Friday, June 6, 2014

A Ravine, A Rim, and Revenge!

Portal RV Resort
Moab, UT
May 31, June 1, June 5, 2014

Spanish Valley Drive towards Strike Ravine

It has been  busy in Moab...just the way we like it with good friends and good trails.

A ravine...a small narrow steep-sided valley that is larger than a gully and smaller than a canyon that is usually worn by running water.

Strike Ravine ranks 7th out of 20 on the difficult trails list in the Moab Backroads and 4-Wheel Drive Trails guide.

Sites along the way...

Then the fun really began...

There were 7 vehicles in our group...the leader for the day was Dee in her buggy, followed by Larry in a Toyota Tacoma, Dale and Rolande in their buggy and Scott and Chris in their modified Rubicon and Pearl behind them. Following us were Ron and Sharry in a beefed up 2 door similar to Pearl and the tail-gunner was David and Lois driving their totally modified jeep (it has a hemi) with passengers Martin and Jan.

The trail is described as "Difficult. Steep, rocky climbs and descents sandwiched between easy and moderate stretches." 


I couldn't help but chuckle when I saw this this male posturing?
Scott maneuvering one of the many obstacles...

Dale made the tight squeeze look easy...

Dee...a great spotter. It amazes me how she knows these trails like the back of her hand.

There is a lot of work maintaining these trails. Its not all play. Volunteers are always needed. We have our name on the list and hope to be called.

Isn't he beautiful? Dee spotted 5 of these gold collared lizards on the trail and using the CB pointed them out to the team. They were all definitely in posing mode.
Dale's buggy performed flawlessly...
Aside from the challenge and the up close and personal experience with nature, the camaraderie between fellow jeepers is special.

A rim...the upper or outer edge, border, margin, or brink of an object. Moab Rim is not for Pearl. This challenging trail ranks 17th out of 20 on the difficult list. We were quite happy when Dee invited us to join her for the day as we had never had a buggy adventure.
Moab Rim is located on the left off Kane Creek Road. Right from the get-go there were beautiful views of the Colorado River...which has overflowed its banks a little.

 The guide describes this trail as...Difficult. Trail wastes no time getting started. The first mile scares the wits out of most people. A long climb of tight, tippy and extremely difficult ledges.

Once on the rim, we were treated to miles and miles of scenic views...

Our lunch stop...

Meet Zuni...his people parents are Scott and Chris.
 On the return trip, there is a descent on a very narrow section of trail into a sandy valley. Sand Hill is an optional obstacle...only Dave tried it with his hemi as tremendous horsepower is required... he made the short hill look easy, but the bigger one can't be checked off his list yet.

Z-Turn is the first and last big obstacle on this trail...
Dave entering the Z-Turn...

A few hours later...Dave exiting the Z-Turn. His excellent driving skills and capable 4-wheel machine saved the day!

Revenge...payback, retribution, retaliation, or vengeance...

Hell's Revenge ranks 10th out of 20 on the difficult list and is described as...Difficult. Dangerously steep climbs and descents over sandstone domes and ledges.


Pearl did this trail last year with stock gears and no lockers...quite a memory! This year's revenge, however, was made easier as we now have lower gears and front and back lockers.

The trail is well marked with black tire marks, yellow flame symbols and brown signs.

Looking up...

Looking down...

There are several intimidating obstacles on this trail...Hell's Gate being one of them. I got to ride up it with Dee in her buggy. Totally awesome...nobody did Escalator...and Pearl was the only taker in Wash Tub.

Unlike last year, Pearl crawled right over Tip-Over Challenge and no one got stuck on the boulders as we exited back to Sand Flats Road.

Today is a much needed rest day. Well, after the laundry is done and Joe installs a new spare tire carrier for Pearl. The puppies are happy to have us here and I am sure extra play time at the park is on their agenda after it cools off this afternoon. I took this picture thru the screen door the other day...its supper time for the Tan Clan. Aren't they waiting patiently?

Until next time, take care and


happy trails!


  1. Wow, what amazing trails! Reminds me of my dune buggy days...only on steroids! We chose to go with a truck and 5th wheel...but it sure would be fin to have a Jeep!

    1. Thanks Lisa! If we are ever in Moab at the same time, we would be glad to have you and Hans join us for a ride. It is way fun!

  2. You got some awesome photos, Gay! You sure are getting really brave out careful! But it looked like a tone of fun with some great people. Glad you are able to take advantage of the mods you had done last year on Pearl. Pearl was smart to stay home for that one ride!! Can't wait for your next big challenge:)

    1. Pearl has done great Pam. There aren't too many 2 door, manual Jeeps on the trails...sure puts a smile on our face to crawl along with some of the "big boys". It's time we hit the trail on foot...but boy is it hot! Can't wait to do Fisher Towers and Defil's Garden.

  3. What a trail! what a thrill !and what a scenery! Believe me every time I see all the stunning scenery I wished we could hurry up and take Betsy there. In time, in time…
    I enjoyed the ride Gay as always, now I can relax the ride is over.

    1. That's too funny MonaLiza. Just remember...we crawl very slowly!

  4. Any trail that is described as difficult, steep and rocky is certainly not one I'd be willing to take. However, looks like the scenery was gorgeous.

    1. It's not as bad as it sounds most of the time. It's for sure we would never venture out alone on any of those trails though. Each trail is rated by the most difficult section of the trail so most only have small sections that are difficult. It's really pretty Jeri...

  5. Wow that sure was a fun day, and just amazing what the proper vehicles can do there. Thanks for taking us along on this journey.

    1. It was a great weekend George! Lots of "wahoos"!

  6. All I can say is WOW! I caught myself holding my breath looking at & reading about this trail trek. It's a wonder you don't break an axle or tip over. But I have to agree, the view from the top is magnificent. I am amazed by all the greenery in a place I expected to be barren. Happy trails to you, Joe & Pearl.

    1. That's funny Gayle...I catch myself holding my breath too. We did upgrade to stronger axles and lower gears just last week. Moab is one of our favorite places...lots to do here!

    2. So much fun - I love your pictures! Reminds of of past days when I used to go Jeeping with a friend - the Rubicon and other Jeep trips in California and Nevada. I loved it - but I wasn't driving. Once we did the Rubicon in an old military jeep - no seat belts, no shocks, bare bones metal. I was holding on for dear life at times. (I think that Jeep was against the rules, but he worked the event.) Such excitement, and it was always amazing what those Jeeps could do. Lucky you! What beautiful scenery. :)

    3. Oh you lucky girl.....I would love to do the Rubicon! Just between us Barbara, I have no intention of driving either. I am getting much better at spotting and helping though. My favorite part of these off road trails...beside the watching the tires. It is amazing how they just crawl over anything!