At the junction between Poison Spider Mesa and Golden Spike, Mike took his Jeep back from Gary and Gary switched to the photographer and passenger roles. The run was going very smoothly and we were making good time.
We all made it through the Launch Pad with no issues and then got to the Witch's Crotch. Mike opted to skip the obstacle and so did Walt, but Jeff decided that when in Moab you need to do the Moab thing. Following Gary's instructions, Jeff lined up on the obstacle and started through. Jeff went ridiculously slow through the obstacle but once the front of his jeep started coming down on the way out of it he had a huge smile on his face.
We continued along the trail and went up Skyline Drive and stopped at the top to take in the view. Below us we saw a buggy bee-lining across the slick rock and joining up with the trail at the bottom side of Skyline Drive. We descended the hill and came around the corner only to find the buggy pulled of the road with a transfer case that was low on fluid and overheating. Mike had an extra bottle of gear oil in his Jeep and gave it to the buggy's driver. We made sure he could continue along on his way and let him take off ahead of us into the Washtub.
Once we were in the Washtub, Mike led us through the series of water holes and up and over the steps to head up toward the overlook at the top of the canyon. Mike and Walt made it through with no problem. Jeff, on the other hand, started in to the Washtub's first big hole and flexed just right and then dropped quickly into the tub. He went fast enough so that his rear traction bar scissored through his fuel line. His Jeep died and was stuck in the Washtub. With everyone's help, Walt, Gary and Mike were able to winch the dead Jeep out of the obstacle far enough to get underneath it without having to lay in the water. From the appearance of the fuel line it looked like the connector was the piece that was cut and that there was a small bit of it left in the fuel line. After pulling on the plastic piece that was in the rubber line for a while enough of it had come out that the rubber tube was able to be hose clamped to the metal fuel line that ran underneath the Jeep's tub.
Jeff was able to drive up the remainder of the obstacle at which point the fuel line ruptured again and he was unable to go any further. The group finally had to drop the fuel tank half way and disconnect the old fuel line. It was at this point that it was discovered that his Jeep's fuel lines consisted of plastic tubing coated in a rubber sheath. These lines are not patchable -- you have to fully replace the line. Once we discovered that we only needed a piece of 5/8" rubber tubing we started to look for a piece of tubing. Naturally, none of us had any. We had sent Walt ahead to try and radio the other group on Rusty Nail but he had no luck so he left cell phone messages for the other group letting them know we needed tubing. After 3.5 hours of field repair attempts the buggy driver from earlier in the day found us again and stopped to help. We were in luck, and Mike's good trail karma from earlier that day paid off. The buggy driver had a piece of 5/8" rubber hose that was the perfect length. We thanked him greatly and about 20 minutes later we were back on our way.
When we got to the Golden Crack we had discovered that the optional rock way on the left to get across had been pulled down and was spanning the crack. We all made it through the crack at the usual spot with no issues and after that called Monica to check in with them to see where they were on Rusty Nail. It turned out that they had some major trail damage and had to call off their run before finishing it.
After the Golden Crack we continued on and completed the Golden Stairs with no problems. Jeff decided he wanted to try Double Whammy since he was trying everything. He was unable to do it, but later found out when looking at the pictures that if he had been further over to the right then he would have had no issues with it due to the fact he has a longer wheelbase. He had been trying the buggy line.
The group got to Body Snatcher and Mike walked right through it with no issues. Then Jeff found out that the obstacle is a lot harder with a longer wheelbase. Walt then tried and made it up without issues.
Reports from Other Days: 11
Use the arrows or dots to flip through the previews of the other reports for Golden Spike. Click one of them to read more and see all of the photos from that day.