Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Buckhorn Draw - Camping Review

In what I hope will become a series of posts, I want to share with you our adventures, the good and the bad, in the hopes that you can learn from us and enjoy these same areas as we have. Since we have been shown by other folks over the years about certain areas for recreation, we want to give back and share the information that we gather thru our first hand experience. So, without further ado, we launch into the Maiden Voyage of our Camping Reviews.

We recently purchased a toy hauler to haul our bikes, toilet and to a lesser degree the fridge out with us to enjoy the great outdoors. I've always contended that having a potty is priority #1. A fridge is #2 and a bed is #3. Having a shelter into which these 3 items reside is a plus that comes with a trailer or motorhome. Not a priority, but a happy happenstance. We have all the gear needed to endure a few days camping in a tent in the wild, and have done so on many adventures. When the weather turns, its miserable to be in a tent. In any event, these are some of the thoughts that led up to the purchase of a mobile potty container that also happens to have a fridge, beds and several other amenities.

We started loading it up on Wednesday night, and got the bikes loaded inside on Thursday night. After work Friday afternoon we departed from Pleasant Grove and headed south to Price. After a brief pit stop for some food and sundries at the grocery store, we continued on our way. Between home and Price we encountered a couple places where out F150 and 7k trailer bogged us down to the point of driving just under 40 miles per hour. Some of those hills are tough to climb. Outside Price we were able to keep the speed as we traveled south to Huntington. Another brief pit stop in Huntington and we were on our way out to Buckhorn Draw in the San Rafael Swell. To reach this destination, from Huntington, you simply have to find center street and head east. This takes you through some town and then the outskirts of town. At one point you will encounter a sign redirecting you off the road you are on to enter the San Rafael Recreation area. Follow this sign. It knows what it is talking about. This new road that will continue to take you east through the nothingness and ranches. Soon you will see a road that veers off to the left, with signs indicating Cleavland or a Dinosaur quarry. Do not follow this, unless you want to go that way. It will not take you to Buckhorn Draw.

If your destination is not Buckhorn draw, than its really silly to continue reading this as the intended destination will be exactly that. Veering to the right will keep you on track to the destination already discussed above. Soon you will see mountains on your left, on the east of you. Unless you are doing this in the dark like we did this time, in which case you will see what appears to be a massive void in the distance that is deceptively large but unexplained with the lack of light that night usually provides. Know that these are mountains. At this point you will be able to find anywhere off the road to camp. There are several locations from which to choose from. If you continue to follow this road, and stay to the left, it will provide you with a dozen opportunities to camp in locations near and far to the road upon which you are travelling. Continuing up this road a few more miles you will eventually encounter a gate. I've read that you can travel through the gate, leaving it as it was when you found it. We did not. So i cannot direct you into that area as it is comprised of nothingness in my recollection.

Back to the road we were so recently travelling on. You will most likely notice other campers already taking up residence in some spots that you may realize are well positioned and you wish that you had started your journey many hours earlier in order to ensure that you secured that camping spot. Keep this as a mental note for next time. Not this time, because someone is already there and its a mute point to want that spot. Continue on until you do find a spot. something that screams out to you as a descent spot for you to setup camp and sleep.

As you travel this road, which is called the old railroad road, you will see small roads that shoot off to the left. Most of these are great camping areas, some close, some further. One of them actually leads you to some petroglyphs. But this is a great area to camp. Had you veered right, instead of left as described above, this road will eventually take you to a few different roads, all with interesting locations to setup camp. Further along this road, you will encounter a road that leads to the Wedge Overlook. If you have not seen this, its a must see. Amazing views. There are some single track trails that branch off of this road further east. As well as the beginning of the road/trail that takes you down into Buckhorn Wash and ultimately to Green River. If you continued on east, you may eventually end up running into Highway 6 that headed from Price to Green River. Between these camping spots and Highway 6 there are many other trails to ride your dirt bike on.

If you ever find yourself in Green River, swing by the Robbers Roost hotel and grab a map for the Emery County area. This map has great details about the roads and trails in the area. I have personally ridden and driven on many of these trails. In future posts, I will detail my adventures prior to this maiden voyage in the toy hauler. We'll discuss the other trips that I have been on with friends and family, and the things to look for and to avoid. I hope these prove fruitful for someone other than myself and my family.

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