Events/Trails Trip Report: Death Valley and a Wrecked 80...

Joined
Jan 3, 2018
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SoCal
Im glad you found your pup, couldnt sleep all night thinking how that there may not be a chance that you will never see him again. I was the dude that follwowed Luke to the site and helped him get your LC back on all fours, and helped with airing up the rear tire and changing the front. My friend also helped with picking up the debris off the roadway. We were all fearing the worst as we approached seeing how flat the LC was and not seeing anyone standing around. Just amazing that nobody was hurt! We also drove around wirh hopes of finding your pup. We eventualy started back to the springs since it was clear that there wasn't more that we can help or offer.

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Joined
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Wow, man. Thanks for telling your story. Thank God you are all ok, including that beautiful shepherd. The truck is just metal and glass, nothing to get your soul twisted up over.
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2011
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Peachtree City, Ga
Glad to see you and your family are safe! Thanks for sharing your story and besides the terrible accident great trip report! Get well and keep us updated on the next rig!
 
Joined
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1) So glad you and the family are OK. I've been in a similar roll and know all the crazy thoughts that run through your head during and in the aftermath. A lot to digest, but the important thing is you are all safe.
2) Also glad you got to have some fun before the wreck!
3) Thanks for sharing. We see bits and pieces of information on this forum sometimes because we're all out on the trails, but it's best to get it from the horse's mouth. It was a great trip report and great pictures.
 
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nukegoat

Should have bought a Jeep
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Yikes. Thanks for sharing the whole story and glad you guys are ok. On a lighter note, this re-affirms my belief that Luke is every bit as bohemian and awesome as I hoped
 
Joined
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What other have said! Glad you and fam are safe. And good on Luke, @MonkeyProof and crew for assisting.

My boss had a similar thing happen in a rollover with his excursion. Both dogs were ejected. Took a day to find one of them. Thankfully everyone was ok in that wreck as well.

Just goes to show how fast things can go south.
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2015
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Southeastern Virginia
I’ll just echo everyone’s sentiments about you, your fiancé and your pup being alright.

I’m also glad you took the time to share your story, as it’s a fine reminder of the risks associated with these endeavors. As others have said, good to hear about it directly from you.

Yet another testament to LC enthusiasts and the kind of people they are. Glad you had so much help.

(Those lousy scavengers should be ashamed...)

Best to you, your soon-to-be wife and your future.
 

LS1FJ40

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Glad you and your family made it out of this!

Now buy another 80, use this experience to learn from it, and get back out there! There’s a whole world to see!

PS: Your dog is a bada$$. I picture him wandering around Death Valley, “this is really cool! It was nice of my people to let me run around! Well, I better get back to them they will be lost without me!

Keep weight off your roof. Hit up Luke for a rear, dual swing out bumper for your spare and Jerry cans!
 

surfpig

The Anti-Tech
 
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The Accident

Here's where this trip report goes south- so here's a group puppy photo to lighten things up


After Lippincott my fiancée asked me if she could drive the remainder to Saline Warm Springs so she could get some wheel time before the end of the trip. We had planned to go Eureka Dunes the next day via Steele Pass and that would be too technical for her comfort zone.

A few miles down from the road we reach a crested slight left turn. My fiancée apexes a little early and the car begins to fishtail ever so lightly. She attempts to counter steer her way through the turn, but being lifted and top heavy with our spare + gear + extra fuel the weight transfer on the car is very apparent and steering input is crucial. By the second countersteer our rear tire hits the outer burm of the road and I feel the back end hop and the car starts to roll... as the car comes to a hault I try to stay calm throughout- no time to think about what-ifs or shoulda coulda's, I need to make sure my family is OK.

I find myself kissing the the roof of the car but I'm able to unbelt myself with ease. I hear a scream from my fiancée and I immediately get sick to the stomach. I've heard my fiancée scream before, sometimes because a spider gets in the room and sometimes even in jest, but this is a scream that I have not yet been acquainted with- it was blood curdling. I relunctantly look over, but miraculously she had no visual injuries and was not pinned in any way. I make sure she has no neck/back injuries before unbelting her and pulling her out of the car. Immediately we embrace but we notice that our puppy is gone.




I tell my friend who was following us to flag down some help as my fiancée and I spend the next 3-4 hours tracking paw prints throughout the desert and mountain terrain. We should have probably better evaluated ourselves, but we were running on adrenaline and needed to find our dog. The second half of our crew met up with us on their KTMs and went off road to aid the search



As I walked back to the wreck I noticed our car was flipped right side up. A man walks over and introduces himself as Luke (owner of 4X4Labs), serendipitously he was on holiday in DV as well. He mentions that while we were gone he flipped our car over with his LC100. He quickly took the helm and devised a plan on getting our car out of DV. One of the tires popped the bead so we swap out the spare and made sure we had pressure on the rest. Steering was good, driveline was straight, and brakes still worked- the truck was towable.

As the sun began to set, someone noticed a dark figure approaching the crash site- it was our dog. This was unreal, we made it out of the wreck virtually unscathed and our dog found his way back to us. We quickly packed what we could then headed to Saline Warm Springs to camp for the night.
Sorry about your cruiser, it looked like a nice one. I'm so happy everyone was OK. And you couldn't have had better luck than Luke to happen upon the scene.

:cheers:
 
Joined
Feb 23, 2016
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San Diego
Thanks for the sharing your report and for the good news about you, your fiance, and your dog. Word traveled quickly up the valley to the springs and all were relieved you were okay. It's always an interesting mix of people camped out there, but everyone is looking out for each other. Hopefully, you'll get another rig built in time and can return.
 

470SNC

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so so glad you guys were okay and had help out there, sad to see a clean 80 go but vehicles are replaceable, family is not!
 
Joined
Jul 22, 2017
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Los Angeles
Great write up and report, and best of all to read that all three of you are ok. Sorry you guys had to experience this, but it'll make the bond between you all the stronger.
 
Joined
Nov 9, 2012
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Olathe, KS, USA
Glad to hear you're OK.

Kudos to Luke and others for helping out!

Thanks for sharing! The reports like this help the rest of us look at what we're doing and how we're doing it in order to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe. Different ways of loading, driving, gear, and setup all work together to determine the limits of what we are doing.

A slip can happen quick, especially with aired down tires and a top heavy rig.

Make it a grand new year!
 
Joined
Aug 4, 2017
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Colorado
Yikes dude! Thanks for sharing. I was doing that exact same loop in November (Ubehebe -> Racetrack -> Lippincott -> Saline Valley Warm Springs -> Steele Pass -> Eureka Dunes). I also drive a '97 in the same color (not the 40th edition though).

Pretty amazing you guys rolled it back over, bent it back in shape, and towed it out of there.
 

UltraFJ40

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Dude, what a great write up. You documented that extremely well, thank you.

With that said, I too am happy that everyone is safe and healthy (including the pup) although such an event isn't the best thing that could happen on a fun trip. By avoiding anything more tragic or life threatening, that is the real blessing. I wish you the best moving forward and am looking ahead for some more of your well written posts.

Again, thank you for posting this. Hopefully others can utilize it to stay safe and count their blessings.

:beer:
 
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