Trip Report: Rubicon Trail
July 8-11, 2018
Trip report by Mike
Members attending: Mike, Brandi, Sami, Tori, Jon, Jarrett (Jon's friend), Doug, Kyle, Mark,
April, Kelsey, Lauren
We meet at the Prunedale Safeway at 8am. We would
caravan together leaving around 8:30. Amazingly we meet up with Mick and
Dave (Engleking) at Hwy 205 and Hwy 5 just before Manteca. We all
caravan'ed up Hwy 50. Just outside Placerville, April blew a tire on the
trailer she was pulling. We pulled to the side of the road, took their
jeep off of the trailer and removed the blown tire. The trailer was a 3
axle. After getting gas, ice , etc.in Placerville we were unable to
locate a replacement tire for the trailer and proceeded to Airport Flats
Campground arriving around 2:30.
After getting settled in, we went for a short ride up Wentworth Springs
Road. Chuck and his buddy "DC" (don't remember his name but he flew in
from D.C. to attend) arrived. After Mike (me) got lost and wheeled
approximately 1/2 mile further we headed back to camp. We ate like kings
every night, steaks, sausage, jalapeno poppers, pizza, won tons (that's
right.... pizza and won tons).
We planned on leaving at 8am but after eating breakfast we left around
8:45. We headed out on Wentworth Spring again and planned on making it
to buck Island for the day. Dave stayed back and was waiting for Brad
and they were going to fish and camp at Buck Island for the week. Gary
arrived and caught up with us on the trail. Everyone made it up little
sluice and we had lunch at the soup bowl. Chuck got his first taste of
rock crawling and I think he's hooked now. We all made a decision to not
go to Buck Island and to go back to the campground. On the way back we
met Brad and Dave on the trail, on their way to Buck Island.
After having dinner, we sat by the fire. April thought she heard
something moving/walking around but did not see anything. When we
decided to go to bed, Gary discovered his cooler was tipped over and
broken into by a bear. That same bear also broke into Mark and April's
cooler that was in the back of their jeep and took food and a cheese
cutter. Gary decided to move his tent to Mark's flat bed truck.
The group decided to go out Wentworth Springs and then go down the gate
keeper, granite slabs and spend the day at Loon lake. Gary's jeep had a
suspected broken tooth or two in the rear axle, Jon's Toyota was loosing
several transfer case to cross member bolt the day before and mike's
buggy's power steering pump was going out. These vehicle did not make
this run. The rest of the group hit the trail while Mike, Brandi, Tori,
Sami, Jon and Jarrett went to Loon Lake to scout out a spot on the
rocks. A couple of hours later we met up and had a day at the lake.
After dinner we hung out at the fire, the camp across from us was
greeted by a large brown bear (approx. 300lbs) in their food. The bear
ran around our camp site (about 30 feet from us). The bear would visit
several other camps later that night. After our nerves calmed down, we
all decided to to hit the sack. About 1:30 in the morning, Gary stated
he heard something and said the dome light on his truck was now on.
After investigating the incident, Gary had his window open a bit and the
bear decided to push his window down into the door, breaking the
mechanism and then chewing on his cooler and I believe his head rest.
Mark and April's jeep was slobbered on and rustled through by the bear.
Gary decided he had ENOUGH of the bear and packed up and left.
Mike, Jon, Kyle and Mick pack up and headed out. Mark and April went
into Placerville to get the blown tire replaced. Mark, April, Lauren,
Kelsey and Doug were planning on staying until Friday.