Actually back for a week, since my first Mog-venture. Seemed at times just would not happen, but persistence does pay off. Took off from the Denver area October 19, and went to Beef Basin and then north into the Needles District of Canyonlands NP. The Elephant Hill loop is pretty notorious, and seemed a good workout for the "new" adventure vehicle. Survived that, and then headed for the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Had managed to get reservations at the last minute for 3 nights just before they close the road for the season. Not particularly tough driving, but living out of the truck makes photo-ops more logistically easier. From there I headed for Toroweap, further west on the North Rim. Driving a bit more entertaining, but still not stressing the Mog. With this post, I am committing myself to the "full story"' of the 1900+ mile trip, in a new thread; it was illuminating, to say the least, and might be food for thought for some of the people who have recently been considering expedition platforms.
Until I figure out how to label pics individually, here is the rundown:
1. First Portal check-Eisenhower Tunnels on I-70, Elev 11,767 Ft (All good!)
2. Waiting for traffic to clear, Elephant Hill loop. Jam-ups are getting outrageous these days
3. Base Camp at Toroweap. Yeah, I know, evidence of serious desecration of a national monument, I mean Firebody. Oh well.
Should mention, the band of red rock showing about even with the top rear of the firebody is actually the SOUTH (opposite) rim of the Grand Canyon at this point. The Canyon becomes very narrow, and it is a near vertical drop of 3000 feet to the river from the overlook. The photos are iconic and amazing. Will post images in new thread.
4. Glamour shot: North Rim sunset, from Cape Royal. Probably the best vantage point at or in the Grand Canyon.
Another day, another rescue mission.
I've been lucky again to be able to demonstrate the mighty abilities of this forum's main topic to the world - Unimog of course.
This time the dump truck with pup got stuck in the snow.
Standard procedure of locking differentials, setting transmission in first gear and using recovery strap turned out to be enough again, to do the job.
The wife and I took off to the Australian Outback to see Lake Eyre flood. A rare event. You have to take to the air to get a good perspective however. Fortunately, there are local flights at Williams Creek that will take you up in a Cessna 172. Good fun !
We were also surprised to bump into two Swiss brothers in a 1300. Fred and Markus is touring Australia. It was a good catch-up with some fellow enthusiasts. The 1300 is a 1983 ex Swiss Rescue with low miles. Not surprisingly, they have done the axle venting mods on all four portals.
The roads are pretty brutal out in the Outback and a lot of shredded tires lined the road. Our bias plys performed flawlessly and I was pleasantly surprised at how well it handled the rocks/stones. :smile
Anyone who has followed the Adventures of the Trav'n Mahhgsta probably wonders if the truck ever associates with actual people. Well yes, it does. Here's proof. Ms Mahhgsta's grandkid has played in and on the truck a good deal, but partly because of age and seat belt laws, has yet to have a moving adventure. This past Thursday (baby-sitting day), we took off for the mountains, up through Pinecliff and Rollinsville. The UP Railroad goes through, on the way to the East Portal of the Moffat tunnel. The tunnel is about 6 miles long, under the Continental Divide, exiting at Winter Park on the west side. Taking the Amtrak through this route/ tunnel is really cool; I've done it several times.
We are ready to depart. With a booster seat, the view from the Mahhg is really up there.
Neglected to take photos at the East Portal, but it is now extensively fenced off, and can't get close, as in the "good old days". So, first photos are after we back-tracked, and took Mammouth Gulch Road up and out of the valley, towards the south.
From inside: The East Portal is around the bend in the valley floor, showing above the center of the glove box. The old rail grade is the slight horizontal line below the mirror over the passenger window. The railroad originally climbed OVER the Continental Divide, but was abandoned in 1933 when the tunnel was completed. Guess they were not partial to drifting snow. Wusses.
My F250 could, and has, done this route (although a lot of years ago), so not exactly a workout for torque-tube suspensions. It was 1:30 pm when we got up to a big cleared area, still below actual treeline, and decided food was in order.
Then time to fool around.
We do a taco route during the workweek. Wonder how they are surviving without us today (!!!!).
Time to pack it up. His Mom will be waiting. Would have liked to go higher, it is really a spectacular setting, but since I was last here the Forest Service has installed a seasonal closure about 1/2 mile above where we stopped, just at treeline. Does not open until July 15, and is closed again September 3. Just have to gear up for an overnight, in a few weeks.
Long slow drive back down the canyon. Gotta love proper gearing and an exhaust brake. Virtually never used the actual brakes, on a 5500 foot descent (2000 feet on the rocks, 3500 feet on pavement). And very glad of AC. Up top, cool and breezy, but 96 F back on the plains at 5 pm.
Photos were proper side up on Photos, but came out 90 off. I hereby empower Trev to work his ADMIN wonders, if he cares to.
Nice steel deck, (checker plate is such an improvement over the original plywood), nice tie-downs integrated into the deck, and nice jib crane tucked into the starboard gunwale for convenient access and minimal interference with loads in the bed. All elegant solutions. Always interesting to see how an experienced restomodder can improve on a product originally produced by an army of engineers driven by corporate commercial objectives.
It's funny: I work on it and the wife and I drive it - that's it. No build thread. No youtube channel. No trip reports. Pretty low key. We finally stopped the other day to take this one pic, and I think a nice one at that so just had to post it up.
Used to have an another account on here (which somehow disappeared - maybe too much lurking). With that account I posted a tiny bit and maybe one pic posted to this specific thread (taken on the day I drove the truck home from my importer's shop a couple of years ago).
It's still a build in progress, but lately I've been getting somewhere. That is a Zeppelin FM1 on the back of the U1350L (214 hp upgraded) held on with custom mount plates and Tandemloc Visos. It's starting to look like a really usable camper.
One day I may post up a build summary/recap, but for now, there is still a fair chunk of work to do before showcasing the build. I did happen to sort out the canbus integration of an Orion Jr BMS with my Victron CCGX for the camper electrics so that may be the first build element I share.
Oh, wait, I was texted this pic from the owner of the red Westy. I guess you can see who I keep company with around these parts as Unimogs are rare.
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