First Helmet Cam Day

Today was a beautiful sunny warm day, and the first day I got to try out my new Helmet Cam setup.
   I wasn’t sure if Jeff was going to be around, since I couldn’t get a hold of him that morning. So I just stopped by his house on my way to Indian Creek. He was home, and just waking up, but he was still up for a ride.
We headed out to Indian Creek first as usual, and sure enough, saw a few people down at the Island. I didn’t see anyone I knew, but Jeff talked to a couple guys he ran into before, I think he had helped get one guy un-stuck before. We were only there for a few minutes, when we saw JJ come riding over. I had ridden with him once before, and enjoyed it, so I was glad to run into him again.
I was getting my Helmet Cam out and hooked up while we talked, and showing it off a bit. Everyone thought it was neat and that it would make great vids. I was really excited to test it out. It is quite cumbersome though, there are a good bit of wires, and I still have to have the miniDV camcorder in a pouch, that I had strapped to my chest. I had to turn the camcorder on, set it to record, then place it all in the pouch and zip it up, before I could start riding. I would have to repeat that same process any time I wanted to start or stop recording. But, it was all worth it in the end.
JJ had told us about the tunnel that ran under the Interstate before, so we were telling him how we had found it, and ridden alittle in the area that it leads to. He asked if we wanted to go there today, and of course we were happy to explore the area more. He wanted to swing by his house first to pickup a few things, and let the wife know, not to expect him back for quite some time. His house is just down a road that connects into Indian Creek. I envy him and Jeff for living so close to our riding territory. Must be nice not to have the burden of hauling the ATV every day you want to ride, like I have to.
On our way to JJ’s house, we passed a guy riding with his dog. Not really all that surprising out here, I have seen this several times. Here is a snapshot that I took from the helmet cam video.

     JJ asked me if I noticed anything about his trees, I didn’t know what he was talking about at first, till I saw that three of the trees had a face! It was really neat, and I regret not getting photos of them, I will have to next time. They had eyes, noses, and mouths stuck on them.
We headed out to the tunnel alittle different way than Jeff and I had taken before, I think it ended up being alittle quicker, but I don’t think it was actually a shorter distance.
On the way there, we came upon a fallen tree on one of the trails. This is becoming a common occurrence, and most of the time there is no way around. This one wasn’t all that large though, and we managed to ride over it. We helped each other plop the ass end of the ATVs over it, as the tires tend to slide when you try to get the back to ride up over.
We took a break once we got to Motown Lookout number two, which is just above the Ash Dump. Jeff had just put new back breaks on his 3 wheeler about a week ago, and said that they kept loosening up on him. So him and JJ took a few minutes to see if they could adjust them alittle to get more breaking power out of them.

     Now it was time to hit the Ash Dump, what we had all been waiting for. This was only the second time Jeff and I had been there, and we couldn’t wait to check it out again. As I said in my first trip report about this area, there are alot of ditches, hills, valleys, etc. that you have to watch out for. But it makes for some really fun riding.
     Here is a sample video from the helmet cam.

The first part is the road leading up to it, which has that ridge line that I was riding up on.
You then pop out on top, over looking the Ash Dump. We then dropped down into the Ash Dump itself, then over to a dirt road to the right side of it. The next part of the video is of us doing a speed run across the flattest part of the Ash Dump, that reminds me of salt flats.
As you can see, its very fine black powder, and makes quite a dust cloud as you run through it. Oh, and just to be perfectly clear, I was NOT racing those guys. I wanted to stay behind them so I could record them and the dust trail they were making. I can pass them any time I want 😉

     Jeff was doing some smooth 2 wheel motion on his 3 wheeler when we got to the end. Here is a snapshot from the helmet cam.

     After that, we headed up one of the power line ride of ways. JJ had been up most of these before, and said that you can go all the way to PA on them. Which I am not surprised by, I bet you could make it to the coast if you planned it out right.
We ended up at an all put abandoned coal load out down by the river. The place looked totally deserted, but Jeff said he could see a few lights on inside. I am not sure what they were still using the buildings for, but it was quite evident that the load out was not in service anymore.

     It was getting kind of late, and we still had to get back home, so we decided to head back from here. We took our good ol time though, stopping to BS and have a drink along the way.
One of the places we stopped, was an old log cabin, located on the top of a field. The view from here was great, this much have been a really nice place to live when it was new. As you can see, not it is all but collapsed, and used mainly by college kids as a drinking spot. Its hard to tell exactly how old the place was, it had been fixed up and renovated a couple times over the years. The newer windows were a dead givaway. But the original logs making up the cabin had to be really old.
     From there we pretty much went straight back to JJ’s house. We took a small break there before heading home. By this time, it was alittle after 11 PM, and I was starving. Didn’t get home till after midnight, and was feeling like regurgitated crap. I think it was due to not eating much all day, topped off with a couple beers, and sweating all day on the ATV.
It was still worth it though, we got to explore the Ash Dump area more, and I got some really cool footage on the helmet cam.