Evans Creek

Meeting at McDonalds in Maple Valley, collecting friends along the way and before, we parked at Daryl’s place in
Carbonado, then reaching full strength by meeting up with two Toyotas and one more Rubicon in the main parking lot at Evans Creek. Seven Jeeps, two Toyotas and one brawny Ford Bronco came together to tackle the trails once again with drivers and riders from Washington, Oregon and Canada. The ground was wet and muddy, but the air remained dry and pleasant for the day. A great day for wheeling. The Ford drew first blood, taking some damage that would make it retreat at the very beginning of the first trail. With that example as a guide, some of us made it past the obstacle in the picture with force and skill, while discretion was the better part of valor for others. The winches did the job intended for them. The day continued through mud and over rock, the former offering surprising amounts of traction. Trails were tight, making me wonder if the Ford and if newer Wranglers would make it here. I don’t recall seeing any JK’s, but we did see a WJ Grand Cherokee and a lone CJ with a crew that would provide for entertainment later on.

First, one of the Toyotas pulled the “Lone CJ” out of the mud after a failed attempt of the CJ driver to overcome the laws of physics with his winch. (Wrong tree, if you ask me.) Then, still alone, they took their Jeep into a small rock basin that didn’t look very impressive from above or on photos, but proved to be interesting in a number of ways and ... interesting ... when looked upon from below. Crawling up from below, with plenty of other off-roaders around, the CJ was rolled - without intent - onto its roll cage. Just half a turn. They easily could have rolled down the hill, taking out dogs and others who played safer. People rushed to help as gasoline, oil and whatever else drained from the Jeep. Driver and passenger were robbed of their pride, but otherwise were okay. With some help, the CJ was uprighted. Some of us helped, others broke out folding chairs and snacks. I was amazed to see so many people willing to stand downhill from a highly unstable vehicle. On the next trail, a Toyota took some damage as a bolt on the tie rod sheared off. After some discussion and the banging of steel against steel, a replacement bolt was used to give the Toyota some steering back and it made just fine to the end of that particular trail. I am still amazed at all the skill, tools and parts that make it onto our runs. The only other damage were a broken valve stem suffered by Brett & Erica and I broke a plastic tab on my left front marker light.

Another fun day, played out mostly between 3,600 and 4,000 feet at the base of Mount Rainier.