Trail Damage Winners
Each year, one lucky Member either breaks the most or has the most dramatic, interesting, or crazy recovery. We reward that Member with a trophy and the prize of winning Trail Damage of the Year.
This was a good year, and no one really damaged much on their rigs. Brian had fun on Holy Cross when he got pretty stuck in French Creek, getting some good use out of his gas tank skid plate. He'd finish the day with a busted steering stabilizer. Nice!
The year started out with a bang when Roger had a V-Belt pulley go out in freezing temperatures on snowy Phantom Canyon. He had a tow truck get him back home, and it was still a decent day on the trail. Way to win it early, Roger!
We almost made it through 2020 without damage, but Matt won again this year when he found his PSC steering actuator bracket had separated from his frame on September 5th, while doing the Alta Lakes trail. He probably broke it somewhere else, and the breakage didn't even stop him from wheeling the rest of the trip. Not bad!
A rock jumped out and bit Niko on Chinaman Gulch on May 4th, denting and scraping his driver's side door and rear door hinges. Chinaman Gulch is one of those trails that dishes out trail damage as fast as you can take it. The Rock Pile is vicious on the line he took, but hopefully he'll be back later to try again!
Sean has won for the most trail damage this year, getting something each time he went out with the group. He dented his bumper and got a flat on Barbour Fork, and then got two flat tires on McClellan Mountain. He doesn't know for sure how he popped any of his tires, but it keeps happening anyway. Time for thicker sidewalls!
The best Trail Damage of 2017 goes to Monica running Chinaman Gulch on April 8th, 2017. She made it past the major obstacles and was on flat dirt when her power steering sector shaft broke in half. Without steering, she was towed through the Rock Garden and out of the trail with Frank and Quentin pushing her tires to steer.
The best Trail Damage of 2016 went to Matt running Big Water Canyon on May 14th, 2016. He couldn't have been much farther from civilization when he stopped, opened his hood, and pulled out a belt. His Jeep didn't want to run at that point, so Frank towed him out. It took about seven hours, but he made it back to civilization.
The best Trail Damage of 2015 goes to Frank running Green Ridge on September 12th, 2015. It was a bad year for mud, and the deepest, stickiest hole of mud pulled Frank in and wouldn't let him go until he broke something. His track bar mount paid the price, and he had to leave his Jeep out there until he could find someone with a trailer to help get it home. Your front tires need to point the same way, Frank!
The best Trail Damage of 2014 goes to Bob running Coney Flats on July 5th, 2014. Bob had an altercation with a gate back in the day that left his front fender pretty mangled, and the argument he had with a tree next to the trail didn't help matters. It's cosmetic, and a little bit of wrestling bent things out of the way so he could enjoy the rest of the day. Whoops!
The best Trail Damage of 2013 goes to Roger running Mount Rosa on June 29th, 2013. At least that's when Roger found out that his rear upper control arm mount had broken off of his Jeep's frame, taking the rear track bar with it. It's tough to drive without a rear track bar, but a few ratchet straps got him home. Maybe we should call the trail Upper Control Arm Mount Rosa?
The best Trail Damage of 2012 goes to Ben running Copper Ridge on October 21st, 2012. For his first time in Moab with his new Jeep, he managed to get in a morning fender bender with Walt in the hotel parking lot, and then he ripped his rear fender flare and wheel well off on a twisty hill of rocks before lunch. Add lots of scrapes to his new skid plates from the days before and the trip was a success!
The best Trail Damage of 2011 goes to Matt K. running Steel Bender on May 10th, 2011. It was day one of our spring Moab trip and his new front axle completely failed taking his locker, control arms, track bar and a shock with it. It was all under warranty but his vacation really didn't go as planned!
The best Trail Damage of 2010 goes to Terry running Iron Chest on August 21st, 2010. He bent his steering link into a nice, big curve in the Rock Garden and the fix took place in between boulders. The day before, his shock mount broke off on Baldwin Lake. That's a good couple of days!
The best Trail Damage of 2009 goes to Chad running Sidewinder on October 17th, 2009. He managed to make all of the tough obstacles look easy, only to break a rear axle shaft on the easiest pile of rocks. It took some effort to get off of the trail but he managed. It definitely could have been worse!
The best Trail Damage of 2008 goes to Robert running Cliff Hanger on May 29th, 2008. He gave it everything he had to get up the last obstacle on the way out, and his rear axle blew up. That ended up being the catalyst for Robert to completely overhaul his whole Jeep.
The best Trail Damage of 2007 goes to Don running Pritchett Canyon on May 19th, 2007. He got to the top of Rocker Knocker only to fall off the rocks above it, rolling his vehicle to the passenger's side and then the hood, coming to rest on the driver's side. No one was hurt and his Jeep ended up only with body damage. It was definitely an adventure!
The best Trail Damage of 2006 goes to Monica running Liberty Trail on May 14th, 2006. Her trail damage included a broken front u-joint and stub shaft, broken front ring and pinion gears, exploded power steering box, blown tire bead, broken spare tire carrier, ripped soft top, and a broken sway bar disconnect. That trail will find your weaknesses!
The best Trail Damage of 2005 goes to Eric B. running Pritchett Canyon on October 8th, 2005. Eric was on the bypass to the Rock Pile and almost finished with the trail when he managed to blow up a u-joint and flatten two tires all in one shot. That takes some skill!
The best Trail Damage of 2004 goes to Derek running Golden Spike on May 15th. On October 26, 2003, Body Snatcher claimed Derek's axle shaft and he had to leave his Grand Cherokee overnight. In 2004, a tree and dented and scraped his passenger side, then he lost a spring in the Golden Crack, and then Body Snatcher once again got him.
The strangest and most severe Trail Damage of 2003 was to Adam's TJ at Saran Wrap on July 12th, 2003. He got his front wheels lodged under the lip of a rock and when he tried to pop over it his back wheels kept going while his front wheels stayed put. The end result was a busted axle, but Adam put it back together enough to get back to town. Nice job!