Death Valley?

Discussion in 'Bikepacking' started by rossage, Jan 17, 2018.

  1. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    So the questions are flying and the interest is piqued so I will throw out an invite to go and ride in Death Valley National Park.
    Use the search function to see all of the previous reports.
    Expect long days in the saddle on rocky, sandy, washboarded, roads and jeep trails. No singletrack.
    I usually like to go for 4 or 5 days, starting mid week through Sunday. Some people come out just for the weekend. It is a 6 hour drive-except for Wolfie! @DangerDirtyD
    The mid week stuff is usually the hardest, more exploratory, back country, even bikepacking stuff. Dry camp next to your vehicle in the desert somewhere. Usually looking for geologic wonders, petroglyphs, and mining relics. I would also like to throw in a pre-dawn and/or twilight ride in order to see DV in it's best light.
    It is most convenient to meet the weekend contingent at one of the campgrounds near Furnace Creek.
    Depending on who shows up, the traditional favorites of Titus Canyon and Echo Canyon are good on the weekend. There is much more out there and depending on what kind of group we get going, then we can plan accordingly.
    I would suggest that we do this as soon as possible. Either of the first two weekends in February is good for me.
    The last two I am busy.
    March-April starts heating up and getting crowded at the campgrounds.
     
  2. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    Probably should wait until after govt shutdown and restart. :sneaky:
     
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  3. mike

    mike iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Western US
    Name:
    Mike O
    Current Bike:
    GG Smash
    This sounds sublime!

    Dammitall...
     
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  4. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Snake"
    Current Bike:
    Vassago/Trek
    I've been there and camped (never been on a bike there, though) dozens of times since the late 1980s. It's the best Natl Park in the US, in my opinion because I am a true desert rat. I know of some secret, off the beaten path, not advertised spots as I am sure you do too, @rossage.

    I have ALWAYS wanted to RIDE through Titus though. The other stuff like Hunter Mtn/racetrack sounds kind of gnarly (on a bike). I could see myself driving up to camp a night the day before or the night after a planned Titus ride, though.

    A big bonus now is the trail system that is being built in Beatty. Worth a look see, I imagine.

    We will need our certified German translator, @Faust29, to be on site because a lot of the tourists encountered there are from Europe.
     
  5. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD iMTB Rockstah

    Location:
    CA
    Name:
    Chicken Nugget
    Current Bike:
    2013 Trek Slash 9
    Rossxpedition in the desert is bucket list material. I doubt I can make it this year, but who knows what tomorrow will bring. Be safe!
     
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  6. Luis

    Luis iMTB Rockstah

    Location:
    Sylmar
    Name:
    Luis
    Current Bike:
    Big Black 29er
    I've burned up all my vacation time at work so this year is out for me. I don't get any time off until March :(
    The Rossxpedition is the best deal out there. On the plus side, there is no need to pay extra for the audio units like those rented at most museums and national parks. The audio narrated Rossxpedition tour is informative, insightful and sometimes comical. The only downside is that there is no OFF switch :laugh:;):whistling:
     
  7. schillingsworth

    schillingsworth Member

    Location:
    Queen Creek, AZ
    Name:
    John Schilling
    Current Bike:
    Motobecane Ti 29er
    Did you ever do this ride? Report? I'd be curious to see the route. A bunch of us did a 3 day bikepacking / car camping ride a few years ago and it was a blast.

    Here's the ride report with a ton of pics.

    Alive in Death Valley
     
  8. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    Didn't make it out there so far this year. Still got 17 days to change that!
    Your trip looks fantastic.

    Anybody want to go?
     
  9. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Snake"
    Current Bike:
    Vassago/Trek
    Id be interested in meeting for the ride through Titus and possibly more if we had a camp site as a base and used vehicles to drop off/pick up.
     
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  10. mike

    mike iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Western US
    Name:
    Mike O
    Current Bike:
    GG Smash
    Wish I could consider it :cry:
     
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  11. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD iMTB Rockstah

    Location:
    CA
    Name:
    Chicken Nugget
    Current Bike:
    2013 Trek Slash 9
    Can I bring my toddler along on the balance bike down Titus?
     
  12. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Snake"
    Current Bike:
    Vassago/Trek
    I’d like to see that. :eek:
     
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  13. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    The short answer is "yes." It can be done. The wisdom of it is another issue entirely. :p
     
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  14. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    I don't think you know what Titus Canyon is. People have died out there.
    The short answer is no.
    Hell no.
    Not if I am involved.

    Take the scoot bike to the Floop if you want some off road action.
     
  15. SnakeCharmer

    SnakeCharmer iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Crescenta Valley
    Name:
    Mike, aka "Snake"
    Current Bike:
    Vassago/Trek
    Hence, the name "Death Valley"?
     
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  16. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    "Tongue in cheek." Should have been obvious.
     
  17. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    I know. I have to be stern when children like @DangerDirtyD are involved. Poor beast, he just doesn't know any better
     
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  18. DangerDirtyD

    DangerDirtyD iMTB Rockstah

    Location:
    CA
    Name:
    Chicken Nugget
    Current Bike:
    2013 Trek Slash 9
    Awww, c’mon Rossage! Get back down here and play with me!
    6493AA70-1FF4-45D9-9B85-8263AB930548.jpeg
     
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  19. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
  20. evdog

    evdog Well-Known Member

    Location:
    San diego
    Name:
    Evan S
    I saw that too. Looks like a lot of damage to the roads unfortunately.

    I was on the bikepack trip with @schillingsworth a few years back. There had been rain the previous day and our ride down Titus Canyon got a bit sloppy. We later learned they had closed it. Not sure if that was before or after we started out - there were no signs. Before it got really muddy we came across some jeeps that were stopped at a spot where the road was washed out a bit. John had a pic of that. After that it turned into a nasty soupy muck all the way to the bottom. Not sure how long it takes for it to dry out or to get in and grade the roads. But I imagine you could ride them as soon as they're dry enough. I'd still like to get out there again but I'd probably do day rides and some moto rides rather than a bikepack. There were some looonnngggg pavement sections on our route.
     
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  21. littlewave

    littlewave Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Newport Beach
    Name:
    Brett
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripley LS
  22. rossage

    rossage iMTB Addict

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    I did most of this ride a few years ago. Instead of the final road miles, I met my 4WD buddies on the Saline Valley Rd and hitched a ride to the hot springs.
    The climb is total brutality. And worth the pain. Cerro Gordo is amazing.
    The descent is literally a brake-burner, I saw the toasted hulk of an Isuzu Trooper on the downhill towards Hunter Mtn.
    Definitely worth the effort.

    And like @evdog, I also think that day trips, shuttles, and overnighter are the way to go in DVNP. Multi-day trips are going to put you on the highway...

    Let's go!