OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

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OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#1

Post by DaveK » Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:40 pm

It's time for a trip to some of the most spectacular country in the world - Arizona and Utah. This week we will visit some very remote and very interesting places, both of which are in our very own South West. If you have several days (usually about a week, or more) these spots are worth your time to consider for your next back country trip. There will be separate trip reports for each below, complete with pictures, links and recommendations. Join us!

Just a teaser:
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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#2

Post by toms » Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:01 pm

San Rafael Swell

This is an area little know to many people as they zoom by on I-70.

"The San Rafael Swell is a very large anticline located in the very center of Utah.
I-70 cuts right through the center of the Swell and climbs up and over it.
The town of Green River in Utah sits along the east side and the tiny town of Emery on the west.
In between the swell extends 70 miles north to south and 40 miles east to west and forms a large kidney shaped fold in the Earth."


A.
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A-1.
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More quotes --

"The Swell is 2,000 square miles of public land, known for its scenic sandstone formations, deep canyons, desert streams, and expansive panoramas. The Swell is a massive maze of winding canyons, broken fins and buttes in the heart of Utah."

"Managed by the Bureau of Land Management, the Swell offers visitors many of the same sights that can be seen in several of Utah's national parks but allows these visitors to enjoy these sights in leisurely solitude. The San Rafael Swell also provides sights that cannot be found anywhere else, such as Goblin Valley and the San Rafael Reef. Hiking possibilities here range from easy to strenuous- technical canyoneering.

A part of the Colorado Plateau, the San Rafael Swell is high desert country, vastly different from the Sonoran desert of the Southwest. In some sections, it is a sweeping country with towering mesas, buttes, and pinnacles rising from flat desert floors. In other areas, it boasts rolling pasturelands populated with antelope and wild horses. And just around the bend it can become an incredibly wild, broken land with streams cutting through slot canyons that open up to panoramic vistas."

"There are numerous roads that only four-wheel drive vehicles can negotiate. Spring and fall are ideal seasons to explore this country because temperatures are usually moderate. Summer days can be uncomfortably hot. Winter nights get very cold but winter days are often mild - very pleasant for hiking, biking and jeeping. Make sure your car is filled with gas and bring plenty of drinking water."

I think one of the top items on a must see list is the Little Grand Canyon at the Wedge Overlook.

B.
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Another fun site is the view ( from below) of the 2 I-70 bridges that span Eagle Canyon. The trail there will take you pass Swasey's 1930's cabin and it becomes a level 3 trail down into the wash.


There are miles of flat, sandy, easy level 1 or 2 roads in the Swell. There are also areas with a bit more 4WD challenge.
Like this one at the bottom of Eagle Canyon on the North side of I-70.


C.
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There are miles of flat, sandy, easy level 1 or 2 roads in the Swell. There are also areas with a bit more 4WD challenge.
Like this one at the bottom of Eagle Canyon on the North side of I-70.

D.
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Most of the road are like this and very scenic.

E.
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Since I-70 cut right across the Swell East and West you sometimes find yourself using tunnels under the freeway. Most tunnels are big enough. My vehicle will just make it with an 8x8 foot but I prefer the 9x12 foot ones. There are a few that are too small for an SUV. Just hope you don't find your trail dead ends into one of the these small ones.

F.
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G. Partway through the west side tunnel.
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You can camp almost anywhere in the San Rafael Swell. There are some great remote areas.

H.
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There is only one bridge across the San Rafael River. It is also where a primitive camp ground exsists with pit toilets. Fuller Bottom is a place to ford the river. But not the day of this picture!


I.
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Goblin State Park is just off the Southwest corner of the Swell. They have a camp grounds with pads.

J.
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A must have for the trip is the National Geographic San Rafael Swell Map #712. This map has a full UTM grid lines in both directions at 1000 meter intervals. It makes it easy to tell where you are or in conjunction with a GPS where you want to go.

K.
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A very useful book is the San Rafael Swell Off Road by Ed & Janice Helmick
Sub title: A trail Guide to 42 Destinations for Automobiles 4WD Trucks & ATV's

L.
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Both the book and map can be ordered as a package deal at
https://www.4x4training.com/w/product/s ... uide-book/
See you on the Trail!
TomS
KI6FHA / WPZW486

Badlands Off-Road
tom@4x4training.com
http://www.4x4training.com

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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#3

Post by KAP » Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:19 pm

Dave and Tom
Please check me in. I will be listening on Echolink.
Kevin
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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#4

Post by DaveK » Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:48 pm

GRAND STAIRCASE ESCALANTE NATIONAL MONUMENT

By all accounts, the GSE is HUGE!!! We've visited there twice, and each time have returned with the firm understanding that it would take many more trips to even get a good start on seeing it all. The vastness of the Monument is obvious by just looking at the map, but it is ever so much more evident when you reach certain peaks and view the incredible expanse of the countryside. More than one member of our group commented that you could almost see the curvature of the earth when taking in the GSE from a good perspective.

The GSE has an exceptionally rich past, both from a geological perspective and from its human history. Our net, unfortunately, does not provide enough time to explore the entirety of this history, but if this introduction to the GSE serves to pique your interest at all, then your research will reveal one of the most fascinating places to visit in the USA. Travelers beware: Due to the huge expanses of territory in the GSE, both you and your vehicle need to be well prepared and you should have some form of capable communication (just in case you break down or have an emergency.) Just so there is no confusion, a capable communication device is NOT a cell phone - it is a Ham radio!!! While there are small towns interspersed in the Monument, you will need to carry plenty of water, gas, and food. If your vacation allowance permits, we recommend that you give this trip at least a week (although 14 days would be better.) AND, don't travel alone!!!!!!!!!

The GSE gets it's name from the topography of the region which contains a series of plateaus that descend from Bryce Canyon south toward the Grand Canyon, marked by vertical drops at the Pink Cliffs, Grey Cliffs, White Cliffs, Vermillion Cliffs and Chocolate Cliffs. Roads traverse much of the Monument, giving the traveler an opportunity to appreciate the beauty and diversity of the land. A CAPABLE 4wd is not necessary for many parts of the GSE, but it is certainly recommended. At the very least, a high clearance vehicle is mandatory for many areas.

Of the many things that is singular about the GSE is that is was the last portion of the US lower 48 to be mapped by the US Geological Service, due, in part, to the expansive nature of the terrain as well as the immense variation in the topography itself.

We generally travel during our many expeditions, by moving from location to location, on a daily basis. In the GSE, we picked a couple of spots that forced us to stay for 2 days, both to rest up and to fully appreciate the scenery. One can make it to the Monument is a day's drive (from the LA area.) If you are interested in our first trip report, see: viewtopic.php?f=118&t=2728

MORMON (LDS) HISTORY

As the GSE occupies a huge chunk of Utah, it naturally has a rich history of the Mormon religion. The Latter Day Saints have played a significant part in the development of the State and the GSE shares in this history. Again, while this net will not permit us to cover all of the significant parts of this history, we will only focus on one of the most popular - Hole in the Rock. The trek, which later became known as the Hole in the Rock, was the result of efforts to create settlements in various parts of Utah. The "Hole in the Rock" itself is perched above what is now, Lake Powell. This journey was a testament to the hardiness, faith, ingenuity, and determination of the Later Day Saints. More details on the net.

HOLE IN THE ROCK

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DEVIL'S GARDEN

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50 MILE BENCH ROAD/ MOUNTAIN

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SLOT CANYONS

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LONG CANYON

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CALF CREEK & FALLS

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BRIMSTONE GULCH

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ALSTROM POINT

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THE GROUP

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DaveK
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Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.

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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#5

Post by Voodoo Blue 57 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 5:14 pm

Early checkin please!
Phil T.
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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#6

Post by Jeff-OAUSA » Thu Oct 12, 2017 5:44 pm

Nice Photos!!

Early Check-in Request.

Thank you.

WD6USA
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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#7

Post by N7AJJ » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:58 pm

Early checkin please...thanks Dave!
Dale - N7AJJ
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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#8

Post by KK6DYO » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:02 pm

Please check me in. Thanks.

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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#9

Post by lrsrngr » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:08 pm

KK6CTT for the on-line check-in please.
[b]HUA[/b] or "Hooah!" = Heard Understood & Acknowledged. In context: "Roger that sir, HUA!"

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Re: OAUSA Net - October 12, 2017 - Destinations, Arizona and Utah

#10

Post by NotAMog » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:12 pm

Please check in Bruce, KD6GCO and John, KN6VL.
Bruce Berger
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