PresidentialRovings Rover Reﬂections Hello everyone! Another four wheelin’ season has come to a close and as I reflect back on the year we’ve had, I can not help but be very proud of all the accomplishments we have attained and I am happy to report that there was a ton of fun had by lots of members, including myself. In 2004 the Solihull Society merged with Rover Riders to consolidate the strengths of both original clubs. We created and passed a new set of bylaws. We created a great new website and expanded our club newsletter. We hosted an off-road trail leader training course this winter. We have worked toward adopting a second Adopt-a-Trail. We hosted over 20 trail rides and events this season. We hosted the best National Rally in Moab ever. And we have grown our membership to around 135 members strong. This is a great club! In reflection on the rally…I want to thank each and every one of the people involved in making this year’s National Rally in Moab an absolute success. Thanks to all the members who volunteered their time to plan and participate in the rally. Thanks to all our valued sponsors and all the vendors who took their time to come to Moab and make this rally happen. And a special thanks to all people who traveled from far and near to be a part of the fun as participants. We need ALL of you to make this happen, and we really appreciate everyone’s help. A few statistics for your pleasure: At this year’s rally we had 75 vehicles in attendance. Of those registered at the rally, 13 4WD Clubs were represented comprising people from 15 US states and 3 countries. So far this year’s rally has been covered by 2 television programs (FoxNews31 and Spike TV’s Tough Truckin’ show) and is rumored to have made it into a 3rd show. That’s great stuff and we should all be proud of this year’s rally…which leads to the next point, next year’s rally.
The club officers and rally committee members have been working hard to collect as much feedback on the rally as possible in order to make the next rally even better. We invite you to continue to share your comments on our website user forum or give one of us a call or email to share your thoughts. A couple of common themes have emerged from the feedback collected so far. Many would like to see a return to the roving rally locales, many would like to see a return to a mid-summer rally date, and many would like to see a lower cost to the rally. We hear you. The Rally Committee is busy researching possible 2005 rally locations in the Colorado Rocky Mountains which would allow for a late July/early August rally date. Moab fans, don’t despair. It is our intention that the rally return to Moab every other year as we all feel it is a great place to host this event. We are also closely evaluating the costs of putting on the events and plan to work toward lowering registration fees in the coming years. It is our hope to announce the location and date for the 2005 National Rally at the Holiday Party in December, so make plans to be there. Cheers,
A Newsletter for Land Rover Aﬁcionados
RoverXchange The Rover Xchange is a quarterly publication of the Solihull Society 4-Wheel Drive Club, Inc. All material in Rover Xchange, unless otherwise noted, is the property of Solihull Society and may not be reproduced without permission. SOLIHULL SOCIETY CONTACTS Co-President – Pat Bickford (303) 526-0780 Co-President – Marc Richardson (303) 733-7169, firstname.lastname@example.org VP – Mark Stolte email@example.com Secretary – John Alden Membership – Carl Padgett (303) 932-7090 Treasurer – Pam Haigh firstname.lastname@example.org Event Coordinator – Ali Vali email@example.com Newsletter – Nathan Hindman firstname.lastname@example.org Website – Joshua White email@example.com Website – www.solihullsociety.org Newsletter Articles and Photos – The preferred format for articles to be submitted is in either Word (.doc) or text (.txt) format. The preferred format for photos is for a digital picture to be emailed or maild on CD in either a JPEG, TIFF or EPS files. The articles can be submitted either via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or mailed on a CD to Nathan Hindman at the following address: Nathan Hindman, 3800 Pike Rd, #3-203, Longmont, CO 80503. Materials will be returned upon request Advertising – $25/issue or $100/year (4 issues– get 1 add’l issue free) for 1/4 page ads. Payment must accompany all camera-ready ads. Make check payable to Solihull Society; mail it to the address at the bottom of this column. Free classified ads to members. $5/issue to non-members. Club Membership – $60/year includes membership in the Colorado Association of 4-Wheel Drive Club, their newsletter, the Rover Xchange newsletter, and all the trail rides you can take! Make check payable to Solihull Society and mail it to the following address: Solihull Society PO Box 480864 Denver, CO 80248-0864
In this Issue Presidential Rovings
Volume 9, Issue 4
Looking back at the 2004 wheeling season, and looking ahead at 2005.
Trip Report: Chinaman’s Gulch
An early season trip to this perennial crowd pleaser trail.
Trip Report: Kenosha Pass Trail
Great views and great times at the top of Kenosha Pass.
Event Report: Club BBQ
Solihull Society adopts an old Rover Riders tradition: The Summer BBQ.
Trip Report: 2004 Land Rover National Rally
Rover owners from across the country make a pilgramage to Moab for the Rally.
Event Report: Wheeler Lake
High alpine meadows, stunning vistas and challenging trails.
Parts and accessories for sale by club members
2004 Event Schedule
Front cover: Carl Padgett’s D90 descends “Upchuck Hill”, Behind the Rocks Trail, Moab. Back cover: Larry Grubb’s Rangie tackles an unnamed obstacle on Behind the Rocks. Below: A diverse Rover convoy heads up Top of the World trail. Photos by Nathan Hindman
TripReport Unlike last year, when Rich Dekkard was democratically voted into responsibility at the gas station, this year Ralph Bradt took it upon himself to lead the “new” and “improved” Chinaman’s Gulch Trail. New and improved because an obstacle has been added to the backside of the oval course, but access to the lake has been blocked by large boulders and a cable.
by Hans Schulze
out of the ground to his left. It was decided that maybe a little pushing lift from the downhill side would get him off his differential and keep him upright. Dave drove straight up the alley without worrying about undercarriage damage due to his height advantage, and Jim drove his Rangie like
Chinaman’s Gulch he stole it, without stopping. Fun trip. And since I met new trailers, they have too. I leave you with Jennifer Brown’s tip: If it has tits or tires, you’re gonna have problems. Thanks Jenny.
But the trail remains pleasantly scenic especially at the squeeze which renders pictures of your vehicle maneuvering the obstacle, and snow capped mountains as the backdrop. Ralph pointed out the collegiate peaks made up of Princeton, Yale, Harvard, and Columbia located in the Sawatch Range which contains fifteen 14’ers, including the highest point in Colorado , Mt. Elbert at 14,433 feet. Since it was the maiden voyage for Jennifer, Ralph, and especially Jim, were coaching, coaxing, and cajoling Jim’s ‘87 Rangie which needed a little adjustment on the trail to cure the rich gas odor. At the same time Dave Whitney had to reseal a valve cover on his Pinz. He said it’s a common trait on these vehicles, like…Land Rovers leaking. Other repair sessions included Will Taylor replacing a spring retainer after going through the rock playground and Jim replacing the steering relay while situated on the rocks. This is the same problem that required him to leave the II on Golden Spike overnight last year. Due to the awkward position of his vehicle during the repairs, he couldn’t quite get it right, because after strapping him off, full left turn was mostly straight ahead. It was an easy fix for Jim. The other interesting happening at the rock playground was the Pinz, of course. We were ready with our cameras anytime Dave tried something difficult...just no flex. And he got a little air which excited the crowd.
Jim Hall’s Series IIA behind a large boulder. Photo by Josh White
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At the waterfall, we waited while the big wheeled v8’s with monster tires were attempting the vertical. Will aired his driver’s side front tire and Dave’s trip was a Pinz adventure, but everyone else took their lines with comfort.
Rock sliders came in handy at The Shelves, the new obstacle, and you could make your approach as hard as you wanted to. Thanks for the show, Dave. Gotta love those Pinz’.
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The last interesting obstacle required a far right, up hill approach that resulted in an off camber fall toward the driver’s side. Kudos goes to Josh for persistency without lockers. He made it. Ralph wanted to test his ability to keep his vehicle on all fours by straight arming a boulder growing
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Keeping Ralph Brandt’s IIA away from the body eating boulders, Chinaman’s Trail. Photo by Josh White
by Jacquelyne Davis
Ahh, Kenosha Pass. Back in the day, Kenosha was a post office and railroad stop for the Denver, South Park & Pacific Railroad, a narrow-gauge that was used mainly by miners to transport their ore. The name Kenosha is likely derived from a tribe of Chippewa Indians that once inhabited this beautiful country. Now, with the natives gone and the railroad tracks long having been dismantled, all that remains is an extensive network of trails nestled among aspen and pine trees that’s treasured by hikers, bikers, and 4WD’ers alike. There were two trips scheduled for this day- Twin Cone and Kenosha. Having learned that Ralph Bradt would be leading Kenosha, I knew two things were certain: the weather would be perfect (my husband, Craig, is convinced that as long as Ralph is around, the weather is always pleasant) and he would likely know the trails better than anyone else. After all, forestry IS his profession, and this was his backyard. Once Ali’s group left for Twin Cone, we gathered around for a few kind words and talked about how nice of a day it was going to be with such a small group. After a short drive towards Kenosha Pass, we stopped to regroup along Park County Rd 60, which is in the Pike NF. This is the same road you would take to get to Webster Pass and Red Cone. Ralph pulled out a map that was Forest Service-issued, and had made copies of them for us. It was like holding a map to a pirate’s treasure, as there were trails laid out that are not on your standard issue topo. Cool! As we looked over our newly acquired booty, Ralph perused over the map and reminisced of fishing the beaver ponds as a younger lad. The trail started out with a nice gradual uphill that lead to some excellent campsites tucked away in a meadow that ran along a nice creek. Hmm…there may be some fishing possibilities. After about 2.5 miles, we came to a great river crossing that was much deeper than we had anticipated. Jennifer plowed through the
Above: Jacquelyne Davis crosses a scenic Alpine vallry, Kenosha Pass Trail. Below: Jennifer Colorbrown tests out the water fording ability of Jim Hall’s Range Rover Classic. Photos by Jim Hall
creek rather quickly, and the water rose to an impressive level on the Range Rover’s bonnet, but she made it through without a hitch. We passed an old shooting area and then continued on a narrow uphill section that was once a cattle-drive road. After a nice break to stretch our legs and observe the huge campfire ring that was left, a discussion ensued concerning Leave No Trace ethics, and how it is important for us to leave the lands better than we had found them. Jim collected some rubbish that had been littering the ground and soon we were back on the trail.
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The trail slowly decreased in elevation and soon we were touring through aspen trees with their leaves still new and bright green. We came across some handgliders who appeared to have already landed, but their crafts were still amazing to see. After a quiet lunch atop a rock outcropping overlooking the South Park and Fairplay areas, we headed down towards Hoosier Creek Valley, which eventually took us back to 285. Some of us, still wanting to play on the trails, took advantage of the nice weather (a la Ralph) and headed back up towards Webster Pass. What a pleasant day for a Sunday drive.
by Hans Schulze
Club Summer BBQ
Matthew and Catherine Schulze hosted a social friendly, kids friendly and testosterone friendly BBQ on behalf of the Solihull Society. Over twenty Rovers and other unmentionable 4x4’s lined up behind the monster garage and goat barn. Matt and Cat procured a 50 gallon half drum that was engineered into a grill by their neighbor, Mr. Bob, the owner of Maud the horse. They also borrowed a large tent from the homeowners association. The tent soon became the center of eating, drinking, sitting and spouting anything that cam to mind. It also buffered the occupants somewhat from the usual afternoon rain and gusting wind. Children had a play set and a trampoline to challenge their physical capabilities. I still can envision Peyton Vali laughing while bouncing uncontrollably, powered by the aftershock jumps of the kids around him. The trampoline also became a balancing challenge for Tim Clair early into the evening. Oh by the way, Tim has an outstanding off-road vehicle equipped with CD player, air-conditioning, and sun roof. The guys had the opportunity to run their vehicles up the ramp to test flexibility. And as Yousef will tell you, he’s the greatest. He rode the ramp to the day’s high, utilizing his extreme setup to the max. But I think points should be deducted for riding on the outside edge instead of on the ramp, but probably should receive points for not falling off. Challenging him was Matt Schulze, using a more standard setup. And there were lots of attempts just for curiosity. And some, like Bob Lohman and Pat Bickford, surprised the crowd. Some measured their progress in feet, some in inches. However, only Chris Rice’s dog reached the top.
Kicking the tires out in the BBW “parking lot”. Photo by Hans Schulze
Thank you Daniel and Stephanie Padgett for the best use of pastel chalk on a drive way.
Thank you Keith and Matt [names not important….they came in non-Rovers] for helping Carl set up the ramp.
Thank you to the Lohmans who answer to either Pat or Bob.
Thank you Ali Vali for contributing items for the raffle.
Thank you John Hanna for representing Solihull history.
Thank you Roseanne Schulze for trucking the beer and ice.
Thank you Trish Hall for adopting the cowboy attire which contrasted slick Norman’s purple Fila.
Thank you Matt and Catherine Schulze for allowing the club to use and abuse your property.
Thank you Russ Wilson for the Dormobile with upstairs sleeping quarters.
Thank you to the members and their families who attended and made this a success.
Thank you Carl Padgett for bringing the ramp, and Judy.
by Norman Hall
2004 Land Rover National Rally Round-up This years National Rally was the 15th consecutive year of the event. Due to interest levels in past years this years rally was extended by a day with registration to start on the Tuesday, allowing more days of trails. Pizza and drinks were provided to those registering to ensure that the social atmosphere of the Rally started off right. Representatives from 13 different clubs attended the rally, providing a diverse mix of Land Rover enthusiasts. In addition, we had participants from England and Australia making a broad cross section of Landie lovers in attendance. One of the great benefits of the Land Rover National rally is that the Solihull Society includes so much with the registration fee, including an event t-shirt. This year, every time you saw a blue t-Shirt it was easy to distinguish those attending the Rally from those who were not. The first active day of this years rally was on Wednesday, September 15th. All registered participants met at the Spanish Trail arena which was to be the assembly point on each day. Participants were greeted by coffee and donuts supplied by the club. This year they were also greeted by two attractive young ladies from Red Bull handing out free drinks to take along on their trail rides. For the first time in the events history we had a film crew from– Spike TV who were to film a segment for a new upcoming four wheel drive show called Tough Truckin’. Of the 8 trails led on the first day one was a stand out–Golden Spike! The trail that most people refer to as Golden Spike trail is actually an amalgam of three separate trails. The first part of the trail is Poison Spider Mesa trail without the loop section out to Little Arch, a favorite lunch spot. This part of the trail has a number of interesting obstacles including Wedgy and The Waterfall. Bypasses for most of the tougher challenges existed however our group took the tougher routes at all points. This part of the trail is popular because the driving is challenging without quite being a regular vehicle buster. Much of the trail is on slick rock. There are also some rock ledges sandy wash bottoms and two sand hills. The initial climb and switchbacks are rough but easy to drive. There are some rock ledges that make the trail difficult combined with some steep slick rock climbs. It was during this initial section that Ali Vali had difficulties with his transfer case in the end he got into low range but was not able to get back out. A problem he could only fix when back in Moab. This was not a major problem given there was no need for high range until we were to hit the highway in about 8 hours time. The true Golden Spike Trail starts at the turn off
Above: Rover lineup on Behind the Rocks trail. Photo by Nathan Hindman Below: A Rangie tests out the traction on the slick rock Photo by Hans Schulze
to the little Arch loop, where things start to get a bit more challenging. The main obstacles are Launch Pad, Skyline Drive, Golden Crack, Golden Stairs and Double Wammy. The trail is a non-stop challenge with beautiful scenery and a reasonable trail surface between difficult sections. The group drove along sloping Wingate sandstone with fantastic views to the West and North. Unfortunately during this section Karen Kreutzer broke a rear axle and Detroit Locker in her Discovery reducing her to 3 wheel drive. John Brown’s Defender also suffered
electrical problems loosing his alternator belt which caused bearing problems. For the rest of the day we had to help him back with batteries swapped on several occasions to keep him charged and moving. When out on trails one has to often rely on traveling partners to spot your through difficult situations. Given that this was the
first outing for my bobtailed Discovery (called a Discovery SA â€“ for Short Arse) a few within the group decided to have some fun when spotting me and chose some interesting lines. Gold Bar Rim makes up the last section of this long trail. Whilst not the hardest of difficult trail sections, after a long day its obstacles still provide a challenge. Along this section our group was able to enjoy some great views overlooking the Colorado River north of Moab and Jeep Arch far in the distance behind Gold bar Canyon. As part of the registration fees the outdoor area of the Moab Brewery was reserved for participants of the Rally and free beer and soft drinks provided for a period after the trails. This attracted many of the participants and provided a good forum for all to retell the dayâ€™s events and exaggerate their feats of driving prowess. On my part I was trying to downplay the fact that I had destroyed my rear differential on Golden Spike Trail and was a passenger for the rest of the event. Many stayed on for dinner giving the Brewery a Land Rover feel. Event t shirts and other miscellaneous Land Rover attire (yes and 1 or 2 LRM T Shirts were also seen) could be seen on practically every other person in the joint.
Above: Carl Padgett oversees a Disco on White Knuckle Hill. Photo by Nathan Hindman Below: Dave Lucas gets some big air on Kane Creek Trail. Photo by JIm Hall
Day two of activities included options for everyone. Along with the trails being run, Marc Richardson, the Solihull Society Co-President, led a group of Mountain bikers along Cliff Hanger / Amasa Back trail. Yours truly also took a hiking trip out to Delicate Arch in Arches National Park. The intrepid group of mountain bikers was accompanied by Carl Padgett leading a group of Land Rovers over the same trail. Whilst the Bikers may have gotten more exercise for the day, I am sure that those in the Land Rovers had a far more comfortable and safer trip. Unfortunately there were two accidents amongst the bikers with Marc Richards falling over a 7 foot drop onto his back and John Brown going over his handlebars to hit a rock straight on with his chest. Fortunately other than bruises and the usual scrapes neither was seriously injured. The trail taken by our group used the only trail onto Amasa Back, a rather high isolated area bounded by Kane Creek, Hurrah Pass and Jackson Hole. As those in our group will attest, Amasa Back should not be driven by those with agro phobia - as this is not the trail to be on if uncomfortable with heights/cliffs. The group drove along the edge of a cliff negotiating large rock ledges which combined with large vertical drops to the side of the trail. This certainly made sure everyone concentrated as one mistake could have been disastrous. The views were spectacular. An open invitation was made for people to join a walk out to Delicate Arch. This is a 3 mile round trip. Whilst defined as moderate it can be strenuous in hot weather. Our trip was a 2 _ hour return trip which worked in perfectly to get some exercise yet still return to town in time for the Vendor Event.
This was the second year that a Vendor Event was held as part of the Rally. To provide adequate time for all participants to check out the specialty vendors only short trails were run on the morning of the second day. This meant that the vendor show started at 2 pm. In all there were 18 vendors ranging from accessory suppliers, expedition companies to specialist Land Rover product manufacturers and tire suppliers. As part of the Vendor event a mini “Twist Off” was run allowing all comers to put their vehicles up on an RTI ramp to compare suspension articulation. The winner of Coil Sprung vehicles was Yosef Hamzeh in his highly modified Coil over suspension 1995 Defender 90. The winner of the Leaf Sprung vehicle section was Jim Hall in his 1966 ‘88 inch Series IIA. Friday, was purely a trail day. One of the trails, Seven Mile Rim, was led by Mary Molter in her Green Range Rover Classic. Mary is a seasoned campaigner on these Rally’s with her husband Jim who normally drives his Green (Yes matching colored Land Rovers, isn’t it sweet) Defender 90. Seven mile Rim trail passes the old Cotter uranium mine and up onto the cliff rim above the mine and Highway 191. The intense mining activity resulted in many drilling roads on the mesa which can cause some confusion if you are new to the area. Mary led her group very near the rim toward the south and then turned east above Seven mile Canyon. Along the way the group visited Uranium Arch. The trail joins other roads in the vicinity of Merrimac Butte, Monitor Butte, Determination Towers, and Big Mesa. The group was lucky to have Mary leading the way so that we did not blunder around aimlessly lost. The trail is not overly difficult however the section on the south side of Merrimac Butte and a sandy hill near the end can cause difficulties. This south side of Merrimac Butte has exciting slick rock side hill driving which caused many concerns until they became somewhat used to the off camber driving. Wipe-Out Hill is one of Jim’s favorite
Top: Graham Jackson flexes the suspension on Top of the World trail. Photo by Nathan Hindman Middle: Trailmasters oversee the morning gathering of vehicles at the Spanish Trail Arena. Photo by Nathan Hindman Above: Norman Hall takes his bobtailed Discovery through Golden Crack. Photo by Norman Hall Left: Larry Grubbs descends the harrowing Upchuck obstacle, Behind the Rocks trail. Photo by Nathan Hindman
A Newsletter for Land Rover Aﬁcionados
2004NationalRally Moab, UT
Events such as this cannot be run by clubs with out the generous support of Sponsors. The following companies must be thanked for their generous support of Solihull Society and the National Rally:
ARB North America BCB Off Road Inland Rovers Kensington Motor Cars Land Rover FlatIrons Land Rover North America Pikes Peak Rovers Rovers North Rover Specialties Rovertracks.com Safari 4x4 Specialty Lens Corporation XKS Unlimited
The following companies participated in the Vendor event and made it the success it was: ARB North America BCB Off Road Colorado Association of Four Wheel Drive Clubs Expedition Exchange 4 Wheeling America Great Basin Rovers Inland Rovers Kensington Motor Cars Land Rover FlatIrons Land Rover Monthly Magazine Land Rover North America OffRoadTuff.com Pangaea Expeditions Pendy Imports Pikes Peak Rovers Rovers North Rover Specialties Rovertracks.com Safari 4x4 SlickRock Fabrication Specialty Lens Corporation Washbrook.net [Simex tires] Along with the companies mentioned about both Pulpal / Premier Power Welder And Atlantic British donated prizes for the event
spots. It is a steep slightly ledgy descent to a nice lunch spot. Because of the angles a good and trusted spotter is required [do not ask Jim Molter as he likes to see people lift wheels in the most unusually of places] to guide vehicles down safely. Getting back up is a little harder however good throttle control saw the entire group up and away safely. Some of the trails also visited by the Rally on this day included Pritchett Canyon, Behind the Rocks, Moab Rim, Kane Creek, Gemini Bridges and the spectacular Top of the World. As the rally had been non stop since registration on the Tuesday. The Solihull Society committee left Friday night free for participants to explore Moab and do as they pleased. Many from the group [by many I man about 25] chose to visit Buck’s steak house for Dinner. Now I am not saying that the amount of alcohol consumed had any impact on the stories told, however there seemed to be many recollections of Herculean efforts performed by various peoples Land Rovers over the past few days. Suffice to say I was happy that there were no tape recorders around that night. Saturday 18th September was the last day of activities. Again the group of trail leaders guided trips out to various trails around Moab. Some of the trails experienced this last day included: Flat Iron Mesa, Metal Masher, Rose Garden Hill and Poison Spider Mesa. The most memorable story for the day comes from eh Rose Garden Hill trip. Apparently, Ralph Brandt, the trip leader, had a difficulty with one of his front free wheeling hubs on his 88” Series vehicle. Ralph removed the hub to check what was wrong, then drove on for a further 20 minutes before realizing that he had failed to re fit the free wheeling hub. One of the group had to drive back, collect the parts and return before the Land Rover could be repaired. Who said it was only the participants that had things happen to them???
Joshua White admires the view at Top of the World overlook. Photo by Nathan Hindman
• Evil Knievel Award – Marc Richardson and John Brown. For their flying antics on day 2 when mountain biking. A raffle was also held allowing participants to win prizes donated by our sponsors and vendors. Prizes ranged from model Land rov-
The Land Rover National Rally traditionally finishes up with a banquette on the final night. All participants were invited to attend with meals and drinks fully included with their registration. Given how much attendees get for their registration fee, the cost to attend seems quite reasonable. This year saw a full house with some actually choosing to stand at the back of the room [to conduct their business over a few amber ales]. A number of awards were presented to participants including the following selection • Furthest person to attend – Gerard Hall. He came all the way from Australia to see Moab. • Shocking Driver Award – Tim Clair. He broke 2 shocks on the same day on the same trail. • Broken Axle Award – Norman Hall. Remember that destroyed diff of mine. Well the judges also remembered much to my shame. • Oldest Participant – Jim Molter. Well we think he was as he would not divulge his true date of birth.
A Newsletter for Land Rover Aﬁcionados
ers to Thermal jackets, from jerry cans to a Superwinch. There were so many prizes donated that the presentation staff almost lost their voices announcing all the winners.
Marc Richardson’s Range Rover displays his affinity for all things British, Behind the Rocks trail. Photo by Nathan Hindman
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by Ralph Brandt
Wheeler Lake Meeting time was approximately 9:00 at the Walmart parking lot at the Evergreen exit off I-70. We made reasonably good time (in the opinion of a series guy) to the start of the trail, stopping once in Breckenridge to top off with fuel. We reached the trailhead at west end of Montgomery Reservoir at close to 11, where we met the last four trucks, bringing the vehicle total to nine. More intros were made, accompanied by much hissing as tires were aired down in preparation for the trail. When all were ready, we set out up the road, passing under the gradually deteriorating walkway at the Magnolia mill. The three-mile long trail winds up the valley of the Middle Fork of the South Platte between Mount Lincoln to the south and the Continental Divide to the north. Wheeler Lake and nearby Wheeler Mountain are named for Lt. George Wheeler, who led a U.S. Geological Survey in the 1870â€™s to collect an accurate physical description of the territory west of the 100th meridian.
Kristy Long descends a rock obstacle on Wheeler Lake trail. Photo by Bob Lohman
A Newsletter for Land Rover AďŹ cionados
Arriving at the first obstacle, I decided to give the difficult left side variation a shot. Last time I was up here I gave it a try, but the rain-slicked rock had given my tires little purchase. This time, on a sunny day with dry rock, I found myself still flailing. I back down and change my approach. This time I made a little more distance, but also scored what felt like very large air under my right front corner. OK, well maybe not today. I again backed down and took the left side without difficulty. Marc Richardson, right behind me, took a look at the right variation, then without even a spot walked it like there was nothing to it. Don’t folks like that just irritate the heck out of you? My only consolation was that nobody else tried it, everyone taking the left side. The second major obstacle presented a number of choices. I picked the easiest line, just right of center. Marc, in the number two slot, took the tricky looking center-left line. The approach wasn’t quite right and required a bit of readjustment, and on the second attempt Marc decided he’d prefer the far left side. Backing down to reposition, the right front wheel suddenly dropped off an edge, dropping down and left, and bringing a startled look of concern to Marc’s face. The situation was quickly assessed and he continued to back into position to reapproach on far left and successfully negotiated the new line. Kristy took far right line, straddling the ominous wedge and, with minor initial slippage from muddy tires, walked the yellow D-90 right up. The rest of the D-90s and Mark Groves’ white Disco II followed her line and the other two Discos took my line up the center.
Bob Lohman’s Defender takles an optional obstacle, Wheeler Lake trail. Photo by Bob Lohman
Above this obstacle, the difficulties relented and the group made steady progress. The big mud hole I remember from my last trip had diminished considerably and was negotiated without difficulty. As we approached the final ascent to the lake, we could see a number of downward bound vehicles on the road above. We found a spot and pulled off for lunch and to let the descending rigs pass. The final half-mile climb began as a climb up a surprisingly slippery section of rounded cobbles that ran all the way to the first switchback, where the most difficult obstacle on the trail used to be. Just what happened to it a couple years ago, I don’t know, but everyone negotiated it without difficulty and we all arrived at the lake shortly thereafter. The weather was beautiful and there was plenty of time for photos and to let the dogs swim. Lionel hiked west up the line of waterfalls looking for a 2 nd lake above. The rumored 4wd damage around the lake was
TripReport Wheeler Lake (Continued) nowhere to be seen. Just wildflowers, blue sky, and sunshine on water and granite. After we had soaked up our fill of the alpine environment, we loaded up and headed out for a relatively uneventful descent, following gravity’s lead back to the trailhead. Back at the second obstacle, everyone took a turn at the wedge and came through unscathed. Well, I guess I did tag a rear corner, but it seems I do that once on every trail. Just wait till I get my corner armor welded up. Back at the trailhead after a round of goodbyes, the group split up and everyone headed home, half going north the way we came, and half taking the scenic route through Fairplay and back up 285. If you haven’t done Wheeler lakes, keep an eye out for the next opportunity.
Enjoying the alpine flowers bloom. Photo by Bob Lohman
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Classiﬁeds For Sale Five D90 alloy wheels w/lug nuts – $500 Four D90 rear seats – $350 D90 stock rear bumper/hitch – $75 Bob Lohman (303) 671 6995 For Sale– Stock 3.54:1 ring and pinion gears. Gears are in excellent shape with no signs of wear. $150 OBO. Contact Nathan Hindman 303-702-0071 or AAYellowD90@yahoo.com Factory Roof Rack for Discovery Series I models, includes 4 Hella lights and wind deflector $340— James Kelce (303) 783-3771 For Sale 1. Wilderness Roof Rack For D90 5ft x 3ft x 6” $300.00 2. Reese Tow Bar Modified to fit Rock Ware Bumper. Can be adapted for other Tow Points. $150.00. Contact Jim Molter (970-453-7764) or E-Mail D90chief@aol.com For Sale – 1987 Range Rover $3,500 obo. Please call Matt Hurley at 720353-7395 for more details.
For the latest events and trip reports, check out the website
Gregory Chernushin Attorney at Law Parkridge Center 10475 Park Meadows Drive, 6th Floor Littleton, CO 80124 (303) 689-0766 18
A Newsletter for Land Rover Aﬁcionados
2004EventSchedule www.solihullsociety.org • Always call the trip leader to confirm trip details. Natural and un-natural events can interfere with our plans. All difficulty ratings are based on stock vehicle with some driver experience Date Event Sun, Dec 5 2nd Annual Christmas Tree Run 10 am See website for location
Trip Nathan Hindman
Leader (303) 772-7207
Solihull Society Holiday Party Sunday, December 12 Noon–3pm Mount Vernon Country Club Wonderful Holiday Buffet, provided to all club members in good standing Club Executive Comittee will be held to elect ofﬁcers for 2005. Renew dues for 2005 at the Holiday party, and recieve a free club t-shirt RSVP required. Contact Pam Haigh at (303) 666-9039
membershipapplication Name _____________________________________________________________________________________ Spouse/Partner/Significant Other ____________________________________________________________ Street Address _____________________________________________________________________________ City _________________________ State ___________________ Zip _______________________________ Phone Number _______________ E-mail ___________ Website URL _______________________________ Land Rover(s) Model &Year __________________________________________________________________ Detach and mail with $60 to: Solihull Society PO Box 480864 Denver, CO 80248-0864
Solihull Society PO Box 480864 Denver, CO 80248-0864