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  1. #1
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    Skyline Drive . . . doable on a cross bike with 42mm tires??

    Need some input from locals on the road surface on Skyline Drive.

    The photos I've seen look like its generally hard pack dirt and/or gravel. Can anyone offer first person insight?

    I'm considering taking my touring bike on a big 2 day loop. Basically 75 miles on Skyline one day, and 100 miles of pavement back on the next day. I'm fully aware of the elevation, scale/difficulty of the loop, etc but need some better info on road surface and suitability to fat (700x37 or 700x42) expedition touring tires.

    I've seen comparisons to White Rim, for example, which would absolutely NOT be suited to a touring/cross bike due to soft trail conditions.

    Likely date is second week of September. Will the ATV circus mentioned on utahmountainbiking still be a factor??

    Thanks for any advice.

  2. #2
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    I've done it, but it's been a few years. Yes, gravel, and hard pack. I remember a cobbly section toward the road that crosses over between Ephraim and Castle Dale. Although it's high in elevation, most of the climbing is reasonably mellow. I was on a mountain bike with front suspension though, so maybe I'm not remembering anything really chunky.

    Coincidentally enough, I'm headed there this weekend but with 4wd so I'll try to make a better observation.

    Yes, I would expect a lot of ATV's in mid September as folks scout out hunting spots.
    I'm looking forward to regretting this.......

  3. #3
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    Thanks Johnny. Sounds like its probably feasible on my touring bike. I've got a short travel Thudbuster on it, which will take the edge off a bit.

    That would be great if you could reply again next week after you've seen it this weekend.

  4. #4
    JGL
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    I rode 75 miles from the top of Fairview Canyon to Redmond (down Willow Creek Canyon) in a day, the last 40 miles on an old hardtail with a shot fork after the main suspension pivot broke on my motolite above Manti (thankfully we had a sag wagon). Nothing you can't ride on a cross bike. I will say, though, my hands, wrists and shoulders hurt worse than anything else.

  5. #5
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    Ok, just got back from doing the whole thing. Not sure where you are starting/ending, but, starting at highway 6 south the road is mostly improved gravel with a solid climb for several miles before rolling up and down. When it hits SR31 it's paved for a few miles before continuing south. The first 6 miles or so are improved gravel. Then, until you get to the horseshoe's the road is pretty unimproved, and mostly clay. It it is wet, it will be ugly, and even dry expect huge parallel ruts and large areas of ruts across the road to deal with. It was wet in places today from a shower yesterday and it was pretty slippery with the 4WD. If dry, as long as you can navigate between any ruts, I think this would be the best section. Around the Horseshoes to the road heading down to Ephraim there are some pretty rocky sections mixed in with a few smooth spots. South of Ephraim Canyon to I-70 again the road is mostly improved with gravel. Around Emery reservoir/Emerald lake area will be a pretty rocky loose climb. After that, again, mostly gravel.

    Having never ridden a touring bike, especially off road it's hard for me to judge how hard this would be. Hope it helps though. I will say I would want the biggest tire up front I could get away with.

    And, overall, I would say the road conditions have worsened since I road a bike on it.
    I'm looking forward to regretting this.......

  6. #6
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    One more thing, while I"m thinking about it. 12 mile flat campground is right on route, but they have the water turned off for the rest of the season. So if you were thinking of resupplying there, you'll have to plan something else.
    I'm looking forward to regretting this.......

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