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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi from the North Shore in Vancouver!
I am considering riding the San Juan Hut to Hut Trail this summer with a California buddy. I have read the ads and the glossy magazine articles but have yet to see or hear from real riders. Anybody tell us from experince whats going on there?

I am techincal XC rider in very good shape; my buddy a new MTB rider who is just getting into shape. What can you tell us?
 

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Jus' Ridin' Along
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Did it with a group of friends (one of which is now my wife! got engaged on that trip) about 5 years ago in July. I had a fun, would do it again. I used Old Man Mountain racks and pannys on a Superlight (my wife too). Mo betta than using back packs, way betta on tech dh's and twistys, too. Had a ridged SS, and some HT's too. No need for mega-travel.
We had all levels of ability: fast, not-so-fast, and slow. Fasties went for the race, middles went for the ride, slows loved the scenery. All good.
At the time, Huts were well stocked, even found beer, fresh eggs, cheese in a few. Gateway sucked (heat, chickens) but there was a cafe wit burgers and ice cream. The rest were good; of course it depends on the group ahead of you; we had asshats from lower slobovia, so we got to clean before and after. no biggie, takes 15 minutes if everybody pitches in.

Some Real Quik Tips:
Get all your friends to go; don't hook up with another group
Make sure someone likes to cook, and all of you chip in on cleaning
Do ALL the single trak options
Select a good CASK strength single malt. Use a glass flask. if others like Scotch, make them bring their own.
Take your own lightweight sleeping bag and take the mattress outside to sleep. Farts happen (often)
Take a personal sized sun shower (football sized) fits on a rack and you got a hot shower at the end of ride. Stink happens. Our friends laughed, then started asking to borrow ;)
Shuttle from Moab to Telluride. That way when you're done, you're done.
 

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Des(s)ert Rat
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BobL said:
Did it with a group of friends (one of which is now my wife! got engaged on that trip) about 5 years ago in July. I had a fun, would do it again. I used Old Man Mountain racks and pannys on a Superlight (my wife too). Mo betta than using back packs, way betta on tech dh's and twistys, too. Had a ridged SS, and some HT's too. No need for mega-travel.
We had all levels of ability: fast, not-so-fast, and slow. Fasties went for the race, middles went for the ride, slows loved the scenery. All good.
At the time, Huts were well stocked, even found beer, fresh eggs, cheese in a few. Gateway sucked (heat, chickens) but there was a cafe wit burgers and ice cream. The rest were good; of course it depends on the group ahead of you; we had asshats from lower slobovia, so we got to clean before and after. no biggie, takes 15 minutes if everybody pitches in.

Some Real Quik Tips:
Get all your friends to go; don't hook up with another group
Make sure someone likes to cook, and all of you chip in on cleaning
Do ALL the single trak options
Select a good CASK strength single malt. Use a glass flask. if others like Scotch, make them bring their own.
Take your own lightweight sleeping bag and take the mattress outside to sleep. Farts happen (often)
Take a personal sized sun shower (football sized) fits on a rack and you got a hot shower at the end of ride. Stink happens. Our friends laughed, then started asking to borrow ;)
Shuttle from Moab to Telluride. That way when you're done, you're done.
Gateway now has a resort with a full restaurant, grocery store, sporting goods store (small, but they have tubes and some other essentials), auto museum, and lodging if you want to go luxurious for a night.
 

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I worked at the resort in Gateway last summer and all the riders who came thru said the route was mostly fireroads, not a whole lot of singletrack. A 29er would be ideal. Just don't expect it all to be singletrack. Much more fireroad than single track from what I've heard.
 

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screampint said:
Gateway now has a resort with a full restaurant, grocery store, sporting goods store (small, but they have tubes and some other essentials), auto museum, and lodging if you want to go luxurious for a night.
NO SCHITT!?!??! In Gateway? :eekster:
Is the Hideaway bar still there?
 

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Des(s)ert Rat
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Anonymous said:
NO SCHITT!?!??! In Gateway? :eekster:
Is the Hideaway bar still there?
I don't think it is. The resort is on the bend in the road where the highway turns out of Unaweep and starts to go upstream on the Dolores.

Lots of scenery, not a lot of singletrack, but they (Gateway Canyons) are working with the BLM to build some.

Here's a couple shots from late summer/early fall 2005:







And you can even find some petroglyphs:

 

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Weird!
I haven't been to Gateway since the early 90's. I rode my bike from Naturita and back, along the highway, one summer, when I was in Jr High. We used to go over for thier "Prom" every year. The whole town attended. The'd roast a whole venison or pig, and everyone would drink tons of beer.
I was planning a trip over ther in May for the dynamite shoot. Now I think I have to. If fo no other reason than just to see it.
Weird.
 

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Des(s)ert Rat
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Anonymous said:
Weird!
I haven't been to Gateway since the early 90's. I rode my bike from Naturita and back, along the highway, one summer, when I was in Jr High. We used to go over for thier "Prom" every year. The whole town attended. The'd roast a whole venison or pig, and everyone would drink tons of beer.
I was planning a trip over ther in May for the dynamite shoot. Now I think I have to. If fo no other reason than just to see it.
Weird.
If you like automobiles and their history, you owe it to yourself. The resort is trying hard to make it worth the drive out there, as if the scenery wasn't enough. It's owned by the Discovery Channel founder, who has fallen in love with the area.
 

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The bar is still here, but open on a very intermittent basis. All I can say for sure about the bar is that it is always closed on Mondays. Sometimes other days as well, but there's no rhyme or reason to the pattern.

There is mad potential for singletrack here. I still live here in Gateway and have been scouting around and found some cool stuff. Not much loop-type stuff, but some really cool shuttle runs. Once it warms up and I get my bike mobile again, I hope to get more stealth trail scouting done. If anyone's interested, I'd be glad to share what knowledge of "secret singletrack" I have here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the info...

This has been better than all the magazines combined. Thanks to all that wrote. We enjoyed all the beautiful picture and helpful info.

One last question: which route has the best singletracks along the way?
 

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Jus' Ridin' Along
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Single track every day

bikemanla said:
This has been better than all the magazines combined. Thanks to all that wrote. We enjoyed all the beautiful picture and helpful info.

One last question: which route has the best singletracks along the way?
Can't comment on the Durango route, but the ToHellYouRide version had a singletrack option for everyday except for the first. But because it was in the handwritten note book and you had to either memorize or hand copy the routes, I could see where people would get lazy.
Out of our group, half would not do it again. One guy is trying to organize a Durango route trip this year, but the wife and I are out as we overspent last year (mtb'ing in Italy, CO, AZ 3 times, and the Sierra twice.) Plus our wedding and 2 new blur LT's.
So it's a BD trip to Fruita and back to enjoying the trails in So Cal.
Have fun! And don't forget the most important piece of equipment: a good sense of humor!
 
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