After a quick run up Poison Spider Mesa we were ready for Golden Spike. The trail markers had recently been repainted with white spikes, so route finding was easy. You could see some of the golden spike markers, but most of these were painted over with the white spikes, which was a shame.
The early part of the trail was pretty mellow, and there were no 4x4 vehicles, bicycles, or motorcycles so we made great time. We came up to Launch Pad and were excited that finally there was a challenge worthy of the trail's rating! We both made it up with no issues, just a few tire chirps. We missed the Witch's Crotch, apparently not recognizing it. Skyline Drive was fun and we stopped to admire the view and the incredible solitude.
We stopped at the overlooks, admiring the views and taking lots of pictures. The views of Arches National Park, Moab, and the Colorado River were great. Jeep Arch was impressive, with the morning sun shining through it. Pressing on, we traveled over the many ledges and were soon at the Golden Crack. This is when it really sank in - we were in Moab and on one of the signature trails for the area. Life is good! We pulled up to the crack and got out to survey the line. We noted the tilted slab of rock to the left of the crack and the painted "BYPASS" sign next to it. This gave us a pretty good laugh because it looked much more difficult than the crack! Could someone have a sense of humor?
Mike went first secure in the knowledge that many, many others had crossed this obstacle before, but to look at the crack it didn't look passable! Mike made it across with no issues, only dragging the end of his bumper exiting the crack. Roger came next, and got some great flex with his longer wheelbase. Due to some poor spotting and his longer wheelbase, however, he had a little trouble exiting the crack. His front passenger side tire was in a small pothole just when his back passenger side tire was in the crack. The Jeep got a little tippy (which Roger hates). Of course, just at this time the first people we met on the trail arrived. A group of dirt bikes stopped to enjoy the show. Roger continued forward with the back end of the Jeep sliding around. Just when it looked like both rear tires were going to drop in the crack leaving him sitting on his rear bumper, the Jeep pulled forward and Roger was across.
We stopped for lunch there, hoping to see some action as the bikes crossed the crack or hoping someone else would come up the trail. Unfortunately, it was not to be as the bikes turned around and exited the way they came in. No one else came along, so we pressed on. We got over the Golden Stairs with no issues, and looked forward to seeing Double Whammy. Unfortunately, even knowing that it was easy to miss, we did miss it and we were at Body Snatcher before we knew it. Mike made it through without even stopping to check the line out. Roger was next, and true to the description in previous write-ups, this obstacle is tougher in a long wheelbase Jeep. Roger had to make a few attempts at it, and of course, another group of dirt bikes came up just in time to watch! After getting a minor scratch on his right rear flare, Roger was up and over.
We were at the beginning of Gold Bar Rim before we knew it.
Reports from Other Days: 11
Use the arrows or dots to flip through the previews of the other reports for Golden Spike. Click one of them to read more and see all of the photos from that day.