Monday, April 5, 2010

Exploring Dead Ends on a WR250R

A couple weeks ago, I wanted to get the WR250R out and get some use out of the knobby D606 tires. When I started the ride the sky was completely blue and not a cloud in sight. It was also 21F, so I put on my Gerbing coat and gloves. The WR250R has over 100W of excess electrical capacity! Really amazing for just a little 250cc. Our GZ250 can barely run gloves, and my SV650 can only run gloves and coat because of the LED upgrades I've done.
I set out with the intention of riding in the Carlos Avery Wildlife Management Area. The last time I rode there was in August of 2009. There are lots of minimum maintenance roads that aren’t fit for most cars, but are fantastic on a dual sport motorcycle.
The first entrance I arrived at, I was disappointed to find a barricade across the road. This is a decent example of the road surface inside Carlos Avery.
I set off down Broadway further to the next entrance down this long gravel road.
I was disappointed to find two more dead ends.
I kept riding around the area to the next set of entrances trying to find one that was open. I was always excited to see “Pavement Ends”
and “Minimum Maintenance Road – Travel at your own risk”
Eventually, i circled around to the North side of Carlos and found the Linwood Lake County Public Access Park/Boat Launch.
The road leading to the lake was very scenic and I enjoyed riding on it.
But of course it was a dead end.
Linwood Lake was still partially frozen.
I headed back and kept exploring more dead ends. I found so many I lost count until I was reviewing the video later. Eventually I found the last entrance to Carlos Avery on the Northwest side. It was also closed, but there was an inviting gravel road leading North, so I followed it.
This bunch of skeletons is a real dead end!
A fantastic minimum maintenance road
That inviting gravel road was also another dead end, but it had some beautiful scenery. I’ve been in this area before. It is quite stunning when it’s all green instead of brown.
At the end of that gravel road is this VERY red house and barn on a little lake.
On the way home, I stopped at Coon Lake and it was just as frozen as Linwood.
I only rode 150 miles or so, but it took me almost four hours. By the end of the ride, it was finally 31F! All the dead ends gave me a lot of practice making u-turns. I didn’t get to ride where I wanted to, but I still had a great time exploring.

Check out the ride video below on either Vimeo or Youtube.
Video on Vimeo:

Video on Youtube:


  1. I had a blast watching the videos. I even watched them a second time simultaneously--totally fun on this rainy, dark cold day! You inspire me. I've got to get my cam up and running...

    Great post!

  2. BTW, I love the pics! The one of the skeletal remains--wow!! I found that one unbelievable (city girl talking here).

  3. Sojourner: I'm glad you like the video. I had a fun time riding around. It wasn't what I planned, but it was still great. Editing the video took a long time. I had over 2.5 hours of stuff I wanted to keep and it was hard to get it below 20 minutes. I was surprised when I saw the skeleton. I'm still not sure what animal is used to be. Deer maybe.

  4. Awesome! I went exploring yesterday and found some good stuff too.. love that narrow trail video.. sometimes Dead Ends don't really dead end... those are the good ones :)

  5. Bash3r: Thanks. I saw some of your photos on flickr and am still jealous of the great riding spots you have so close!

  6. Chris - Very frustrating for you – 14 dead ends! It did however look like a great day out for a ride. Do they open all those roads in summer?

  7. Gary: It was actually like 20, but they didn't all fit in the video. It was too long. The roads are actually open now. They opened the week after I did the ride. I'm not sure why there were closed either.