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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,
After doing (easy) parts of Death Valley in the spring, I'm thinking about trying Titus Canyon in October. Some questions for people that have done Titus Canyon:
1) What is the difficulty level? I've only been riding for a year so I'm still in the "beginner/pretty new" category.
2) Has anyone done it on a TW and was this a good bike for the trip?
3) Finally, I was thinking of doing this in the October 17/18/19 window (one of these days) and curious if there would be interest in coordinating. (Even if I don't do Titus I still plan to go back to Death Valley in this window.)

In my mind doing this "solo" doesn't sound like a good idea (especially at my skill level and having never done it before).

All honest/constructive feedback welcomed.

Thanks.

Peace. Out.
 

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Titus would be good for new rider if one can handle possibly churned up sand and gravel on what is essentially a downhill run through an ever tightening slot canyon stream bed. All depends on how much vehicle traffic has loosened up what was likely nicely settled creek bottom after last monsoon event. I believe area saw some significant flooding a month ago.
I would say try it. There is enough traffic that some help should be available should you unlikely have difficulties. Perhaps go moderately slow, stay relaxed but ready to react,
foot dabbing when it seems appropriate or reassuring. Stop and enjoy the experience but don’t block the route with the bike since others come by. I had to share the canyon once with a group of history reenactors in very correct Roman Legionairs outfits, a Centurion officer and a gaggle of foot soldiers marching up. Figured I would turn next corner and see camera men and hear director shouting “Cut! Get that idiot out of frame, we’re making a movie!”

Never know what surprises and entertainments you can discover in Death Valley.
Stock TW tank can limit how far you can explore from your base camp. If you can take extra gas then The RaceTrack, Teakettle & Crankshaft Junctions, Eureka Dunes, etc can extend a days ride for a learning rider. Lippencut, Saline Valley and some others are best done with more experience. Walking out to the absolute bottom below sea level is good...air is thick and rich and the bragging rights are fairly unique.
 

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(y) With the extra fuel you can extend that 100 mile loop if so desired. Modern signs and historic landmarks can help guide the way at important intersections.
Cloud Sky Mountain Plant People in nature


Sky Plant House Gas Landscape


May you have a very good time. That actually seems like a good time window avoiding the weekend. Perhaps initially try some easier touring besides Titus, you may be pleasantly surprised.
Sorry I only mentioned destinations on the far NW end of the park not realizing your coming from Simi Valley. I usually come in from Big Pine with easy access to Bristlecone National Monument as well as routes to Saline Valley or main park and mentioned points of interest and always boondock somewhere scenic and permissible.
 

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I did Titus Canyon on a TW200 in like 2008. I, too, had only been riding for about a year at that time. I found it to be quite an easy ride, even at that experience level.
 

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Is anyone up for a challenge? It is my belief that Crankshaft Crossing is woefully lacking a TW200 crankshaft!!! I am willing to supply a 1987 TW200 crankshaft... Who among us will place it there???
 

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I reviewed the Alerts & Conditions notice just to see if my typical areas were affected, fortunately still lots of good places and ways to get to them. Unfortunately many of those areas are not really suitable for a solo somewhat new rider.
Ecoregion Map World White Light


When back in Cartography School my professor would have given the USNPS map maker a "C-minus" for publishing a map having a key listing only 3 colors but then a map with 5 colors depicting differing road conditions and closures. Our government publishes way too many inadequately proofed or ground checked data bases. At least that one was recently up-dated, another shortcoming so often encountered often mis-leading and irritating.

Hopefully road conditions should improve soon, should NelsonJ elect to go while closures remain in affect he could enter via the north and still deliver reddave's crankshaft. A short close section by Uhebe Crater blocks access to Racetrack, a very worthy destination if one likes enigmatic natural wonders.
Sky Mountain Ecoregion Nature Natural landscape


Nice T-Dubbery around Mt.Whitney, Bristlecones and in the NW park quadrant where one never sees a Ranger on hundred mile back country loops.
 
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With 3 days one could pause for a few hours and sample Alabama Hills if heading to northern entrances out of Big Pine (395) Lots of easy beginner roads.
 

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Great advice from Fred! Titus is one of my favorite things to do in DV. I have probably done Tutus 20+ times on a mountain bike preferably when the road was closed by the park service. Only got caught out once & still survived. Yes, inquire before you go as it is often closed. Check out Echo Canyon if you are staying in Furnace Creek. It is close by & is an out & back, but is beautiful with an abandoned mine site at the top. Probably more challenging than Titus. Again I have only done it on a Mnt Bike. Also Chloride Cliff, another mine site, is a good ride. Again more technical than Titus.
 

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TBH, the recent natural terrain changes make that whole region sound like an absolute blast. I'd love to go explore any of that stuff that hasn't been closed! But yea, as noted^^...might be less suitable for a solo beginner (maybe just don't go solo!).
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Okay this is really helpful info - but unless I'm convinced areas are opens it looks like I'll have to postpone this this Death Valley trip. Big Bummer. My plan actually was just to do a single day of riding (on one of the 3 days noted). Last time I used Las Vegas has my home-base (roughing it, I know) - drove to Death Valley from Vegas (about 2.5 hours), road most of the day, and then headed back to the hotel. Then I did some additional riding closer to Vegas on the following days. That was going to be the plan again, but all the closures really are unfortunate. I would approach Titus Cyn from the Nevada - but if Titus Cyn closed, it really doesn't matter how I approach it.

Hmmmm....but thanks very much for all the input, especially the warnings about the closures I'm going to do more research and figure out was is still possible.

Thanks again. .
 

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Well if you have to cancel Death Valley hope you find another equally rewarding life adventure. Maybe head to coast and send us surfing pictures instead. :giggle:
 
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