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Discussion Starter #1
Launching tomorrow for a few days riding the Alabama Hills with Adam-in-Nevada then off to Death Valley for some serious riding. Hope to make it to the Racetrack Playa and see some of the tracks left by sailing stones. Numerous road closures might make for no vehicle rescue possible once we leave Eureka Dunes and drop into Saline Valley and then on to the Lippencott Mine Road's ascent to the Racetrack Playa. Will be nervous first 50 miles or so.
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Hopefully the stones wont chase us.:D giphy.gif
 

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Discussion Starter #2
mysterious_moving_rocks-Death_Valley_National_Park-California-fabbd2066b8e4e44a3f6762896db6b97_c.jpg image_2148_1e-Death-Valley-Sailing-Stones.jpg The place is fairly unique and worth the remote journey to get there. The stones move only when playa is flooded, often rafted up by ice sheets and then blown by extreme winds blowing out of the Saline Valley through the Lippencott cut. Changes in wind diretcion and ice rafts banginging into each other account for the sudden changes in track directions. This happens when winter weather makes the playa inaccessible so the mechanism responsible has been an enigma for many a decade.
 

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That will be a cool trip. Now is a good time before it gets too hot. Are you going to the hot springs? Dirtluver and I went to the race track last year from the north side. We camped at Mesquite Springs campground went past the Ubehebe crater, then Teakettle junction down to the race track.


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What "race track"?
Just the sliding stones?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yeh, just a bunch of boulders that move around, no checkered flags.:rolleyes:

Plan is to camp a base of these dunes
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Ride through Steel Pass
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Then descend about twenty miles of alluvial fan to soak off trail grime at some well maintained yet primative hot springs that are pretty well isolated due to flooding & road closures now
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Another twenty miles along the salt pan then takes us to base of this jeepy climb up to the RaceTrack Playa
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After that it normal SUV roads past Teakettle Junction
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...and on towards Cranckshaft Crossing.
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About 130 miles means we'll carry extra fuel just in case we need to backtrack due to impassable conditions. Conventional access at both North and South Passes closed so we have few bail-out options.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Death Valley website claims low rainfall so far this year thus few wildflowers. Yet this somewhat contradicts Rocky's Salt Creek Lake as well as all the road closures due to storm damage & flooding. salt creek.jpeg
No one will answer the Park's telephone of course so it will be what it will be. It sure won't be the weather forcaster's 80 degrees.:p We will be a half day away from sea level Salt Creek and thousands of feet higher and thus colder.
 

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Beautiful scenery to have the luck & privilege to ride in.
Envious.
 

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I've been out to Death Valley a few times and every time I've wanted to have the TW out there! GODSPEED ON YOUR TRIP AND KEEP US POSTED!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
So we made it to the Racetrack after several days playing at the Alabama Hills. We had so much fun night single-tracking through the desert there and putting around the bizarre landforms that is was hard to leave. I'll do another thread and post some pics and videos later.
As is many of the road closures were now open so rather than basing out of Eureka Dunes we ferried the bikes in to the clothing optional grandfathered old free spirited Saline Valley Hot Springs that pre-dates the National Monument.
Takes more than few hour to get there when much of the roads are at 10 mph but the scenery sure is great.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Got a good camp site for the van close to one of the well maintained springs.
A little beyond my van is some low land so got to witness one of the Navy F-18 Hornets do a low wing-over fly-by at about eye level so could see into cockpit. Was treated the matching show of all the naked ladies jumping up and down waving and wiggling for the pilots.
Apparently this is becoming almost a daily habit, giving the boys in blue something other than Mom and Apple Pie to fight for.

Seeing that I couldn't help but think "God Bless America!"


The "air show" may have delayed our departure but we did finally launch for the RaceTrack.


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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
"Pictures or it didn't happen"? Well, poor taste to photo the disrobed, otherwise I would have to rename the thread "Burros, boobies and boulders". I did take pictures of other camp visitors. Boulders are still coming.
Officials want to kill the burros and cut down the palm trees since both are non-natives. Since the palms are the only source of shade for a good twenty miles and the burros seem to be only mammals around the plan is not popular
.


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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
After driving down in rain & snow flurries the 80 degree warmth and sun of the 1500 ft elevation hot springs was nice.


The 1050 ft elevation Saline Valley salt pan was a hoot, but only shade at lunchtime was under creosote bushes or in shadows cast by bikes. 2,500 ft climb up rather rugged Lippencutt was a dramatic contrast no longer suitable for most vehicles. We aided a young lady who in fear of going over a cliff had pinned her way-too-big truck up against the high bank. Took some doing but we got her free of the high wall & backed her far enough to turn her pick-up around and send her on her way back down the mountain. Once again Google Maps had sent someone down impassable roads. The Park's maps no longer even depict the Lippencut road.
 

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great pics fred, you have some of the best adventures. when i grow up i wanna be like fred!

have only been to death valley once... had a burro scare the feces out of me in the middle of the night when i got up to "admire the stars"...
nearly pissed on my feet.

in argentina they used to give burro milk to underweight babies, they still wander the backstreets in my wife's town. ??
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The burros were really cute, met this fellow when I crawled out of van. Not much he could hide behind at edge of camp while he nibbled sparse vegetation.


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Discussion Starter #19
Say Joe, found a nice air cooled motor if your 223cc TW isn't big enough. It's a V though, might need TW Brian to figure out how to install. Actually I believe it is an air compressor for a local mine


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Fred is the man! There's a small herd of feral Burro's that roam the South Park area near the reservoirs... I've seen them before. They are supposed to be very tame. So in honor of you, Fred - I'm thinking I should ride out on a mission this year to hump a sack of fruits and veggies to these wild asses! Here is some guy's video...
 
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