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A good friend of mine pieced together really remote quad ride near the old mining town of Bagdad AZ and invited me along. I was told the ride would be long one, starting in the dark and ending in the dark and to be prepared for an awesome ride. I certainly wasn’t going to miss this one.

We arrived at the staging area at 6:30 AM after a 2 & 1/2 hour drive. It was a very crisp 39 degrees when we arrived. One of my co-workers had some Carlisle Black Rock tires he was talking off his quad so I decided to put them on mine to see how they perform even though they are about half warn.



As we head out towards the mountains I was amazed at the colors cascading across the vast desert floor as the morning sun started peaking over the mountains. The early light always makes for some of the best photos.



I just happened to look over to my left shoulder and saw a crested saguaro on top of a hill. These are very rare. I believe in all the thousands of miles of desert I have ridden I have only seen 8 or 9 of these ever.



Below are a few photos as we progress along our 80+ mile trip up and over many mountain trails along the way.

We came across a couple of cowboys on horses that were headed out to round up some of their cattle. I cannot imagine trying to find cows this vast countryside.



Within just a few miles we had climbed up one of the mountains and had this gorgeous view of the trail we were traveling.



A short time later as I was riding along there was a loud pop under my quad. As I came to a stop I wondered if I had a tire explode. I looked down and the tires were OK so I thought maybe an a-arm broke. As I got off and looked at the rear of my quad I was amazed to see the shock coil spring was off. Further investigation showed the shock had come unscrewed from the mount letting the coil spring loose. Fortunately Harold was behind me so he took off to gather the heard. When they arrived we went about securing the quad with a strap to another machine to hold the tire in the air. After taking the tire off we went about putting the shock back together.

Fortunately Harold found the 2 washers within 20 feet of where I stopped. Zane had some JB quick weld, so we put that on before screwing the shock back together. Zane also used 3 ratchet straps to compress the spring to get it back in place.







With the shock fixed we ventured on and eventually made it to an old homestead called the Yolo Ranch. I always love looking around all the old buildings and try to imagine how the people lived out in the back country 100 years ago.

 

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Here's a cool shot of Meka, Howard's Great Pyrenees. She's such a trooper! Its difficult to tell in this photo but she’s a big girl. (Almost as big as Howard). Howard has a large rack on the back of his quad, perfect for her to ride on.



If you look close at the photo below, you can see some of the trail way off in the distance that we rode to get to this mountain.




After a quick lunch we were off again. We wanted to make sure we had enough daylight to finish the ride before it was dark. There are just too many trails and not enough daylight in the winter.





We came across a very cool old truck that was burned up. What a shame. It looked like it would have been a blast.



We had a few more mountains to climb up and over before we get back to the trucks. Some of the mountains had a bit of off camber that had your attention. The trail was very narrow and had about a 100 foot steep drop off if you got in trouble.





At the end of our ride, we just beat some upcoming weather.



One last stop before we are back for a group photo.



I have to say this was an outstanding ride with some fantastic people. It seemed like we could see forever from some of the vistas. It was another excellent adventure for the record books.

I was pleasantly surprised by the traction I had from the Carlisle Black Rock tires, even though they are half warn they did a solid job putting up with the demands of this ride. This was not a hard core ride other than its length, but it was very rocky and steep at times and it had some off camber spots thrown in too. I purposely went up on some berms to see how the lateral stability was for this tire and was impressed.
Remember to get out every time you get a chance to see our beautiful country, ride responsibly and always buy your tires and wheels from Discount Tire.

Don McNeilly
Discount Tire
 
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