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10/17/2003



I wish to thank the 19 people, 3 dogs, and 12 rigs that made it up to our annual Deer Valley/Blue Lakes weekend.

This year we had the reservations for lodging made by John Skier. John booked us in at the Tammerack Lodge just below Bear Valley lodge. The accomodations were very nice. The inn keepers supplied us with snacks to munch on and a very relaxing time. Continnetal type breakfast were provided on both saturday and sunday mornings. A very great dinner was waiting for us when we arrived back from trail on saturday. Lasagna (both meat and vegitaian), tortillini, angel hair pasta, meatballs, salad, beer, wines, and soda. After we were all stuffed, out came the icecream and brownies. Needless to say we all had more than we should of. I would certainly recommend that we keep this place in mind for future years.

Kathy and I arrived up at the Lodge around 3:00 pm and other started arriving shortly after. By 10:00 we had 15 of us there. Ira and Lorrie arrived a little later and Chris and Arlene stayed in Arnold, room 18, where else! We had lots of new faces and names to try to remember this year. Dirk brought Sally, John C. brought Caroline, Steve Muckle and his Rubicon, Jim and Monica O’Leary were there along with Chuck and Linda. For those of you that have not met the people, you really missed out on a great time. After going around the room several times with introductions and swapping some stories it was time for bed. we were up at around about 7:30 am for breakfast and were ready to get going by 8:45am. We waited for Chris and Arlene to arrive, since we were not suppose to leave the lodge till 9:00am. With Chris and Arlene arriving we all got into our vehicles and headed to the trail head at Hermit Valley. All tires aired down we proceeded up the trail. Kathy and I led trail with Ira and Lorrie mid gunners and John C. and Caroline at the back. We pressed on with out problems, even with the new people having never been either on this or in some cases any trail before. Jim O’Leary showed how to get some real air at the trail entrance, front tire about 4-5 feet off the rocks. Once Monica (Jim’s wife) caught her breath, they continued on. Jim Hodges displayed his new suspension by taking the upper line close to the big tree. We all scatered! Jim Hodges seems to be a little more aggressive now that he is trailering his Grand Cherokee. A few stops along the way to spot people and check things out. The rock gardens were still there and provided some fun obsticles. I had a different type of trip, in that I had to pay attention and take the easier line in order to have damage controll for Steve and his beautiful new Rubicon. As the day went on Steve became more confident in the choices of lines and even started trying some other choices that I had for him. Steve is great follower of direction. We made it to the second water crossing and had lunch there. After lunch we proceeded to Blue Lakes. We saw some beautiful water falls along the way. Started heading back to the lodge about 2:20. As always the trail seems so different going the other way. We finally came across some traffic headed in, about 15-18 vehicles and 6-10 motorcycles. We became a little streched out because of the traffic. Several took their shot at the big boulder on the left side of the road. Dirk had the missfortune of cutting down a tire (about a 4″ slice in the side wall) which led to a little delay. We all made it back out with some of our rigs making more noise than others as we came out. A couple kissed rocks, some clunked, some banged and other just scapped their skid plates. It’s OK, it’s just your skidplate, it’s OK it’s just your skidplate. All down, aired up, scrapes looked at and on our way to the hot showers and the great dinner.

The casino opened at around 7:30 with Ira and Lorrie in controll. Many learned the ins and outs of playing craps, other continued conversation over wine, and a few just headed to bed. The Weiny Casino finally closed it’s doors about Midnight. Up around 7:45 to 8:30 depending, breakfast, load, and said goodbyes. What a great time with alot of GREAT people.

I just hope that all who made it had as much fun as Kathy and I did.

See you all at the next meeting, and tell your friends about our Club.

Darell & Kathy

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