Gravel Pimp – Moto Recon 1

Posted: June 20, 2012 in ADV Ride

Planned route north in pink and actual track in dark red – click for larger…

I’m trying to find a dirt mountain bike route between Lake Cowichan and Victoria BC on Vancouver Island. I’ve done a lot of recon on my mountain bike and have hit dead ends so far. I decided it was time to use the KLR because it is so much faster and less painful to climb a mountain on the dualsport especially if there was a locked gate at the top!

I get the feeling I’m not supposed to be here!

I cruised from Victoria to Sooke BC and then headed up some logging roads to see if there was a way through the mountains north. The logging roads are private, but I had no choice if I want a bikepacking route up the island some logging roads have to be ridden.

This is getting old..

I ended up riding north on Boneyard Main to Leechtown and then up Craig Main which connects with logging road I’ve explored on the other side of the mountains.

This is what I found…

Sadly there is a massive gate with security guards patrolling the area behind it [Victoria water supply area] so I was denied. I tried riding some double track nearby to get around, but it didn’t lead anywhere useful.

Close up of the connector I was trying to ride – click for larger…

In the image above pink is Craig Main starting in Leechtown at the bottom and ending on the South San Juan Mainline logging road which would take me to the Trans Canada Trail and then to Lake Cowichan. The dark red line is my actual GPS track showing where I was turned back at the locked gate.

I had to wait for this little guy…

On the way back home I scared this little fawn and his mom so they got separated. I didn’t want to chase him too far from his mom so I stopped the bike and shut off the engine for 10 mins while he chilled out and eventually ran into the woods towards his mom. I was concerned that he’d just keep running away from me down the road and end up alone and scared = not good!

Oh well. If it was easy it wouldn’t be recon. It would just be a ride. My next move is to try Butler Main which is the next major logging road to the east. It’s a long detour from the direct route I had hoped to find, but it’s the best option I have left.

  1. […] About this time I realized that riding a bicycle out to Leechtown and back for every route recon was taking up too much time and frankly riding the Goose MUP so many times was getting boring. So I broke out the KLR dualsport motorcycle. I plotted another route uphill out of Leechtown that looked promising on the map [pink line above], … […]

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