Field & Forest Summer Blast 7/4-7

Author Topic: Field & Forest Summer Blast 7/4-7  (Read 118 times)

Offline Wingman

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Field & Forest Summer Blast 7/4-7
« on: July 09, 2019, 01:30:18 PM »
After some administrative hiccups, Field & Forest Recreation Area was able to open for business and they immediately posted an "open" weekend that included a Saturday BBQ. Surprisingly, there were tickets available right up until July 3...

All of our group arrived at varied times on Thursday, Dennis and I rolling in around 5:30p. After getting reacquainted with everyone, we decided to hit a couple of black trails: Boulder-dash and Pinball. Good difficult trails that required some work to overcome and all made it through except for Reid. His TJ power steering pump decided to shred the serpentine belt at the end of Boulder-dash so he limped back to camp while the rest of us worked through Pinball. It was getting late and we wisely returned to camp and enjoyed dinner, beverages, and campfire fellowship before turning in for the night.

After a very leisurely morning Friday, we chose to embark on the red trail called Easy Street while Reid headed to the parts store. In spite of it's name, it is still an extreme trail. About halfway through, Caleb's Cherokee front driveshaft decided that it had enough and broke the slip yoke ear off. He had another on board and it was swapped out in fairly short order. Up ahead, DJ pulled down a tree onto his Jeep and time was spent to clear it from the trail. There was some winching and "road-building" in a couple of spots to get everyone through. Both Harry and DJ were able to make the exit without assistance! That is a feat limited to only a few. With all rigs out, we headed back to camp to check up on Reid and his repair. After a total of 3 trips to the parts store and one trip to the hardware store, all of which were 35 min away, he was reassembled. Dinner, beverages, and campfire fellowship were again enjoyed before sleep was procured.

Another leisurely Saturday morning was had before setting out for an "easier" day on Lake Trail (black), Devil's Bunghole (red), and Pete's Pass (black), hopefully to avoid the predicted storms looming. Dennis was seeking revenge as this was what took out his Jeep two years ago. Somewhere on Lake Trail, Caleb's Cherokee had an electrical no-start issue. It was eventually resolved enough and everyone got through Lake Trail and into Devil's Bunghole without further issue. Midway up, I had to pull cable to surmount a spot, and then finished up without assistance. Dennis was able to get through the area that took him out and nearly onto Pete's Pass when his front driveshaft u-joint gave way. It was right then that the skies opened and it began to storm for what seemed like an hour, drenching everyone and everything. The driveshaft was removed and the two-winch effort to get the Jeep out and up the hill was eventually successful. A rough pull back to camp was accomplished by a helpful Jeeper with 44s and 4BT. Once Dennis was clear, Reid got up to Pete's Pass and then his new power steering pump seized, throwing the new belt off. Without a belt, there is no cooling, charging, and very slow and difficult steering. He was able to make the final climb under his own power before overheating. Harry and I circled around and aided him back to camp via straps and winching and 30 point turns. It was about 5:30p by the time we were all at camp and nearly time for the infamous BBQ. That was delayed by the rain too because the moisture cooled the smoker down and slowed the process. Thankfully, by about 6:30p, the dinner bell rang and we filled out bellies under the protective tarp keeping the rain from filling our plates. It did eventually stop in time for another campfire. A long day of challenges was finally at an end.

Sunday greeted us with clearing skies and cooler temperatures. Reid had made another parts store run and installed yet another pump. We bled the system and he test drove it without issues. He loaded it on his trailer and we all packed and prepped for our respective journeys home. Hannah made an awesome breakfast that we all gratefully devoured. Final departure happened around 1:30p and the journey home was uneventful.