Walker Welcome Run Oct 2021

This is our opportunity for a “do-over”. Six months ago, virtually to the day (on 4/24/2021), we made our first attempt at a Welcome Run for our new members. As you may recall, that Welcome Run was effectively hijacked and taken away even before we got to the south gate by the Timber Tamer Trail where we were beseeched by a motorcyclist to help with his friend who was injured after crashing his motorcycle at the top of the Lower Timber Tamer Trail. Being the socially responsible Tamers we are, we went to his assistance, and stayed with him until an ambulance got there—about 2½ hours later. That meant we essentially lost most of our opportunity to actually do our Welcome Run where we had planned to share 4-wheeling skills with our newest members and candidates. Things have been busy enough that it took us another 6 months to schedule another Welcome Run—and this time we weren’t kidnapped by any emergencies to help with!

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Operation Shore Patrol Sep 2021

OPERATION SHORE PATROL 50TH ANNIVERSARY

Operation Shore Patrol, (OSP), is a bit of a passion of mine, as I love the ocean. Planning this event typically starts for me in the spring, and doesn’t finish up until the week or so after the event. It begins with asking for volunteers, contacting the campground and vendors, and moves outwards from there.

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Montana Aug 2021

It was like any other morning really, but it was not. Eddy was going to make a new friend today. It had been a hot night and the temperature in the morning was still warm. Eddy had spent the morning down by the Clearwater River just north of Kamiah with 4 of his friends. Around mid-morning Eddy’s friends thought it would be a good idea to explore across the road. Three of Eddys friends crossed before him. Eddy who is not that bright decided he would cross too. Then he saw someone coming toward him. This will be my new friend he thought. After all he is very friendly. Eddy thought to himself how he would introduce himself and ran towards his new friend. Eddy’s new friend was coming very fast. At the last-minute Eddy changed his mind and switched directions. It was too late. Unfortunately for Eddy his new friend was a steel bumper traveling at 60MPH. Rest in peace Eddy, you will be missed.

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All Jeep Show Jul 2021

Well, I agreed to head things up for a booth representing the Timber Tamers (and PNW4WDA Region 1) at the 2021 Jeepcast.com All Jeep Show. As it turned out, this was a pretty good event to attend. It was planned as a big event that this year would celebrate not only Jeeps, but also the lifting of the COVID restrictions that had been in place for something like 17 months! It was well-advertised on Facebook as well as word-of-mouth, and on Facebook something like 1500 people had registered at least interest if not commitment to attend! (In addition, to that, more than 350 Jeeps registered to participate in the show-and-shine competition!)

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Colockum Pass Jun 2021

There is one thing for certain you can count on in this life – and that is – NOTHING – is for certain. My 20+ years in this club (and my 60+ year in this life) there is always a surprise waiting around the corner.

Part the First – Howdy-Doos and Road Time

Saturday was one LOVELY day to do anything – and it dawned brightly at the smokestack in downtown Monroe, the appointed meeting place for the Tamers to start this adventure. Mary and I pulled into quite the crowd of Tamers and friends already milling around. Once parked – we had to discharge the first order of business. At the monthly meeting a few days previous, I got the brilliant idea (brilliant? Just ask me – I’ll tell you!) to bake some homemade brownies and auction them off as a little club fundraiser and something different to do for the month. The bids started at $20 – and after a number of minutes of some spirited back and forth bidding on them – Mihai issued the winning bid – of $50!!! And so it was my task to make sure the brownies were delivered, which Mihai then handed back to me – so that they could be shared around – and further making sure Gary Miller got the first bite. Once he wanders off with a look of supreme satisfaction on his face – I start wandering the crowd with my yellow pad in one hand and brownies in the other – getting names and trying to make out who is who on the trip – because you know – the first few years in the club – you mainly know folks by what they drive – and generally after few years – you start putting names and faces with rigs to make sense of it all. So I’m in this process – when a somewhat familiar face pokes out from around behind someone – saying, “Hey Moose – do you remember me?” (Surprise the first.) I look – and I don’t want to be mistaken – but upon saying – “OMG – are you Jess?” And yes – IT WAS! Jess – or JR as we always called him – was in the house with his lovely wife Christina – and WAY older kids than I think I’d seen in a long, long time. Jess was in the club WAY back when – when I was in my pup days with the Tamers – back when I drove a CJ that was open-open with way-too-tall gears and sporting a street Holley that wouldn’t run worth a hoot up a hill. That means the last time I’d seen him and Christina was like – 18 years previous? And somehow – his red hair is still red. (While my brown hair is now gone AWOL….) But what a treat to see them again! They were all ready to wheel in limo style in a built LJ.

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Green Dot May 2021

Having a Blast Out of Kittitas!
(Tamers 5/22/2021 tipping toeing through the green dots…)

I suppose there are some in the Tamers, used to more (ahem) “vigorous” wheeling (trees, mud, big rocks to climb, body damage, rolls, etc.) might view the green dot roads as somewhat tame. (which – I don’t see the problem – we are Tame-ers – after all…) But – this day we did have all of the requisite parts and pieces of a trail run – use of 4WD, AND low range; sidewalls gashed out, PNW pinstriping and general trail rash, 2 rigs needing winching to avoid a memorable roll down an open mountainside – and probably one last bunch of hillclimbs on an open-faced ridge trail that probably caused some folks some degree of VRI. (That’s Vinyl Rectal Inversion – where your butt cheeks become a traction aid clamping onto your seat covers, willing you secure attachment to if not terra firma – at least terra-seata….

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Walker Valley Apr 2021

The Timber Tamers have been really blessed over the past couple of months to have something like 8 new people contact us with an interest in joining our 4-wheeling club. And, we have been offering an opportunity to mentor people new to wheeling to help them develop experience and skills in 4-wheeling so they can enjoy themselves more fully and more quickly. About a week and a half ago, the BOD developed an idea of holding a trail run to help the newer folks have this opportunity in a more structured setting rather than just “letting it happen” however and whenever. So, at our meeting this month we proposed to the membership having a “Welcome Run” to do just this, which everyone thought was a good idea—and we planned it for today!

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Cumberland/Finney Creek Pass Mar 2021

I had been researching areas behind Walker Valley for scenic routes and ways but I was finding everything closed off by gate after gate. One evening while watching YouTube I saw a video about Cumberland Pass and when I researched a little more found there was no gate. FINALLY!!! Taking a look at the maps a little more they showed the route ending at Segelson Sno Park or Finney Creek Sno Park. I am thinking I have a snow run.

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Beckler Dec 2020

In recent years the hang over run has been the most attended run of the year. We normally have between 20 and 30 rigs on the hill. This year was no exception. This year however would be different. With this many rigs we clog up the trail and make it hard for others. As a result this year we decided to hold a night run.

The meet up location was at 7 sharp with a full tank of gas. Gary took a group up toward the staging area, Chris took the trailers to the ranger station and I took the last group. The road to the staging area had a little snow on it which was fun. After consulting with a few board members we decided to break the group into 3 groups. The heaviest built rigs would head up the hill, another group would follow them and lastly I would lead a group up the river valley and to the top of a low level pass. Considering how many people we had this worked pretty well.

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Tonga Tree Run Dec 2020

I started off the day with hitting the alarm clock. I work a swing shift schedule so I usually don’t even know what that dang thing sounds like.
I got my coffee and took my time getting ready. I should have plenty of time.
Well I guess once I got in behind a guy speeding up then slowing down and speeding up and slowing down. Then stopping to top off fuel.
I got to the staging are right at 10am on the dot… Oops

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Pyramid Pass Nov 2020

Joe and I have been talking about running Pyramid pass FS70. For anyone who does not know Pyramid pass is just north of Naches pass. While planning for the run I setup google maps on my tablet. The funny thing is that google maps knows that highway 410 is closed and suggested that I drive over Fs70 instead. Can you imagine getting told by your GPS to go over a pass that is not passable by cars. That would not be good.

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Reiter Nov 2020

The day was predicted to have sunshine, although to be cool. Well, the weatherman was half right—it was actually overcast with some fog/low clouds and late in the day there was a slight bit of rain, but at it was a bit cold.

Two days prior, Troy Messick announced over our new Tamers e-mail list that he was planning to go to Reiter and invited whoever wanted to join him. Since it had been at least 2 months since I’d actually used my lockers, I immediately said I’d be there! Shortly afterward, Travis Butterfield also popped-up on-line and said he’d be there, too! So, at 9:00 AM we all met at the parking area at Reiter and aired down—Troy in his blue TJ on 35s, Travis in his red JKUR also on 35s, and me in my white JKR on 37s. All of us are locked in both axles, so we were looking forward to a good day! Since we all had been suffering from “Covid Incarceration”, we jaw-jacked for a while as we aired-down.

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Gallagher Head-Hawkins Ridge Oct 2020

I really wanted to get out to Gallagher Head before it closed for the year, so I threw it out to the club, and it turned out that many others wanted the same thing! Travis in his red JKU, John and Jenny (personal friends of ours from Ferndale) in their trailered JKU “Lil Donkey”, and Ryan and I in our JKU – recently christened “Raven” – met up at a Shell in Bothell at 6:45 AM and caravanned to the Safeway in North Bend. There we met up with Dave and his lil TJ that can, Curt and Wendy in their JKU, Joe in his TJ, Rick in his JKU, Chaz in his Toyota Land Cruiser, and Mihai in his JK. At 8:00 AM, we set off for the Shell off of Bullfrog Road near Cle Elum. Although the weather was rainy and overcast on the West side of Snoqualmie pass, we got clear skies and sun as we came over the pass and the day wore on. At the Shell off of Bullfrog Road we met up with Cosmin in his JL and a friend of Joe’s named JR (rumored to be an old time Tamer?) in his LJ. John and Jenny dropped their trailer and those that needed to fuel up. Now we were 11 rigs and we caravanned to the staging area. Quite a large group!

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Gallagher Head Lake Aug 2020

Gallagher Head Lake run – by the numbers….

8:30 AM Saturday – the time to meet.

I-90 – the route east.

9 – rigs on the trail – (and by subset -)
1 – YJ – latest moniker “Cowbell Dave” (fresh from a roll to the side on the Naches!)
1 – TJ – Moose, Mary, and Hunter
1 – LJ – Tammy and Dave
1 – 2dr JK – John – Rock Doc
5 – 4 dr JK – Rudy; Bruce and Debbie; Cindy and Jack; Cosmin and Alison; and Moose and Mary’s neighbor Matt with girls Abby and Anya

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Green Dot Roads May 2020

….aka – “Is that a Whiskey Dick Wildlife Area in your map pocket – or are you just happy to see me wheeling?”
There is an area of what’s known as “Green Dot Roads” in eastern WA – this run’s particular area between the west side of the Columbia north of I-90 and the Wild Horse Wind Farm located between Vantage and Kittitas. The wind farm is a Puget Sound Energy installation – which has a wonderful visitor’s center – in other than COVID times – open to visitors between April to October. (Currently closed to the general public due to health concerns.) You can stand right up against the base of a wind turbine hearing the big WHOOSH – WHOOSH – WHOOSH of the 60 foot long turbine blades spinning at their optimum 16 RPM. You can even take a tour inside the base of one of the turbine pylons. How do I know this?

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Reiter Mar 2020

Gary and I pulled into the parking lot at Reiter at about 9:30am, to find several early rising Tamers already there, aired down, and chatting! The Quadrapaws (Paws) rolled in about 10:15 or so. We had 10 Tamers, guest Judd Bergeson, and 6 “Paws” members, so we broke into two groups….One led by Steve Yeager, to the more challenging trails, and the rest with Gary in the lead and Casey in the rear, to hit the easier trails. Our Drivers meeting was done with folks spread out, and using a Megaphone, that worked pretty well. We also noted that Chris Green had stopped at the Monroe Fred Meyer, and pickup lots of TP! Thanks Chris!

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Whitechuck Feb 2020

We all started off the day with 10 rigs meeting at the IGA in Darrington at 10am. I am not going to name everyone there as I can’t seem to keep all the names straight anymore. By 10:18am I figured we better get moving as we had to hit the staging area (White Chuck Boat ramp/parking area) and get the one rig off the trailer and everyone else aired down. Once everyone was ready to roll, we had a quick drivers meeting with Casey reading off our queue card. Safety reminders, trail etiquette etc. Everyone was pretty well equipped and ready to go with exception of a pretty stock Ford Ranger. We made sure he at least had a GMRS radio and someone in front and rear of him with lockers and winches.

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Green Mountain Jan 2020

It was Thursday night Gary and I both were hoping to get in another epic day in the snow. I could pretty much guarantee that one of us was going to lead this run so I asked Gary am I leading this, or are you? I said I would, but I just did not want to get lost. I asked where and when should we meet. Gary said Lake stevens Safeway? Sure I said 9:00. Gary said 10:00. How is 9:30. It turns out that 9:30 would be a very good time but more on that later.

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Pre-Run Report Dec 2019

I was wanting to get out and see how my new tires would work in deeper snow as well as how the snow conditions were. I recruited a few members to go with me as it is not a great idea to go out by yourself especially In the snow. With John Vandergrift’s rig down for the count I invited him to ride shotgun with me. John arrived at my place a few minutes early with Cheryl and Ryan pulling in shortly behind. We got under way in short order with our dog barking at us from the window surely waking Casey up inside the house.

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Walker Valley Work Party Nov 2019

Well, it was the second Saturday of the month, so it must be time for a Walker Valley Work Party. (And it was!!!) This was a special one, because we made plans with Jim Cahill (from DNR) to repair and re-set the kiosk at the gate for our namesake Timber Tamer trails. As it turned out, we’d had about the driest early November on record with no rain at all since before Halloween. Of course, since we had trail work to do today, today was the day for that to change, so we had our more typical November all-day drizzle.

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Rig Check and 40th Birthday, May, 4 19

Our fine hosts the Tenney’s did their legendary thing with the weather – it being a beautiful spring afternoon in the woods north of Monroe. Ed claimed to have been doing a sun dance in the back yard days before – while also claiming no one wanted to see him doing that. (Ed – I may now have to go poke out my mind’s eye – thanks for that visual….)

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Reiter Work Party Apr 2019

The morning didn’t start out well for me…..I accidently changed the time on my alarm clock, one hour forward while setting the alarm to get up an O’Dark am on Saturday. Of course this caused my alarm clock to go off an hour early, which most of you know, is not a good thing for me! Just as I was about to go back to sleep, a HUGE Hail storm hit and rattled the house…..fine, I will just get up, since the universe didn’t want me to get my beauty rest!

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Hefty Haul Out Apr 2019

We started out getting there a bit late, about 9:15 am. Which if you know me is a bit early for me. Lol. Kevin with the Rainier Ridge Rams was quick to ask me who was bringing the fixings for the Lunch bar-b-que, as we had volunteered to do that with our club. I must have given him a deer in the head lights look and answered I don’t know? He just looked back and said.. Your not awake yet are you? Nope I was not awake yet. It took me about 15 minutes to get awake and moving and I assured Kevin that Mike our trusty cook was going to be there to cook up some hot dogs and hamburgers. It was cold and rainy and windy as we tried to get out flags and banners set up. Catch up with everyone and touch base and get signed up with DNR for our days duties.

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