ROFs SE Utah Trip Part II

Ace Brown

Adventurer, Overland Certified OC0019

The next day was calm which I'm sure was welcomed by the film crew. I broke camp early and headed out to Croton Road.
I saw one low clearance SUV on the way in and told her the area was empty. Turns out she was the only moving vehicle I saw all day after 57 miles and 7 hours of driving. I drove Croton just last year and didn't remember it being quite so difficult. There were many climbs on steep, rough and narrow ledge roads and a few moderate wash outs.
I guess because I was solo this time I was more cautious of the road conditions. Soon I came to Left Hand Collet Road and turned east, not left, but right. LHC is probably the most challenging road in all of GSENM but it had flooded recently and that was followed by a rough regrading. A few ledges and tight spots will get your attention.
Soon I broke out of the canyon at 20 Mile Wash Dino Tracks site and camped close by in a very cosy cul-de-sac.

The next morning was a Sunday so Hole-in-the-Rock Road was choked with tourists heading south. That road is pretty washboarded and I wondered how many of the compact cars I saw would give up and return to the pavement long before seeing HIR. Learned after getting home that Martin, from the Desert Expedition trips, passed by me headed south. Upon arriving at Hwy 12 I aired up and headed towards home.
While driving the fairly long section from Torey to Hanksville I was amazed to see the road was nearly deserted, even going through usually very busy Capitol Reef NP. Hard to understand on a beautiful fall day with peak colors everywhere. That last night I camped on a quiet side road not far from I-70.

Morning found me driving home through Grand Junction and on to my home in Cedaredge. Always good to return home but at the same time I was missing the freedom of the open road.

Some trip stats: 736 miles, 215 on dirt and 13 days. Costs: fuel $249, food & drink $167, misc $50.
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