Pacific Northwest 4 Wheel Drive Association’s 2011 Trail Jamboree – Day 2 of 5

Pacific Northwest 4 Wheel Drive Association’s 2011 Trail Jamboree – Day 2 of 5
Report and photos by Clay Graham / Eastern Washington Adventures

On Day 2 (Thursday July 7th, 2011) I got up very early in the morning to meet up with the Yakima Ridgerunners for their hosted 4×4 run at Rimrock. They set me up with Ken to ride in his CJ5. Around 6:30 AM we headed out. We took the FS1500 road over Bethel Ridge. We then ran a few miles down SR410 to Tieton Road. We ran Tieton Road, FS1000 and then up the ridge with a few turns to the 4W641 – Leaning Tree trailhead.

Kevin’s rig got a little hot on the trip. He let it cool down as everyone aired down their tires to trail pressure.

It wasn’t long before we hit the trail. The trail has a stump gatekeeper which was challenging to the rigs. Some a lot more than others. Ken’s rig got stuck on one of the stumps and had to be winched off.

On up the trail we came across a mud hole that was hard to get through. Next the trail climbed with some off camber here and there. The last part of that climb was very steep but the traction was good. We regrouped at the top so I got some pictures of a few of the other rigs coming up.

We moved on going up smaller climbs and drops with a lot of off camber every which way. Some places got tight in the trees with off camber. Ken’s CJ5 being so short wheel based it kept picking up the front tires. Parts were muddy enough where Ken slid off and had to winch. As I was out helping I lost my phone. I walked back looking for it as the rigs went through the off camber tight wet area. I walked by a Red Rubicon right after he did some sidewall damage to his front tire the was on the down hill side. It was a bad spot to change the tire so he headed on up the trail to an open spot where others were waiting at. I got back up to that area and found my phone had fell out on the floor of Ken’s Jeep. Lucky for me Ken has doors or the phone would have be gone on the off camber section. The Red Rubicon’s tires were lifted off the ground by Kevin’s Jeep winch hooked to the Rubicon’s cage. This was the first time I have ever seen this done. Once the spare was mounted, we moved on. Not to far up the trail Ken took a wrong turn and we found a small lake. We climbed back up the hill and found the group stopped just above the next hill climb. A TJ was having problems with a front hub. They worked on the TJ and the kids played in the snow. They got the hub on the TJ fixed and we moved on.

More up and down with off camber here and there. It was a nice somewhat easy ride until we came up on a creek crossing that was more like a waterfall. Ken had just flopped in this creek a few days earlier on the pre-run so I decided to cross on foot and take pictures in case he did it again. Well Ken did not give the camera a show this time. I was glad since it was my ride out of the mountains.

Here I think everything is mellow again, then I hear a rig running some Rs to get up a hill climb. I walked on over to see a very steep hill climb that has a boulder near the top with snow and mud in the trail around it. I decided to walk up this hill to get some pictures. The boulder got a few rigs. Some had to winch up to the top. Kevin’s winch stopped working after they had it hooked at the top of the climb. They rapped the cable around Kevin’s bumper and Joe Richie used his Toyota to winched Kevin’s CJ5 to the top. Todd was the last to come up. He broke a rear hub and had to winch up. They fixed Todd’s hub somehow as the rest of us had lunch.

The trail then opened up and had a lot of rocks we had to cross. The views were great. You could see Rimrock Lake and the other ridges around the area. The last part of 4W641 went back into the trees and the trail got tight again around where 4W651 came up.

Ken’s CJ5 had smoke coming from under the hood. We jumped out and got the hood up. His choke wire melted. We cut off the bare part and we were back on our way.

Just around the corner was the end of the 4W641. We turned up 4W661 and found another tight area and then off camber to the top of the hill. At the top was the Jeeping Nomads Meadow. We took a short break and regrouped. The views were great of Dome Peak, Divide Ridge, the Short and Dirty Ridge and beyond.

Once everyone was ready, we back track 4W661 and then ran it to the end were we hit FS1010. Everyone aired up there and then headed back to Jim Sprick Park for dinner. We ran the hi-way back around to save time.

Dinner was bought to you by Autonation/Town and Country.

Safety/Education Director Rob Stafford gave a Hi-Lift Jack class in the evening where people had a chance to win prizes donated by 4 Wheel Parts.

Here are some photos of the day:

The staging area at 6 AM.

Ken’s rig I got to ride in for the day.


On F1500 where is turns to gravel everyone let some air out.

Turning on US12 from FS1500.

At the Leaning Tree (4W641) Trail Head airing down more.

The Leaning Tree Gate Keeper was a challenge for many of the rigs on this run.

Josh makes it look easy.

Ken had some trouble getting through.

Ken ended up getting caught up on a Gate Keeper stump and had to winch.

This mud hole was a challenge to get out of.

The Rimrock off camber started not to far into the trail.

This was a long hill climb.

At the top of the long hill climb we watched the other rigs come up.

Moving on there were a lot of ups and downs.

The Leaning Trail went into the deep dark forest and the trail was a little wet from the resent snow melt off.

Ken slide off the trail and had to winch.

Ken moving again. You can see one of the front tires off the ground in this photo. This happened a lot with Ken’s short wheel base CJ5.

This rig got some side wall damage to the front tire. They winched the TJ over to change the tire.

Ken took a wrong turn and we came to a little lake.

We got turned around and found a Jeep being worked on just around the corner. One of the front hubs was not engaging.

With this special hub tool the rig was fixed in no time.

The convoy of rigs waiting in line.

Moving on.

A small water crossing.

On the pre-run Ken rolled his CJ5 in this creek.

I got out and walked across in case Ken Ken rolled again.

Right after the creek crossing there was a steep climb with a boulder sticking out. I walked up to get some pictures of the rigs coming up.

Near the boulder there was mud and snow on the trail making it hard to get around.

This TJ broke a rear hub.

At the top of the climb we had lunch.

Moving on.

looking down on Rimrock Lake.

Since the trail is not marked at every intersection we missed the turn. Here we are back tracking and that is why he lead rig is behind us.

Back on the right trail.

Ken’s CJ5 had smoke coming out of the hood. His chock wire was shorted out and melting.

Just around the bend the Leaning Tree Trail (4W641) ended. We turned to the left and up 4W661.

At Jeeping Nomads Meadow we stopped for a break and to regroup.

Here is looking at Dome Peak.

Looking at the Short and Dirty Ridge.

Heading back down 4W661.

At the 4W661 Trail Head everyone aired up to head back toward Jim Sprick Park.

We ran US12 to SR 410 to get back to Jim Sprick Park.

Back at Jim Sprick Park Autonation/Town and Country served dinner.

Jay Lawhon “Barney” was the DJ for Trail Jam.

Ways & Means Frogg McMains doing a great job.

Pam Remley and PR Chairperson Diana Stafford working hard.

Region 4 Junior Jeepers Ice cream.

Trail Host meeting.

Raffle Prizes.

Brad Hoyt (a member of The Hombres out of Region 2) had a real bad day.

Region 4 Junior Jeepers movie night.

Safety/Education Director Rob Stafford gave a Hi-Lift Jack class. All the people who took the class got a free raffle ticket.

After the class was over they drew two tickets and gave away the Hi-Lift Jack and the jack accessory kit.

Another fun day.


About Clay Graham

Photojournalist at Selah Sweets / Eastern Washington Adventures - Our mission is to help communities on the east side of the Cascades in Washington State by promoting responsible outdoor recreation, promoting tourism, and community involvement. Our vision is to see Eastern Washington as a destination point to do bring more things to do.
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