The group met at the Yandina Ginger Factory on Saturday July 22 at 0900. It was a beautiful cool clear morning which gradually warmed to a perfect day for a fun drive. This is a special place as our club is only one of two 4wd ckubs allowed in the area. The plan was to make the falls and have a picnic lunch there.
We had a great turnout, 11 cars, 3 of them guests checking out the club. Thanks to Rob Manglesdorf, our very capable trip leader, and everyone else who pitched in to the fun.
Jim Deakin, Ben Schottlander with Finn and Izzy, Kevin O'Sullivan, Brad Taylor, Dave Ringsell, Nigel Botham, Rob Manglesdorf, Jen and I.
A very special welcome to prospective members Fran Murdoch, Gary Hoger and Matthew Kierel.
We took off with Rob in the lead and me at the tail eating everyone's dust. Not too far in we hit a steep bump that tried to dislodge everyone's tow hitches and plugs. No reported damage but there was plenty of crunching. The drive was shaping up nicely with some fun steep climbs, technical gully's and quickly escalating into some challenging climbs. I knew the tracks were getting tougher just by looking at Jens white knuckles!
The guys up front found an old fridge on the track. They reported it was full of cold beer which they managed to drink before I rolled in from the rear. In the same area we found a fallen tree across the track which the boys buzzed through and cleared the way.
We had a stop at a creek in a gully with nice swim holes and interesting rock formations. Definitely a place to come for a picnic in the future. Jim has marked the map.
A while further in we came across a hard left turn, deep drop and fairly deep ruts leading into a watery mud hole. I called it "Devils Gulch". It was slow and careful tire placement with plenty of coaching from the sideline. Then, not much further up, we hit the wall. Well, it looked like a wall to me. I thought Hell's Gate" would be appropriate. After much consulting and discussion we decided to turn back. However, Rob had a mighty go at it but the base was just too loose with deep rubble offering no traction. We felt that persisting would scour up the track and risk damage to our rigs.
Now the fun began. Having turned around further back, I was now at the front. We approached Devils Gulch and quickly found out there was no way up freestyle! I had to be winched up, over and around.
Then I turned around and eventually winched up nine cars, Dave winched up one from another angle. Kevin, a man with no fear, had a try at the hard way up. No go but it was hilarious to watch! Note that he was the only vehicle who made it up the gulch unassisted. It was a great winching clinic and many of us learned a lot about safety and technique. It's reassuring to know the club has such a high standard of care, safety and experience.
Around 1330 we arrived at the alternative destination, Point Glorious and had lunch in the warm sun with those glorious views.
From there, off the the Mapleton Pub for the much anticipated and mandatory rehydration process. A few beers were downed while recounting our day's events. Then air up and off home around 1700. We hope that our guests enjoyed the day and decide to become part of the family!"