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If all you have is a weekend, you still better get a ride in when you can. It is winter after all, and the desert is beautiful. And, you can't always keep wishing you could make the weekdays with the breakfast club folks with weekday exploration time - lucky fellas!!   A couple of buds needed a ride fix too, so we opted for a quick day ride on Saturday. What last minute readiness usually means is a little prep work early on the day you are going (knowing you should have done it last week  :) ), so they arrived around 6:30 am for some prep work, and then off we went.  

We had a buddy who was going to be in Ocotillo Wells, and he said he would stash a 5 gallon jug of gas for us if we ended up out his way.  That can add a lot more options as we were hoping to casually cruise out 8 east on the big interstate to ocotillo and wander from there (sure beats the windy long trek through ramona and/or the 78 or 79, and saves a lot of drive time).  The wind was howling in Jacumba, but when we dropped down to the windmills, all was still - Nice  :) .  We parked with all the Jeep clubs, side by sides, and to my surprise, a whole bunch of groups that looked like they were "small SUV off roaders"... might be a new trend, all with tools, jacks on the roofs for digging out if needed....etc... all were at the Chevron getting ready for adventure. We geared up and started our bikes with no route in mind, but were thinking we would try to avoid the many vehicles out and about that looked like they wanted to find dirt too.

Hmmmm, have the laws changed? I do not ever recall that so many quads and rzrs just driving on the roads in ocotillo to gas up (common in Arizona and Utah, and used to happen when the area "Yuha" was open to off-road).  But that area closed to non-plated, and no one can ride off-road in Anza Borrego, so that must mean they simple head out to Plaster or Superstition, or all the way to wells or even through Painted Desert......  But I thought that Painted Gorge was a plated area too...... is there another action spot that they would go to that would have them swing by to gas up in ocotillo?

Regardless, we headed towards dos cabeza, then out to the S2, then as we approached canyon sin nombre, it looked like an off-road vehicle convention- haha.  We passed by and decided to take south carrizo by the trees...  The dirt was super nice and that road used to be quite skinny, meaning that only rigs that were ok with scratches would go there.  It has been opened up a bit, which is ok I guess, since there are less dangerous blind curves.  We then flew up the wash to head to Diablo Drop (skipping the Mud caves route- Tapiado- and the cross over, to avoid vehicles). Wow, we were all proud of ourselves as we were enjoying a completely free route with nobody on it....  Yahoo, until we then discovered why....  A large section of the cliffs collapsed and as of saturday, it didn't look like any vehicle has yet won the battle of finding a way through.  The issue may not just be how to get over the rubbish, but how to also avoid the mucky muck mud on the other side.  We found a goat trail along the edge and worked our way over.  We stopped a truck who was headed that way and shared that heading back to the cross over would be the only way out, they were appreciative. So zip zam zoom, and down Diablo drop, and out of fishcreek, dodging jeeps and many vehicles at the opening and near the windcaves.  We found our buddy, got a free cold one, and some gas, and turned around.  2 hours and 20 minutes, 55 miles. 



We then zipped over to Trestles for a break and a bit to eat, and to listen to the loud music from various groups who had claimed their spot under the bridge....  it always seems like a music festival there... :) , and offers a good view of where we were headed.


From there we rode over to Superstition so we could go up to see the view... It is always spectacular from up there!  And it always adds a little more challenge for me riding in that soft sand. Last October I made it up there and went over the handlebars twice at 2 mph as I tried to go down a hill of talcum powder....  knee deep to get out... and always a bit anxious (mechanically) of where that incredibly soft sand might end up in, or on, my bike. 


Yep, my buddy was proud to have made it too - smiles.


From there we headed west, parallel to hiway 8, opening it up a bit and cutting across through the zone I call "Sharp rocks"  on the way to painted Gorge, then through the super cool area of bizarre mix and match of ravines, mounds, yellow dirt, etc... as you cut the corner from the western part of the gorge as if you were gonna head back north up the valley of S2, but east of it along the mountain (maybe a lot of mining up there still).  So many diverse geological riding zones in that one day.  Great ride with part 2 being 2 hours, 50 minutes, and 56 miles.  Wow, our gas stop was almost exactly halfway.  Pretty cool loop. We finally got out of the maze of tracks and got back to Ocotillo, where the wind began to howl, and it was cold, but we were casually headed back west on the interstate in the comfort of a truck.

Great day, Great ride, we all felt lucky!  Just how it should be. It was a great Saturday loop. 


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Diablo Closed,,,,  I wonder if anyone is buried under the pile.  So, a lake on the north side of the wall collapse. 

   Thanks for the intel. Not a good time to go caving in Tapiado canyon. 

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