More Lower Powerline Side Roads

Dirt roads off Lower powerline road

Here's quite a tangle of roads. The right side is devoted to exploring side roads off the Lower Powerline Road. The left side is a set of roads accessed from where the Lower Powerline Road intersects Kinikin.

On August 10th I explored side roads off the lower part of what I call the Lower Powerline Road (see here). On the 11th I explored the upper part of the road, all the way to Kinikin, plus a few other unnamed dirt roads that began where the Lower Powerline Road meets Kinikin. The results are in the GPS track shown above.

Let’s look at the map point by point. The map begins at the lower right hand corner somewhat to the north of where I left off in my explorations of the evening before. There’s really only one significant side road, which leads over a hill or two and across a gully, to a couple level spots where people have camped (judging from the campfire debris). The intersection of this road with the Lower Powerline Road is marked by hundreds of red shotgun shells now pounded into the dirt.

I followed the road north to where it meets Kinikin Road and looked for other roads following some different powerlines, without too much success, although you can see a couple where they parallel Kinikin. So, I turned my attention to a road that took off to the southwest. It is in good shape until you get to an electrical substation. Past that it’s barely a track, but does continue on around the hillside to where it intersects with a road that follows the canal. I should say a bit about the road past the electrical substation: it’s heavily rutted, but I went through with no problem. Mind you, I was on the motorcycle, so I only needed a single track. I would think a vehicle with four wheels, whether ATV or 4WD, might have to negotiate it rather more carefully.

The road that follows the canal is in pretty good shape, though dirt and therefore likely not passable after heavy rains. I’ve got to caution you about this canal: it’s swift and deep. Above all, you do not want to find yourself in it, as you’ll probably not survive.

The road winds up a hill and the canal disappears into a tunnel. From there a road leads up to the water tank (you can go right up to the fence), offering some pretty good views. The road continues north to another viewpoint. I looped down and along a bit of road that just went out to a point. What saddened me was that people have used this area as a dump—it’s out of sight, but the junk left there should be in a landfill, not out in the open like this.

Coming down from the water tank, one can go to the east on a poorly-defined road that ends up fading into a single track (which I didn’t follow) or else a take the west side for a much-better-defined road that ends at a locked gate. But this latter road also offers a good road down to Pahgre Road. To the north, Pahgre connects with Kinikin. To the south, Pahgre goes all the way to Buckhorn Road.

Where the canal comes out of the tunnel is one of the most ferocious waterworks I’ve seen. It pours into a basin and creates a perpetual wave, curling back up on top of itself. It’s loud and dramatic. I think anything (or anybody) caught in that wave would never get out. The canal flows south from there, broadening quite a bit but still traveling swiftly.

So, there you have it. I tried to travel every road. I did not travel any of the single tracks that took off here and there. For one thing, they looked rarely used. For another, I still remember the Slanty Bridge Trail fiasco and am trying to stay on or near roads either accessible by pickup truck or double/single tracks that are more heavily used.

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