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Thread: Red Rock Rendezvous

  1. #1
    On the Road CGARR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    Talking Red Rock Rendezvous

    On the road yet again.... This weekend was spent at one of
    the activities I like best. Rallying with MOA members.

    The venue of choice for this month was the Red Rock Rendezvous
    put on by the Beehive Beemers club of Salt Lake City, Utah.
    They have over the last few years managed to get in and stay
    in the good graces of the kind people of Panguitch, Utah where
    the rally is held. That puts it in the heart of some of the
    best riding Utah has to offer. More about that later.

    Since it is sort of a long ride (at least for members of the
    marshmallow butt association like me), I decided two days were
    in order to make the run from Tucson, Az to Panguitch, Ut.
    That put me on the road at 6:00Am Thursday headed north.

    My first stop was a force of habit stop at the top of El Capitan
    pass just north of Globe. Don't know why, I just always stop here.

    Practicing common sense, I didn't stay long. It is always best
    to get out of the desert early in the summer months.

    In Globe I made a stop for fuel, and ran into two fellow rally
    aficionados who were also making it a two day trip. Pushing
    on (the day was really heating up quick). I made it to Roosevelt
    lake. The water levels were way down. All but one of the boat
    ramps have been closed since the water has long since receded well
    beyond their reach. If this drought doesn't end soon, there won't
    be a lake left.

    As I was running on Hwy 188 along the lake, I passed a golf cart
    on the shoulder running a sign that read "wagon train ahead". Hmmmm
    this is unusual, so I took their suggestion, and slowed way back,
    sure enough just over the next rise, was a 4 wagon train with
    wagons, horses, mules, and all kinds of mounted riders. The had
    mounted traffic handlers at both ends so I passed them slowly,
    and picked a nice spot just ahead to pull off. I can't pass up
    this sort of opportunity for pictures.

    Turns out this was the Vision Quest group out doing one of their
    repeats of the travails experienced by the early settlers with
    problem kids. I did a little looking after I got back, and these
    youngsters are the most incorrigible of the worst. The deal is
    they have to work really hard to get accepted in the program.
    They were cordial, and waved and chatted as they passed by, so
    it must do some good..... although it could be heat stroke too,
    it was beginning to get very very hot. Shortly up the road I
    stopped again to get one of those traditional travel pictures
    (the ones you get every time you go by a place). The bridge at
    Roosevelt lake is one of those for me. While I was loading back
    I chatted with some couple on Harleys that were headed for a
    rally in Williams, Az.

    With that stop under my belt, I hit the road in earnest, and
    my next stop was a brief pull in for gas in Payson, Az. Once
    I made Payson, I was into the pines, and the temps became more
    bearable, so the pace was back down. My only goal was Flagstaff
    before dark (something about Az. forests and elk after dark just
    doesn't work for me on a bike).

    My planned route then took me along hwy 87 through Pine,
    Strawberry, and Clints Well, Az. Then onto hwy 487 for the
    final leg to Flagstaff. Along the way I passed through Happy
    Jack, Az. They had an old logging wagon, or part of one sitting
    in front of the ranger station.

    After Happy Jack, my next notable stop was Mormon Lake.....
    more properly, these days it would be Mormon Meadow, there isn't
    drop one of water in it. This was my first glimpse of the San
    Francisco Peaks behind Flagstaff (so named because on a clear day
    it is rumored you used to be able to see San Francisco from the

    Rolling into Flagstaff just after 1PM, I decided that a stop at
    NAU's skydome for some pictures might be in order, I graduated in
    1999, but I still like to visit the town and the school occasionally
    the just sort of grow on you after a while, and what would a visit
    be without some pictures of the mountain yes there is still just a little bit of snow on the north face.

    Much to my amazement, when I got to Steve's (my gracious host
    for the evening), he was home for lunch, and just getting
    ready to go back to work. The evening was spent much the same
    as any evening in the company of old college friends, with mixed
    drinks (strictly rum n cokes, and scotch n waters no appletinis for this
    crowd.....apologies Benn....) and plenty of story telling

  2. #2
    On the Road CGARR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003


    Steve had to leave early (like 3AM) to ride to Albuquerque NM
    to visit the love of his life. Long way to ride to visit
    someone, but she owns and maintains 3 of her own bikes. I have
    never met her, but I can understand totally, she rides, I could
    forgive a lot of miles myself for that fact. So I was on my own
    to get out on Friday.

    I managed to get on the road before 7AM, and headed north up hwy
    89 toward Utah. After leaving Flagstaff the road climbs up to 7400+
    feet, and then drops back out into the wide empty spaces that make
    up quite a bit of the Navajo Indian Reservation. As you drop out
    of the trees it just seems like you can see forever.

    The stretch of hwy 89, and hwy 89 alt between Flagstaff and Marble
    Canyon has some incredible roadside geology. Every time I drive
    or ride through this part of Arizona I see just a little bit more
    that I missed the last time around. Some of it looks like it is
    right out of an old roadrunner coyote cartoon.

    In truth the vistas are so breathtaking, my camera has never been
    able to really do them justice. They are just so large that by
    the time you frame them you have lost the subtle detail that
    makes them so fantastic.

    My next stop was at Marble Canyon. I stopped for breakfast
    and pictures from the bridge. The old bridge is open for
    foot traffic so you can get some good shots up and down the
    Colorado river from it. In truth the river is looking very
    small and shallow these days. From up on the bridge you
    see right to the bottom of the river bed, it just isn't very
    deep right now (that pesky drought again I suppose).

    From Marble Canyon you also have some choice views of the
    Vermilion Cliffs, of california condor re-introduction fame
    sadly I never saw any of them. While I was gassing up (the
    most expensive fuel I bought by at least $.20 per gallon), I
    talked to another couple (Mike and Sue) also headed for the
    rally those beemer riders sure are friendly folks...

    After the canyon, you ride right down along the Vermilion
    Cliffs until you get to the Kiabab plateau, and then you ride
    right up it. The view on the way up are incredible. You can
    see for miles back the way you rode across.

    Once you are up on the plateau, you are back above 7000 feet,
    and it gets nice and cool, with lots of pines. There is a 50
    mile side trip you can take to the north rim of the grand
    canyon though I didn't do it this time. For my time and money
    the north rim is the way to see the canyon. It is cooler, and
    there are far fewer tourists.

    At the far side of the plateau, you can look north into
    Utah and the canyon country.

    Dropping off the plateau was quite a ride, the winds were up
    and it was necessary to ride at a nice angle to the left to
    go straight. Not my favorite riding conditions. I also had
    more than one close call with passers on the other side not
    seeing, or maybe not caring that there was an oncoming bike.
    Guess it might be time to get those extra lights up front....

    When I reached Kanab Utah, the world simply changed. From there
    to Panguitch you are driving up a canyon, and the towns look like
    a Norman Rockwell picture. Kind of like a trip to the twilight
    zone, one minute you are in the desert with dried out, dusty,
    little towns that always appear to be on the verge of dying,
    then suddenly there are towns with storefronts, and small white
    clapboard houses with lawns and white picket fences, hay fields,
    and farms. The back drop to it all is the beautiful red sandstone
    cliffs that symbolize southern Utah. All very surrealistic.

    I rolled into Panguitch around 1PM, set up camp, and waited for Bud
    and Phil to wander in. Phil arrived between 4 and 5, and Bud never
    did. Turns out his father had passed away (my condolences to you
    and your family Bud, and we'll see you at the next rally).

    End of the day was dinner at the flying M (turns out the mayor owns
    the restrant).

  3. #3
    On the Road CGARR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003


    Saturday, up early to hike to the showers, then
    wandered around to get some sights on the camera. There
    were the tents, the bikes, the big pit fire for the pit
    roasted BBQ Saturday night. The one man band, the beer
    garden and the shop trailer where Doug serviced bikes,
    and answered the questions of onlookers as he did so.

    After a breakfast put on by the local Lions Club, Phil and I
    decided that a trip up hwy 12 to Bryce Canyon might be in order.
    Since both of us had ridden considerably to get there, and we
    planned to make the trip back in one shot a short 50 mile round
    trip like this was just the thing, and it would take us through
    Red Canyon so I could get a few pictures.... imagine that.

    After getting back to camp, we discovered that the local rodeo
    folks were doing some calf roping in the arena. We were able
    to watch from pretty much any seats in the house.

    The evening brought a real honest to goodness pit BBQ, put on by
    the local volunteer fire dept., and even to mayor was serving
    food. Everyone ate plenty, and they had enough leftovers that
    they could offer to sell whole roasts packaged for traveling.

    After dinner the usual drawing for door prizes, and the speeches.
    Especially interesting was the announcement that the owner of
    Salt Lake City BMW is opening another store in Las Vegas with
    his grand opening in September. It was a very nice conclusion
    to a good rally.

    The ride home Sunday was logging lots of miles in the heat.
    There were no picture stops, just gas and food to get home
    before dark.

    All things considered, it was a really great rally, and is
    now on my list of annual must do events. It is a fairly young
    rally, and it has plenty to do and see.
    Last edited by CGARR; 06-22-2004 at 02:06 AM.

  4. #4
    El Dookey loves to ride. 99007's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Ada, MI (outside Grand Rapids)

    Waay cool

    Lookin' good. Your shot of Roosevelt Lake brought back the memory of the first time I came upon it. Traveling out there in a cage on the back roads - did not know such a huge lake even existed (hey I live in Michigan - Lakes R Us).
    It was surreal to come upon the vast expanse of water in the desert in July. The campsites (quite modern and expansive) were completely deserted, after all it was 112 degrees. Wierd to see all the camping area with no people.
    Went swimming - ran down the boat launch and launched ourselves into the refreshing waters.
    Sorry -
    Also loved your shots of the Colorado and the red rocks of Utah.
    Great report - thanks for sharing.
    Don't winterize; Rounderize!

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