Monday, March 1, 2010

Ride 24: Mesquite City Loop

Ok, this wasn't such a fun ride — more of a "proof of concept" really, which took surprisingly longer than either of us anticipated.   [For a free Google Earth file of this route see: Mesquite City Loop]

A mostly uncomfortable ride on its own, this map is designed to assist those wishing to get from one place to another inside of Mesquite City — or to get to the riding areas from one's own home. [Double-click on the photo or click on the map link to see a larger image]

All of the roads are paved so be prepared to… endure screams of pain from your tires unless you've got street tires. As long as you can access this route anywhere along its length — "you CAN get there from here.

Description: This trail logs the odd route one must take to circumnavigate the city of Mesquite Nevada where, ostensibly it is now legal to ride most of the city streets as long as YOU WEAR A HELMET!

All of the roads in Mesquite are legal to ride on EXCEPT Mesquite boulevard, Pioneer and Riverside Road (because its a state highway).

Unfortunately however, even though the mayor and city council made riding the city legal, little forethought or exemptions were made which would actually make the riding either useful or consistently possible. So, you people from Utah, this is NOT an "Offroad Friendly" city like you are used to seeing all through your state.

The truly skillful politician is one who, when he comes to a fork in the road, goes both ways.”
Marco A. Almazan

Storm drains are OK and passable, except in rain, and this is were cross-city passages are relegated. Many areas of the city are "gated communities" which are allowed to be blocked off at their whim — even the city police don't patrol those areas. Sometimes, if a gate is locked you must search for a storm drain going through the area – that may still be passable.

Additionally, you may need to get a bit "creative". For example, some accesses to the loop are through parking lots and around backs of buildings. You MAY CROSS the prohibited roads, even a short ways diagonally at a cross-roads, but you MAY NOT ride along them.

From these routes you can access the North Flats riding area on both the East and West of the city from anywhere in Mesquite. Absolutely no provision has been officially made to access the Bunkerville Flats-Scenic riding areas however.

The trail segments along the freeway next to the Casablanca Golf Course and along the Virgin River near the bridge are particularly scenic (you must stay on the trails - there is NO open riding) and are the only portions of the loop which are dirt (mud when wet).

You must stay off of the streets marked in RED on this map, although you can cross them – if you dare. Four under-the-freeway routes are shown – the storm drains.

On the west end of the route we rode to the end of the construction where 'dozers are moving part of Table Top Mesa down into a ravine to fill it. We are told that there will eventually be another I-15 off-ramp to the city.

On the East end we rode up to the Mesa Blvd Trailhead, from where you may gain access to the North Flats and Beaver Dam riding areas.

That's about it. You need to zoom in and study the route to fully understand it.

And by the way, be prepared to see a few policemen along the way as they "check you out" due to a citizen "tip." Not all citizens are happy about seeing ATVs on the street… they do seem to be OK with golf carts however.

ADDENDUM: I was just pointed to the source of the city code on the internet. A few of the concepts actually in the code seem interesting and should be added to a post like this.
  • Any ride through city streets is supposed to be for the sole purpose of riding to and from public land riding areas (i.e. no sight seeing or shopping, etc..)
  • Any ride through the city can only be less than 2 miles
  • No more than ONE person on a bike (unless built for two, then only two)
  • Every person must wear a helmit
  • You must remain over 500 feet from a residence (many homes are closer to the road than that)
  • You must remain under 20 miles per hour even if the speed limit is 35 mph
  • What we didn't find was the section which prohibited offroad vehicles from going to gas stations - that whole section seems to have been removed without any of us knowing about it. [However, just try and find a legal way to actually get to the city's few stations. I can't think of any right now, but the City Manager didn't seem to think it was a problem.]
  • You can only ride during the hours 1 hr before sunrise and 1 hour after sunset.
(And, by the way, more people overloook golf carts than ATVs; except, if they use them to stop at a store or something on the way to the links.)


Desert Walker said...

Good to meet the man behind the maps! Lost your email, so please contact me and I will forward the
pictures of verticle petroglyphs at Devil's Fire and a couple more interesting shots - a balloon animal chollo, and a possible vandalized plant at Devil's Fire. A couple of Yucca's that looked like they had been totally stripped of their fronds with a knife - clean cuts. Only a couple of fronds on the ground - the rest missing. Can't imagine why anyone would do that.

Post a Comment

Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. I will, of course, be moderating all comments to make sure (a) they conform to the standards of good taste set forth by Offroading Home; and (b) nope that's pretty much it.