Went out last Sunday (11/6) with the East Coast 4 Wheel Drive Association’s (EC4WDA) Region D Food Drive. Basically, everybody who wanted to run the trails needed to bring a bag of non-perishable foods to be donated to a food bank. The food drive itself looked pretty successful, with a full size pickup truck completely full of food items.
The trails we ran were new to me (and most of the rest of the group) and were located in southern Vermont. After a slightly rocky start caused by some communications issues while convoying to the trail head, we split into two groups and hit the trails. The trails themselves are rough forest roads, over some hills and through some fairly rocky areas. There were no real obstacles as such, rather, the trail demanded your attention its whole length. It seemed that the biggest problems were caused by the wet conditions that robbed all but the most aggressive tires of significant traction. Personally, I could definitely feel the difference in traction between the Big O XTs on the front of my truck and the BFG ATs on the rear. The ATs packed up with mud and leaf litter pretty quickly and rendered the locker pretty much useless, while the XTs in front stayed fairly clear and let me claw my way up the hills. Here is some video that John B. took. It required some pretty agressive throttle work to climb, it was just too slick to crawl slowly. Of course, it didn’t help that I was at the back of the pack and nine other vehicles had chewed up the terrain pretty thoroughly. Other than that hill, things went pretty smoothly. A nearly stock XJ that was with us had some significant trouble with fair stretches of the trail, so there was quite a bit of idle time. There are a lot more pictures from the run here.
All in all, it was a fun day wheeling and besides, the worst day wheeling is better than the best day at the office!