Friday, August 14, 2020

Independence Mountain - Day 7

Saturday, Aug 08

Another sunny skies morning with temperatures in the high 60s and low 70s.

Decided to ride with Yagi, my TW200 Dualsport, the BLM trails located about midway up Independence Mountain and accessible from BLM 2504 near the Tipi Rings site: BLM 2514 below:

I started off with the lower portion of the route which progressively led down the mountain:

As I got near the bottom, it became pretty steep and I paused to gauge things before continuing.  As I looked, I saw dirt flying up from the ground to my left.

Soon, this badger's head popped up, and locked in on my presence perhaps 20 feet away.

The badger and I kept looking at each other, he seemed quite calm but wary of me.  He went back to digging his burrow and I took the opportunity to dismount Yagi and move for a flanking shot.

 Here's the badger popping up to check up on my last known position

The badger quickly spotted me to his left and we both stared at each other for a bit; then he went back to do more digging.

I moved uphill a bit for a better angle on the badger and next time he surfaced:

 He doesn't seem to worried about me, does he?

Badgers do have a fierce reputation so I decided to leave him alone and turn back the way I'd come; leaving the last steep portion for another day.

I rode the upper branch of the three way intersection on the above map but didn't get too far before things got pretty steep so I turned around.  I did find a campsite set up in the trees so apparently someone likes that location.

Returning to BLM 2504, I ascended back to the top of the mountain and wandered about CR 35 looking to see who was camping near me.  I found a couple of camper sites at the spot where I'd set up camp initially.  The travel trailer which had set up last evening somewhat close to me was gone, must have gone somewhere else out of the winds.

There was one spot I wanted to check for signal but it turned out to be not too flat anyways but it did have trees which framed the nearby mountains nicely:

I went up BLM 2513 which I'd found closed by a locked gate before, thinking I'd come back and do some hiking.  This time, the gate was unlocked and open so I went through!

Sadly, not much in the way of scenery up there, just a wasteland of cut down trees and the detritus associated with it.  Lots of pine beetle killed trees too preventing views of nearby hills.

I went back through the gate and turned left trying for a view of the hills:

Returning back to BLM 2504 aka CR 35, it was time to pose Yagi with the nearby mountain peaks in the background since it was such a clear day:

Delaney Butte in the distance

Late afternoon, I downloaded an inclinometer app for the phone which logged pitch/roll of a vehicle.

The results were a bit mixed as the phone wasn't solidly anchored to the tank bag it sat in.  I used Scarlett since trying to do all this AND stay upright would be too much.

If I'm reading the spreadsheet it exported correctly the max slope on BLM 2504 was 22 degrees and on CR 7B it was 24 degrees!  These results are very rough estimates.

Suffice to say, both roads have steep sections that way exceed the 7% grade mandated for US Highways!

I watched several ATVs and side by sides cruise slowly by during the afternoon.  Everyone was well behaved and not going fast.  I did hear someone target shooting, briefly.

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