Rides & reports of motorcycle adventures..


dugas loop, 12/4/06

This is mostly a rehash of the ride report i posted on thumpertalk:

It's taken me this long to reply.. couldn't even type. Ok, i could type, but i had a grueling game of golf yesterday, & didn't get my pics managed, or the gps tracks down.

Anyway, here's my story, & i'm sticking with it.

The beginning. At dugas rd. & I-17. Note the wide, easy parking area.

Wide open vistas, intact bike.

Pretty much at the top. We went up about 6500', & down to 2700 at the verde river. This is where we started going down. The road to this point was fairly easy.. Going down we encountered rocky, rutted switchbacks. Boulders in the road, narrowing to barely a jeep width in places. Picking a line was tricky. Some of the steep downhill spots you just had to roll through it (closing my eyes & screaming helped, too)

There were some great views all along this section. The switch backs hugged the mountain side. We went down about 4000' in about 10 miles.

You can see the verde river down at the bottom.

The edges were pretty steep. You didn't want to lose it around corners or slide off.

Then, when i was in an easier bit of road, after white knuckles coming down a particularly hairy section, i took my left hand off the handlebar to raise my visor.. it was a little dusty, & i wanted to see better. My front tire hit a small rock.. the handlebars twisted left.. the right hand on the throttle held on, but gave some gas. I wheelied over the edge. Tom was behind & saw me go over. He said he was afraid to look when he caught up. But all he heard was me coming up sputtering & cussing. The bike went left & down a steep bank about 20'. I bailed, going right & landed on my right side (ribs are still a little bruised), about 10' down. The tree caught the bike, some brush caught me. The windscreen shattered, the front fender cracked, & the spoilers on the handguards tore off. But, i was ok. Now came the hard part.. getting the bike up the hill.

Ok, i left off with me flying over the edge of the cliff. Here's Tom surveying the situation. You can sort of see the bank we had to pull the bike up. I went over about where my helmet is.

Ken to the rescue! He waited about half an hour at the next intersection.. then figured something was up... er, down.

We probably wrestled with the drz for about an hour.. next time, i'm putting a bit of rope in my bag. This is the part that drew blood. my finger got smashed between the fork stop, Ken snagged on some other part. We finally stood it up, & I pulled on the back tire while Ken & Tom pushed, handling the front brake. we went up the hill at a little angle to lessen the grade. Finally, at the top, checked it over, & back on the road. We weren't even half way at this point.

Going down, getting closer to the verde, the hot springs, & hundreds of naked women I promised the guys.

At the old Verde Hot Springs Lodge & health spa.. it really was, back in the '20s. All the naked women were out.. i thought they heard us coming & went out for beer. They should be back any minute..

It was a little chilly, i guess. The group shot at the Hot Springs. Me, Ken, Tom. No one wanted to get in the water.

We looked for a spot where you could cross the verde.. it could be waded, but was hip deep in spots & the current was pretty stiff where it narrowed. We found one spot that was over 100 yds across, but no one thought it would be a good crossing point.. at least, no one would take their bike across there. So, we finished our snacks, started up the bikes, & got ready for the easier ride back.. There was a lot more up & down as we headed for Bloody Basin road. We crossed a couple of creeks.. very little water. Ken came up on the turkeys (he was already riding with them).

There were still some great views.. but we kept waiting for the trail to get easier.. it was still very rocky, rutted, & scary steep.. but this time we went both up & down.

Pictures can't really capture how steep & rocky it was.. plus, no one felt like taking a snapshot while screaming & bouncing down the rough parts.

Then i had another get off. I was picking a line too close to the right edge. I hit a pretty big rock on the edge of the road, tossed me left into some other big rocks, which tossed me back right & over the edge again. I went over the handlebars & landed on my right side. My head hit pretty hard, & my right knee took a pretty hard shot, too. I fell about 10' down into a wash. I got up, ran over & turned off the bike, then collapsed in the wash to survey my injuries. I was hoping my leg/knee was ok.. it took the biggest hit. Ken was able to roll the bike down into the wash & back on the trail. He said i made a good roll when i landed.. practice makes perfect.. No one was in any mood to take more pics, especially me. Banged & bruised, wondering what the heck am i doing this for, i remounted & pressed on. We were about the halfway point.

Finally, we got on a maintained road.

It was open & we cruised along at a pretty good pace.. which was good, it was getting late, & we had miles to go.

The rest of the ride was uneventful.. although i cramped up several time.. arms, hands, even legs.. We ended up cutting the ride short & riding back to dugas road on the freeway. We got to the Bloody Basin exit about 5pm. It was already starting to get colder & dark. Tom's Husky wasn't geared for the freeway, so he rode along the shoulder with his blinker on. Ken rode on ahead & was loading up his bike when I pulled up. I insisted on buying these guys dinner, but the only place we knew of was McDonalds at Cordes Jct. about 5 miles S. We went there & enjoyed our burgers & fries, then everyone went home. Tom to Prescott, Ken back to Chandler, me to Sedona. All in all, it was a fun, exciting, & adventerous ride. I'll post the tracks & details of the ride next.

Here's the details of the ride.
Dugas road & I-17, 3850', temp-40 deg, 9am 12/4/06

Dugas Road to Verde Hot springs- 28.3 mi, 6471' to 2756', ave. speed-7mph.

Verde Hot springs to Bloody Basin road, I-17, & back to Dugas- 66.4 mi., 4952-2756', ave speed- 15mph.

Total trip: 94.7 mi. Here's the tracks:

I'll post some more pics & organize it a bit, later.

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Sedona, Arizona, United States
Semi-retired home builder. Musician. wr250x adventure rider. Amateur philosopher. Innovator. Tech & gadget freak, genealogist.