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RimRocker trail and Blazer Bash in Moab

Rimrocker moab montrose blazer fwc

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#11 Zoomad

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 05:13 AM

I was given the option to try it or take the bypass.  I watched a couple take it on and really thought it felt similar to a few of the climbs we had on hells the day before.  I felt I could do it.

Still, I paid close attention to those that would go ahead of me for the line to follow.

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So here I come.   You can see I’m pretty much where most had started out. So I thought it was the right line.  Nope, not the right line for my ride.

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Uh oh..

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Ok that’s enough. I could feel it was out of shape.  I didn’t know how high I hung that wheel but I knew it was off the ground.  Thankfully, the other trail boss Mark was heading my way to reposition my rig for a second attempt. 

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He had me back down and come in much further to the driver’s side of the truck.  He pointed to the tree limb and said, you want this limb to hit your windshield.  That’s how much more over you need to go.   Following the directions I repositioned and proceeded to walk right up it without any drama. 

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Still, not out of the woods yet.  I still had to cross the off camber section with the top heavy rig.  Mark told me to take it slow and creep across the face.  No issues as I crossed it.

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We had to start coming back down again.  This was a fun one.

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More down.

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Right back up and out again. I found my departure angle slightly lacking in some of these.

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Ron’s run down this section. 

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It’s after this section we ran into an issue.  Nothing gnarly or cool to say we broke on.  Just a slab on the driver’s side and the passenger side dropped low, the steering went right.  The front end felt like it was going to crawl over the short ledge so I gently rolled into the throttle.  Then I heard the distinct snap of a front axle shaft/u-joint.  It was followed by the complete lack of drive on the front diff.  I backed up and took a new line and went right over, but could hear the clank, clank, clank of the u-joint yokes in self clearancing mode. 

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There was another ledge to climb up right away and I knew I wasn’t going to clear it.  I got help with a winch to pop over it.  Thankfully there was a intersection of the trail with a dirt road that would take us back to the highway.  We called it a day at that point.  There were some others that bailed with us including Ron as the trail got harder from here out.   So we got back to the road, aired up and headed back for camp in Moab. 

We had leftovers from the fajitas from a couple of nights before in the fridge so for lunch since we were back early I figured we could have fajita quesodillas.  Gotta love having a fridge for leftovers. 

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It was a great idea as they came out awesome. 

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We hung out downloading the SD cards to the laptop and staying cool and hydrated until the others got back from the trail.   Later we fixed up our final camp dinner for the trip.  Ribeyes seared in the cast iron skillet and some baked beans.   My son loved it, as did I. 

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We ended up hanging out with many from the trail group camped nearby as it got late.  Great times were had and were really bummed to be heading out the next morning. 

We planned on a fairly early departure, but after the night before it was slightly later than planned.  Still we got the camper broke down and packed up and said our goodbyes to those that were up and about.   We pulled out of the campgound and headed north to get to I-70 for the push home.  We made good time and before we knew it we were back in our home state.

We pull off the interstate in Grand Junction for fuel and to part ways with Ron and Mason.  We’d be rolling back on US 50 and they’d be getting back on I-70 for Denver.  After filling up and exchanging goodbye’s we headed on in to Junction and onward to Montrose again. From there we just cruised driving in and out of a large thunderstorm we ran into in Montrose and dealt with all the way to Salida.  We made pretty good time despite a horribly slow stop at a Sonic in Grand Junction for lunch.   Still we pulled into the driveway by 4:30 and unpacked.

 

All in all it was an excellent trip even with the breakage on the last trail day.  Ron and his son were great to travel with.  Both our boys seemed to speak the same level of sarcasm that kept cracking us up. They got along pretty good for not ever meeting before.  We had a great time hanging out and sharing stories and experiences.   Ron’s Blazer is a beast for sure and performed well despite the lack of low range.  Being able to manhandle it on both trails in high range showed me he could handle the adversity without throwing in the towel.  Totally impressed the fan shroud noise and low range issue were the only issues after just completing the drivetrain swap and lift a few weeks before trip.  I’d have no problem heading out with Ron again on another trip for a weekend or longer like a desert trip. 

Blazer bash itself was a riot.  Getting to meet folks I’ve known through the net and seeing the trucks in real life and watching them in action was so cool.  The fact that Wade and Mark made sure we kept our home on wheels in one piece was awesome.  Not having wheeled with any of these guys I’m sure there was a level of uncertainy on our driving ability or the trucks ability with the houses on the back.  I understand the apprehensiveness and appreciated the direction to keep us safe while having fun too.  You guys rock.  Our rigs are not full on rock crawlers, but feel pretty good about how they did.  I need more time on slick rock for sure.

 

Now to fix the broken axle shaft and prep for maybe one more trail ride before it gets blown apart for the next round of upgrades.


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#12 Oilbrnr

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 01:34 PM

Good report Rob! So the Rimrocker, do again or pass? Does it have any interesting side trails or is it just a straight shot more or less? How'd the fridge do, I know it had a fun time in DV?


Edited by Oilbrnr, 17 September 2019 - 01:35 PM.

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#13 Mighty Dodge Ram

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 04:10 PM

Sorry to read about the axle carnage but sounds like a great time was had. New axle, new 8.1, carry on sir!
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Richard
1996 Dodge Ram 1500 4x4, lightly lifted, ARB bumper/Warn winch, BFG AT/KO2, Snugtop shell. SOLD! But not forgotten!
2002 Chevy 2500HD XC LB 6.0L 4X4, Leer Hi-Rise shell, completely stock...for now!

#14 Zoomad

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 03:22 AM

Good report Rob! So the Rimrocker, do again or pass? Does it have any interesting side trails or is it just a straight shot more or less? How'd the fridge do, I know it had a fun time in DV?

Thanks Don! I'd do Rimrocker again.  We got pressed for time so we boogied quicker than our normal pace on a trail like this.  It was a lot like the Mojave road in that most could be done in 2wd but there are a ton of off shoot trails to see different things like historic mines, ghost towns and just plain old awesome scenery.  We omitted a good section east of hwy 141 and skipped the side run to the extinct town of Uravan.  So there isn't a shortage of stuff to see, but it really depends on how much time you want to spend on it.  

 

This was the first real multi-day trip with the ARB.   Loved it.  Not needing Ice was great when Moab and the surrounding areas were seeing temps above the century mark.  It was 108* on Hell's revenge.  Ron in the other K5 was grabbing ice every time we stopped for fuel or supplies.  I did miss having a stash of ice for my iced tea I drink during the day.  Somebody suggested getting container to keep ice in the fridge with it set right near freezing to have ice and not letting it melt in the unit itself.  Probably do that for the next run.  

 

Sorry to read about the axle carnage but sounds like a great time was had. New axle, new 8.1, carry on sir!

Meh.  I'm used to the axle bs by now.  Odd thing we can't pin down is Larry used the exact same setup in the K10 for 10 years (tru-trac, stock axles with the Big block and manual trans) and only broke one stub giving it too many beans on a snow run. He never broke on a mountain or desert trip with it.  I've broke something on each week long trip I've taken.  Oddly enough the breakage always has occurred in Utah.  Maybe that's it? LOL.  Chromoly shafts will address it. Just more money.


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#15 Zoomad

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 01:06 AM

Video from Rimrocker and La Sal Pass.

 

 

https://youtu.be/TUeaXeR4fD4


Edited by Zoomad, 23 September 2019 - 01:06 AM.

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#16 Mighty Dodge Ram

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Posted 24 September 2019 - 04:30 PM

Looks like fun! 👍

Edited by Mighty Dodge Ram, 24 September 2019 - 04:30 PM.

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Richard
1996 Dodge Ram 1500 4x4, lightly lifted, ARB bumper/Warn winch, BFG AT/KO2, Snugtop shell. SOLD! But not forgotten!
2002 Chevy 2500HD XC LB 6.0L 4X4, Leer Hi-Rise shell, completely stock...for now!

#17 CougarCouple

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 12:18 AM

Thanks for posting zoomad if it’s any consolation you probably broke before the easy part where the ears and U joint came apart. My personal opinion is to find and put a 60 underneath that rig, just too much weight and tire for the stock axle. Thanks again for the update.
Russ
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F250 extended cab, Cougar from ATC. You guys rock thank you!

#18 12valve

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 12:48 AM

In one of your nighttime camping photos showing the interior of your Blazer, it looks like I can see the drivers seat and rearview mirror. Did you open up the camper and back of the cab to make a walkthrough?


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2005 Reg Cab Dodge Diesel 4x4 6sp, far, far from stock. Gutted 4 wheel camper pop up, now an empty shell that rests on the bed rails. Much better. 


#19 Zoomad

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 03:06 AM

Looks like fun!

That it was.  I want to go back tomorrow if I could.  So much fun to explore out there.  

 

Thanks for posting zoomad if it’s any consolation you probably broke before the easy part where the ears and U joint came apart. My personal opinion is to find and put a 60 underneath that rig, just too much weight and tire for the stock axle. Thanks again for the update.
Russ

You aren't the first to give that suggestion.  Probably won't be the last either.   When the budget is ready for it, that may happen.  I've had some pretty lengthy discussions with a couple of more hard core rock crawlers than I am that Chrome-moly shafts are the best balance between strength and cost right now.  Had I not put the tru-trac in the front I probably wouldn't have broken a shaft yet.  But the budget is thin for that option also. Which means I'll stuff another stocker in it for now so I can make a final trip for the season.

 

In one of your nighttime camping photos showing the interior of your Blazer, it looks like I can see the drivers seat and rearview mirror. Did you open up the camper and back of the cab to make a walkthrough?

 

Actually the campers weren't opened up to make the walkthrough.  It's a feature unique to the FWC Blazer campers (the Bronco, Scout and Ramcharger had it too) that made the cab open to the camper.  I'll be honest, that's a good and a bad thing.  Access to the camper doesn't require getting out and coming through the back door.  One could climb out of the front seat and into the camper.  It does make the access to other items in the back easy by the passenger while driving.  But one of the issues is the noise.  You hear everything moving back there while on the road and trail.  So one becomes fixated on packing, tying stuff down and making doors quiet and able to lock shut.  Maintaining heat in the camper in cooler weather is different because of the open cab with all the glass.  You loose a lot of heat through it.  One of the other Blazer Camper owners here gave me a tip to hang a thick blanket (wool or fleece) from the cabover bed down to close off the opening to the cab and keep heat in the camper.  Totally works too.  Easy 20 degree difference in zones for sure.  

 

The benefits for me to have the open pass through are totally worth putting up with the noise and heat issues for sure.  It also makes the small interior space feel a little bigger too.  To have a camper in such a small package and still maintain a certain level of serious off-road capability makes it worthwhile to deal with a few little issues.  


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#20 Zoomad

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 05:03 AM

Ok, the next video will be less overland travel and more rock running.  Here's part 1 of Hell's Revenge. 

 

https://youtu.be/SbN93TyyAIc


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