Monday, September 2, 2013

Labor Day Weekend, Day One

This weekend was the second annual 3-day 4-wheeler/motorcycle mountain marathon. My brother Dennis and his motorcycle buddy Allen came back for another weekend of nothing but riding, eating, and sleeping.  The guys arrived Thursday evening, and I knew it was a good sign when a full double rainbow appeared right before we met for dinner.  I took this picture very quickly before I left the house, and the rainbow became ever more beautiful as I drove into town. 

We attempted to get an early start; however, I have to say, it's become our routine to start out the morning with a hearty breakfast and good conversation before settling in  the pickup and pulling  the machines up to the mountains.  So, we're not the first ones on the trail by any stretch of the imagination, but we are awake, relaxed, and ready for a full day.

Day One: Pinion Ridge

Playing the role of scout, this trail was all new territory for me, so we were in explore mode and hoped we would hit a winner. This trip required going all the way to the top of Union Pass before unloading.  I studied the map and had the trail numbers pretty much in mind.  First, I suggested we go all the way out to the end of the trail on the north side of Pinion Ridge.  I was hoping there would be some pretty views as we went along the ridge, but that was not the case; we were in timber the whole time.  But when we broke out of the timber and climbed a ridge to the end of the trail, the view of Green River Lake opened up, and it was a beautiful sight.
Green River Lake

On the ridge, Dennis and Allen in the foreground behind my 4-wheeler.
Looking to the west, you can just make out the Grand Tetons. Too bad there's smoke in the air.

Next, we went back down the ridge and explored another trail stretching north where (according to the map) there was a small lake, but we discovered that the road was closed before you could get to the lake.  So, we ate lunch and decided to explore another area.  After looking at the map, we took a chance on another trail, again hoping it would be worth the ride.

 We happened to pick a very good path that lead us to the lower west end of the Green River Lake area.  The trail took us through some beautiful, old groves of Aspens.  In a couple weeks these big groves should be an absolutely glorious site as the leaves start to turn. We saw a big buck deer jump through the trees in front of us.

 And then the view of the lake really opened up.

Gorgeous views. 

On the way out, it was a little tricky finding the right trail a couple of times because they weren't marked, and we had to backtrack a short distance twice.  I think I have it clearly in mind for now, and if I'm able to return for the fall colors in a couple weeks, I feel pretty confident that I can lead my friends in and out on the right trails!  It made for a long enough day (or enough butt-time, as the guys would say); we put 48 miles on our machines.

Day one on the trail ended very successfully: good views, perfect weather, easy riding.  We stopped at the Cowboy Cafe for dinner...which was excellent, as usual.


  1. Your pictures are beautiful. I'm sure 48 miles on a trail bike or 4-wheeler makes for some sore buns! LOL

    Can't wait to see more pictures.

  2. Glad the three of you found some good trails and gorgeous vistas. Not hard to imagine how the old mountain men felt when they saw Green River Lake in the distance.

  3. Great photos! I love the mountains, anywhere!

  4. Gorgeous views is RIGHT!! Fireman and I may have to go to the Tetons now! I love the hearty breakfast idea . Im starting to embrace breakfast ...a hot one mmmmm with cornmeal pancakes today