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Author Topic: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017  (Read 434 times)

John Beard

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FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« on: September 29, 2017, 05:00:35 AM »
I am pretty excited for this year's events. I am finally leading my first trail, a very easy scenic trail (a dirt road) Gemini Bridges. I am a bit nervous, so I'll make an effort to pre-run the trail at least twice before Wednesday. Pictures of the week's trails will certainly follow during the event.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
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Northwest Las Vegas, NV

John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2017, 08:44:34 AM »
Outstanding John! It's a real leap from following to leading, I remember when I led my very first trail. It was a prerun for 7-Mile Rim and I took a wrong turn for a little side trip to Uranium Arch.  ::) But it all worked out fine.

Couple of tips for you. Assuming you are using Back Country Navigator, start recording a track the moment you leave the RV park. Takes the stress from trailfinding when you have a group. Second, pick your trailgunner - somebody you know and trust (hopefully you both will have 2 meter radios.)

You know the rest and congratulations on stepping up to be a trail leader.!
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2017, 07:56:26 PM »
Outstanding John! It's a real leap from following to leading, I remember when I led my very first trail. It was a prerun for 7-Mile Rim and I took a wrong turn for a little side trip to Uranium Arch.  ::) But it all worked out fine.

Couple of tips for you. Assuming you are using Back Country Navigator, start recording a track the moment you leave the RV park. Takes the stress from trailfinding when you have a group. Second, pick your trailgunner - somebody you know and trust (hopefully you both will have 2 meter radios.)

You know the rest and congratulations on stepping up to be a trail leader.!

Thanks John, words of wisdom.

I have the new Magellan offroad GPS, which I will discover tomorrow if it's all that it is suppose to be. I don't know who is going on the trail, so I have no idea about tailgunners, and I'm not a HAM...yet. I have the book, and I am beginning to work through it.

I am pre-running the trail tomorrow solo, as everyone here are mostly trail leaders pre-running their own trails. I am pretty confident as long as I pre-run tomorrow I'll be good to go.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2017, 08:12:24 AM »
You might have a full group when you lead it, the easier trails usually fill up quickly. If you have 12-15, you might need somebody in the middle for comms to relay to the tailgunner. I like to stop after about one hour for a 10-100, remember to tell the group ladies to the right, gents to the left.

Sometimes groups are a bit difficult to get rounded up and moving so I always honk my horn a few times to let everybody know it's time to load up.

In spite of telling my groups at the trail leader meeting to STOP if then don't see the person behind them, they sometimes still get really spread out so you might need to just really slow down every 20 minutes or so to let the group close up.

Don't be surprised if you get some grouchy people in your group - I ran into that more with the easier trail bunch than the hard trail folks. The hard-core crawlers have a real bond with each other but generally speaking the sightseer people that do the easy trails don't share that bond.
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2017, 01:07:51 PM »
Thanks John, I will heed all of your suggestions. I did pre-run Gemini Bridges this morning and the Magellan TRX7 is spot on accurate. I was not able to pre-run Long Canyon because of a fierce thunderstorm, but I should have a chance to explore it as a side trip for those that want to extend the 2.5 hour journey, excluding lunch.

During my trek this morning, I putted through the whole trail in good time, at 8-12 mph. A bit faster at upper Gemini Bridges when it becomes a graded road.

On air down and on a trail like this I went to 18 psi, I know folks are going to ask.

How long should the lunch break be, an hour? 45 minutes?
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2017, 02:02:00 PM »
Usually my lunch stops are about 20-25 minutes. Keep an eye on everybody and you can tell when folks are finishing up and had some time to relax and go 10-100. With a large group the last few Jeeps won't get set up and have a chance to eat and relax as soon as the first few Jeeps so keep an eye on them.  Sometimes I'll walk around and give everyone a 10 minute warning before we leave.

Another thing I thought of to emphasize is be sure the person behind you sees you make a turn. If you (anybody in your group) has to stop to wait on the guy behind, say on the radio "I'm stopped" . Many times less experienced drivers never look in their rear view mirror to see if the guy behind is there, they get entirely focused on following the guy in front.  This is usually no problem with groups on the harder trails, they are experienced in trail etiquette.
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2017, 02:24:16 PM »
Usually my lunch stops are about 20-25 minutes. Keep an eye on everybody and you can tell when folks are finishing up and had some time to relax and go 10-100. With a large group the last few Jeeps won't get set up and have a chance to eat and relax as soon as the first few Jeeps so keep an eye on them.  Sometimes I'll walk around and give everyone a 10 minute warning before we leave.

Another thing I thought of to emphasize is be sure the person behind you sees you make a turn. If you (anybody in your group) has to stop to wait on the guy behind, say on the radio "I'm stopped" . Many times less experienced drivers never look in their rear view mirror to see if the guy behind is there, they get entirely focused on following the guy in front.  This is usually no problem with groups on the harder trails, they are experienced in trail etiquette.

More good suggestions about technique. Thanks, I do so much appreciate your wisdom.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

kdbgoat

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2017, 03:18:11 PM »
John C- I don't do any trail riding or rock crawling, but I dream about it. I also read posts here about it. Watched a few of Kevin's videos too. I haven't seen much in the way of how to's on this subject, but reading this thread topic, maybe you ought to write a guide for first time trail leaders, and maybe put it in the library or make it a sticky.
John B- congrats on the big move! :)
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John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2017, 06:21:12 PM »
I have a bunch of rock crawling videos on my YouTube channel,  here's the latest : https://youtu.be/EpErc4rIOKo. We have a trail leader and tail gunner guide , I'll post the contents when I get a chance.
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2017, 06:25:39 PM »
John C- I don't do any trail riding or rock crawling, but I dream about it. I also read posts here about it. Watched a few of Kevin's videos too. I haven't seen much in the way of how to's on this subject, but reading this thread topic, maybe you ought to write a guide for first time trail leaders, and maybe put it in the library or make it a sticky.
John B- congrats on the big move! :)

Thanks, I am pretty stoked.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

ArdraF

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2017, 06:57:22 PM »
John B, I'll be interested in hearing about Long Canyon.  It was the very first off road experience years ago when we got our little Geo Tracker and it was great.  Then a few years ago we couldn't get up and over one section.  Our friend in a Hummer barely made it with wheels spinning and we turned around.  I wonder how it has fared in the last couple of years.

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taoshum

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2017, 08:55:57 PM »
We led the GB trail a few years ago and all of JC's suggestions are "right-on".  I'd add one though... take a hard look at all of the vehicles that sign-up and show-up for the trail.  IIRC GB is rated at a 2.5 but depending on the conditions you find during your pre-run you can modify that and if on trail day, you see a vehicle that looks marginal either in equipment or driver experience it's better to make a decision before you get out there than deal with it once you are out there...  On one trip on that trail there was a stock Renegade with smallish wheels/tires and as it turned out, a driver with little or no experience off-road in Moab.  It did not play well, especially with the other vehicles who were "obligated" to provide assistance.  Your 2.5 hr run could end up taking twice that or more.  The TL was lucky that another driver volunteered to escort that vehicle back to town before the rougher sections were encountered.

Also, if you are seeing a lot of rain, the road back toward "long canyon" can get really muddy... like 8-10" ruts (typical pic below).  After the third or fourth vehicle, the going gets a little dicey on the day we were there and there are usually cows on that road!  There could be some storms there this year if the weather forecast proves to be reliable.

Also, just before you start the descent into Long C, if you watch for it, on the south side of the road there's a view point that is spectacular!!! One of the best.  Further down, there's great photo op going under the big rock...

Also, below GB's, (there's a road down to the area below), the hike to the base seemed to be a big hit.  We had lunch in that area.

We can't make it to Moab this year but wish you the best! 

« Last Edit: September 30, 2017, 09:07:15 PM by taoshum »
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2017, 04:45:59 AM »

Also, if you are seeing a lot of rain, the road back toward "long canyon" can get really muddy... like 8-10" ruts (typical pic below).  After the third or fourth vehicle, the going gets a little dicey on the day we were there and there are usually cows on that road!  There could be some storms there this year if the weather forecast proves to be reliable.

Also, just before you start the descent into Long C, if you watch for it, on the south side of the road there's a view point that is spectacular!!! One of the best.  Further down, there's great photo op going under the big rock...

Also, below GB's, (there's a road down to the area below), the hike to the base seemed to be a big hit.  We had lunch in that area.

We can't make it to Moab this year but wish you the best! 


Thank you, all very good advice. I am really grateful for your input. I am hoping to have the time to check out Lower Gemini Bridges and Long Canyon today.

« Last Edit: October 01, 2017, 04:48:54 AM by John Beard »
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
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Northwest Las Vegas, NV

John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2017, 09:33:13 AM »
...... take a hard look at all of the vehicles that sign-up and show-up for the trail.  IIRC GB is rated at a 2.5 but depending on the conditions you find during your pre-run you can modify that and if on trail day, you see a vehicle that looks marginal either in equipment or driver experience it's better to make a decision before you get out there than deal with it once you are out there......
That is excellent advice! Last year I wouldn't let two 4-doors (new members) on a 4.0 trail I led in St. George. They were on 33" tires which would be a setup for failure and they would need to be strapped over every breakover (there were several of those.) I alerted a buddy who was leading another hard trail and he kicked them off his trail as well. I won't let a 4-door on this trail (Plan B) unless they are on at least 35" tires and even at that they struggle. 37" tires on a 4-door usually works quite well on this trail. A 2-door on 35s is golden.

Before I looked at their 4-doors they talked a good talk - "we have plenty of experience" bla, bla, bla. Since I've led trails for a few years now I'm familiar with most of the guys that do the harder trails but if I don't know them, I give them and their wheels a good look-over.
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2017, 03:10:07 PM »
Just got back from doing Fins N Things and had just a fun time. Rainy, wet, and cold but it was fun. I can now honestly say that the vertigo I had been stricken with is resolved.
John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

kdbgoat

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2017, 05:46:21 PM »
Watched a few of your videos John C, good stuff! Thanx.
I know you believe you understand what you think I said,
But I am not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant


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John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2017, 09:18:24 AM »
Just got back from doing Fins N Things and had just a fun time. Rainy, wet, and cold but it was fun. I can now honestly say that the vertigo I had been stricken with is resolved.
Maybe I'm glad I didn't make Moab this year  ;) . Three years ago or so I remember running Metal Masher, we were near the top and it started raining buckets and it was cold. We were on Top Of The World a few years ago for lunch and it was sleeting and snowing on us. Lunch was in the Jeep. Oh, vertigo. Had that a few years ago - what a completely horrible experience.

Watched a few of your videos John C, good stuff! Thanx.
Thank you for watching! They are a bunch of fun for me to look back on - video memories. One of these days I won't be physically capable of doing those things but I'll be able to relive them.
--John
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #17 on: October 05, 2017, 05:43:38 AM »
I volunteered to lead a trail at this event, and in turn I was selected to lead Gemini Bridges a very easy trail that takes about 2.5 hours to complete traveling at 8-12 mph. I had three Jeep Wranglers (4-doors) and one Jeep Liberty in the group, I drive a TJ.

I made an effort to make the pace easy for the Liberty, and I picked the easiest lines for the Liberty to track right behind me. Two women were driving the Liberty and they were awesome, independent, and very well suited for any adventure.

I had fun, although I was very aware of "my group". I was blessed to have an experienced Tail Gunner in the group.



John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
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John Canfield

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #18 on: October 05, 2017, 08:08:00 AM »
Congrats John, you got the first one out of the way! It's great you had a small group to shepard. When I pre-ran 7 Mile Rim for the first time ever being in front of the pack, I had 12 or 13 in the group - I was hoping for only two or three  :P

It's fun that you had a Liberty in your group, the very first trail we ever ran in Moab was GB and we were in the Liberty (and alone). We bounced all over the place since we didn't air down the tires (never knew about that.) That was eons ago.
--John
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jeffanita

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2017, 08:38:16 AM »
John B, I'll be interested in hearing about Long Canyon.  It was the very first off road experience years ago when we got our little Geo Tracker and it was great.  Then a few years ago we couldn't get up and over one section.  Our friend in a Hummer barely made it with wheels spinning and we turned around.  I wonder how it has fared in the last couple of years.

ArdraF

I remember going on the Long Canyon Trail years ago with you. Jeff and did Long Canyon after Gemini Bridges yesterday. It was graded recently probably because of all the rains here. It was an easy trail. Ran the trail downhill. No lockers needed. Fun and very scenic.
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ArdraF

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #20 on: October 05, 2017, 05:47:39 PM »
Thanks for the feedback re Long Canyon!  Glad to hear it's back to being usable.

ArdraF
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John Beard

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Re: FMCA 4Wheelers Moab 2017
« Reply #21 on: October 07, 2017, 06:02:47 AM »
It's been a really fun week hanging out with the FMCA 4Wheeler Crew. I am excited for the future of the club, people are stepping up to volunteer for leadership positions, and we have a good man at the helm as "Acting Everything" who is making tough decisions.

Today I am doing the Poison Spider Trail to wrap up my week, sans Launchpad. Tomorrow I move to Blanding, UT for the Utah Rolling Rally for a week.

John & Susan
2014 Winnebago Aspect 30J
2005 Jeep Wrangler X, Toad, a little modified
Northwest Las Vegas, NV

 

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