Being that this was my first Jeep Jamboree, Tom asked me to write my perspective on the event. First of all, I had a great time! I was extremely impressed with the hard work and cooperation that was exhibited by the Two Rivers Jeep Club guides. We have a great asset in this group of people and it should be applauded and appreciated. Great job!
As I was riding (and driving) on the trails I felt a great sense of pride that I was allowed to be a part of this experience. It was great to see the effort and willingness to assist by all Jamboree partici-pants. Friendships and memories were made as tow straps and winches were used (yes, I did break Tom's brand new Ramsey winch, but I had fun!). I learned a little more about jeepin' and a lot more about a family that I have been graciously accepted by.
As always, I'm sure I displayed a pride in my husband and all of his homework. All the time taken up and countless phone calls were worth the result that came about. I hope all of you that at-tended can treasure the musical talents of O.R., the unforgettable and welcomed laugh of Tim Miller, and the cheesehead display from our Wisconsin peers. These memories are a representa-tion of what a wonderful group of people that we have and what a tremendous job that we can do.
Durrell got the registration organized, so everything ran smoothly on Thursday night.
Rooster didn't have such good luck the previous day, however. While driving his old jeep truck, the wheel fell off. Then he ran out of gas in the creek in his Scrambler. Also, a rock hit the wind-shield of his brand new Ford truck. (Where did the rock come from, Syndy??) The next day he ran out of gas again, this time in town. Durrell had to strap him through the streets of Pittsfield. How embarrass-ing! Well, thanks for letting us pick on you, Rooster.
On the trail there were 15 jeeps Friday and 20 on Saturday. One rookie mashed the front fender of his dad's jeep, so he decided to video the rest of the day. The day ended at Thunder Run after a twenty-minute downpour. It took two hours to get 12 vehicles up the ravine! They turned around at the top and came down the bypass instead of attempting to traverse the steep downhill by the gate. Everyone had a great time and covered a lot of territory. After the rain on Friday, Saturday was a bit more challenging. The morning took us 4 hours instead of the 1½ the previous day. We split the group for the afternoon run and it moved quite a bit faster. The day ended with play time in the creek. Thanks to Rooster, Mikey and Spanky for their expert trail guidance and assistance. See you all in June for the Father's Day Run!
Friday started bright and sunny with 20 jeeps lined up to take on the new Mississippi views trail laid out by Dave "Maddog" Jacobs and tail gunned by yours truly, G.D.S. Air down and drivers meeting was very orderly as Tom Wombles gave us a brief his-tory of the oldest cemetery in Pike County.
Early running was fun for everyone on the new trail with a double loop containing some steep uphill shots combined with some daring rocky downhills. Chris "the Winchboy" kept backups to a minimum by being traffic cop in the middle of this madness. Next up was a nasty hole which claimed two front ring and pinions, one of which made a short weekend for Rib, one of the Jeep Jam's organizers. This hole also put the hurt on Debbie Wombles winch as Tom watched her pull to the max.
After great food at the antique farm of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Wombles, it was onto a tough afternoon of real wheelin'. Maddog led off with a busted tie rod end about a half-hour into the afternoon session. And the whole line passed as G.D.S. led on. Thirteen jeeps made it out of the woods as a "10 minute toad strangler" rainstorm hit. Seven jeeps were scattered in two different hollows and a team winching ses-sion was necessary to free them. At about the same time, Maddog had repaired his jeep, the right rear tire gave up with a hand sized split in the sidewall. After a lot of winching and team work, our Friday crew had a very well deserved dinner.
Saturday's turnout was quite alarming as only 4 jeeps showed up to run the Muddy Mississippi. Dave improvised an alternate run to avoid Friday's massacre, and we wound up inducting two new members to the Tall Dog Club. One brave young man was driving a stock V-6 powered CJ 5 without a winch. Question: Where are all those dudes with the Cheeseheads? We finished the morning with a scramble up Wombles' rock garden and an early lunch.
Lots of wind overnight had made our second half much better as the sun came out and quickly dried some of the previous day's nastier spots. We finished the trail with little difficulty, and went to look for Tom Cash and the Back 40 Gang. We waited at "T-Bucket" for some pictures only to hear 20 plus jeeps stranded by a broken motor mount and oil filter. Tragedy! On the way out, G.D.S. leaves his camera on Mad-dog's front bumper and Dave starts a BBQ under his hood. Enough is enough!!! Maddog backtracks to help Back 40 and G.D.S. heads out with the small turnout. Maddog did make it out OK and found a "Mudnolta" camera in a bogger print.
All in all Mississippi Views lived up to it's 8 rating and showed lots
of folks that Illinois and TRJC has some awesome wheelin'.