Trip Report:Friends of the Rubicon Work Day
June 19 – 22 2008
By Eli Casey
We all awoke and had a leisurely morning while Howard cooked up some great breakfast for all. It was a potato; onion and Chorizo (sp?) scramble with scrambled eggs on the side and tortilla’s. After we were all filled up, all 5 rigs filled up with everyone including all the kids, left camp around 10:30 to head over to the Loon lake entrance so we could take a look at the project site we worked the following day and to run as much of the trail as we could. We made it to the Loon lake spill way, air down and disconnected sway bars and headed in on the trail. We made it to the Alligator pit which was our assigned work site and I started taking a look at what needed to be done. At this time I heard that Doug’s tie rod had bent. He was able to use his winch to give it a tug back into shape. After looking and talking about the work to be done, we continued on. By the time we got to the beginning of the granite bowl. Doug’s tie rod was bent again along with the stabilizer shock shaft. I took a quick look and suggested pulling the stabilizer and the tie rod off the rig. Straighten the tie rod the best we could and then sleeve it with a high lift jack handle. And that is exactly what Doug did with Lance’s assistance. During this time a few diapers were changed, lunches were made and eaten. I believe it was shortly after 1:30 or so when we continued on. We traveled through the bowl and toward Ellis Creek . Just before the Wentworth connection before Ellis Creek , John advised something felt loose with his transfer case. We stopped to assess and found that he had lost the tyranny mount. We talked about splitting up and my family going back with John’s family to make sure he made it out and back to camp while Mick, Doug and Howard continued on with Lance’s family riding along. However in the end it was decided that we would all turn around and head back to camp as a group. I believe we got back to camp around 4:30 or so. Howard, Mick and Doug decided to go out and play some more as they did not have small children in tow. While pulling out of camp it was discovered that Howard’s steering box was ripping off the frame. Del let Howard use his on board welder and it was fixed up in no time and off they went to have some more fun. John cooked up some killer beef and Pork fajita’s with all the trimmings for everyone. Around that time Mick and Doug arrived back to camp with Howard being towed. As it turns out his fuel pump went out again. I thought I was going to save the day (and so did Howard) with my spare fuel pump, however upon inspection the pump I had did not have the right fittings for what he needed. After dinner we were talking and Howard decided to go to another camp where we saw a Bronco and see if he had a spare fuel pump. He did and it was the right on. With fuel pumped in hand to be installed in the morning we all hung around the camp fire. Doug made root beer floats for everyone and Lance made popcorn for everyone as well. I must say it was the first time I had fresh pop corn made in a dutch oven over the camp fire. Good times for sure J! Around 10:30 or so, everyone decided to hit the sack as we needed to be up early and over at the Loon lake Kiosk by 9:00 am.Saturday 6-21
Woke up and started packing up our rigs with tools to use, lunches, coolers filled with water and such. Breakfast was fend for your self although Howard did cook up food and shared with all that wanted. We left camp around 8:30 and headed towards Loon Lake . Once there we hung out and waited for the morning briefing to start. After the briefing we re group and I assigned areas to work to people. With the assignments taken care of, or at least I thought, off we went with Robert Lightfoot (member of the Rubicon Oversight Committee) to show us what has been approved by the forestry service. This is where I realized that while they said we had one project, in fact it was like 6 smaller project with a few of them being rather time consuming. By 9:30 work was being done. All of the work we did was between the fences FOTR installed last June and the beginning of the granite bowl. While they were not all that far apart, I must have walked back and forth around a half a dozen times or so. The projects ranged from digging ditches to cutting and placing logs to divert water and people, to dragging 1200 + pound rocks into places, to stop people from going off the trail. There were around 25 or so people on my crew that consisted of 2 SC4WDC members (one being me), 2 SC4WDC prospects (Doug and Chris), 3 of my friends (Lance, John and Howard), several Four Dice Club members (6 - 8 but Brandon would know for sure) and allot of people who just wanted to help. All in all it was a great work day that was very productive. We finished up around 2:30 or so. Howard and Mick went back to camp via Wentworth and Chris, Doug, John and I all headed to Robb’s resort. Chris and I took showers and then we all had a couple cold ones at the bar. We left and got back to camp around 4:00 pm. By 5:00 pm the FOTR BBQ was in full swing for all. It consisted of Hot dogs, hamburgers, French fires, macaroni salad and brownies for desert. After most the FOTR dinner crowd left back to their camps, it was back around the camp fire enjoying conversation and ones favorite adult beverage. I believe everyone had a great time and was advised by Doug and Chris that the conversation was very enlightening as with Del (FOTR trail boss and BRC ambassador), Debra (FOTR incident Commander), Bebe (Founder of Friends of Green Horn and the FOTR event Safety officer) and others all around the camp fire, allot of information was shared about current fights going on for continued motorized access to the forest. Seeing how it was a long day and allot of work was done I believe everyone hit the sack by 11:30 that evening.
Over all it was a great trip. I know everyone I have spoken to thought so as well. I personally can not remember the last time I was hanging out around the camp fire until 2:00 in the morning having such a wonderful time. I also know as long as I have been in the club we have not done the group feeds or potlucks. However I think this really went over well and while it does take more coordination I think the bonding and camaraderie it builds is well worth the effort. Thank you to all that were able to make it, your efforts were noted by Del and others and I could not have pulled off being a crew lead for around 25 people without your assistance.
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