CO 4x4: Snow run on Sat 17th Jan (1 Viewer)

Joined
Apr 15, 2003
Messages
776
Location
Ireland; USA (WA,CO, CA, CT), Scotland, London
Talked to ranger this morning and Moody/Crystal still open, no report on snow covering.

Those definitely going: Robbie, Shawn, Lal, Mark Huxley, Mark Brodis (passenger as don't wanna run with one driveshaft :)
maybes: Trevor (FJ40 from Co Springs), Darryl (80),

Meet up points:

8:30AM: My House, 1636 20th Ave, Longmont, CO 80501
9PM: Loveland, Albertson's car park, Intersection Rt 34 and Taft Ave
9:30AM: Masonville, T-junction with 27 from S and 38E (by old shop)
10-10:30AM: Trailhead, on Buckhorn/44H off Stove Prairie Rd/27

Please call if u are not going to make it, so we don't hang around.
Be on CB Channel 4

Lal
720 652 0467
brendan.lally@mail.com
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2003
Messages
776
Location
Ireland; USA (WA,CO, CA, CT), Scotland, London
Location: Moody and Crystal Mountain, FR (132-513/344), West of Fort Collins via Buckhorn/44H off Stove Prairie Rd/27
When: Sat Jan 17th 2004

Those that came:
Shawn Jackson - Fort Collins 94 FJ80, J's,37 SSR's on 17", 5.29's, lockers, custom sliders, tjm front and rear
J ? (Shawns buddy) - Fort Collins 3 wheeler ATV
Robbie Antonson - Louisville, 94 FZJ80, OME+spacers, 35 Trxuus
Mark Huxley - Erie 93 FZ, White (nice), Slee bumpers, 33" MTRs, ARB, 8K winch
Mark Brodis - Castle Rock took a ride and lotsa pics as his 97 LX450 has only one drive shaft!
Brendan Lally - Longmont 96 FZJ80 with 34x10.5" Simex Tracker II


Robbie arrived first (8:20am) and then headed off for food supplies. Mark (*2) meet at my house and left from there and meet up with others at Albertson's in Loveland. From there headed E on 34 and then N up towards Masonville where Shawn was putting on his CB aerial. W from there on 27 thru canyon and eventually turned off onto Buckhorn Rd (as up paved road on hill, sweeps towards R - we hang a left). Few miles in on the dirt road we pull over at trailhead (good space off road on R) for Moody. After airing down, chit-chat and some photos we hit the trail at 10:30am. Weather was nice, cool in the shade (30f) and blue skies (darn where's that rain I need!)

Initial start of Moody is steep with lots of little climbs and large moguls and had covering of some snow and ice in sections. All made it up ok but thoughts of coming back down later in the day stuck in my mind. Robbie and myself had a little ice sliding on one section (Shawn must have been spinning his big 37" tires and melting it) and we both had to ease back and gas it a little to get over (lack of traction) section. Interesting how going backwards down a slope with foot on the brake having no effect and little steering capability can raise your adrenaline a little! (but that was nothing compared to later).

As J was leading we just followed like little lamb (well big chunky 5000lbs+ metal lambs). He didn't seem to have any suspension on the rear of his ATV and spent most of his time standing up and bumping it around. Occasionally he would spin, he'd jump off and yank the thing sideways and hop back on all while tires going!
We took a side tour to the quarry section where Robbie and Shawn did some climbing and made it look way too easy (too easy that rest of us declined :).

We then had a T break that moved into extended chit-chat (37-42" tires, lift, gearing, castor, body lifts etc.) and food time.
After that J took us to another offshoot that we hadn't seen before and consisted of a zigzag route thru a similar type of quarry section with a steep climb to get out. We named it Crystal Sluice. J had done it previously in an old Bronco.

However some little issues a) looking as if u could just squeeze thru one tight section b) once in could only go fwd c) one pass thru had two trees guarding the exit and would require some TLC squeezing to get thru.
Robbie decided to give it a go. He had to make part of his own trail to get into the maze. Then has to climb a snow bank to get out of first section and got some help from J to manage to squeeze thru the guarding pine trees. Next up was the tight turning to get into the last section. After some maneuvering back and forth he gained entrance into the section but required VERY slow and steady steering as he had less than one inch on one side ! He then managed the last climb out (after running over an elk!) and up to the top. Got it all on video/pics and some driving. While we looked on in awe Shawn got up the courage and had a go. Again, very tough on the narrow entrance to the last section but came thru without an rock scratches. Final climb up the last obstacle on his 37" turned out to be easy on 2nd go when he put on rear lockers.

Another break after that to calm down and we moved off and climbed up to Crystal. Shawn played around trying to climb the large rock (3/4 way point) with his 37" but no joy. Just sat there with his tires chirping. Interesting that he tried a different section than Robbie/Mike had one last trip. A group of FJ40's came up while we were there and we chit-chatted for awhile.
Moved on from there heading up to the top of Crystal. We hit one last obstacle on the way. I managed to literally bounce my way up it (had Rancho shocks on easy setting which facilitates that 'style' of driving - at least that was my official story for Mark B who was riding with me at the time). I took a line to the left of the rock obstacle (which were also covered in snow/ice so made things a little tricky) and close to trees as that seemed to have the least steepness. However at the speed I took it and with the bounce factor Mark thought we were going to hit the trees (me too) but managed to just bounce right and up and over. My rear right (PS) tire was leaking some air and had taken a dent on the (soft?) steel wheel. Took out my hammer and after a few (little) whacks it seemed to stop (lost 10psi and had to pump back up later).
Shawn and Mark H managed to get up ok but Robbie (last) kept spinning on rocks and then managed to get his control arms resting on a large rock. (He claimed us poor drivers had iced up the trail and just making it plain nasty for him). Mark H give me a pull and wagons roll. Made it to the top and enjoyed the 360 degree views. For a change the weather was nice and not blowing a gale. (3pm)

J indicated he could take us out "Outlaw" trail and it should be less slippy so after some photos we headed back down. We hit a section at the end of a meadow where a stream had totally frozen and created a nice slide for a section of the trail. However more immediate issue was a large old tree was across the trail. Mark H with his winch, tree strap, shackle block make lite work of it. Robbie tried the 'slide' first and by hugging one side (climbed a downed branch) made it down ok. I tried the other side as less ice initially and then if slid would end up hugging other side of bank. No problem and ice had more grip than imagined. Shawn and Mark made it down fine.
After that things started going downhill (literally). We had 2-3 tough inclines, some powder snow covering with a little off camber and tight tree lined just to make things interesting. Robbie showed his years of experience (did he have his eyes open?) but negotiating the descent. I followed with trepidation and then Mark and Shawn. All arrived safely down on more level terra firma without issues but increased heartbeats and adrenaline surge.

From there we came out near big rock playground (needs a name or I just need to learn it :) and back the way we came. On two occasions guys ahead (zooming ahead) stopped at intersections to let others catch up and follow out right way. Last section was descent down Moody moguls with 'some' sliding but no issues.
Finished back up near trailhead, aired up, patted each other on back and headed home. 4:30pm and long trail but enjoyable.


Shawn won prize for coolest rig. Those 37" fit nice and don't seem outa place.
Robbie won prize for most gutsy (sluice) and his tree parting manners- again.
J won prize for most understated expression ("we'll take the back way out - it will be a lot less slippy") and spotting.
Mark H won prize for cleanest rig and nicest dog -Boris (well there was only one)
Lal won prize for laziest trail organizer (didn't lead, tree down over trail- someone else pulled it away, too many T stops, slippy exit strategy!)
Mark B won prize for longest traveled and best pictures (see http://pictures.colorado4x4.net/4_Wheeling/1.17.04-Crystal_Mountain/)

Now if someone could donate some prizes then I could hand them out :) (I'll tell u what my parts list is - will that do?)

Not sure when next trip is, I believe Rising Sun has a Yankee Hill excursion end of the month. Offers/suggestions welcome.


Lal
brendan.lally@ mail.com
720 652 0467

In truck photo L-R shawn, Mark Huxley, Robbie, Lal
in people photo L-R Mark Brodis, Shawn Jackson, Mark Huxley, robbie Antonson
 

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