This day didn't turn out anything like what we had planned. We were hoping to run the Crystal Geyser trail with Tenmile Wash in the middle. We did do the first section of Crystal Geyser (we did the majority of it on November 1st, so look for the trip report on that day instead) and we finished Tenmile Wash, but that's all we managed to accomplish. Tenmile Wash ended up being a much more difficult trail than what we'd thought it was going to be.
When we got started, Mike S. and Roger were also with us. We worked our way through the sand, weaving through the trees, and it was pretty fun. It was actually very relaxing, with such a smooth trail.
We came to a tight spot where we all had to drive up on the side a little bit to get through it. That was the only place that was too tight, though, so that was good.
We passed the Midway Exit, planning on going out that way later. Then the trail got more curvy and the steep walls of the canyon got closer and closer.
We didn't realize it at first, when we got to the obstacle. We were up above it, headed for the stacked rocks that are probably only used by dirtbikes. We got out and wandered around, and luckily we saw the route we would take instead.
We had no idea how deep the water was. It was murky and still, just a big area of standing water. Jeffrey found a long stick and he started poking into the water, trying to figure out how deep it was. It seemed like it wasn't too deep, so that became our plan. It was a much better one than going down the stacked rocks.
Mike S. actually went through the water first. He went down the steps and through the rocky section, and then cautiously went through the water. It was fairly deep, but not a big deal at all. The rest of us followed.
When Monica was coming down the steps, Jeffrey noticed that her sway bar wasn't attached to the disconnect pin on one side. In fact, the whole pin was gone. Amazingly, Jeffrey found it a few yards behind her in the dirt. He put it back on, but it was the start of Monica's troubles for the day.
When we got to the dry, wide area of the obstacle, we all got out to check out the next part. It was definitely going to be rough. We obviously couldn't go through the narrow part, so we were stuck going down through the rocks and in the water.
Monica wanted to try it, so we all agreed to see how that went before anyone else went through. It was definitely twisty and fun, and challenging to get through. She had the most trouble climbing up the sandy section just after the rocks, with wet tires. After that, she was through the obstacle.
Michael came through next, taking the same line at the start over the big rocks. After the second set of rocks, though, he stayed in the water and found a much easier route through it, avoiding the sandy climb that gave Monica troubles.
Jeffrey was next, trying a new line through it. He skipped the bigger rocks at the start, carefully working his way through the water and around the big rock in the middle. He narrowly missed the side of the canyon a few times, but he didn't hit anything. For the rest of the obstacle, he followed Michael's line.
Mike S. and Roger decided to turn around at that point, unfortunately, deciding that the bigger section of the obstacle was too much with the long Moab trip still ahead of us. Our little group turned into two smaller groups at that point, and we hoped to meet with them later. Unfortunately, we wouldn't see them again until we were back at the condo.
The three of us continued on, and the trail got much tighter and more obnoxious. We were practically driving through trees that reached out into the trail. Monica and Jeffrey both ended up with spider bites, probably from spiders that came into their Jeeps at this point along with all of the leaves and twigs that made their ways in.
The muddy section at the end was totally dry and easy, and then we were at the river. It felt so isolated. We even saw a deer on the way there. The river was very peaceful. There were lots of footprints and tracks from a dog, and we figured that someone had camped there and really explored the area. We wished we had the time.
We started back, making our way through the trees again. We were all glad to see the obstacle again, because it meant we'd have a bit more room on the trail.
Monica went through first, trying a few times to make it up the big rocks at the start of the second half. With wet tires and the crazy line she needed to take, it just wouldn't work. The only other way was to sneak around the big rock. It was difficult to get lined up, but then she made it through without any body damage.
Jeffrey came through next, snaking through the water and making it all look very easy. Michael came through last, also making it look very easy. We stopped there for a minute, happy to be through the worst of it.
We continued on, and Michael had a bit of bad luck. The last big rock moved out from underneath his Jeep, and suddenly he was very stuck. In addition, his fan was hitting the fan shroud and making a huge noise. He couldn't go forward or backward. It looked like he really needed to go backward, so we used a Hi-Lift and lots of rock stacking to try to get him back off the rock. It didn't work.
As a last resort, he winched off of Jeffrey to pull himself forward instead. More rock stacking needed to happen first. Luckily, the rocks moved as they needed to move and he got through with only a few scrapes. Also, his fan noise stopped.
Monica and Jeffrey found out that there were quite a few sand fleas in the area, and both of them were rewarded with lots of bites on their legs. Michael was wearing jeans and he escaped them, thankfully.
We worked our way out of the obstacle and we were happy to be on our way. The sun was definitely going down. We stopped to enjoy the last bit of light and that's when Monica noticed that her sway bar disconnect pin was gone, nowhere to be found. A few zip ties fixed that issue.
She also noticed that one of her turn signal lamps was gone, with a bare bulb hanging out. However, the most upsetting thing was that her antenna Barbie was also gone. She had made it through the whole year, only to fall off at the end of the season. She also took the CB antenna adjustment screw with her, but Monica seemed to have good reception and transmission anyway.
We got to the Midway Exit in the last of the light. We stopped to open and close the gate in the middle of the exit, and Jeffrey found Monica's other turn signal lamp on the ground. So the trail claimed both of them.
We got out to the main road and took the easy roads out. What a crazy day!