Thursday, April 19, 2018

UTB: Factory Butte SRMA while doing a Recce

After an unusual productive day at work, I left a bit early to run down towards Hanksville, UT to gas up, get some more groceries and do a little recon of possible boondocking sites to the west of Hanksville along UT24.

 We did have a pretty good sunrise

Uma, the URRV, was out of position for the sunrise, 
but her window captured it just fine.


Once I got to Hankville, I filled up and then continued west towards the last location I'd stayed near when I towed Scarlett with Martha's Bimmer almost two years ago:  Cathedral Valley.

About halfway there, I saw signs for the Factory Butte Special Recreation Management Area of the BLM (Bureau of Land Management).  It's basically about 2600 acres of open space and hills for the use of OHV (off-highway vehicles).  The first entrance has a rather large and mostly flat parking lot that's perfect for boondocking.  It had 3G (extended) in the lot but 4G LTE (1 bar) closer to the road. 

The second entrance didn't have any cell service but you can see that's where most of the OHV traffic is based on all the tracks.

At the parking lot
Not great but usable, probably better using 
the weBoost cellphone booster.

Near the sign at the entrance, closer to the highway:
"mo better"

I then rode closer to Factory Butte itself, you can see it from quite a long distance away, very majestic even when the light through thick overcast clouds made everything look a bit dull.

Factory Butte

Continuing west on UT24 I son came to the entrance to the boondocking site I'd used before (18 miles from Hanksville).  Absolutely no cellphone service for Verizon, nada, zip, zilch.  The site is accessed via the road for Caineville Wash Road.  From there it's 26 miles to the Valley of the Sun and Moon; and if I remember correctly, not for the URRV to traverse!

The sight one sees upon exiting Caineville Wash Road

I did try going west about another 10 km but found no cellphone coverage.  Though I did find an open WiFi access point called Blue Gate at the Sleepy Hollow RV campground which appears closed for the season.

Retracing my route, now heading east on UT24 and stopped at the parking lot for the Rodeway Inn, multiple WiFi access points but all secured.  I suppose one could go in and pay a fee to use their WiFi in a dire need case.

Back in Hanksville, I gassed up with non-ethanol gas and then went back to the Bull Mountain Grocery store for more food.

Heading back to camp, I tried for another shot of Little Gilson Butte but it didn't really turn out very good:


As I rode on Temple Mountain Road towards camp, and thinking that perhaps the setting sun (which was behind clouds during the whole ride) would shine nicer on the western side of this butte.  

I'd spotted a dirt road earlier that seemed to lead in the right direction so off I went.

3 km later, I hit some really deep and loose sand and got stuck.  Dammit.

Weather closing in, losing the light and even 2WD was of no avail as the sand was just too deep.

Took off my helmet, took some deep breaths, broke out the entrenching tool I carry in the storage box under the sidecar trunk.  A couple minutes of digging out a path to the rear of the rig, a little crossing of fingers, and voila....2WD got the rig moving again back to a firmer spot on the road.

Executing a 18 point turn u-turn later, I got Scarlett pointed back the way we'd come and got out of there as the weather moved in.  Visibility was like being inside a gray snow globe with perhaps a mile before solid gray surface is all one could see.

The wind was blowing up pretty good too, we'd be under a wind advisory until 9PM (it calmed down by 8:45PM) and Uma happened to have her rear end pointed at the wind so we were good anyways.

So, quite the ride.  Sorry the lighting wasn't that great for pics, maybe tomorrow the sun will be out in force.

UTB: Utah Boondocking.
Recce: Reconnaissance

6 comments:

RichardM said...

18-point turn. Did you actually count?

That looks like a great area. Has things warmed up yet?

Charlie6 said...

I was going for a Riepe-esque embellishment RichardM. Temps in the high 60s but felt cooler.

Trobairitz said...

Quite the adventure when you have to dig yourself out. Better to dig the Ural out and not the RV.

Nice capture of the sunrise in the windows too.

Charlie6 said...

Thanks Trobairitz, digging out the RV would truly suck....

SonjaM said...

Stuck in the sand, alone and no cell phone coverage... I'd say that's enough of an adventure, Dom. Glad you got the skills and means to dig yourself out of this situation.

Charlie6 said...

Thanks SonjaM, I didn't even check for cell coverage...didn't want to even think about a tow out of that area. Luckily, a few minutes shoveling and Scarlett gained enough backward momentum to power out the rest of the way....I sure couldn't budge her by hand.