2015 Cruise Moab Kokopelli Expedition Team Member Thread

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100s in the Hills
Media Partner
Sep 27, 2011
Hello old friends and new friends to be!

Cruise Moab 2015 is right around the corner and it's time to start planning. The selections for the 2015 Kokopelli Expedition have been made and we're all in for a grand adventure with what looks to be a fine group!

The Kokopelli Trail was once again the first run to fill to capacity for the Cruise Moab event. This is a FULL 3-day expedition style run that is essentially an event all its own. OutdoorX4 Magazine will be our trail sponsor and we're working hard to make this the best Kokopelli Expedition yet. As of right now, we are a group of 13. I expect that number to grow slightly to 14-16 total. Anything over 16 and we start to get crowded at our stops and bottlenecked at the obstacles.

We are now FULL with 14 Land Cruisers.

I will be our trail guide and expedition leader for the event and I have two great tail gunners and spotters along to help as needed.

So far we have a great mix of vehicles. The breakdown is as follows:

Six 80 Series

Four FJ40's

Three 100 Series

One FJ45

As of right now, this is an ALL LAND CRUISER group. This is also the most 80's we've had in the last 3 years. Again, I'm expecting a few more to join us as well and I'll add their vehicles as we go.

This thread will serve as our meeting place, so to speak. We will coordinate our times, make cyber-introductions and generally just start the process of getting to know one another. After all, we're going to spend 3+ days together where we're going to work as a team, look out for each other, break bread together, camp together and laugh together. We'll also be doing that on one of the most beautiful and exciting trails this fine country has to offer.

The Trip:

This is a true expedition experience that will have us covering 150 miles between Mack, CO and Moab, UT. I don't want to spoil anything by explaining the trail too much, I'll just say get ready for an amazing route to an amazing town. There is no grander way to arrive in Moab than with 3 days of dust and dirt on your tires and on your face.

The Plan:

Monday Night: (Optional) Several people typically travel to the trailhead the day before and it is recommended, but not at all required. There are hotels available in Grand Junction if you'd like to take that last real shower before starting off Tuesday morning. We will plan on meeting/camping here:

39°10'33.6"N 109°01'19.9"W

This area is a first come first served dispersed camping area fairly near the interstate exit for Rabbit Valley (Exit 2). From the exit, travel south, just over a half mile and turn right. I will try and have a sign out but there is cell phone service in the area and you can call if necessary. My initial email will have my phone number and the phone numbers of our tail gunners. If that area happens to be full (that's' doubtful) then we can camp in any designated camp area.

Tuesday Morning: Meet at the site mentioned and mapped above off the Rabbit Valley exit (Exit 2 off Interstate 70)

Tech Inspection will run from 9:00-9:45. Drivers Meeting at 10:00 and Departure at 10:15am. Please ensure that you are totally fueled up (With EXTRA) and 100% ready to go. Tuesday will actually be our shortest day on the trail. Barring any setbacks, we'll arrive in camp in the late afternoon and have time to set our camps and relax for what is always a great evening. Everyone is excited to be on the trail and the first night is always a late one around the campfire.

Tuesday night's camp will be at Fish Ford near the Colorado River. Dinner will be a potluck style meal with everyone hopefully bringing something to share. We did this last year and it was a big hit. I will start a list at the bottom of this thread and I'll update it as we go along with who is bringing what. I will be bringing Pork Green Chile with all the fixin's (Chips, Cheese, Tortillas, Sour Cream etc.)

Wednesday: Depart camp by 10am. This will be a long, but fun day. We'll travel through Cisco Wash and on a portion of Dome Plateau. We'll exit the trail near the famous Dewey Bridge and make a brief stop at our second night's camp at Roberts Bottom. We will drop off any trailers in the group and continue to the Top of the World. This out and back trail will take us a few hours to complete and I'm aiming to have us near the top as the sun is getting lower to the west. This is one of the most photogenic areas of the entire region. You can expect to hit your sliders and bumpers pretty often on this trail.

Thursday: Depart camp by 9:30am for another very full day. Day three will be our hardest day (obstacle wise) of the trip. Plan on being on the trail all day, getting into Moab in the early evening. We will cover some beautiful terrain throughout the day. We'll descend the infamous Rose Garden Hill which will be the hardest part of the trail (Sliders are required to avoid body damage, bumpers and skid plates are recommended.) You WILL hit your sliders and land hard on your bumpers. It will take our group a few hours to cover this small stretch. Then, we'll pass through the Fisher Valley and Onion Creek and traverse the northern flank of the La Sal Mountains. We'll arrive into Moab via Sand Flats Road tired, dusty, dirty, hungry and smiling from ear to ear. You'll love pulling into SlickRock Campground where people are just setting up camp, their Land Cruiser’s all shiny and clean, and we come rolling in with dirt and dust flying and three incredible days of adventure behind us.

Important Details:

Vehicle Inspection: This is a TLCA Sanctioned Event. All vehicles must pass the TLCA tech inspection. The time is now to ensure everything is in proper order. We are traveling in a remote area well away from civilization and there are very few bail-out areas.

Communications: Everyone must have a functioning CB. It's a Cruise Moab requirement but it's also vitally important for these long distance overnight runs. Having a HAM radio is even better. Having your HAM radio license is even better still. I will have both and am a licensed HAM radio operator. Something to consider if you're thinking of getting your HAM radio license, these little hand held HAM Radios are cheap and they actually work pretty well. Even if you have a CB and no HAM license, you can at least carry one of these to listen and keep on stand-by. If you're wanting to become a HAM radio operator, let me know and I'll give you some clues that will help you to pass the test prior the event.

Fuel: Once we leave the pavement at Rabbit Valley, there will not be an opportunity to get fuel until Moab. I recommend everyone please bring at least 5-10 gallons. You know your offroad mileage better than anyone, so please plan accordingly. I average about 6-8 mpgs on this trail and I use 4-6 extra gallons.

Food: Plan to be self-sufficient, however, breakfast will be provided at least once, possibly twice. Please let me know if you have any allergies. Food or otherwise.

Pets: Please feel free to bring your friendly and well behaved dogs. Mean dogs or dogs that could possibly bite are better left at home. We are a long way from medical facilities and a dog-bite could be hard to deal with.

Be sure to bring a leash and a way to clean up after them.

Trailers: Off-road trailers have their place and you may bring one on a case by case basis. The terrain is tough in several spots and your trailer should not be the limiting factor. Also if you are one who drives slower with a trailer than without consider leaving it at home. It's not fair to the group to move at a slower pace because of one individual. Please let me know if you're thinking of bringing a trailer so we can discuss it.

Firewood: Please bring at least one bundle of fire wood. More is always better. Nights this time of year can be very cold and sitting around a warm campfire is pretty darned nice!

Water: 1 gallon per person per day for drinking is the rule of the desert. Bring more if you plan on doing dishes, showering etc. There is very little water to speak of and even the mighty Colorado runs pretty dirty that time of year. Filtering water would be difficult.

Firearms: Abide by applicable laws. We are traveling in Colorado and Utah. Keep in mind this is a TLCA Sanctioned 4x4 event. There will be no recreational shooting. Be responsible and keep your weapons safely secured.

Toilets: For number 1. Urinating in a disturbed or stable area (i.e. trail, rock, dry drainage) is preferred. The bushes don't need to be and shouldn't be watered. Number 2: BLM mandates that all solid waste be removed. We will have portable/packable toilets available. Please visit Wal-Mart or another store of your choice to pick up a box of wag bags for about $11. The Wal-Mart brand is Ozark Trail. You will pack out what you pack in. We will also try to stop at vault toilets in a couple areas. There is a pit toilet somewhat near each of our camps. The vault toilets near our second night’s camp are back at Dewey Bridge, about a 10 minute drive from camp.

Alcohol: Drinking on the trail is prohibited by drivers AND passengers. Camp is the place for it and we will have plenty of time to share stories in the evening.. FYI, alcohol is best purchased outside of Utah as you will typically get it cheaper and of higher quality products. Fruita/Grand Junction is a great stock up point, but most stores don't open until 10am, so you'll need to have it prior to our meet-up on Tuesday morning.

Health Issues: If you have any health issues that may require emergency assistance, please let me know privately or share it with our group during our Driver's Meeting.

Medical: I am a former United States Marine. My medical training is consistent with my military training. I am CPR certified and will carry an Outer Limit Supply medical kit. I encourage everyone to carry a medical kit as well. Please let me know if you have medical training so we can best handle emergency situations. We are in remote areas and medical needs can become very serious very quickly. I'll also be carrying a SAT phone in case of emergencies.

Vehicle: We are traveling in a remote area. Please ensure that your vehicle is in top running condition. If you cannot pass Tech Inspection on Tuesday morning, you will be asked not to participate. Inspection Details

Trash: We will pack out what we pack in. This means all human waste and trash. This means no burning trash in the evening fires as well. (paper plates are obviously ok when the fire is raging) Let's make camp and the trail look better than we found it. A Trasharoo is a great addition to your rig and doubles as a firewood carrier. Don’t hesitate to announce on the CB or HAM that you’re stopping to pick up a water bottle or beer can that you find on the trail. Let's do our part to make sure this trail stays beautiful and open for the next generation!

Camp: Please respect others in camp. Let’s have fun, but don’t disturb the folks who climb into their RTT’s at 10pm either.

Have Fun!: This expedition is a once in a lifetime trip for some folks. We will stop for photos at all the best places!

Please post up and make an introduction. Feel free to ask questions, tell a little about yourself and your vehicle, or just say hello. I recognized at least one name on our list from last years Kokopelli group....

EDIT: We should start to discuss the Tuesday Night Pot Luck and who is interested in participating. This has been pretty successful in the past and it makes for a great first night on the trail. Please post up if you're planning on bringing something to share and I'll update this list as we go along.

Big Country: Smoked/Pulled Pork
paflytyer: Pork/Chicken Green Chile with all the fixings

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My name is Stan Wright. As mentioned above, I will be our Trail Leader for this adventure. I live in Denver, Colorado with my wife and 3 great kids. Although I'll be solo on this trip, my family often accompanies me on adventures throughout the Rocky Mountain West. We own a 2004 Toyota Land Cruiser that has been built for adventures just like this one.

I am a member of Rising Sun 4x4 Club and serve as the Toyota Land Cruiser Association Social Media Director. I am also the Marketing Director and Staff Member for OutdoorX4 Magazine, our expedition sponsor. As if that doesn't keep me busy enough, my "real" job is as an Air Traffic Controller at Denver International Airport.

I have traveled the Kokopelli Trail 4 times and will be making one more trip prior to our adventure to check current conditions and look for any hazard areas along the route. The two co-leaders/tail gunners/spotters (@bigcountryFZJ and @bluecruiser) that are joining us both have experience on this trail as well. They will make their own introductions, but I can assure you that we are in great hands for this trip. I have known them both for a long time and we travel together often.

Rising Sun 4X4 Club has some of the most knowledgeable and experienced trail leaders in the country and I'm thankful to have learned from the best. I'm fortunate to have spent so much time on the trail with our club learning the nuances of Trail Leadership, Safe Spotting, Recovery and Group Dynamics. I lead trails often for the club, some of them with more members than what we'll have here. We'll also have the benefit of having another long time Rising Sun and TLCA member @Hulk with us on this adventure (He'll make his own introduction), so we will be covered from all sides!

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Matt Farr here. I'll be running the complete trail for the first time. I did run a portion of the trail back in 2009, and I've run Rose Garden Hill a couple of times. I'm planning on getting a hotel room in GJ on Monday night and finding a good place for dinner and a beer. Maybe we can meet up with other who are interested on Monday night?
Cliff here, this will be my 4th Cruise Moab and first time on the Kokopelli.
Guess I am the other 100 Series on this run.
Stan, I was a Tech Inspector at last year's CM so I can help with that.
I haven't yet decided if I will be camping at the trailhead Monday night.
Some of you may remember my Gold Bar Rim run in 2013 which resulted in an unexpected upgrade to a front locker. :(

Gold Bar Rim Fdiff-7411-s.jpg
Stan, I was a Tech Inspector at last year's CM so I can help with that.

Thanks Cliff! @bigcountryFZJ is handling Tech Inspection and I'm sure we'd be happy for the help. I'm sure it will be quick and easy as this group is well prepared. Some in our group have been LONG time TLCA members and Land Cruiser owners.
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I realize that my phone contact info was not included in my initial email. I will remedy that as our departure date approaches. Feel free to email or PM me for my number if you need to speak with me prior to that.
Hi, I'm Anders. This is my first cruise moab and first time driving the Kokopelli although I did mt bike it many years ago. I will be driving one of the fj40s I am planning to camp at the trail head on Monday night. Also I am a paramedic so I can help out on the medical side of things if everyone promises to be good.
My name is Dale I'll be in my 1967 fj45 I hope I can pass the tech inspection as my ac , air bags, nav system , anti lock brakes , headrest video system and other do dads don't appear to be working . I've been to cruise Moab many times but this should be a special trail for me and my son . I'm a machinist up here in Steamboat and have worked on many cruisers I look forward to meeting you all.
Looks like we have a great group with a nice mix of trucks. I also work closely with @paflytyer as the Directors of the annual 100s in the Hills event in Ouray, CO.

This will be my 4th time on the Kokopelli and 6th Cruise Moab. I have attended all prior CM's in my 100 Series LC but have recently transitioned to an 80 Series. I reside in Phoenix and enjoy UT, CO, and CA pretty regularly to explore remote locations with my LC friends. Kind of a small world, I believe that @Hulk led me on my first CM run back in 2007 on Fins & Things, quite a memory for me (first time on slickrock). I look forward to meeting everyone on the run. It should be a good one. @paflytyer is a great guy and will do his best to make this trip memorable for everyone. Please feel free to ask any questions, better to have most items resolved before hitting the trail. Thanks.....Chris

My name is Tim and I'll be the other 40 on the trip. This is my second Cruise Moab and first time on the Kokopelli Trail. I'll be hauling a trailer (if that's cool), I think I worked out all the kinks last summer. I'll do my best to try to keep up with the 80's and 100's.
No issue with trailers. Have had a few on the trail over the past couple of years. Yes, we have helped get a tipped over trailer back on its wheels but with careful driving, spotting and having some experience with the trailer, it should be okay. That is a great looking setup, @74bruiser. Looking forward to seeing it in action.
Thanks Bluecruiser. Hopefully it'll be a smooth trip.
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Hello everyone! Vince checking in, Looking forward to exploring the Kokopelli with everyone. Will be driving red pearl 91 Fj 80. Had the opportunity last cruise moab to run the San Rafael Swell in my 100UZ. What a great trip meet many great adventures such as Cliff who is flying his 100UZ up above that rock!
@red mud fj You're going to want sliders on your 80 before this trip. I'd hate to see you damage those door/rockers. There are areas where you will land hard on the belly.

@bluecruiser from two years ago. The trail was in much better shape back then than it is now. Some of the ledges are at least 3 feet tall.
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OK ya just had to make me put on my slippers and walk out into the storm and take a slider picture. Bright shinny Rock Road sliders reporting for duty.
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I just wanted to toss out some more information for the group. You may know some (or all) of this and already apply it during your long outings, but just in case...I'll go over a few tips I use.

Wind/Dust- The wind can really pick up during this event and we will kick up a fair amount of dust while we're driving. For you open top guys, we'll probably find a spot near the front to keep you from eating too much red sand and dust. I typically bring a BUFF head/neck scarf, even with windows that roll up with the touch of a button. I do a lot of flyfishing and a buff is perfect for keeping the sun off your head/face/neck. It's also great for keeping the dust out of your mouth in Moab.

Trash- We will have one opportunity to empty our trash near the end of day 2. (Dewey Bridge) Therefore, I would like to encourage everyone to use either their own camping plates/utensils for Tuesday Night's Pot Luck, or use paper plates that can either be completely burned or thrown in your own trashbag. Last year we ended up carrying a lot of trash with us after the first nights camp (2 full bags) and I'd like to avoid that this year. If you don't have a Trasharoo, it's the perfect purchase for this trip. I may even have a few extras at a slightly lower cost.

Water - As mentioned above, you'll want a few gallons. If you're a cooler user, freezing water bottles at the bottom of your cooler and stacking perishables on top will save room and serve as your ice. If you're a portable fridge user, I keep a 1 gallon jug in my fridge with 3 water bottles. I re-use the same three water bottles for the entire trip (no waste). I just fill them from the ice cold 1 gallon container kept in the fridge. When I'm drinking 1 bottle, the other two are getting cold with the gallon jug. I carry a 7-gallon Aqua-Tainer from Wal-Mart or Target that I can use to refill my 1 gallon fridge jug and do some cleaning up with.

Baby Wipes- I buy a huge box of unscented baby wipes before this trip. You'll have dust in every crack and hole of your body. If you're not using a shower system during the trip, do yourself a favor and grab baby wipes. They clean everything!

Gear- If you're not accustomed to carrying this much gear for this far off-pavement, don't forget the importance of strapping everything down. This is a rough, rocky, bumpy and bouncy trail. There are a few steep climbs, descents and off-camber sections. You don't want gear bouncing around and breaking a window or injuring you or your passengers.

Weather: Unpredictability is the norm. We've seen way below freezing at night, high winds, nasty thunderstorms and full sun 80 degree days too. Be prepared. You'll want a tent or sleeping quarters that can keep you dry and warm. It could be warm enough to camp under the stars on a cot, or cold enough that a 20 degree bag is barely enough.

Does anyone else have a tip to share? Maybe you have a better way of doing things that can benefit all of us. What do you typically never leave home without?
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