2000 4x4 Blast - Mossy Mountain
By Rusty

This year's 4x4 Blast was terrific! Before any more words, I thank all of those SUPER Jeepers that took their time, cell phone calls and parts to try and get me back on the trail for Saturday after my locking hub blew out at the end of Friday's trail. THANK YOU ALL! Now, what led up to that? Well, let me tell you.

Friday, I decided on Mossy Mountain trail. Keep in mind that every time I'd been on this trail in the past, something broke. Once on the '95 Cherokee (testing the trail) and the last time was a couple of year's ago on the Halloween run. The gas tank of the '85 CJ8 got smashed underneath the skid plate on the last rocky downhill of the afternoon.

The trail was very much as I had remembered. We had several Jeeps and two BIG trucks on the trail this time. The first difficulties were at the second obstacle - down a steep hill into a soupy, muddy bottom, up two steps and then back up, not quite as steep as the down side. One of the 1st Jeeps was turquoise (carrying the Pittsfield photographer). He did great! He completely changed the color of his Jeep to brown! He would have been a top runner-up for the dirtiest. I went through ok.

No particular tough stuff until after lunch when the big truck stalled in the creek and melted his battery cable hook-up. Got that fixed, but it still couldn't start (later determined to be the ignition coil). We left both trucks (the other had a starter problem). It would've been a tough afternoon for them, as the rest of the trail had very tight spots. One spot became a spectator sport. No takers except for young Mr. Bradshaw. He came down the gas tank crusher hill while the rest of us watched from the creek. That hill has a name. Susie's Knob! Unbeknownst to me, I'd been down Susie's Knob and once was enough.

Lining up for the last creek bank crossing of the day, we heard BAM. I thought axle, but JJ (Tom Miller's delightful daughter and my passenger for part of the day) told me something was on the ground. It was a chunk of the locking hub cover. Two wheel drive for the trail ending. Had to remember how to drive again.

Later that night, I had the brightest lights in town. My voltmeter pegged on the high side. Between that and the hub (going to upgrade to the 6 bolts), I borrowed a ride in a TJ with Shawn from IFWDA for Saturday's trail. My CJ8 wouldn't make those ravines, but I'd like to take it up the waterfall.

At the Saturday evening raffle I won a radio (thanks to Doug), TJ quick disconnects, and a hat/mug (thanks to Garry). That's a lucky streak.

Trailered the CJ8 home and am making some needed upgrades for great wheeling next time.

Thank you to Pike County and supporting towns, the sponsors and Two Rivers Jeep Club for being there and letting us enjoy our ever-endangered sport.

Created: 06/29/01