Did you ever drive through there?

Old Feb 11th, 2007, 05:13 AM
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Did you ever drive through there?

From Bryce to Page there is Smokey mountain way on the map.It is unpaved.Did somebody drive through there?
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Old Feb 11th, 2007, 05:48 AM
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I just wanted to say that it was very clever of you to post such a tantalizing title that everyone who comes here just "has" to click to see where you're talking about -- even though very few of us have done that drive. Wouldn't it be just as easy to post something like "Smokey Mountain drive near Bryce?"

I really don't mean this to be rude and hope you don't take it to be. Just offering a suggestion for making this a more "user friendly" site in the future.
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 03:44 AM
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 04:55 AM
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In my opinion those unpaved roads should only be driven by an 4X4.Car rental agencies usually do not allow their cars to be used on unpaved roads.Paul
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 05:09 AM
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I have not driven on this road.... however, while spending a summer in Colorado I did take quite a few unpaved passes through the mountains in Colorado, New Mexivo, Utah and Arizona.

From these experiences I would generalize and say that they were....
 without fail a unique experience, because you feel like and adventurer out exploring....
 almost always desolate (with no houses, no stopoffs for gas, food, and few, if any cars)......
typically a bit rough, potholed, rocky, etc....,
 often had perilous drop offs/with no guardrails, which often made for spectacular views/scenery.....
 sometimes were passable only by 4x4 vehicles.
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 06:31 AM
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Given your group (five adults 40,40,60,60,70 years old. and one almost seven years old) I wouldn't drive the unpaved passes. If someone in the group is very interested, then rent a 4x4 jeep and a couple of you take such a trek. Your rental car company may have restrictions on driving such roads.
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Old Feb 15th, 2007, 09:30 AM
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Have you ever taken a survival course? Do you know what to do if the vehicle quits somewhere on that road or if you should get stuck? There may not be anyone to help you for many hours, days even if nobody knew where you were and when you were expected out. What then?
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Old Feb 16th, 2007, 03:00 AM
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My curiosity was piqued. Is this the road in question from Big Water to Escalante? One site said it was a 5 hour drive - 78 mile drive. The note on unmarked intersections really raises concern. Sounds like a great drive given the right vehicle, experience and safety gear AND friends with similar vehicles i.e. organized trail ride.
Here's what I found on a Southern Utah Travel site:
(9) Smoky Mountain Road -
The Smoky Mountain Road is the most remote and challenging of the main dirt roads through Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. It runs 78 miles from Big Water on US-89 to Utah-12 just west of Escalante. The route requires a high clearance vehicle, four wheel drive to explore the side roads. It is more difficult to navigate due to unmarked intersections. The reward is access to very beautiful places in a very lightly visited area.

The road is noted for the Kelly Grade which offers a huge panorama, and you pass an unusual area of balanced boulders. There are access roads to rarely visited vista points on the north side of Lake Powell. Several movies were filmed in the area, including "Planet of the Apes". Smoke and occasional burned areas can sometimes be seen from a century-old underground coal fire (hence the name, Smoky Mountain). Visit time: expect to spend a couple days in the area. Don't try the road unless you are very self-sufficient. Always carry plenty of water in your vehicle. Avoid the area during wet weather.

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Old Feb 16th, 2007, 06:00 AM
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I've done something similiar to this...

North of Rock Springs, Wyoming, there is a landmark called the "Boars Tusk" out in the middle of the high desert, miles from civilization.

I was in the area and decided on the spur of the moment to drive my rental car (a Pontiac Grand Am) out to see this landmark.

About half way out there on this desolate unpaved, potholed rutted "road", I began to question my decision to do this.... what if I knocked the oil pan out of this low riding car.... what if I ruined a tire (or two).... what if the car overheats in this desert....

I didn't see another soul for hours. The car survived. And I got to see some wonderful petroglyphs on the base of the White Mountains as well as the "Boars Tusk".

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Old Feb 16th, 2007, 07:48 PM
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Wow... Smokey Mountain Rd sounds like a death-trap but I'm sure the scenery would be stunning. After having a rental breakdown in the middle of the 18 mile drive that goes through "Valley of the Gods" in Utah in August a few years ago, I don't recommend anyone of any age to drive on unpaved roads for extensive miles in a rental. Having made it out ok, I can say it was an incredible experience and I'm glad I did it but it was a stupid thing to have done considering the conditions of the road at that time and my lack of preparation/preparedness.
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Old Feb 16th, 2007, 08:38 PM
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Do not go out on roads of this type unless you are with a very experienced group - and I mean multiple vehicles too! We loose uneducated and inexperienced visitors every year this way....
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