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The_Goob 06-21-2015 07:31 PM

Iowa to Moab, f12 style
Let this thread serve as my recap of the /f12 Moab trip at the end of May.

I decided to tow the jeep this time. last fall I drove it from eastern Iowa to Colorado and back, that was a bit much for this old Jeep. You can see that trip recap here:

Here is what i used to pull it, bought it last year and it had 2 cracked heads that someone used stopleak in. It took me all winter to rebuild it and get it running, so it seems rational to drive it for a month, then pull a Jeep to Moab!
99 Suburban 1500, 5.7, 108k miles. 3.73 towing package. Not the best tow rig out there.

I had planned to rent a trailer and the local rental place called me 3 days before leaving to say they changed there mind and didnt want me taking it that far. The trailer is my buddies, while it had brakes, no amount of rewiring and adjusting would make them work. I could hear them engage but they wouldnt grab, this made for a hairy ride in the mountain passes.

Day 1
Anyway on to the trip, it was going to take 2 days. first day, was 800 miles to Tecksjeep house in Greeley, CO. we left at 9am and got there around 1030 pm. Other than 5 hours of pouring rain the trip was uneventful and went well. We stayed there and had breakfast in the morning. Plan was for his rebuilt coilovers to show up and we would throw them on and head out but that didnt work.

The_Goob 06-21-2015 07:31 PM

Day 2
From there I realized I didnt pack the tent so we(wife and I) went to walmart and got one, and took off solo for moab around 1230pm.
Everything was going fine then we hit the first hill out of denver. Within 5 miles my temp gauge shot up, I hooked up bluetooth scanner and saw trans temp was over 200 and you could smell it. So we pulled over to let it cool down, meanwhile I could only think of how the hell we were going to make it all the way over these mountains if I cant make it 5 miles.

We took off again and the hills mellowed out so we chugged along, and I made sure to downshift early as to not lug the engine. Had no trouble going up the pass to tunnel or vail pass, these seemed to be much steeper on the back side. And they were. At some point I was in 2nd gear going 45 mph trying to stay slow, I could smell the brakes cooking and feel the rotors, they warped under the heat. Sure wish I could have got the trailer brakes working right! same thing on the way down vail pass.

The rest of the trip was fine, had to stop in Silt, CO for gas and saw trailer light had filled up with water and broke off! 6 zip ties later we were good. From there we drove all the way to Moab without stopping. Rolled into town at 8pm.

We were going to stay at Pack creek campground, got there and there was only 1 spot open for just 1 night, we took it knowing in the morning it would be time to find a better place to camp. This place was ok but it was kind of lame. I was the first one to Moab, a couple pulled up an hour later(friends of tecks) I had never met so we told them to share our campsite.

The_Goob 06-21-2015 07:52 PM

Day 3
Woke up, showered and took off with Marcus and Allie(the couple from night before) in search of a new camp for the group. We headed 10 miles south to Kens lake, and found 3 spots down at the bottom with shade and a creek. Next Amp713 showed up, and the 3 of us we took off for Hell's Revenge. I had seen plenty of pictures but I was still shocked at how steep this place was. Most of the hills in there are seat clinchers.

Pretty much had the whole trail to ourselves. Took a look at Hells gate and none of us were up for that on the first day.

The overlook just past the gate is beautiful!

We got to escalator and were going to try it, Amp went up first and there was so much water he kept sliding in. It got ugly for a minute, his steering got bound up against a rock and couldnt move either direction so we had to get creative!

Got him out and I decided not to even try, it was a close call! Me and Amp did do Tip over challenge but dont have a pic. A storm was rolling in so we kind of high tailed it the rest of the way. All in all a very great trail! Late that night, teck and jmart showed up along with another couple that we didnt know.

Stay tuned for more!
Few more pics, credit goes to Marcus, he takes some good shots!

grogie 06-27-2015 05:58 PM

Sounds like you had an adventure in towing, and I'm glad you made it. That first hill out of Denver is a steep one! (Just watch that on the way back down it.)

More, more and more! :)

The_Goob 06-27-2015 07:34 PM

Yeah I forgot to continue this write up. Stay tuned I'll get more up

The_Goob 06-28-2015 08:34 PM

Day 4
Today we would have 6 jeeps instead of 3, and the plan was to hit Top of the World trail. Tecksjeep and a few others made it in real late the night before. This trail is about 30 miles up the Colorado river from Moab, the drive alone is pretty awesome to get up there.

First few miles of the trail were much like a gravel road but very scenic.

soon it started to get a little rocky.
This trail is rated as a 3-4 on trail-damage, but I would dare to say its more like a 5+. Sure the first half is mellow, but its a long, bumpy trail with plenty of spots to get into trouble.

A few Hours in, Jmart started to overheat so I got out the RTV and coolant, and we had him pull out his thermostat, sealed it back up, filled her up and off we went. Made for a good Beer break!
When we approached the top, I had NO IDEA what we were in store for. I had merely heard of this trail but had no idea how amazing this view would be!
Me and the Mrs.
Straight down

After a few minutes of staring in awe, the real reason we came here happened. One of the couples we were with got engaged up there. It was pretty cool!
These guys:

We all took turns pulling our jeeps out onto the edge to get good pictures:

On the way down there is another fork in the trail to take, it actually ended up being a little more challenging than the way we took up, which was fine! It was probably 5pm by the time we got back to the trailhead. At this point the last of our group had arrived in moab and they were running cliffhanger trail. Most of us meandered around town and made our way back to camp for fire food and beer, and call it a day. It was a long one!

The_Goob 06-28-2015 09:17 PM

Day 5
After 2 days wheeling in moab we were sunburnt to a crisp, and ready for more! I forgot to mention that the first day while on hells revenge, an animal chewed a hole in tent we JUST BOUGHT on the way out here, and got into some of the food. it was in a rubbermaid bin but the lid got left off :/
Plan for today was to meet up with Randonexplosion and his crew that arrived the day prior. They stayed in cabins while the rest of us camped. I think they had 4 Jeeps so today we would have a group of 10. Plan was to run Metal Masher but plans never hold up? Behind the Rocks, here we come! Its a pretty gnarly trail(rated 7-8) and about 10 minutes in, we hit the "Guardian Hill". this isnt our video but a look at it.
2 of our jeeps were on 31's and 33's so we had them try it first and it wasnt looking good. Sure we could have sent a few guys up and winched people up but we all felt this trail might be too much for some of the group. Also Amp had to leave early to meet his lady who was arriving today and we didnt want to be stuck in there all day. Decided to head down to Flat Iron Mesa which was only 5 more miles away or so. Wasnt a bad decision as this was pretty fun too!(Rated 5-7)

little drop off, bashed bumper on way down.

Somewhere around noon the lone XJ in the group climbed a fin and blew a rad hose off so we stopped for lunch and got that all fixed up. He can be seen in the top of this pic:

After awhile we saw a sign that said "chute bypass" so we ignored that and gave it a shot!

At the top it looped around back to the trail, but there was 1 more wall, it was high and steep. this picture doesnt make it look so but Randon was the only one to try it. had to back down to air down more and try again, he did finally make it. Front end was LIGHT!

Flat iron was pretty awesome but there is a point about halfway through where it is marked poorly and if you dont know the way there are several wrong ways to go. we had the book with us and still took a few wrong turns. Didnt get any more pics. Again we finished up and scattered into town to stock up on beer/ice/food/whatever. plan was to meet back at our camp for a night run on Fins 'n Things!
Stay tuned for that

extra pics

Randonexplosion 06-30-2015 09:40 AM

Good read Dan! Just barely saw the link in your signature.

The_Goob 06-30-2015 11:04 AM


Originally Posted by Randonexplosion (Post 30782753)
Good read Dan! Just barely saw the link in your signature.

Thanks. I'll get more up soon

The_Goob 07-05-2015 06:10 PM

Day 5 continued:
So we got back to camp, ate and had a good old time. once it got dark it was time to head up to Fins N Things for a night run. We tried to run with just parking lights as to not blind the people in front but it was hard at times. Kind of hard to get good pictures at night too. there were a few times i was , ahem, "temporarily absconded from forward progress" and had to really give it the onion to get up. There are some really steep spots out there!

The group ran probably the first 1/3 of the trail and then left where the access road meets the trail. Myself, Amp, Marcus and the XJ decided to run up to the last leg of trail and do Kenny's climb. It really wasnt all that nerve racking, kind of surprised its a named hill. Directly after that though there is a fin you have to go up. There is an optional way up it straight up the side. I think 3 of us went up it and I am here to tell you it was insane. Had it not been nighttime and had a little liquid encouragement I would have passed! (Anyone reading feel free to say if that thing is named or not) After that we were ready to head back to camp but got turned around a few times on the trail, its hard to navigate in the dark!

The_Goob 07-05-2015 06:40 PM

Day 6:
Alot of people were leaving on this day, and Scott was parking his rig due to power steering issues. Since there was nothing planned I decided to head with him out to arches national park. It was on the list so why not. Yeah I would have loved to wheel a little more but the views were worth it!
A few of the other guys did go do the back side of steelbender I believe before they left. Pics:
Balanced rock

Parade of Elephants and Double Arch:

Delicate Arch from the lower view point, pretty far away:

We left there and decided to eat at a resteraunt for a change, good BBQ place. Got back to camp and everyone was gone at this point. So the 4 of us just had a nice evening by the fire and got ready to leave in the morning. Scott was staying another day but I had to leave.

I think we hit the road at 730am and only stopped twice between moab and North Platte, NE. got to a super 8 around 9pm?? I suppose that was a bit of a lie, the Suburban overheated going up vail pass and the tunnel pass since they were steeper on this side. So we did have a roadside pee break there too! :D Other than that Denver was a zoo. Truck ran great after the mountains. The next day took another 9.5 hours to get home to Eastern Iowa.

All total, we brought $1000 with us for the trip and got home with $7! The tow rig used $485 in fuel and racked up just over 2400 miles. the other money went to camp fees, beer, groceries that we didnt bring, the tent we had to buy, ETC. I mention this since it ended up being alot more affordable than some vacations a person can take, and there are friends out there who feel like Moab is some sort of unreachable destination. It's not!

The_Goob 07-05-2015 06:43 PM

And to the people who went along, I had a great time and enjoyed meeting and hanging out with you guys! Feel free to add anymore pictures or stories to this thread.

zte87 07-05-2015 07:39 PM


Luuca 07-05-2015 09:26 PM

Great Job on the write up and love those pics and videos! Subbed

AZdEvilYJ 07-05-2015 11:26 PM

Awesome write up Dan! It was such an awesome trip and meeting you guys! :cheers2: I'll have my jeep there next time

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