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 The Trek: The Journals

•
Team: South
Jan Nesset
Friday, August 16
Motorcycles and the Zen of Route Mechanics
When I call to mind my earliest thoughts of this journey, months before I had sufficient information to paint me a realistic picture of the lands we were to cross, I see idyllic images of beautiful landscapes. I see blooming desert and fresh mountain tops. I see free-flowing rivers and endless prairie. Iím a daydreamer but the realism is amazing.
While not all public lands have the luster necessary to land them on a postcard, Iíve discovered a secret that I am ready to disclose: around the next bend and over the mountaintop are excellent places to look for something marvelous to write home about. Prove me wrong. Brochure-perfect images of public lands are a dime a dozen if you know where and how to look.
Our two days on motorcycles take us through a segment of the longest contiguous ponderosa pine forest in the country. Imagine an endless forest, towering 100 feet above earth. See here the expansive green meadows backlit by cumulus clouds topping rolling broad mountains.

With the same team of motorcycle riders as yesterday, our task of the day is to ride Forest Service roads from Los Burros Campground to a point northwest of Show Low, Arizona.
Last night we stumbled through our GPS manual and handwritten techie notes and landed on a correct procedure to upload our routes, and we did it without our GPS support team. Actually, Bob figured it out but because I stayed up late with him Iím gifting me with some of his credit - according to my rules of fairness.
But loading GPS routes properly does not guarantee the route will not present puzzle pieces.
Another piece of the puzzle: our Forest Service map indicates that we had a good road available. The road was shown to avoid private land and keep us clearly on public land. However, our updated GPS software didnít show a road at all. We took a risk. We uploaded the road into the GPS. The risk failed.
We began our travel on the right road, according to its location and number, but we soon deviated far to the west of the GPS route. We were on our own, and because I held the map and GPS it was determined that I was the guy to fit this piece of the puzzle.
Some private land indicated on the map to be in a westerly direction concerned me because the road headed in that direction. But a fence appeared exactly where I expected the private land to be. The road paralleled the fence north - on public land - and with great relief to me eventually turned east and around a knoll shown clearly on our topo map. Some squiggles here and some lazy arcs there and we were soon onto our next piece of the puzzle: a four-mile walk across a dry lake bed. The journalists shuttled our motorcycles and gear.
Our convoy of motorcycles roared to a stop where the GPS and map indicated we were to end our day, which up to this point was a reliable way to know where our support team and campsite awaited. But today, the end of the GPS route line was at a remote dirt intersection with no clues to follow to camp. Oops! In an hour or so the crickets would begin to sing, so rather than waiting for support I pulled out our Apache-Sitgreaves map and noticed a yellow marker had traced a route into Show Low and a campground called Fool Hollow. Duh! you may say but these maps always have scribbles and scratches and wayward lines. A black marker had actually scratched this yellow line as if it were supposed to go away. But it was out only clue, and it paid off.
Puzzle completed. Taco soup. Banana pudding. Skunk in camp. Farewell to Paul, Bill and Mark.

for Friday, August 16
North South Both




Biographical
•
Team: South
Jan Nesset
An experienced outdoorsman, Jan Nesset knows that everyone has to pitch in at camp
A native of Montana and the third of four children, Jan Nesset joins American...
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List of All Journal Entries
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Wednesday, April 28
Jan Nesset
American Frontiers: Part II: Taking Stock
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Sunday, December 1
Jan Nesset
Canyonlands in December
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Thursday, November 21
Jan Nesset
Snow Raspberry Bounty
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Sunday, November 17
Jan Nesset
The Bisti Badlands
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Friday, November 15
Jan Nesset
Public Land Flows Through It
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Thursday, November 7
Jan Nesset
A Day At Earth Analytic's Home
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Tuesday, October 29
Jan Nesset
Slot Canyon Adventure
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Monday, October 28
Jan Nesset
Some Things Never Change
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Sunday, October 27
Jan Nesset
Back To The Wave
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Monday, October 7
Jan Nesset
The Thing About Summits
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Saturday, September 28
Jan Nesset
A New Beginning: National Public Lands Day
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Thursday, September 26
Jan Nesset
Big Day of Sneak and Salvage
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Wednesday, September 25
Jan Nesset
History-Coated Strawberry
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Tuesday, September 24
Jan Nesset
The Last Of It
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Monday, September 23
Jan Nesset
Dinosaurlandia
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Sunday, September 22
Jan Nesset
Over The Edge
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Saturday, September 21
Jan Nesset
God Bless America
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Friday, September 20
Jan Nesset
Sometimes It's A Tough Life And We Get To Do It
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Thursday, September 19
Jan Nesset
The Niche Near You
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Wednesday, September 18
Jan Nesset
Snow Day
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Tuesday, September 17
Jan Nesset
A Capitol Reef Bull's Eye
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Monday, September 16
Jan Nesset
A Lucky Rift
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Sunday, September 15
Jan Nesset
Riding The Hog's Back
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Saturday, September 14
Jan Nesset
Oh Rhythm My Rhythm
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Friday, September 13
Jan Nesset
Precious Images
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Thursday, September 12
Jan Nesset
From the Hole to the Staircase
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Wednesday, September 11
Jan Nesset
Happy Days
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Tuesday, September 10
Jan Nesset
Do You Believe In Magic?
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Monday, September 9
Jan Nesset
The Bridge Over the River Why
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Sunday, September 8
Jan Nesset
Public Lands And…Not You?
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Saturday, September 7
Jan Nesset
That Place So Special
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Friday, September 6
Jan Nesset
Just Looking To Have Some Fun – Be Dammed!
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Thursday, September 5
Jan Nesset
Do The Wave
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Wednesday, September 4
Jan Nesset
The Condors Are Coming!
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Tuesday, September 3
Jan Nesset
Fires Are For The Birds
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Monday, September 2
Jan Nesset
Back On Top
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Sunday, September 1
Jan Nesset
Perfection
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Saturday, August 31
Jan Nesset
The Wheels Have Left The Tarmac
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Friday, August 30
Jan Nesset
Star Light
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Thursday, August 29
Jan Nesset
The Traditional Connection
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Wednesday, August 28
Jan Nesset
Onward and Upward On Mountain Bikes
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Tuesday, August 27
Jan Nesset
Checkerboard Kings and Queens
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Monday, August 26
Jan Nesset
Aldo Leopold As Ranch Manager
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Sunday, August 25
Jan Nesset
A Story In Everything
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Saturday, August 24
Jan Nesset
Fire In The Whole
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Friday, August 23
Jan Nesset
"Good Morning, Flagstaff!"
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Thursday, August 22
Jan Nesset
Hoping For The Best
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Wednesday, August 21
Jan Nesset
Could Get Stinky
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Tuesday, August 20
Jan Nesset
Wheels Asunder
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Monday, August 19
Jan Nesset
Hurt Me, Thank You!
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Sunday, August 18
Jan Nesset
Roads Aplenty and Rocks of Pleasure
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Saturday, August 17
Jan Nesset
Of Dragons and Fire
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Friday, August 16
Jan Nesset
Motorcycles and the Zen of Route Mechanics
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Thursday, August 15
Jan Nesset
Puzzled
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Wednesday, August 14
Jan Nesset
A Day Off, Sort Of
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Tuesday, August 13
Jan Nesset
A Delightful, Light Day
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Monday, August 12
Jan Nesset
Courage On Eagle Mountain
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Sunday, August 11
Jan Nesset
Farewell
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Saturday, August 10
Jan Nesset
My Aching Back In The Saddle
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Friday, August 9
Jan Nesset
Back In The Saddle
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Thursday, August 8
Jan Nesset
In The Saddle
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Wednesday, August 7
Jan Nesset
Shut My Mouth!
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Tuesday, August 6
Jan Nesset
Diversity and Song
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Monday, August 5
Jan Nesset
An Unraveling
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Sunday, August 4
Jan Nesset
A Bagged Peak
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Saturday, August 3
Jan Nesset
Lines On A Map
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Friday, August 2
Jan Nesset
GPS-Marriage Made In Heaven
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Thursday, August 1
Jan Nesset
Free Wheelin'
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Wednesday, July 31
Jan Nesset
An Excellent Start
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