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South-Central Utah Trip (Day 6)

Today, we continue along FS-300 and up toward Torrey.

Day 6 – Tuesday 18 May

After sleeping like logs at the overlook camp, we take it easy and get up well after sunrise, make some coffee and breakfast, and break camp to get back on the road (FS-300) going North, turning onto FS-230 dirt, and finally onto “Hole in the Rock” road, which is gravel.

That gravel road is awful – the washboarding is crazy bad. Even with our aired down tires, it feels like the vehicles are coming apart driving this road. Add to this the fact that we are on this sorry excuse for a “road” for quite some distance, this part of the drive is miserable.

Seeing all the tourists in their nice sedans, pickups, and crossovers navigating this stretch (no doubt with fully inflated tires…,) makes me cringe.

Finally, we make it onto HWY-12. Phew! We air our tires back up for the drive on pavement North and head on.

If you have never driven (or ridden – I have been riding this stretch many a time on my various touring motorcycles,) do yourself a favor and put it on your bucket list – it’s an easy drive, but offers absolutely gorgeously amazing vistas all along the route.

The paved drive is – as expected – uneventful, and traffic is quite light. Being early in the season helps keep the number of (car & m/c) tourists at bay, and we make great time heading generally North.

In no time, we see Oak Creek Campground and Lower and Upper Pleasant Creek Campgrounds, as well as Rosebud ATV Campground, all of which we choose to pass by, opting instead for a small campground off of FS-168, Lower Bowns Campground. We figure, if we can’t find a spot here, we’ll just backtrack and camp at one of the grounds we passed on our way up; but even with no reservation, there is only one other camper occupying a site :).

Glenn sets up his T3 under some trees, while I, since we have plenty of trees here, am opting to use my ENO Double Nest with Glenn’s underquilt and tarp, strung between two evergreens. I am using my Nemo 20-degree sleeping bag, since we are at an elevation of almost 7500ft/2275m.

Once settled, we treat ourselves to some cold ones, and, when dusk starts falling, we start a fire and cook some pork chops over the fire. Needless to say, an excellent meal finishing off an excellent day of travelling through beautiful country with great company :).

We turn in in the dark, and sleep like logs again. I love sleeping in a hammock!

Saturday:

We drive Pleasant Creek Road to Capitol Reef National Park.

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