My rock hounding trip for Sunday April 18th, 2010 turned into a sightseeing ATV Trip.
I had my trip mapped out. The GPS unit was all loaded with turns, waypoints and the location of the mining prospects I wanted to explore. The only problem...I was going a little too fast to actually see the road where I needed to turn to get there. I was on my ATV speeding along on Birch Creek Road in the Owyhee's at 12-15 mph. I had to keep one eye on the road, one eye on the scenery and one eye peeled for the turn. Something had to give as I discovered I only have two eyes.
I missed the turn, thinking the road on my maps didn't exist anymore, so decided to head south into the Pixley Basin. For the most part I had the entire area all to myself. I saw only one truck on the road the entire time I was riding. With blue bird skies and warm temperatures I decided to do a slow sightseeing cruise as I headed southwest into the lonely Owyhee's. I hiked up a few short cow paths that looked interesting. It seems like everywhere I looked there were cool rocks. This whole area of the Owyhee's is just geologically interesting.
It was getting late in the afternoon by the time I got about 15 miles into mountains so I decided to take a short ride off the main road and up a peak that overlooked "Black Butte". I took a long series of pictures and started back to my truck.
I had a nice quiet (so to speak) ATV ride on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Thankfully I didn't encounter any rattle snakes BUT. On the way home I did get to see a mountain lion cross the road in front of me. I wish I had whipped out my camera and tried to get a picture but that animal was too fast and headed into some tall sage brush. I stopped on the gravel road (Poison Creek Cutoff) to see if I could find the tracks of this big cat. No luck.
Even though my plans changed, it was an enjoyable day slowly re-exploring a place I have been a few times in the past.
Link to a few more pictures from the ATV trip into the wilds of Southern Idaho: http://picasaweb.google.com/tim.bondy/ATVTripIntoPixleyBasin?feat=directlink
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