The Gorge, July 28, 2019

The Wranglers are always well represented on the trail, and four generations of Wrangler participated. Starting with Joel’s timeshare YJ, a few TJs from stock to Norm’s behemoth, the usual group of JKs and JKUs, and a handful of JLs and JLUs. Beyond the Wranglers, however, there were some other logos, including a Renegade piloted by Rupert who only used three wheels on many obstacles and several others representing Toyota, Nissan and the massive Chevy Suburban that managed more than I think many expected. In total, we had 23 vehicles on the trail.

Despite some recent efforts to repair it, the bridge at the beginning of the trail was in poor shape when we arrived. We moved some timbers and tried to shore it up some, but as the Renegade was crossing, one of the timbers broke. Fortunately, he was able to easily back out and we shuffled some more lumber and found him a new line. With some careful spotting, and slow movement, everyone was able to cross the bridge on the way in and again on the way out.

With the help of the four trail leaders present, we managed to maintain a solid pace and made it to the usual lunch spot in very reasonable time. During the lunch break, we took a few moments to help Don and Nat patch their transfer case cable. We weren’t able to get them into 4 Lo, but we at least gave them 4 Hi. Just as we wrapped up the repairs, the rain started. The rain was welcomed by many on such a hot day, but less so by those that chose to go topless. Shortly after regaining the trail, the rain stopped, but only after we cleared a downed tree.

It was a large group, but it was a good group. We had enough trail leaders and experienced members to guide the new members and guests, the rain only lasted a short time, and even though we had to remove a broken U-joint from Norm’s jeep, everyone made it off the trail under their own power.