2001 - Trail Building
Two Rivers started off the 2001 season with an Awareness Class, a 4x4Blast organizational meeting, a dinner and a Board meeting, all on January 20.
Tim Miller, Dave Christensen, Garry Shadwick and Gary Schreiter presented the fourth in a series of United Four Wheel Drive Awareness classes to TRJC members. Thus far, we've had well over 150 attend this course. The purpose of the course is to make club members more aware of some of the issues that we may run into on the trail. Time was spent on land use issues, driving issues and skills, recovery techniques, equipment, and TRJC guidelines. The weather was nice enough to allow some vehicle inspections and demonstration of recovery techniques. Thanks to all who attended. If you missed out on this class but would like to take it, please call the club phone, 630-717-JEEP, and ask to be put on a waiting list for the next course.
Later in the day, Carl Seymour held a preliminary meeting for the 4x4Blast to be held August 16-18. Frank and Jude Fleeger will be handling registration this year. More help is still needed so call Carl at 217-336-3171 if you can help.
85 people attended the dinner. This was our best turnout in years. OR made it all worthwhile when he dressed up in his (yellow) scuba gear and begged for money for the Pike County Volunteer Emergency Corp. $231.00 was collected. The Corp was established in 1954 and their charter is to look for lost children, especially around the many rivers in the area. Originally there were 16 members, with 3 of the original still remaining active. Over the years they have had over 300 members. We wish them well on this valuable service to the communities in Pike County.
The drawing for the Ramsey Platinum 9500 winch was held. Mike Morger, from Heyworth, Illinois, won the winch. He wasn't present, so it will be sent to him.
4/28 Trail Builder
This past Saturday was a lot of fun, running and clearing the Murphy's Law trail. We started the day with the usual breakfast served by the guys at the V.F.W. (thank you, guys). After some deliveries from G.D.S. we were assigned to run with the Mad Brit and Chief.
On the way to the trailhead I was dubbed the black sheep (Jeep) after making a comment that I felt like a black sheep inasmuch as Brit, Wild Pete and Tim were all driving white Jeeps and Chief, with his mini fire engine in tow, was lagging behind so far he couldn't be seen.
We hit the trail after airing down and began an array of up and down maneuvers through the same creek bed until we ran across a meadow and got into the woods. We had only been out there a couple of hours when we found a nice little up hill challenge with a cant to the left. With Brit leading, Chief and then I began the quick climb. With the nose of the black sheep way up in the air, I heard the all too familiar bang of a Dana 35 letting loose. I wanted to believe it was just the Detroit locker unloading but as I tried to again climb the hill due to only marginal uphill movement with only my left rear and one of the front tires grabbing, everyone began to get out to see what had happened. As I began to roll backwards I applied the brake only to have the pedal go most of the way to the floor. This, as some of you may know, is due to the brake drum, wheel and axle beginning to leave the rest of the Jeep.
While we were holding the brake, the guys on the trail with us began their efforts to help out. THANK YOU ALL ONCE MORE!!! They tied my winch off to a nearby tree so I could pull myself out off the incline enough to begin repairs. Some of you may recall this same procedure from our run out to the Land Between the Lakes when the black sheep popped the left axle.
With the help of all my trail buddies, we pulled out both the axles and the differential in order to extract (BEAT) the little chunk of the right axle out of the carrier in order to install the spare which I just happened to have in my add-a-trunk compartment. Within an hour we had completed the transplant, added 10W30 (Thank you, Chief I had forgotten to put my spare bottle of gear lube in with the spare axle), added some lost brake fluid, bled the brakes, and we were on our way.
We only stopped a couple more times for other than trail clearing. Once when Wild Pete thought he was going to get through a mud bog (he DID NOT), and when John (who caught up with us after fixing his trailer earlier) had to change a tire on the trail after snagging the sidewall just after the mud bog incident with Pete. Brit did a good job leading his sheep. He only got off the trail a couple of times, but Chief kept him from getting too far off the path. Once again, thank you ALL for your help in getting the black sheep rolling!
Well, things turned out pretty good for a cold and breezy day. A good crowd began showing up at the V.FW. hall and the fellas at the hall had a hot feed waiting for the early risers. Tim Miller was trying to organize the madness while Garry Shadwick was handing out vehicle inspection forms.
The work crews started leaving around 9:30 am. There were 4 groups all together. Our group was last to leave. It consisted of myself, Garry Shadwick, Bruce Urlinger and son, Bruce jr., Tim Carson, Elmo and Barb Johnson, Allan Applebee, Laura Persons, Chief and a special guest appearance by Pokey and his son Billy. This was Pokey's first time out since his accident.
We headed out for some landowner appreciation work at the Bradshaws. The plan was to clean out about a 1/4 mile (in reality more like 1/8 mile, but to a well fed flatlander like myself it seemed longer) of fence row that was being taken over by trees.
As we arrived everyone seemed eager to start. After a brief meeting to fill everyone in on our goals for the day, there was no hesitation by anyone in getting started. (This may have been encouraged by the brisk cold wind!) With everyone working together, things moved quickly. After all the trees were cleared from the fence row Garry Shadwick pulled his truck and trailer out into the field and the lumber was loaded and moved to the corner of the field to be burned at a latter time. Billy and Bruce jr. put stump killer on every thing we cut as suggested by Fred, who just happen to have some handy. Apparently, doing this right away saves a lot of work in the future. I had the opportunity to talk with Fred for a few moments, which was very enjoyable! We were finished before 11:30.
After a very brief discussion about lunch, even though everyone had brought something, it was without hesitation that we headed to the Purple Martin cafe for a hot lunch. After we sat down I noticed we were missing a few folks. Turns out that Elmo had left his lights on while we were working Now, I'm not sure, but this probably falls under one of Doc's rules. (Hey Doc, do ya have a printed edition yet?). One thing about those C.B.'s they need juice to be able to call for help. Well, Chief saved the day as he was there to help get Elmo powered up. Thanks, Chief!
A few folks had to leave after lunch and the rest of us went to Magic Mountain. We were hoping to check out a section of trail originally cut for Suzie's Knob. It has not been used since some logger's had been in there and changed the dynamics to the point of, (well, I can't use those words in this article!). Let's just say it's more suited for the lower rated Mossy Mountain trail now. After some clearing and more cutting and tagging the section is finished. Almost everyone made it through un-scratched except for one spot. Well, I'm sure there's a rule for that in Doc's book, and Pokey said he had a good time, too.
Not a bad day. Thanks to all that braved the cold weather to come out and help. I hope we have as good a turnout for the rest of the work weekends so all the trails will be ready for the club events. Also, we don't want to forget those all-important Landowner Appreciation work day's
Without the help of ALL club members and the endless generosity of the
land owners our club would not be here!!!