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  1. #1
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    Big brown gate ...

    As is customary (for me), I went up Tunnel, over to Otero on Tio Juanito, then right up the canyon through the "no-sign" area. But, instead of making 3 lefts that will eventually take me out of the naughty zone, and on to 49/236/3btls, etc, I decided to skip the 3rd left and continued south up what turned out to be little more than a well-travelled (mtb) ditch. After a while, that ran into a 2-track that continued south, and eventually through a big brown metal gate. I kept going south west, expecting to run across some clue as to where I was, but hadn't seen the backside of any big metal signs (must've still been naughty), and started imagining skulls on pikes in the trees. I caved in to the uh-oh's, and doubled back after a few miles. Where the heck was I headed on that road, and what's that big metal gate in the middle of nowhere for?

  2. #2
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    Was the gate tank-stopping big?

    Those were to be the boundaries of the military withdrawl fenceline, heading down that road would have eventually landed you deep inside DOE/DOD land. Not good.

    I cringe to think how much money those gates cost, how much was spent putting them in place, and now they'll probably never be used.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndyN
    Was the gate tank-stopping big?

    Those were to be the boundaries of the military withdrawl fenceline, heading down that road would have eventually landed you deep inside DOE/DOD land. Not good.
    Oh, yeah. A real federal-size gate. I assumed the gate was already well within the metal-sign boundary, and was curious as to whether I was going into, or out of a restricted area by going through it. When the road failed to turn back to the east, it occurred to me that the first people I met might have something to say besides, howdy.

    So, that was intended to be a boundary, but was replaced with the metal-sign boundary that encloses a larger area?

  4. #4
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    You would be headed the back way (south) to the fire tower and deep into David Canyon. That trail is great coming from the other direction, but after the mileage you put into getting there it would have been a tough climb for sure. Pretty sure that big gate is for military, FS access. It is quite large and detouring though. That was one heck of a ride!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garson

    So, that was intended to be a boundary, but was replaced with the metal-sign boundary that encloses a larger area?
    Probably due to the amount of traffic (bubba's) that accessed the area prior to the withdrawl.

  6. #6
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    We call that the Jurassic Park Gate. Seem big enough to hold dinosaurs.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn. Biker123
    You would be headed the back way (south) to the fire tower and deep into David Canyon. That trail is great coming from the other direction, but after the mileage you put into getting there it would have been a tough climb for sure. Pretty sure that big gate is for military, FS access. It is quite large and detouring though. That was one heck of a ride!
    There were a lot of fresh mtb tracks in that ditch of a trail, but once I got to the road, there were nothing but big wheel tracks. Eventually it occurred to me that bikers must be coming in/out from another direction, but it was already kinda spooky since I don't usually spend that much time deep behind the signs, so I just bailed out to the usual points east.

    That section of trail that continues up Otero past the bottom of Tio Juanito is as pretty as it gets, and is my favorite way to hook up a nice loop through Tunnel/Otero and points east and south, but I don't usually screw around till I see the back of the signs on the east side.

    Somebody performed a helluva community service when they bootlegged Tio Juanito. I doubt that I change my route even if they took the signs down at the top of Tunnel.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by F.N.G
    We call that the Jurassic Park Gate. Seem big enough to hold dinosaurs.
    That's a darn good name for it. Somebody needs to carve a little wooden Jurassic Park sign to hang on it.

  9. #9
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    Yeah, lots of traffic. There is another trail above the one you rode that is nice too. Dumps at the same spot (2-trk). The trail looks ridden because we ride it! You just missed the Bando trail too

  10. #10
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    May hold dino's, but it can't hold Bando's.

    JK...nice to see you have officially joined the community F.N.G. That is like your second post in a week!

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    Extend the ride...

    Quote Originally Posted by Garson
    There were a lot of fresh mtb tracks in that ditch of a trail, but once I got to the road, there were nothing but big wheel tracks. Eventually it occurred to me that bikers must be coming in/out from another direction, but it was already kinda spooky since I don't usually spend that much time deep behind the signs, so I just bailed out to the usual points east.
    Once you hit the 2-trk instead of going straight to Jurassic Park Gate make a left and follow the road down to another less intimidating gate. Hang a left here and there is some more new trail ( I forget the new names ) just past the evil signage. I like this section of trail too, but it is kinda out of the way of our normal loop. That could make for a 20+ mile loop from Tunnel.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn. Biker123
    Once you hit the 2-trk instead of going straight to Jurassic Park Gate make a left and follow the road down to another less intimidating gate. Hang a left here and there is some more new trail ( I forget the new names ) just past the evil signage. I like this section of trail too, but it is kinda out of the way of our normal loop. That could make for a 20+ mile loop from Tunnel.
    I'll try it once more, with the left turn next time - a different way out to the forest roads south of #49, etc., which is also a very nice area. I usually end up out that way, poke around a bit, then come back, drop down and pick up the unmarked south end of 236 to begin the flight back down into Otero. Then I either take the Tunnel Tr. back to the Tunnel descent, or just head down Otero to the highway, depending on available light.

  13. #13
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    Best trail name ever!

    Are you talking about "gnasty wag"? I love that name!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn. Biker123
    Once you hit the 2-trk instead of going straight to Jurassic Park Gate make a left and follow the road down to another less intimidating gate. Hang a left here and there is some more new trail ( I forget the new names ) just past the evil signage. ...
    Good tip Bryan, thanks. I somehow managed to take a different route up to Jurassic Park Rd without realizing it, but it ended up at the same spot on the road. Today's route was much nicer - mostly pine needles instead of a ditch. Anyway, followed your advice and found Un Poco Loco. Glad I had the gps. I knew from the sun that I was heading generally north and east, which can't be bad, but couldn't be sure when (and it was getting late) I'd dump out somewhere that I'd recognize. A quick check confirmed that I was about 1/4 mi. from where I'd left my route in the first place, and sure enough, I soon ran into the unmarked leg of tr #236, which is the start of my usual return route back down into Otero. There was an Un Poco Loco sign hanging right over my head, although I've never noticed a trailhead there before. So, that's a nice nearly 3-mi. loop that goes and returns very conveniently off the usual route. UPL would definitely benefit from some loose rock grooming, which I'll attend to the next time I'm out there. I'll try to make some constructive use of it.

  15. #15
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    I thought you would like that. UPL has some very challenging climbs, but mellow enough that you can recover. Not like some other trails that I have ridden recently

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn. Biker123
    May hold dino's, but it can't hold Bando's.
    The Bando's have evolved and have learned to climb. As evident by the Faulty tree.

    Damn Dino's without an opposable digit are SOL.
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