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Unread 08-25-2008, 01:23 PM   #1
97kurt
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Default Niagara Rim Trail report 8/23/2008

So we had a little fun this weekend and ran the Niagara rim trail in northern California. There were 4 trucks on this trip (JohnD,Bulldog,Joel and myself). I will let someone else post the GPS coordinates.

We setup base camp for the two nights at the OHV campsite (thanks John for grabbing the spots).


This was one of the harder trails I had ever done but we managed to get through it without any major damage / hang ups. This was due to some good spotting, lots of armor and just taking our time. This was also the first run that I had done with out using a CB, we stayed on 2M the entire time.

Anyways... blah blah blah, here are the pics.


1st obstacle (no way out hill). Very steep, lots of rocks



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Unread 08-25-2008, 01:24 PM   #2
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[IMG][/IMG]

This was a very very steep grade with loose soil and two giant rocks you had to squeeze through.
The only way to back up this will is to be winched up from someone at the top. A group of pirate4x4 trucks were going down this when we got there. They had to winch one of their trucks back up the hill to get a better line.

I got to go first. (drum brakes suck!!!)





Name says it all






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Unread 08-25-2008, 01:29 PM   #3
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sweet!! ....more pics!!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 01:50 PM   #4
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Bitchin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 02:06 PM   #5
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Default some pictures







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Unread 08-25-2008, 02:07 PM   #6
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Unread 08-25-2008, 02:07 PM   #7
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Unread 08-25-2008, 02:14 PM   #8
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I didn't take many pictures but I've got some good video coming soon..

Niagara Rim Trail was a pretty cool trail. All of the trail signs were pretty spot on for the obstacles following. I ended up loosing a tire coming down hard brake hill. Popped pretty good coming down off a rock onto another.

Andries still needs to figure out how to use his truck backed out of one obstacle because he couldn't figure out how to turn on his lockers (the light means they're on not off!)

The Niagara OHV campsite was a nice site, trash cans, vault toilet, and not many people.

Sunday, Andries and I did the Eagle Peak Trail. Pretty easy overall, just lots of stray rocks and volcanic rock. I was taking it easy on that trail due to not having a spare anymore. Finished up the trail and we were on our way home around noon.

All in all a great trip!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 02:39 PM   #9
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Nice pictures!!!!! Need more!!!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 03:25 PM   #10
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Very cool pix!!!

I didn't take a single pic or second of video (Probably cause I was a bit busy hiking up and down too much). So I guess I will add some blah blah. I will add the GPS trails, waypoints and routes later in the GPS section.

Hopefully this is the first of a number of Sierra Trails scouting trips, where we can get a first hand feel (and real trail tracks of the mountains). John went out Thursday and got 2 nice campsites at the Niagara OHV campsite. It is a little further into the forest, so less traffic and quieter. Friday Joel and Kurt beat me to the campsite. Both Joel and I were running APRS so we could see each other's progress towards the campsite, very cool feature.

I marked an old turn off to the campsite, which seemingly haven’t been used in years. So everyone seems to get a bonus trail on the way to the campsite, as it was littered with rocks, holes, ditches and fallen trees. Made for interesting driving to get to the camp itself.

After setting up camp Friday we had the usual fare of great food, drink and banter around the campfire. Saturday morning we had breakfast and set out to run the complete Niagara Rim Trail from start to finish, and enjoy some of the scenic spots. Once you turn off the main road onto the trail you are welcomed by a nice drop-off a hundred or so yards in. Then it is followed by No Way out hill, where you have the choice of a hard climb with fairly large rocks and lots of loose soil, or an even harder optional climb. I tried the optional climb, but had to back down as I kept messing with my lockers and didn’t realize they were off when I thought they were on. Time to go to button and control school for me

We walked most of the climb to figure out the lines as there are continuous obstacles with soft soil that was dug up pretty bad in spots. This trail really benefits trucks with a narrower track and shorter wheelbase. It took us a bit of time to get all the trucks up the hill, but we weren’t in a real rush and enjoyed the scenery.

Once at the top we let a group of very build buggies, Jeeps, full size truggies and even a 4Runner pass. Only to discover we had to wait for them at the next obstacle, Hard Brake Hill. A Jeep almost slipped and rolled of the side of the trail towards Hard Brake Hill, and the 4Runner got stuck in the wedge on the way down the hill. As said above they had tow inch it up to be abel to take a different line. Helped us to spot the right lines though. The hill is pretty steep, but even worse the drop is very soft and deep soil. So traction is limited. Part way down there is wedge between 2 large rocks. Kurt was worried about his brakes so we let him go first, so we can winch him down if needs be. Turned out to be just fine as he fitted perfectly between the rocks. John was next and he had to just work over a little of one rock. Next was Joel, which had the largest challenge due the wider front track. I spotted him over the one rock on the side. He was almost through when the front passenger tire kicked out a large boulder, which caused that tire to slip down and cut the sidewall on the other lava rocks. So as his tire was blowing out air I had to run for my life with a large rock rolling down the hill at me (somehow it seems everyone wants to kill me on the trail John and Mark wants to drive over me and Joel with a rock). Joel then spotted me down without incident.

Quick tire swap by Kurt and we were on our way. Sidewall Suicide, Lions Butt and the Rock Pile are 3 other obstacles on the trial, but both have bypasses. I’m still not sure if we actually went and played at the real Lion’s Butt, but anyhow. We gave Rock Pile a look and decided against it for this round. Joel gave Sidewall Suicide a pass due to lack of a spare and already loosing a sidewall.

The rest of the trail got pretty tight between trees at times. Unfortunately we started running out of time to hike to Double Dome rock and drive to the radio tower. We didn’t want to get back to camp in the dark and we needed some vitamin T.

Saturday night we had a good time and I actually was responsible (sort of) for once.

Sunday Kurt and John headed home early, while Joel and I went out to Eagle Peak. It was a nice scenic drive with a few rocks at times, and some soft soil climbs around fallen trees. We gave the last ¼ mile or so hike a miss to the peak itself. Definitely need to do that sometime. Can camp around Pinecrest and then do the scenic trails to the West of Niagara sometime.
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Unread 08-25-2008, 03:28 PM   #11
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I need to go back to button and 4WD control school after my last 2 trips. Locker buttons are not that hard, but sometimes you never know

On Joel’s truck we had to figure out the wider front track and rear tire placement. Just a bit of a learning curve as the rear tires are not really visible, nor their line from the front, and the placement was important. Initially we hit a few rocks, but once we understood how to pick lines for it got much easier. It does track a bit differently that a normal 4Runner, thus requiring slightly different lines in places. The rear shock mounts turned out to be much of a non issue, just one of those things you have to check. He needs to work on his tire to trail ratio

John was the only one without a ham and his CB broke, so we slotted him between Joel and Kurt. He drove smooth and easy. His life was partly better due to us knowing the lines better and strategic placement of rocks in a few trouble spots, but his throttle management was really good (and needed since he didn’t have lockers).

Kurt had a big advantage with his narrower track, which allowed really good tire placement. He seems to like it hard and fast, not slow and easy (we found out why at the Sidewall Suicide obstacle )

Thx to everyone who participated, it was a blast as always.
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Unread 08-25-2008, 03:34 PM   #12
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Wow, great trip thanks guys.. Great meeting up and partying.. My pics are coming up... where to next??
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Unread 08-25-2008, 04:25 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnD View Post
Wow, great trip thanks guys.. Great meeting up and partying.. My pics are coming up... where to next??


Here: http://www.toyota120.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3726

And HERE:
http://www.toyota120.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3667


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Unread 08-25-2008, 05:53 PM   #14
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first time I've seen Kurt's rear bumper .....very sweet!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 06:07 PM   #15
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Looks like a super trip. I love the mountain scenery. I am getting tired of the desert. Keep the pictures coming! I am glad to hear the APRS system was fun for you guys and helped you to track each other.
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Unread 08-25-2008, 06:16 PM   #16
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Tracking you guys on APRS was interesting - brought up more questions of course (roll eyes).

How did the Nittos cope with the trails.
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Unread 08-25-2008, 06:23 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by expat View Post
How did the Nittos cope with the trails.
Air'd mine down to 20psi, I think Joel went to 18 on his. I still remain impressed with them. Hopefully I can test them in some snow this winter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crozhawk
first time I've seen Kurt's rear bumper .....very sweet!
What that old thing?? It was my attempt to copy BruceTS 3 years ago, not my best work but its held up pretty good.
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Unread 08-25-2008, 06:24 PM   #18
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Pics:






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Unread 08-25-2008, 07:08 PM   #19
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Cool, more great pictures!!!!
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Unread 08-25-2008, 08:39 PM   #20
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Very cool


Hurry up with that video Joel!
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