Thunder Mountain

One thing that became very evident while I was on the road was weather. Yeah, weather happens! And when you’re living in a small space you become more vulnerable and aware to the elements outside. In this case I ended up waiting out 2 days of snow, sleet, and rain. I was feeling a bit stir-crazy being cooped up in the van that long but I found ways to entertain myself. Usually on these inclimate days where I’m stuck in the van I edit videos or practice yoga.


Check out my video of my time in this area!

So before I left Hurricane Utah one of our neighbors at the RV park mentioned to visit Casto Canyon on your way to Bryce Canyon. I decided to check it out. Right next to Casto Canyon I found a really cool free camping spot in the Dixie National Forest with hoodoos and this great hiking trail right next to it called the Arches Trail.

In between the crappy weather I was able to get out and do a hike this neat little area. Here’s a stone house that’s probably the tourists put together. I didn’t get the felling it was ancient ruins.

The Arches Trail meander’s up the ridge and passes by several cool hoodoo formations.

Great views but the weather was still lingering.

The Arches Trail was well-maintained and there was even a little staircase to help you get to the higher sections.

As I near the top I could look over the ridge and see my van camped in its spot far away. It always feels good to see your van / home in near view. In case you did not know I have named my van ODY-ONE.

Nature’s picture window.

 

Very neat looking Hoodoos!

 The Arches Trail name lived up to the hype. As you made your way across the loop there was this really cool Arch!

So after the two days of waiting out the weather I was chomping at the bit for some exercise. I was camping right at the trailhead of the a loop that consisted of Casto Canyon to Cassidy Trail returning down Loosee Canyon. After doing some research on my mountain biking trail apps on my phone it looks like a great option to ride and had some good reviews.

As I started up the canyon there was a little runoff from the snow melt further up the valley in the higher elevations.

Not bad so far. I mainly followed ATV track up to this point then it turned a single track.

As the day warmed up the water in the wash increased.

After leaving the ATV track I got on the Cassidy Trail. I was literally stopped dead in my tracks by this nasty nasty mud! I couldn’t even push my bike. The mud was so bad it would chock up my wheels to a complete halt. So I turned around and made my way back down to wash where I came from. At least the water in the wash would clean the mud off of my bike a bit.

Back at camp I was a little discouraged about the ride…. I didn’t get to do the full loop and should have waited out the day to let the trails dry more. Here I am airing out all my gear and getting ready to wash the mud off my bike. I was able to use my shower set up to spray the mud off and get my bike back in order.

Ah! This is the following day and I’m finally at the Thunder Mountain Trailhead. The sun has been out for over a day and I am greeted with nice tacky riding conditions.

Really really good views from the top of the Thunder Mountain Trail

The Thunder Mountain Trail was a blast and I really didn’t take much time to photograph it. I did get video but my camera wasn’t positioned properly during the ride and was only able to use about a quarter of the footage. Luckily what I got was okay and showed off some of the hoodoos and riding highlights the trail offers. I was expecting a 7 1/2 mile down hill on the Thunder Mountain Trail but really it was a bunch of ups and downs and short steep climbs for about half of the ride. About 2/3 of the way down you hit the large hoodoo area and finish with a fast descent to the trail head.

Time for some food! Grilling up a couple bison burgers and chicken italian sausage. This little propane grill is been working out great from Coleman.

Bison burger topped with California kimchi, 1 Italian chicken sausage, fresh avocado, and fresh cut cantaloupe! My kind of meal!

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