SMITH VALLEY OUTING REPORT: by Chas Moser
This may have been the lowest turnout of any outing in TBSA history. Only one person showed up, namely Chas. Chas heard about the Wellington fire just before he left on the trip, but that didn't phase him. As it turned out, the fire was limited primarily to Ricky Canyon and adjacent areas. The weather was pretty miserable Thursday, Friday and Saturday with strong gusty winds and sporadic rain/snow showers. Chas attempted to ride up Red Canyon on Saturday however the further he rode up the mountain the colder it got and the strong snow flurries eventually forced him to turn around. Sunday was a different story as the strong wind gusts had abated for the most part and the rain and snow clouds were much less ominous. Chas got an early 8:45am start going up Red Canyon. He ran into easily traversable snow at the 8,000+ feet elevations. The lunch stop was at the Slater Mine cabin or at least what's left of it. After leaving Slater's cabin he took a dirt road (D14) NW for about ten miles and eventually ran into the power line road/trail about midway between Gardnerville and Sunrise Pass Road. He took the power line to Sunrise Pass Road, then Artesia Road, then back to camp. Total round trip was 70 miles. Since it was still early, Chas decided to break up camp Sunday afternoon and set up camp in Gardnerville 3.3 miles up Pine Nut Road at the second OHV staging/camping area. Sunday afternoon Chas put on another 35 miles from 4:30pm to almost 8pm riding mostly on the infamous single track trails in the Pine Nut mountains.