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Thread: Flatlanders Go West

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    106
    Awesome trip report, especially the pictures! I'll be checking for the next update as well.

  2. #32
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    54
    Great report! I’ve been to some of the areas in the San Juan’s and MT/WY and I feel, like I’m in the travel party-great writing and documentary. Looking forward to the rest of the story. Wife and I are planning on a return Sept of ‘18 so taking notes of your camping stops. Any thoughts on pulling a small Offroad trailer through the San Juan’s? And Alpine loop?

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Kokomo, IN
    Posts
    128
    Quote Originally Posted by Mccaf View Post
    Great report! I’ve been to some of the areas in the San Juan’s and MT/WY and I feel, like I’m in the travel party-great writing and documentary. Looking forward to the rest of the story. Wife and I are planning on a return Sept of ‘18 so taking notes of your camping stops. Any thoughts on pulling a small Offroad trailer through the San Juan’s? And Alpine loop?
    Offroad trailer would have no issues on the loop, its not really that rough at all. Imogene pass and Black bear pass are a little rougher, but if you are running a good hook setup you would still be fine.
    2001 Overland XJ: MORTY
    Instagram:@gaijin_overland

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Rural North West NV
    Posts
    11
    Great report!

    I just went through that area a couple months ago. My sister who lives in Idledale (near Morrison / Red Rocks) was doing a foot race across Imogene from Ouray to Telluride. I met her in Telluride after the race and gave here a ride back to Ouray. Spent a little time exploring the area. Beautiful but as you said, expensive and crowded. I preferred Ouray over Telluride. I spent the night in Montrose and then took 50 across to Pikes Peak before headed up to Arvada to see my folks.

    I love CO but too crowded and expensive for me. Great place to visit though!

    I posted on your XJ build thread. I noticed that you have the back of your hood elevated. Mine runs hot when climbing big grades, especially in the summer heat. Has that helped yours and where did you get the spacer?

    Thanks.

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Kokomo, IN
    Posts
    128
    Quote Originally Posted by Hackopotomus View Post
    Great report!
    I posted on your XJ build thread. I noticed that you have the back of your hood elevated. Mine runs hot when climbing big grades, especially in the summer heat. Has that helped yours and where did you get the spacer?

    Thanks.
    The spacers are from Ksuspension. I can't attest to them helping or not due too the fact I never really wheeled without them and I still had moments when I needed to pull off to the the jeep cool a few times
    2001 Overland XJ: MORTY
    Instagram:@gaijin_overland

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    106
    Seems like a great trip and wanted to give a nod to the XJ. Cheers.

  7. #37
    I'm really enjoying your trip. Thanks for taking us along!
    Bill

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    KY
    Posts
    164
    Read through the trip report and it looks and sounds like it was a blast.

    Im glad to see people are doing trips and trails in an XJ. I added you and the leather shop on IG.

    Hope to see more great things.

    Oh , btw Im down in Cincinnati if you guys ever make it down this way from Kokomo.

    Cheers!

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    BOULDER, COLORADO
    Posts
    1
    XJ ftw.

    Would like to see more of them used for this stuff.

    Great report. Thanks for posting.

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Kokomo, IN
    Posts
    128
    Part VI
    Green to Red

    IMG_20171227_141709_491 by Emerson Bowling, on Flickr
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    N3753'10.28"
    W10750'52.21"
    Alta Lakes Campground, Co

    September 20th
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    DSC_3561 by Emerson Bowling, on Flickr
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    Excited for the last trail in the San Juan mountains we clean up fast to drive back into and through Ouray. Do to some terrible planning on my part we were doubling out back through Ouray because Black Bear pass is one way down the switchbacks. But lucky for us the scenery in the san Juans never gets old. After about an hour drive we find ourselves back on the Million Dollar Highway south of Ouray, Jeep hit 214,000 miles on the way to the trail!
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    Finding the trail head for black bear I pull off, air down, and disconnect.
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    We quickly start a start a steep accent to the peak of the pass. 12,840 feet and the last time we will be at this kind of altitude on the trip. Obligatory pictures with the signage and we start heading for the switchbacks and the part that makes people a bit leery, the off camber section on the edge of the mountain.
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    A decent and another climb we pull off too let domo run and cool off the Jeep. Also figured it was a stop to break and relieve myself, turns out I was wrong. Some guys in an Fj Cruiser popped over the hill, if you guys happen to read this, im sorry lol
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    Zipped up and back in the Jeep we head for the switchbacks. After some drop off we flex our way down the trail and happened to come upon a girl in the middle of the trail. We come to a stop to have a chat, she is in the middle of an adrenaline fix. Grabbing onto a cable left over from one of the mining outfits that spans across the valley, she runs from the far end of the trail and sprints off the ledge, swinging over a ravine with a creek some 75 feet below. She gets to the end of the swing and makes her way back to solid ground offering us a try. We both say no. Shoulda said yes.
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    Leaving her we head towards the off camber section, I see why people are a bit leery here. We slow crawl down and around the edge of the mountain. Brakes squealing, a rock face an inch off the passenger side mirror, terrain leaning the jeep hard to the driver side. Looking out of the driver side is a drop off, rather large drop off. A pucker moment for sure.
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    We make it down this section and park at a large area that makes up the first switchback. Beautiful. Another trail and our last trail in Colorado with incredible views. Cant wait to come back to this area again.
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    Back in the jeep we head down the rest of the switch backs that finish the trail. Easy stuff for us after driving Morrison. Good 10 or 20 minutes we are back on pavement in Telluride and a good thing because we were hungry. We find a place that has outdoor seating for Domo and find a parking spot. Walking down one of the cleanest towns I think I've ever been in we get to La Cocina De Luz, small Mexican place which of course being in Telluride is organic, bringing organic prices along with it. We suck it up and order our food and head outside. Some time later we get our $35+ street tacos and dig in. Wont deny that it was good, but worth the money I don't know.
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    Full, we walk back to the Jeep to head back up to Alta Lakes Campground for our last night in the San Juans.
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    September 21st
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    Quick pick up at camp in the morning and we are off to Montrose. Sad to be leaving the San Juans but excited to see what Utah has for us. We make it in time for McDs breakfast. Sausage & Egg McMuffin and googling for a GPX track of our route today. I found a trail called Rim Rocker while digging around on Expo Portal some time ago. Seemed like a newly put together route of dirt and rock that goes from Montrose to Moab. Looked very easy but we figured it would be a fun way to cross into the state instead of on the HWY. Having found a track online we got it downloaded and headed on our way.
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    Aired down to a conservative 23psi to help eat up some of the inevitable washboard roads. Leaving the "Staging" area we head off on a forest road going through Uncompahgre NF. Easy travels on this road all the way to the town of Nucla. Heading north from there on a rocky trail, the terrain starts to change to red. Bumpy side roads bring us to the top of the same valley that HWY 141 runs through. Great views as we turn down hill on Q12 Road to cross the highway. Little bit of back tracking on 141 and you turn R13 Road. Following this trail into a maze that comes back out of the valley on the other side. Following this road for almost two hours the surroundings green back up as you make your way into the Manti - La Sal NF.
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    Just off the designated RR trail is the Buckeye Reservoir and the campground surrounding it. We getting to the area about an hour before sundown. Empty, no camp host, no other campers. Odd, thinking maybe the campground was closed we take a look at the notice board and see nothing of the sort. Works for us. We pick a good spot and start to open everything up, Jordans finger feeling a bit better now so she is again a big help and we are quick making dinner for the night. Chicken fajitas, one of my favorites. Jordan starts a fire in the massive fire pits provided at each site while I finish up. Eating to full under a full moon and crackling fire. We head up the latter not long after.
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    September 22nd
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    Morning at Buckeye we have our normal breakfast. Itching to get to Moab, we make quick work of the clean up and get back on the trail. As the green scenery again turns red, we find ourselves in Utah only a few minutes later. Dirt turns to rock, rock to sand and then back, we make our way on backroads all the way into Moab. Already early afternoon we decide to not hit any trails until tomorrow.
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    First up was to find an actual hotel to stay in, having not slept in a real bed or taken a real shower for about 2 weeks now we figured it was about time that happened. Not to mention we were really getting low on clean clothes. So we start googling the cheapest hotel that will work for us. We settled on Riverside Inn, sub $150 and a washer and dryer. Perfect, we head that way to get checked in and find some dinner after that.
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    Paid and room keys in hand we get unpacked and shower before we go out. That shower felt incredible, different shades of dirt colored water went down the drain for a good 10 mins. Jordan hopped in after me and I started looking up somewhere to eat dinner. Few minutes later we head out the door for Eddie Mcstiff's for the outdoor seating. Driving through Moab the town was neat, so many cool offroaders. Saw the new JL's still in camo, $50k Jk's being trailered by $80k Diesel tow setups. Insane the amount of money on the streets here.
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    Pull into Eddie's and squeezed the Jeep into a parking spot between a beefed up 3rd gen 4runner and a JKU. Domo on the leash we get sat at a nice table outside. Burgers and Beer ordered, we are excited for our first good meal in what seems like a week. funny how trails can really take it outta ya. Food arrives and its gone not long after. Good stuff for sure. We pay and head back to the hotel for the night.
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    September 23rd
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    Slept in a bit today after a good night in a real bed. We get out of the hotel around 11am, stopping at the Wendys in town before heading to Sand Flats RA. Hope to get down with Fins n Things and Hells Revenge. Get to the park and pay the entrance fee, we head right to the start of Fins n things. We stop and Jordan starts airing down the tires, I disconnect the sway bar and ensure the locker operation is bueno. Jump in and we are off on our first moab trail. FnT is a pretty mid trail I'd say with some steep rock ledges to climb, the most difficult being optional. I'll let the pictures do the talking from here. Apologize for how little I took of both of these trails.
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    And my only picture of the Jeep on Hells Revenge, again disappointed in how little I took on these two trails
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    But I did get a couple shots of the camo'd up Jeeps that were out on the trail. JL wrangler, current MY Cherokee and compass, and a camo'd new Cherokee
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    We finished hells revenge with no real struggles and had lots of fun. Starving we make our way back to the hotel to shower and head out to town and eat. This time we opted to leave Domo in the Jeep and eat at an Italian place called Pasta Jay's, pretty good and it was nice to sit inside to eat, had been awhile. Full on Noods, we get back in the Cherokee to an excited Domo and gave him the breadstick he deserved. Spotting an ice cream place on the main drag we park on the side of the street and walked into Moab Garage Co. Ordered up Strawberry in a waffle cone and Cookies n cream for Jordan. While waiting for the goodness, I was approached by a guy who saw us on the trail. He ask how the Cherokee did, talked a bit about the build and then I asked what he was driving, turned out to be one the the JL guys! Talked to him a bit, seemed to really like the new wrangler. Got our ice cream, holy cow that was some good stuff!
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    Made our way back to the hotel for the night. Excited for Poison Spider Mesa tomorrow.
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    To be continued...
    Last edited by Mr_Miyagisan; 01-04-2018 at 07:38 PM.
    2001 Overland XJ: MORTY
    Instagram:@gaijin_overland

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