Clear Creek , quicky trip report

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Jan 21, 2005
Powell River, BC
Awoke bright and early at 6:10 am on a Saturday morning with the cries of my 2 year old daughter wanting out of her bedroom. Put her in bed with Becky as she smirks at me with some sly comment about how I only get up this early on a weekend to go wheeling.:eek:
I fire up the Taco, and A quick stop at Tim Hortons for some gogo juice and off to the weigh scales at the Port Mann where I meet up with Rod ('77 fj40), Craig & wife ('95? fzj80), Bruce (bj74), Clarence and company ('90 hdj81), Rob & Rob (fbj60).
We fly down the freeway to the next meeting spot in Harrison (Rods 40 cruising very comfortably at 120kmh) where we meet up with the rest of the club. After everyones gassed up etc and Bruce finally makes his second appearance we all convoy out (an impressive sight indeed!) and make for the Harrison East FSR where we once again stop and everyone airs down.
Dan then shows up in his 60 with his spanky new IROKS on and his truck makes us 16 total (well, 15 and 1 jeep..and an Xterra ;) ). We then truck on up the pot holed filled road of the FSR, finally on our way to Clear Creek. Shortly after the first logging camp, our first problem of the day. Clarences 81 had a flat front tire, turns out he had punctured it. We get that changed while Dan, Rod and Craig play in a rock pile. Marcin has some nice video of that.
On we go again where stop at the second logging camp while Bruce repairs his exhaust flex connection on his bj74 and Brad changes out the second flat of the early day. The rest of the gang plays on the beach there and after the tires done its onward again.
I take trail lead shortly after that point and take Craig, Clarence, Dan and Petra down through whats left of the old road. Craig spots everyone through a large fallen tree while I ran around to the other side with my truck (not quite ready to rock bash it yet). The old road consists now only of one short rocky section followed by a rocky creek crossing, but still has some fun factor. Craig makes short work of it in his 80 and Clarence gets set to go thru but has some problems engaging his lockers. Onward he goes and has a little problem getting over one stump but his turbo chugs away and hes up and over. As he goes thru the creek crossing his rear bumper got hung up on old peice of the cedar log bridging and without the front locker to drag him up the bank on the other side he was stuck. Craig straps him up and with a little tug he's out, a broken exhaust hanger being the only damage. Dans fully locked bj60 walked thru both sections with ease, and then it was a very nervous looking Petras turn in her hj61. Dan tells Petra to engage the cable lockers assuming that all JDM's had them..but its soon apparent she doesnt have them. But with what looks like a LSD in the rear and with much hooting and hollering..a now very exhilerated Petra caked walked thru both sections as well.
We hook up with the rest of club where we find Derek & wife (toy mini truck) and his Mom (grand Cherokee) have joined us and they are all stopped as a large rock is partially blocking the road leaving just enough room to squeeze by it and the edge of the road where it drops off quite rapidly. Normally this would be quite easy, but theres a good foot of snow now making things quite slippery. Gary digs a bit of a rut out and everyone slips thru unscathed. We continue on towards the springs in heavily falling and gradually deeper and deeper snow. We soon arrive at the Hot Springs and guess who is already there? yes, the adventeruous Mike McTague (hj75) has been there since 9:30 am. Theres a couple other guys there in a fj40 and pathfinder as well who appeared to have camped out over nite.
A few people left at various times in small groups throughout the day and myself, Rod, Dan, Petra, Brad , Derek and his Mom and Rob jetted out around 3pm with thoughts of having a grand dinner at the Settler pub in Harrison.
We made good time down to the sand pits (Apparently I was driving a little fast) and after waiting around for the rest of the group made even faster time back down the FSR. Rod made a comment later where he thought he was doing 100k!
Dan decided to break the land speed record down the air strip and shortly after that heard some 'bad sounds'. It would seem he broke off some mounts for his shocks (I'll let him explain).
At around 6 we arrived in Harrison and had a great meal at the pub. We then meandered home on our seperate ways and I was even able to get home in time to watch the last half of the game as the Canucks won in a shootout!:cheers:

Pics now up!
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Hi Jeff,

That was really agreat time. And as a day trip, its strange to reflect on 12" of snow of the wilderness, etc and just a few hours later the home sweet home of civilization. Only on the Pacific NW.

BTW, sorry I held you guys up a bit. I went in to Maple Ridge to buy a really nice set of Vbar chains for the trip. Did not need, but better safe than sorry. :)

Thanks for the write up.

[ Dan tells Petra to engage the cable lockers assuming that all JDM's had them..but its soon apparent she doesnt have them. But with what looks like a LSD in the rear and with much hooting and hollering..a now very exhilerated Petra caked walked thru both sections as well.

to confirm what this HJ61 has: "Full floating rear axle Limited Slip".. seemed to do the job just fine! and yes I was exhilerated... what a rush!

Thanks for the right up Jeff. :beer:
lousey rusty crappy............................. I could go on like this
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We assembled Saturday morning at the Tempo gas station at Harrison Hot springs town site. A good turnout with at least 15 vehicles present and a few more to follow.
Coastal Cruisers members and guests present, sorry if I make any omissions or mistakes here:
Clarence Giesbrecht and friends, Dan Siemens, Derek and Christina Anderson, Ruth Anderson and daughter and son in law, Mike McTague, Marcin & Ania Cichy, Martin Stol and partner, Gary Telford, Rob Millson & Robert, Bruce Davie & son Elliott, Craig Johansen & partner, Dan Martz, Petra Niemeyer, Garry Broeckling and Marie-Chantal, Jeff Steiger, Brad Reid & partner, Rod McDonald, Bill Wilkinson.

After a slow start we motored up the E. Harrison Road and much to everyone’s surprise the sun came out with some blue sky. Craig Johansen got a flat and Bruce Davie had a broken exhaust pipe below the header at the flexible steel exhaust hose. We took a pit stop at the Big Silver beach at the log sorting area. They have cleared some of the buildings there including the big sheds for truck repairs. We frolicked on the beach breakers and jumped sand dunes for a short time but the clock was marching on and we had to get moving.

We skipped a visit to the old mineshaft and Silver Creek campsites due to lack of time and daylight. Onward and upward toward Clear Creek. Some vehicles took a detour via the old road while the rest trecked on up. We hit snow about half way up and pretty soon it was steady snow for the rest of the afternoon up there. Some of the vehicles with light rear ends tended to slip sideways at times but the only real challenge was the big rock on the road and the narrow clearance to the drop-off cliffside. We had to take it real easy around there, the wide vehicles too close for comfort to the cliff edge. Some vehicles had to bump their way around the rock with their rear tire. Garry B had throttle cable trouble which made this snow driving more challenging for sure. Also thanks to Garry B for taking up the rear with his VHF radio; we all know how he likes to sprint ahead.

The VHF radios worked really great. The reception was clear and strong, even when vehicles were separated by rock faces and distance. Most of the VHF transceivers only had the small rubber duck antennas, but they had no trouble making contact. I believe that those who have made investments in these VHF units have no regrets about spending the money, and will recommend others to buy these sets and get their licenses.

We arrived at the Clear Creek hot tubs and who should be waiting – Mike McTague! He came up early at 8:00 am before the rush and spent most of the day basking in the tubs. We piled into the tubs while the snow fell around us for hours. It was snowing constantly the whole time we were up there, and no shelter, save for the tiny changing shed which quickly filled up with damp clothes. Garry B. and Marie-Chantal decided to tough it out and stay the night, but it was too difficult to put a tent up in the snowstorm, so they both slept in his BJ42. It was cold and his sleeping bag ripped open during the night, but they survived.
The rest of us snaked down the mountain in small groups. The snow around “the rock” hardened into ice and was pretty treacherous coming down that spot in the dark. Garry T put his cable chains on the fronts and cleared the rock with ease at that point. It was slow going down the mountain, braking was slippery but we all made it ok.
Mike McTague stayed later and went skiing up the road. He was stopped and a tree top broke off under the snow load and crashed down right beside him. That got his attention for sure! Later, on his drive home, some of his ski equipment bounced off the back of his truck, into the darkness never to be seen again. Just how fast were you going (flying) Mike? Word of caution: never try to keep up with Mike if you value your rig!

The rest of the trip home was routine, driving in the dark dodging pot holes and trying to stay awake. Some folks stopped in Harrison for supper. I think it was a great day and most everybody thoroughly enjoyed it. For those who experienced it for the first time, it was a magic day. For the regulars, it was fun to show them this special place and deal with the snow challenge. The only question now is: WHERE DO WE GO NEXT?
Many thanks to those who posted pictures of this event, especially Clarence G for setting up his slide show so quickly and Jeff S for getting his report out in double time. Dan, your pictures are great too! Who has some hot tub pics?
~Bill :beer:
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Yup, working now and looks like a fun day...

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Let's hear it for our newest Coastal Cruiser member: Petra Niemeyer. She drives a mean HJ61 and showed her driving skills Saturday at Clear Creek. Welcome and thanks for the pictures Petra.
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trip report up on bc4x4

I posted a copy of my trip report and pics link up on bc4x4 under the 'trail talk' section of the message board.
One fella asked if I had noticed a memorial marker to the recently deceased 'Chillwack' member (Bruce happened upon the scene shortly after the accident e had mentioned).
I dont recall seeing any markers, he said it was 'left after first loggin camp..2.5-3 km on the mountain side..'.
Did anyone happen to see it?
Hi Jeff,

Yes. My son & I stopped where the accident occurred. Its just a km or 2 this side of the Silver River logging camp (the 2nd camp). We took a few moments to pay respects. The white cross is above the road (opposite side). The side where they went over is marked with flagging. I looked down. Its was very steep and about 80 feet. I could see where branches & limbs had been broken or scraped by the accident. At night, that sort of accident could happen to anyone. There is absolutely no buffer for error. No shoulder, just the void.

Good to see you again Jeff and all.


Thanks for orginazing the run Bill, it was an awesome experience and I am looking forward to doing it all over again....
Yes - I saw the white cross too,... very sad, but very real. It can happen to anyone at anytime....
We stopped aswell, my mom and sister had met the guy that died a few times before and had wheeled with him.
Some of you (especially ROD) might like to visit the bc4x4 message board under the 'trail talk' portion where I posted our trip report.
It seems our parking lot lurker out at the Settler pub has revealed himself!:eek:

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