Miners Gulch

by Adam Mehlberg

Miners Gulch was our last trip for this years All-4-Fun. From Georgetown we headed to Idaho Springs and took the Oh-My-God road to Central City. We had to cross the construction work being done on the new connection road from I-70 to Central City. Once through Central City and Black Hawk we headed north toward Nederland a short distance and then turned off at the Pickle Gulch campground access.

After passing the campground you have to find an overgrown side road that turns off of the main road. Once you push through the brush your on the Pickle Gulch 4WD road. Right at the start is an off camber ledge that gives this road a moderate challenge level. Once over the ledge the road is a two track through trees and meadows that heads toward Apex.

We dropped down Silver Creek and connected with the road to Apex. Following the gravel road our group climbed toward American City and Pile Hill over looking Mammoth Gulch. We left the main road on the south side before reaching the road to Kingston Peak. Our group had lunch along the main road with views of Kingston and James peak.

After lunch we followed the roads through private property and connected with Miners Gulch. The lower section is a narrow two track with no views as your in the trees. After crossing the main creek we headed up toward the small rock garden. The first challenge was a step in the road with some water flowing over it. The taller vehicles took the steeper side while the shorter ones stayed to the right.

Darrel lined up on the obstacle and tried to make the step, but slide to the left into a log. This hung him up a bit and he had to turn his wheels to keep the front from coming around. Once in this position the step was too sharp for Darrel to make it. On one of his bumps to see if he could pull the back up we all heard that sound, BANG! Something broke. Darrel was pulled up to the level spot above the step where the front axle was diagnosed as being broke. In the shade of the trees we got to see how many different kinds of tools everyone carried. I donít think Darrel suffered from not having the right tool to take apart the front axle. There was also lots of helping hands.

Shortly we were back on the road headed for the rock garden. This one is not as tough as the one on Spring Creek, but it did give us a challenge to end our Miners Gulch trip. Once up on the ridge again it was a series of turns, correct turns to be precise, to work our way out to the Fall River road. From here we made a quick trip back to Georgetown.


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