Rocks 5, Tires 2, Dents 3, Thumper 0.
But I did only have 2wd and went almost everywhere. Hehehehehe. So I hereby nominate myself for the following awards: Master Mech., Ace driver and Back Seat Driver.
Well, to make a short story "LONG", we left Huntington Beach around 7:45 Friday evening and headed up the 55 to the 91 / 15 to Barstow. We arrived around 9:30 and got fueled up and sat around the "Mickey D's" parking lot looking at all the lifeless drones there until Fearless showed up around 10:30. With his arrival we also got RAIN!! (Not a pretty prospect), Fearless or the rain. The rest of the group showed around 11ish and we headed down 40 to Ludlow for a good rapping at the gas pumps there.
We hit Kelbaker Rd about 45 minuets later, and did the usual up and down the road and hunt for the road to camp while Lion tells us we past them a mile or so "BEFORE" we got near them. (AH, after a 5yr absence its good to see not a damn thing has changed!).
Well, we made camp for the night, but around 4am I was awaken to the sound of RAIN. I rolled out of my nice moist bed around 7:00AM and the weather had mellowed to a nice dry gray. Fearless called a drivers meeting and we hit the trail for guzzler 206 around 9:15. It was a pretty easy ride to the first one; we surveyed the pad and went straight to work. After about 30min of cementing, gooping, sweep-ing and so on we cleaned up and headed off to our next target which would take us close to 2 hrs to find (Not that we went up the wrong wash or nothing?). After getting out on foot to tediously look for 199, not to mention Rhonda was getting hungry, a call came out from Rooster that it had indeed been found. We decided to also make this lunch, but just as all were getting tucked into their chow, WHOLLY NOAH! the rains came. Off we all scrambled for the refuge of a dry vehicle, however it quickly subsided and back to the job at hand.
After a quick GPS of the site we were off to marvel at the Vulcan mine. Although the water level was a bit low, most of us reverted to our inner child and threw a few hundred rocks, boulders and so on. Then off we went to look for more guzzlers after a short stop to dig through the trash left behind by the mining community of decades gone past, we did find a few nice trinkets though. So onward in confusion to find hopefully a trail to our next appointment. Like the fool I am I decided to follow Fearless down to a cute little notch and then try to follow him straight up. Well this is where I found ROCK #1. Front wheels go over fine, but rear differential don't. Oopsie if I had only an inch more (IN HEIGHT SILLY), no problem. Well needless to say Andy and Jason had to lift me off, then I tried to follow Bob's trail up, but not enough traction so I had to kinda traverse to get up. Except for that ROCK (No#2) that said THAT SIDEWALLS MINE SUCKKKA! Rooster will probably add to this here, but Fearless PULLED ME UP and we proceeded to change the tire, and finished just as a vicious rainsquall appeared. (with lightning!!!!) Off we sped and down a steep little hill that (YOU GUESSED IT),
I got stuck on another damn ROCK (No#3) just after telling Dustin about it being pretty tough to get stuck going down hill. YEAH RIGHT. Well again came Gagetman to my rescue, but his might could not get me off plus the rain decided to get real ugly. So we figured "hey come up behind and push with your jeep" HA! Well a quick look told me that his bumper was to high so I gave him the thumbs down and waved him off, but with the conditions as they were he did not see and WACK DENT OOPS, oh well ca-ca occurs. Rooster strapped me up and dragged me down the hill to safety. And bam as quick as it came the rain was gone. And low and behold more damn rocks, the Fearless did his famous "HMMMMMM I'll go over here and drove right up on to the next guzzler". So off we followed rocks here rocks there BLODDY ROCKS everywhere, then Lion abruptly stops as one of the little granite bastards did some nice custom bodywork to his left fender. Then what ROCK (No#4) grabs my differential and you guessed it stuck (Oh Andy, bring your tow strap over here). Well off I came and onto the guzzler that the local Burro community used as a toylet ( Play on words) Well, that all done, it was back to camp, the sun was out??, but that was soon to change, for when we got to cooking, the rain got to falling; ah but it was quite the sight. Lisa, Dustin and I ate in the dry of the truck, and every now and then Lisa would say LOOK AT UM SITTING AROUND THE FIRE IN THIS RAIN COVERED IN TARPS! Amazing what tequila does to the senses? About quarter to nine I re-emerged to join the fire and drink Jason's Tequila. The rain left and it was a good night (except for the fact some of us slept in our vehicles due to wet tents and bags.
Sunday it was sight-seeing time; off to Kelso Train station and down the tracks to Afton Canyon. We played in the sand and somewhere down the line another flat, (had to have been a rock!), but Montego and Ziplox got one too so I don't feel so bad. We stopped to seal and air my tire and change Montegos. I decided to let Lisa have a go at driving in the riverbed. Then another group came through and some were letting their kids drive so naturally Dustin wanted a go (Hey no complaints the boy did well for his first try). Well, we stopped at a camp area to air up and for me to bum a tire off this guy in that other club, (HE LENT IT TO ME TOO?), helped Jason get his gas nozzle out of his tank, and head on down the road to Barstow, gas, food and home.
After a long absence from you guys it was good to be out jeepin again with you and I look forward to many more years of it. As I get ready to finish this I would like to say thanks for all the help and support and that I have missed you all, No it is time to junk this Jap crap and buy a jeep.
C-YA at the meeting.