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Mar 12th 2018, 10:28 PM   #1
 FeralRdr's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  The Rider's Seat

Snow's Still Up Thar: A Tale of Oldman Pass

Rode up to Oldman Pass today from the Cougar side.

My cunning plan was to see if the pass was clear yet, and though I didn't expect to make it through, I was surprised how far I was able to get.

The roads heading up out of the Battleground area were in great shape, and with the exception of a few areas east of Cougar, were dry and clean. There were a few pot holes on the section of 503 that travels along the northern shore of Yale Reservoir, but nothing that was too deep or dangerous. The pot holes do continue to the east of Cougar, but there aren't many, and they pretty much clear up just east of the power house by Beaver Bay Campground. Surprisingly, the road from the power house all the way out to Pine Creek is still in overall good shape. The damage that was present last year is still there, but it isn't any worse and you can still run a nice pace.

The North Woods area is another matter, which is not really surprising considering that is the one area in the loop where the road routinely gets chewed up during winter.

Some of the pot holes are a little on the nasty side.

And, the pavement is still pretty badly cracked in that section.

This was the one area where the road was a little dirty, but it is due to the pot holes, and not a result of the forestry service graveling/sanding the roads.

Once I reached Curly Creek Road, things improved dramatically. The snow became more prevalent, but it was only on the sides of the road. The pavement was predominately dry, with only the occasional damp spots where snow melt was slowly trickeling across the road. You can definitely move at speed here, but you do want to keep an eye out for Edna the Elk (bitch ran right out in front of me ).

Anywho, I stopped off at the McCLellan Viewpoint, but it was still full of snow. 4-Wheelers might be able to make it in, if they have clearance; but not 2-wheelers.

With the road looking so nice, I continued South on to Oldman Pass. However, after turning onto Wind River Road I began to encounter sections of packed slush (passable via cleared tire tracks). When I reached Koshko Sno-Park, I encountered this:

Though there were still clear tracks through the snow, I chose not to chance it. I know of too many folks who did decide to go for it; but ended up regretting it when the tire tracks ended and they couldn't easily turn their bikes around.

Calling it a day, I head back down to Cougar, and decided to head back to the metro area via Woodland and I-5, to beat the darkness. Definitely was a great afternoon ride, and I definitely lucked out on the traffic the whole trip (out and back).
Mar 14th 2018, 01:16 PM   #2
 Rock Dodger's Avatar
  Feb 2016

Great stuff feral. Thanks for the update!
Mar 15th 2018, 07:24 AM   #3
 FeralRdr's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  The Rider's Seat

Your Welcome Rocky.

How are the roads looking out in your area. In particular, how fares Canyon Rd/Klick-Appleton HWY, and the BZ-Glenwood HWY?
Mar 18th 2018, 05:44 PM   #4
 southpaw's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  2014 yamaha super tenere,2003 klr
Looks like somebody had fun, thanks for the road report Greg.

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