.



Line up of bikes outside the Fields store.









Group shot.









Hmmm...food.









Had to get in a picture of the world famous "World Famous" signs at Fields.









As we were finishing up a group of ADV riders showed up. I briefly talked to them before we headed out, they were from CA and heading North. They had maps out trying to pick out their next destination. Very cool.



Here's a shot of their bikes.









After leaving Fields we headed back to camp for a bit. As evening started getting closer I decided to head to the hot springs and soak for a bit. Everyone else decided to rest around camp for a while.



Here I just pulled up to the Alvord Hot Springs. No one here, I have the springs all to my self. Sweet. :clap









Continued Below...



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #9
This is one of the two soaking pools at Alvord Springs. One is out in the open and one has a wind break built around it. There is a nice wood deck surrounding the tubs. Washing machine drums turned upside down make great seats inside the tubs.









Looks like the Giant Loop guys have been here in the past :evil









This is the changing room. This will come in handy the next day to change out of the rain.









This is a small memorial to Carl. Carl lived on the edge of the lake bed just down from the hot springs. He was a avid dirt biker and took great care of the springs, always keeping it cleaned and keeping the piping working etc. I had the pleasure of meeting him once back in 02, he knew a lot of history of the local area, the surrounding mines etc. When I was through here back in 08 there was a nice picture memorial for Carl located where the ribbon is now but someone recently defaced the picture of Carl, one of the BendDualSport guys picked it up and is currently remaking it with a new picture and will return it to the shed when it's finished. :thumb



Rest in Peace Carl.









Soaking. The pipe in the corner controls the temp in the tub. There is a large wooden plug that you pull if you want hot water piped into the tub to regulate the temp. Works great.









Soon everyone else showed up to enjoy the hot springs and relax. Doesn't get any better than this :thumb









Later than evening Dave Wachs, Herald and ? (sorry spaced the name :baldy) from Bend showed up for a soak. I've talked to Dave many times on the phone and via ADV rider and it was great to finally meet the guys in person. Along with making legendary ride reports Dave and Herald make the Giant Loop Luggage that so many of us ADV riders use on our adventures.



Didn't get any pictures of everyone soaking but did manage to snap a couple pics of the bikes. Here's a shot of Daves 950, Nice!









And a Shot of Dave next to his bike.









We headed back to camp and got some sleep. Another fun day tomorrow!



Lots more to come.



Hodakaguy
 

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This is one of the two soaking pools at Alvord Springs. One is out in the open and one has a wind break built around it. There is a nice wood deck surrounding the tubs. Washing machine drums turned upside down make great seats inside the tubs.









Looks like the Giant Loop guys have been here in the past :evil









This is the changing room. This will come in handy the next day to change out of the rain.









This is a small memorial to Carl. Carl lived on the edge of the lake bed just down from the hot springs. He was a avid dirt biker and took great care of the springs, always keeping it cleaned and keeping the piping working etc. I had the pleasure of meeting him once back in 02, he knew a lot of history of the local area, the surrounding mines etc. When I was through here back in 08 there was a nice picture memorial for Carl located where the ribbon is now but someone recently defaced the picture of Carl, one of the BendDualSport guys picked it up and is currently remaking it with a new picture and will return it to the shed when it's finished. :thumb



Rest in Peace Carl.









Soaking. The pipe in the corner controls the temp in the tub. There is a large wooden plug that you pull if you want hot water piped into the tub to regulate the temp. Works great.









Soon everyone else showed up to enjoy the hot springs and relax. Doesn't get any better than this :thumb









Later than evening Dave Wachs, Herald and ? (sorry spaced the name :baldy) from Bend showed up for a soak. I've talked to Dave many times on the phone and via ADV rider and it was great to finally meet the guys in person. Along with making legendary ride reports Dave and Herald make the Giant Loop Luggage that so many of us ADV riders use on our adventures.



Didn't get any pictures of everyone soaking but did manage to snap a couple pics of the bikes. Here's a shot of Daves 950, Nice!









And a Shot of Dave next to his bike.









We headed back to camp and got some sleep. Another fun day tomorrow!



Lots more to come.



Hodakaguy


Another great ride report.



Thank you for sharing and inviting us along.



Mike
 

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what an amazing trip!
 

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No finer way to start the day than skinny-dipping in the waters of the Alavord Hot Springs and toasting the sunrise with tequila. Then watching your friend try to cover up while bringing back some beer from the truck (she lost at rock, paper, scissors) as the school bus drives by.
 

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As always Hodaka Guy, Great post and pictures that inspire one to have good Friends and a sense of adventure. Gerry
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Continued...



The next morning a few parachutes got a little flying in before the wind picked up again.





Q on the lake bed.







Here Q is skimming the lake bed.









Mike with another PPC in the background.









Bird Man. He has a Geo metro Engine on his machine.









Mike













Mike with his Helmet Cam on. I'm going to chase him on my KTM and film from the ground while he films from the air.









Ready to film.









Had to stop out on the lake and snap a Darth peach pose










Here's a short video of the flight from both the bike's view and from the seat of the PPC.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5NY4xSdk5A





After flying the PPC's I decided to mount the Helmet Cam onto my home made foam twin engine electric RC plane and take a flight around camp. Here's the plane with the camera mounted up.







Continued Below...
 

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Continued From Above...









And a short video of the flight around camp.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rkmJjKEIZLY





After playing with the flying toys we decided to take a ride up to the old miners fruit orchard to get some fresh fruit.



This is the orchard. It is fed from a natural spring. Peaches, apples, pears, apricots etc.











Hmmmm....good.









Looking up into the mountains from the orchard you can see the first mine. This is the Western Quartz Mine. The lower audit is collapsed but there is still lots to see at this mine. If you scramble up the hillside you can find whats left of the aerial tram, two open audits up above the main collapsed audit, wooden ore cart tracks etc.











I rode up to the old miners cabin to see what kind of shape it was in since I was last here. Looks the same as it did the last time.







Inside the cabin.









Looking out the cabin at the lake bed.









This is the view from the first mine, you can see the fruit orchard below.









And this is camp, full zoom sitting at the mine.









Continued Below...
 

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Continued From Above...



Heading back down from the mine.













Arriving back at camp.













More to come....



Hodakaguy
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Continued....



Once back at camp Leah decided she wanted to go for a run. She ran out onto the lake bed far enough that we didn't see her and then ran all the way back....then she did some crunches and push ups. Yikes! I was tired just thinking about it.









Rain storm coming in.













Dust storm on the Playa.









A couple misc shots of my fathers minibike out on the Playa.

















My father snapped this shot of one of the miners pears out on the lake bed.









Mike and James headed across the lake bed to Big Sand Gap to explore a little over that way.



Here's a panorama shot of the gap.









And a normal shot.









Continued Below...
 

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Continued From Above...



Mikes TW









Mike found this pile of spray cans out in the middle of know where. Hmmm....He tested a couple, they were full and worked!









Next morning. Molly cooking up some toast with Q's awesome home brew pop top camper setup. :thumb









Molly holding a desert toad.









Off to the mine. We drove the truck down to the start of the trail and my father dropped us off.



This is where we camped last year on our Oregon bike trip, my tent was right at the base of this cool tree. It is growing right out of the rock! Very Cool!









I had to get a pose next to the tree.









Heading up the trail.













Not to far up the trail you are already getting amazing views. This shot was taken looking back at the lake bed. There is a natural hole in the rock that passes all the way through and splits in two directions.









This scenic hiking trail used to be a old mine road. Further up the trail we come to the old power shack, still standing.









Continued Below...
 
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