A Trip Through Tooele

We had originally intended to head over Johnson Pass into Skull Valley (which is a fun little mountain pass), but the 29 degrees and all the snow on the road at Five Mile Pass as we headed toward Rush Valley gave us second thoughts. Although Johnson Pass is short, it’s highlighted on my Butler Map of Utah and is a fun early spring or late-season ride—the pass doesn’t climb very high and doesn’t get as much snow as Wolf Creek or the Mirror Lake Highway.

Nevertheless, as the temps dropped and the roads got wetter, we decided to alter plans and make a loop through Tooele instead.

We stopped at Penny’s in Stockton to wrap our cold fingers around a warm mug and visited with the locals enjoying lunch in the old café. Although the day started out about the same as last weekend, instead of warming up (as it did last Saturday) it seemed to get colder as the day went on.

Because this time of year the weather can change pretty quickly, I decided to pull my heated jacket and gloves (which I always have with me this time of year) out of the saddlebag and take the chill off the ride. After warming up inside Penny’s, I put on my heated jacket and got ready for the ride home via Tooele instead of Skull valley.

With little to no crown in the road, Main Street in Tooele was covered with water from the melting snow with no place to go but through the middle of the street. As I was thinking about how I thought we’d made the right choice, the car next to me hit a puddle and dumped bucket full of water into my lap.

The roads dried as we exited town, but there was sure a lot more snow on that side of the Oquirrh Mountains. This time of year you’ve got to be flexible and pay attention to road conditions because dropping temperatures on a wet road aren’t good. That said, our little 120-mile loop was a lot of fun and any time you can saddle up and blow a couple hours on the road is a good time.