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Sand Hollow/Sand Mountain pre-run

alrock

El Diablo
Staff member
Messages
10,422
Location
Scottsdale
06 H3 and I hit up Hurricane, UT on Saturday and explored Sand Mountain, which is in the Sand Hollow State Park. We had great weather for the day but only wheeled one day as bad weather was coming in that night.

There are many obvious similarities to Moab but many differences too. Focusing on the differences, we found that trails were very difficult to follow. It seems like the blowing sand (there's a LOT of sand) changes things often and obscures the trail. One of the benefits of that is it's easier to go around some of the obstacles without feeling like you're going off trail. The slickrock itself seems softer than Moab's. More of the ledges are rounded off by tires and there are more holes at the base of obstacles that are exactly shaped and sized to trap tires. Even stacking rocks, the slickrock pieces quickly disintegrated. Not that I needed rock stacking of course. :rolleyes:

Trail ratings can change significantly over time and also in the short term with weather and wind. We ran Milt's Mile first, which looks like it was a 4 trail a few years ago. Now it's a 7 and I would not take a large Hummer group on it. Chris had to pull me up one or two obstacles and was a bumper monkey a couple of times as I got tippy. We spent a lot of time spotting. I got a tiny bit of body damage from trying a narrow option on an obstacle as I didn't have any success on the "easy" line.

We then ran Fault Line, which was rated a 6. It was the weirdest trail start I've ever seen. Start with climbing a 2' ledge, then drive 100' into a mini-canyon and come to the end at a 30' wall. We then realized that as soon as you get into the canyon that you immediately climb up a long, steep dirt hill. It was hard to see as it had been washed over by recent rain and wind. After some tough ledges - which a stock H3 would likely have to be pulled over - were were running alongside another trail (West Rim) for quite a while. In other words, Fault Line seemed to be about 1/2 mile long, if that. We later found it left West Rim Trail, rejoined, left again but we couldn't find the purpose of that trail.

We finally ran a good section of West Rim. which is rated a 4. Should be easy, right? There were some obstacles that were harder than expected, but they all had easier options so maybe 4 is right. It was similar in style to running Seven Mile Rim in Moab.

I think we'll be focusing on 4s and 5s while we're there. Some of the more built rigs can focus on the tougher trails.

Good snow near the north rim of the Grand Canyon
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Chris flexing, Milt's Mile
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Milt's Mile
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Milt's Mile
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I got into a pickle
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West Rim Trail. I took the line to the right.
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Chris playing Hide and Seek
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But I was able to find him
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Me waving to my friends
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Here's a couple of links showing the challenge of the sand and relatively smooth slickrock
 

rascole

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,564
Location
Bellflower, CA
Looks amazing. Sorry I had to back out the last minute, Blizzards and SoCal roads don't mix. Look forward to the challenge.
 

06 H3

a.k.a. "The Jackal"
Messages
9,347
Location
Meridian, ID
It was great catching up with you Alex! I hope the pre run helped.

I’ll continue to look for recent, late 2022-2023, videos of trails to get perspective on them. It’s crazy how much the flash floods that went through there changed things.
 

alrock

El Diablo
Staff member
Messages
10,422
Location
Scottsdale
I assume you normally see it out of your windshield as it pulls you off of the trails . . .
 
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