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theksmith

Sycamore Creek with the AZ-WJ's Facebook Group

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Sunday i lead a little run for the AZ-WJ's Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/azwjs/). the group was started by Offroad Passport member thatoneguyaz (Jonathan) and is admin'd by him and UnderlyVerbose (Jeff). i offered to pre-run and lead mainly so we could do some trails instead of just having a free-for-all in the Lower Sycamore wash all day.

 

from the meetup spot, it looked as though we'd be in for a rainy day.

 

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but the brief showers had stopped and the clouds were breaking by the time the first few other WJ's arrived.

 

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we had a quick driver meeting where i gave an overview of the planned routes and advised everyone to air-down a bit even if they were on street tires (pic below was posted on Facebook by Jonathan).

 

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instead of the usual graded road, we ran a short 2wd trail down to the "main wash" (second pic below also from Facebook).

 

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down in the wash we took a break to chat and line up the dubs for a group shot. there were 13 WJ's and 1 ZJ, ranging from no lift to fully tricked out 6" lifts.

 

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once play-time was over, a few rigs exited via the graded road back to Bush Hwy while the rest of us headed for a trail. a quick potty stop turned into lunch at one of the side washes not to far from to "The Squeeze" area (another Facebook pic below):

 

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we looped back into the hills past the area known as the old quartz mine and up some fairly steep decomposing granite terrain (where everyone did just fine). we had a few diff-smacks and skid scrapes while meandering back down towards the big wash via dirt trails strewn with little boulders - but no dents or leaks! we popped out near the main wash yet again, just across from the Widowmaker obstacle. a few more rigs that wanted to be home before too late headed out.

 

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the remainder of us (i think 6) headed back into the hills to make an even larger loop, past a large dry double tank, to the Upper Sycamore area (aka Sugarloaf Mountain). everyone did great with another few steep rocky, rutted hills. we only had one tow-rope deployment when someone slid off their line and then over-estimated their clearance a bit ;)

 

the final approach to Sugarloaf was more of the windy decomposing granite hills and then some high-speed wash runs. the remainder of the pics below were taken from various posts on Facebook.

 

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at the exit to Sugarloaf, one guy headed across the road to 4 Peaks (The Rolls OHV area), planning to visit the lake and exit via Butcher Jones. the last of us aired up at the staging area and said our goodbyes.

 

to be honest i was little worried about leading a run with such a diverse set of rig capabilities and unknown experience levels for the drivers, but everything went smoothly and i had a great time - i'm pretty sure everyone did... already looking forward to the next AZ station wagon run!

 

thanks to UnderlyVerbose for tail-gunning all day and to both him and thatoneguyaz for setting up the run (and the group). sorry to everyone who's name i forgot - there were a lot of new faces!

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