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The "Non-Invasive" Dirt Roads Around Austin Thread

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OK, this thread has progressed to being able to edit a common Google Map with significant input from Tom/tjrockit. Here is the embedded google map from post #42 (top of page 3) with the group entries. PM tjrockit if you wanted to get added to the group map to contribute. I'm not sure the tools are quite there yet, but eventually I'd like to be able to highlight the cool roads in some fashion.



View Hill Country Dirt Roads, Texas Dual Sport Rides in a larger map

Original thread starts below...
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Alrighty... I'm starting this thread because I'm wondering what I'm missing. I'd like to hear your votes for the best... ah heck with that, ANY half decent public "non-invasive" dirt roads within a 100 mile radius of Austin. By "non-invasive" I mean roads that don't have semi-private gates every half mile and aren't going by private front porches every mile after that.

This is the area in question ... note that it didn't seem to work for me in Firefox.

Here it is the old fashioned way...
712132131_ZyBcP-O.jpg


There's a lot of territory in this circle that I haven't explored. Most of what I know includes the following...

The CR 113s, 308s, 310s, and 315s NE of Enchanted Rock. (Although I think some of these, such as Smith-West, may now be paved...)

712144527_Tfet3-L.jpg


NW of Fredericksburg there's the James River, Salt Branch, Lange's Mill, Cherry Spring, and Schneider-Moellering.... I'm breaking some of my own rules in that some of these aren't dirt, but they're darned fun country roads.

712155204_fzoE7-L.jpg


I know there's some really nice stuff to the north of Enchanted Rock because I chased the Hill Country 350 dual sport guys through there in the fall of 2006, but I was too busy hanging on for dear life to know where I was.

To the east of Austin and to the south of Elgin are Old Sayers, Gotier Trace, and Old Antioch Rd (which I seem to remember is dirt...)

712148843_aXzBZ-L.jpg


I'm about out of suggestions beyond that and I know there's a lot I'm missing, many of which I've seen mentioned in various threads. What would really be cool is if one of you computer literate types would write a "TWTex" Google app that would allow us a common map database that we could highlight promising roads on, and then link it to this thread. That way we'd have one-stop-DS-shopping, as it were, for the Austin area.



Discuss. :trust:
 
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Wonder what road that is running parallel to 290 from Elgin to Paige, Im thinking it's called "old something" I'll be checking the one next to 95 from elgin to Camp Swift soon, we'll let you know how it is. SZ.
 
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Old Hwy 20- last year it was dirt on the eastern end, but even with pavement it was a fun little road. There are a lot of dirt rds in Bastrop, Caldwell, and Guadalupe counties.
 
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Old Hwy 20- last year it was dirt on the eastern end, but even with pavement it was a fun little road. There are a lot of dirt rds in Bastrop, Caldwell, and Guadalupe counties.
From the easter end of Old 20 you can jog north just a bit and catch Paint Creek which goes back northwest towards McDade and Butler. Nice countryside. Old Potato also goes across 290 from Old 20 and if you stay on it, across 20, you will end up in Antioch.
 
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Wonder what road that is running parallel to 290 from Elgin to Paige, Im thinking it's called "old something" I'll be checking the one next to 95 from elgin to Camp Swift soon, we'll let you know how it is. SZ.
SZ - Old Hwy 20 isn't a bad road but it's not great either, I seem to remember a fair number of driveways and such. Still, I'd much rather take that than 290. And the one next to 95 might be Old Sayers, which I mentioned above, but I do see on Google Maps that there appears to be another road between it and 95. I'm not sure if that's private or public, 'cause I don't remember seeing it, but if you check it out please let us know.

713317409_RZiqy-L.jpg


EDIT - the line I'm seeing next to 95 is the train track. Your only other option is Old Sayers I believe. It's worth riding.

This is part of Old Hwy 20 I believe... possibly just to the west of McDade where it briefly joins 290. We didn't want to join so went on the service road... no problem for the DR, almost a problem for the KLR, but the dual sport Hyosung didn't make it :)

529402117_doBDo-L.jpg


This is part of Old Sayers (excuse the crappy pic).
529376367_r2LKM-L.jpg
 
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Old Hwy 20- last year it was dirt on the eastern end, but even with pavement it was a fun little road. There are a lot of dirt rds in Bastrop, Caldwell, and Guadalupe counties.
Alphadog, hook us poor city folk up! Which are the good ones? :trust:

CBAT, thanks for the head's up. I think I've been on Old Potato or at least gone by it. Are those dirt?

Justin
 
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Alphadog, hook us poor city folk up! Which are the good ones? :trust:

CBAT, thanks for the head's up. I think I've been on Old Potato or at least gone by it. Are those dirt?

Justin
Yep, Old Potato is dirt from Old 20 to HWY 20. It's paved for a mile or so east of HWY20 then goes back to dirt until you get to Antioch. At Antioch Cemetary you can head west on a dirt road that takes you into Bastrop SP and you can ride Park Road 1 through the park and not have to pay the troll at the gates. :rider:
 
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Yep, west from Antioch Cemetary is Gotier Trace. Pretty fun!

529378460_jZtQK-L.jpg


Bunch of mis-fits at the beginning of Gotier Trace on the park side :)
 
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On the way to Thorndale. Forgot what road but that's a really big conveyor belt in the background.


 
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Where in relation to Thorndale Justin? Is that around the Alcoa plant east of Elgin?

Any of you southerners have feedback on a route to Gonzales from Austin? This is what I'm thinking... nothing really jumps out at me as obvious though. Not sure why it's doing the wierd little loop on me down by Palmetto State Park...

Aus to Gonzales route...

Here's a possible return route...

Would end up being a pretty long day from North Austin.
 
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Down in Gonzales County there are several... no make that MANY roads that are dirt / gravel combination. May be a little rough on the tires because of the gravel size....just depends on what you have.
I am more familiar with those South & West of Gonzales.
From Austin, I would try West out of Gonzales to Oak Forest and down into Monthalia and then into Bebe and then to Wrightsboro and then Pilgrim and then Cheapside and back up 183.
 
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Smith-west rd is still not paved all the way through, the last 2 miles north from 1323. Not too difficult since i've taken my k1200s down it once or twice. Althuis-Davis rd has 4 miles of dirt in the middle, and access to CR309. Also, no mention of Sandy-round mountain rd (1323-281) , mostly dirt.

There's another Cr310 that runs from 501 about 10 miles west of cherokee up to 190 about 20 miles out of san saba. A nice 20-30 mile stretch.

Went to winchester for vets day for steak. Did gotier trace all the way back though the parks. Several mudholes along the way but good riding.







Another pleasant dirt road about 20 miles west of llano and runs between 71 and 29. I usually go to fm 1900 from 29, turn north, then right when it dead ends. As usual, it was pretty wild the first time but the road has been bulldozed or sumpin since then. Its called Fly trap rd.
 
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Thanks for the update Eric, and with pictures! :)

Althaus-Davis is essentially CR310 right? And I should have mentioned Sandy/Round Mt./307. Maybe that's the one that is turning paved... I always forget. But I could swear that the last time I was through there I remembered a lot more dirt. Anyway...

I like the look of that northern CR310 towards San Saba. I tried to get up to that area a few weekends back but only made it to Lampasas.

I see that one West of Llano... Fly Gap Rd according to Gmaps. Too bad it was dozed!!
 
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Those dirt hills look inviting....

I'm not sure where that bridge was at but it was after McDade and before Thorndale. It's a big ore conveyor belt that goes all the way to Elgin. Ron (forget his handle here) may have the route still. We navigated by paper out of Bastrop and 95. Might be in the thread for that day. I think it was just a RTE.
 

WoodButcher

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Those dirt hills look inviting....

I'm not sure where that bridge was at but it was after McDade and before Thorndale. It's a big ore conveyor belt that goes all the way to Elgin. Ron (forget his handle here) may have the route still. We navigated by paper out of Bastrop and 95. Might be in the thread for that day. I think it was just a RTE.
Thumper_TX?
 
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someone please save this thread in 'favorite spots' or something! Good info.
Thanks
I'm telling ya... one of these computer geeks has the brain muscle to make a Google Map that we can all update by highlighting good roads and providing comments... :zen: :trust:
 
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Thanks for the update Eric, and with pictures! :)

Althaus-Davis is essentially CR310 right? And I should have mentioned Sandy/Round Mt./307. Maybe that's the one that is turning paved... I always forget. But I could swear that the last time I was through there I remembered a lot more dirt. Anyway...

I like the look of that northern CR310 towards San Saba. I tried to get up to that area a few weekends back but only made it to Lampasas.

I see that one West of Llano... Fly Gap Rd according to Gmaps. Too bad it was dozed!!
Ackshully, CR310 starts at 71. Its across the highway from the 2nd rest stop past 281 toward llano. I has one of the slickest low water xings when there's any water around. It eventually merges with 309 IIRC before Click and the sandy creek xing. Should have some pics..... Althuis-Davis starts as FM 3374 from the north and dead ends into 1323, essentially parallel to smith-west rd. I took a video of it some time back great curves on either side of the dirt!









This is the really slick low water xing





Click, tx



I think this is CR309

 
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Thumper_TX?

It was the RTE to Thorndale alright. The conveyor is for the lignite to the power plant. Co road a couple miles from Paige on 290. I believe it is on Church Union road or something like that . Maybe I can dig it up.

Do I sense an east side exploration ride coming up? Old Smithville rd and Old Lockhart rd are interesting also.

Ron
 
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Ron I think if you haven't infected your kid with motorcycles after a lifetime of being around them, he might be a lost cause... :lol2:

Thanksgiving weekend is looming, I've started a new thread on it.

Here's a pretty nice map tool... may have to find an 11x17 color printer somewhere....

County Roads in Texas
 
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those guys are NOT to be trusted under any circumstances... No wonder ranchers get their shotguns out when they hear you comin...:eek2:
 
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Zapp et all -

I found a post containing Ken Ingham's Hill Country 400 ride tracks...

Here (Post #4)

I need to check these at home and update the master map on this thread :)

J
 
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question: can one simply drop that .gdb file onto Google Earth to get a look, or does it need converting first?
'twas a good find... I knew I had seen those posted somewhere but I thought ADV
 
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Excellent tool! :clap: Thanks for the link.

Just took a look at Ken Ingham's route... it's a beaut. I think it's essentially what I followed him through on in 2006. Long day of riding. I'll get it put into Google Maps and link it onto this thread.

Still waiting for one of you CS types to man up and make us a Google Earth App/Database that we can go in and highlight good roads and provide commentary... :)

Edit -

Here is Ken Inghams THC 400 route. I'm not 100% satisfied with the distances that Google seems to be giving me...

Here's Leg 1. ~ 145 miles.

Here's Leg 2. ~ 46 miles

Here's Leg 3. ~ 126 miles
I'm not sure why a portion of the route seems to be missing.... these are tough to do, as I'm having to put in a bunch of "destinations" to get them to route correctly.

And finally, Leg 4. ~ 80 miles
Basically pick your poison for the trip home from Austin.

For a grand total of 397 miles from the Y in Oak Hill (although I'm not sure Leg 3 is including the little problem section)!
 
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JT

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Hi guys, I too have been thinking about a dirt road ride this weekend, but this full route is 385 miles according to Mapsource. That's a long day on a dirt road.
Maybe we can shortcut somewhere along the way?

 

JT

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maybe a shortcut, something like one of these in yellow...

 
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Unless you want to go 12 - 14 hours, you gotta short it somewhere. Back in '06 we started with 30+ riders at about 8:00 AM and about 6 - 8 made it the entire loop, and that was 10:00 PM if I remember it right... and that was moving out most of the time. It was brutal for me.

Edit - thanks for Mapsourcing it BTW!

You could also make the jump from Lower Crabapple (above F-burg) over to Eckert and Willow City... but F-burg is a nice break for dinner and gas.
 
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JT

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this is still 283 miles, but we can shortcut again if nec.


I'll check back in in an hour or so.

John
 

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I PM'd Ken to see if he's doing a Turkey run into the hills this year, we'll see what he says. I could handle 280 - 300 miles, but I'm still working out our schedule at home (Turkey Day feast, mountainbiking wife, sick kid, etc). I'd be tempted to cut out the close in stuff and hit the far out stuff, because I've done the close stuff... makes for a long ride before hitting good road though. :eek2:
 

JT

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I wouldn't mind the further stuf, I was just trying to cut the excess mileage. The only dirt roads I've done around here were the Beyond Epic roads and that was good enough that I have been considering running them again.
John
 
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So I was thinking about a little idea/experiment. At the beginning of this thread there are screen shots with notes next to roads with a little bit of explanations.

Since we now can embed a Google map here, I was wondering if we could start a map that we can all collaborate on. So each person can add their own way points/markers with notes, pics and/or video's.

We wouldn't post routes just information on the actual roads so over time we can have a good idea of where all the dirt roads are, the condition and fun level.

Thoughts?

 
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That's exactly the intent, let's do it. I can probably save a G-map with the "collaborate" flag checked in the first post and we could start there? I think that some of the individual G-maps I posted were collaboration enabled... word of warning, routing on dirt can be a **** on G-maps.
 
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Updated
I started a map. I need people's email address to send an invite to them to collaborate. Please PM me with your email address if you would like to be added as a collaborator. Once you've accepted the invite I have it set up that you can then invite others to collaborate so that I don't have to be the bottle neck.
There is an option to allow anyone to edit the map but I'm concerned some yahoo will come in and mess up a bunch of work people have done.

Thoughts?

Click on the blue way points to see my descriptions.


View Hill Country Dirt Roads, Texas Dual Sport Rides in a larger Google map for markers, pics and commentary
 
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This is going to be cool. Now if we really wanted to take the mystery out of it, you iPhone nerds could go take some geo-tagged pictures... ;-)
 
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Adding pics will be a cool thing and the pics can be hosted similar to what we do on this forum. So they can be in photobucket or smugmug or whatever. :sun:
 
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So here's where the fun begins. I did a ride this weekend and took pics and added it to the map. Check out "House Mountain Rd water crossing".

Click on the water crossing icon and you'll see a description and pics. :trust:

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&ie=UTF8&msa=0&msid=112716355273119241896.000479b4b905703969e2f&ll=30.589603,-98.924332&spn=0.096643,0.206509&z=13

Justin, if you don't mind can we add the Google map that we are collaborating on to the very first post? It will make it easier for new comers to find. :thumb:
 
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Added a few more pics of roads on the map west and northwest of San Saba. :rider:

I'm find that cropping the pics to 320X240 pixels seems to come out nicely sized on the Google maps pop-up.

Freezing_2009DEC05020-1.jpg
Freezing_2009DEC05025-1.jpg
Freezing_2009DEC05033-1-1.jpg
 
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