Thursday, April 20, 2017

Tri-State Jamboree Ride Review - 2016

Elephant Butte
At our first Tri-State ATV Jamboree, we participated in two of the 28 rides offered.  Here’s the run-down on those two rides – from a rookie point of view.

#6 Maildrop / Barracks
This ride is pretty popular – so popular, in fact, that they actually offered it as rides #4, #5, and #7 as well.  It is billed as 40 mile intermediate ride.  The trailhead is near Kanab, about an hour’s drive from Jamboree Headquarters.

The ride was every bit as beautiful – and as much fun – as the description portrayed.   With our lead guide, Jim, leading the way, we visited several spectacular viewpoints and other interesting sites.  I was first to find the elephant in Elephant Butte, which garnered me $2 from Jim.  The photo I took at a really interesting rock formation ended up on the cover of the 2017 Jamboree Newspaper.  And the consecutive banked turns on the ride were really fun to drive – at least, that’s what Paul said.  I was too busy hanging on.

Before we started the ride, Jim asked if we would be interested in taking a slight detour which would present a bit of a challenge but the ride would be worth it.  Of course we went along with it.  When we saw the “bit of a challenge” we were more than a bit concerned.  It was steep.  Paul drove it like a champ but it pushed our little machine to its limit.  That was when we broke the code:

The Code:  What we considered “Oh, s__t!” is considered “intermediate plus” in the Tri-State Jamboree.

The “slight detour” ended up adding 20 miles to the ride, and unfortunately, our little machine ran out of gas.  We were more than a little embarrassed, but our tail gunner, Donnie, came to the rescue and wouldn’t take any money.  I hope someday to pay that one forward. 

I’ve heard from other jamboree riders that their guides also took the longer route.  If I ever have any kind of input on the content of the Jamboree Newspaper, I plan to strongly encourage the editors to just tell people up front that the ride is 60 miles so they are more prepared.  That said, the ride was definitely worth the extra miles and extra time. 

#19 Curly Hollow
Our second ride of 2016 started a little closer to Jamboree Headquarters – in a neighborhood near St. George.  It was also billed as 40 mile intermediate ride. 
Top of Curly Hollow

The description boasts many elevation changes.  We rode up and down dozens of hills on the trail as we made our way to a beautiful viewpoint overlooking the Virgin River.  Then it was back down, and before we knew it we were on the banks of the Virgin River. 

OK – there was one minor obstacle – the trail down to the river was very steep and very rocky.  We made our way down and relaxed a bit on the sandy banks, steeling ourselves for the eventual climb back up.  It was not without incident.  As we started the climb, I felt the front wheels of the ATV come up off the ground and found myself sliding off the back.  I scrambled to my feet pretty quickly, was completely unhurt, and managed to hitch a ride up to the top on one of the side-by-sides. 

Virgin River
When we got to the top, I learned that one of our fellow riders and a fellow photographer had captured the whole thing on video.  He very graciously sent me a copy.  Don’t look for me to post it any time soon. 

The rest of the ride was dusty but uneventful.  It really was about 40 miles, and most of the terrain really was intermediate skill level – with the above-mentioned exception.  Again, a ride worth taking.

No comments:

Post a Comment