What a great weekend. My wife and kids flew to
1) Drive I-80 out past Delle, then drive North across the Air Force Range to Lakeside, a railroad siding at the Western shore of the Great Salt Lake, then follow the dirt road next to the tracks for ~25 miles due West before crossing the tracks and driving to the range on a rough 4WD track. The problem with this route was Union Pacific, who owns the causeway, and doesn’t allow trespassing. According to the ranger, they patrol the causeway with a private cop.
2) Drive I-80 all the way West to Wendover, then follow dirt road up Northeast into the Silver Island range, then drive ~20 miles straight across the Salt Flats to the range. This route is only feasible- if ever- in late summer, when the salt/mud flats are baked dry hardpan. The problem with this route is that you have no way of knowing if it really is baked hardpan until your vehicle breaks through a muddy spot, at which point you are irrevocably stuck in an extremely remote place, from which you will never, ever, ever get a tow… And even if you did succeed in getting across, summer is the last time you’d want to be out in this low-altitude desert range.
But over the intervening years I spoke with a couple of people who claimed to have visited the range, or knew of someone who had, always via option #1, and always without incident. In the meantime, the range taunted me. It’s a hard range to get even a glimpse of- you can see the Southern end on a clear day from the car window when driving to Wendover, and I’d had occasional great views of the range from other expeditions- climbing Pilot Peak (NV) in 2002 (Pictured left: view of Newfoundland Mtns from Pilot Peak, 10/2. It's the 2nd range, in the distance) and mtn biking in the Grassy Mtns in 2004.
-At about mile 11, you’ll pass the pumping station (pictured left), built 25 years ago to lower a rising
-At about mile 23.5, you’ll come to an older, disused crossing of the tracks. Don’t take it. (on the side of the rail here is written “NEW XING 1 MILE ->”). At mile 24.8 is a good crossing (pictured right, looking back after crossing) with extra RR ties filling in the space between the tracks.
-From the crossing, drive South to a junction, the left/East. Follow the road through several intersections around the low knob at the extreme Northern End of the range, then contour around and South along the East side of the range. At about 8 miles from the RR tracks you’ll come to a fork to the Right/uphill which is a rough 4WD trail leading up into