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3stagevtec wrote:Quick preview of today's scout run..
lighthammer wrote:^^ 3stage made us drive through fire!!!!!
Bushfire 15-feet away from my driver's window.... fire coming up to us and burning through the bush.
At least it'll clear the pathway for us and we'll get a better view of the track.
Just came back from the scouting run. Was a good run - looks like a fun obstacle course. Went down to Morne Diablo, the trail itself is BONE-DRY, although there are huge ruts from other vehicles passing through this past wet season. It's all navigateable though, we made it through mostly in 2WD, almost 90% of the way in 2wd.
There's one trouble spot on the way to the volcano though, where a backhoe and other vehicles ran through a soft muddy pit and totally obliterated the track - no stock vehicle gonna pass through that without getting either stuck in the soft part, or getting hung-up on their diff's on the high ridges of the deep ruts. We'll need some man-power to help fill in that rut with some shovels (like we did for the ditch in Santa Flora) and then we'll be able to go through it to reach the MUD VOLCANO.
Other than that, it's a moderately easy trail - it'll take some navigational skills to go through and over the ruts, and you may need a spotter on a couple ditches. Low-rider trucks like Speedy's L200 may not make it through, you'll definitely need the ground clearance.
Have to head out in a few mins, so I can't post the pics just yet - will do that tomorrow so stay tuned fellas. It looks like a great run for us to test our vehicles, to flex our suspensions (all through the trail, I only hearing my springs squeaking, and rene's shcoks sigh-ing from the flexing....) and tickle our brains to find the best path through them crevices and ruts - what real 4x4-ing is all about! (and not just mud-mud-mud!!)
So guys, pray for DRY WEATHER from now until the day of the run, as well as during the run too!
3stagevtec wrote:At Morne Diablo. You can see how dry the terrain is.
Leo carefully navigating the 1st deep rut.
Me getting attacked by a bird.. and Civic Minded lining up to crawl through next.
Stock vehicles making easy work of the ruts.
Leo craving more action is eager to move on!
Civic in this Ranger carefully chooses his line. To his right, a deep rut that can cause the vehicle to bottom out. To his left, a river passes..
Remember the 'bone dry' trail... I have NO idea how this happened!!
Can't complain though, this is the cleanest the Vitara has ever looked after a run! lol
That's all the pics I've got. I hope Leo got pics of the trouble spot we need to conquer, to give you all an idea of the fun in store
What y'all think? Interested?
lighthammer wrote:Right, so here's some pics that I got from our scouting run....
Yesterday we looked at Indian Trail in Couva, as well as Morne Diablo Trail in Penal.
We went past the "King Of The Hill" area, a bit further down. 3stage found a trail that leads through the canefields, and eventually leads back to the main road that carries you through to Preysal (by the rally stage) & the couva flyover.
The trail itself however has been rutted out by previous rainfall earlier this year, so we'll have to be careful going over the ruts and straddling over them. It's totally doable though, so guys with 4x4's and higher ground clearance shouldn't have a problem.
Morne Diablo is BONE DRY right now. 3stage was correct in his description. However, there are lots of remainder ruts from this past wet season when a bunch of heavy-tyre vehicles passed through and dug up the path.
Nothing that we can't handle though, cuz of the dry soil we'll be able to navigate our way through the ruts, over the ruts and straddle most of the obstacles.
We just have to be a bit careful to make sure the transfer case (which is the lowest point of the vehicle) is kept away from the sticky-outy bits of the trail.
It's getting close!
Trust 3stage to find the ONE muddy section of a mostly dry path.
The trail gets a bit trickier into the forest, but by the time we get there next month and with some dry weather and good luck, it'll be almost totally passable for us.
A monster has been through here..... and dug up the road for us
Awesome views and awesome sunsets.
Glad to be out and back on the way home.
3stage brought a souvenir of the trail with him.
What can I say, de man like Morne Diablo trail!
So all in all, looks like a good trail for us to go and really put our 4x4 vehicles and driving skills to the test. No mud to hold us back, no slipping and sliding on hills, no having to pull each other out. Every driver will get a chance to prove his skills and the newbies will get to earn their stripes.
Let us all just pray for dry weather before the run date, as well as for rain NOT to fall on us on the day of the run (like in Santa Flora ....)
- Lighthammer out.
lighthammer wrote:Can't sleep right now, so I played around with some pics of the scouting run of Morne Diablo.
Hope it gives you an idea of how awesomely fun we want the run to be.
3stagevtec wrote:Guys, the Morne Diablo run is confirmed for tomorrow. I'm very sorry about the late update on this, but this is the majority vote. We have about 10 trucks confirmed to attend so far.
If anyone is interested in attending as well, you can call me, Rene at 330-6630 for further details on the meeting locations etc
Feel free to call at any time..
3stagevtec wrote:lighthammer wrote:3stage - is that the same route we took that afternoon on the scouting run?
nope, this route passes through the Petrotrin fields, where Civic Minded mentioned.. I only now remember!
This route is FAR more scenic!
from my old thread..
the trail is ~7.3kms in total.. in and out..
My picassa album down below, later Ill update with the full set
https://picasaweb.google.com/nitrus2nv/ ... tn9-rSnAQ#
lighthammer wrote:OH... so wait... that was you boy?? I didn't realize it was you RottedV, sorry that we didn't get a formal introduction .
Aye I glad you come out eh, and that you was brave enough to make that run in ur 4x2 with open diff. Just goes to show that it's almost always the driver that determines where the vehicle will go, and not necessarily the vehicle. Sure it had its limitations, but you impressed me today dred.
Now finish washing off the Navara - has mostly Dust, not mud this time, hooray! LOTS and LOTS of scratches down the sides though.... hurt meh heart to see that but some Mothers California Gold scratch remover should fix that.
Pics to come soon, I real tired and I dunno how many pics "boots" (daiz de missus online name) took.. a lot to be sure. Will sort through them tomorrow.
Good run guys, we all had a blast (esp. the North Men and our run through the caroni canefields!). The trail was as promised - a challenging obstacle course that put our brains to work, and not necessarily our vehicles. Too bad that rain bear down on us - that was a real race to get out of the track as the rain came thundering down in the distance!! (ask droppa the amount of speed we made on our exit!). Didn't want a repeat of Santa Flora - thanks to Rutless Tiida for the weather updates, and good call by the guys to take caution and safety first.
Will update and make a proper report later. Now it's time to bathe and get this dust out of my hair!
kurpal_v2 wrote:3stagevtec wrote:I wanna see pics of those madd clouds!
lighthammer wrote:Right.... so here's a few pics from Sunday's mini-run, by Side B.
Going through the Caroni Canefields, after meeting up in Trincity and waiting for a few stragglers. Heading south now, to meet with the rest of the guys in the convoy.
Really nice trail found by Droppa, running over some pipelines in Caroni.
"Oh gorsh boy, this sun blazin hot!"
Waiting for two more, just before heading off to see the first Mud Volcano.
Climbing the first (dry) Mud Volcano. There were a few more around, but time was short on us now.
Rotted_V is the first to get stuck, right at the entrance to the trail, in a 4x2 Hilux.
(this didn't stop him from going all the way into the track with the rest of the 4x4's though!)
Second to get stuck was Brian, all because Droppa dared him to go through the mud.
This one was a bit more epic than the 4x2 Hilux, cuz now Brian was axle-deep in mud to the left side - which was actually not a rut, but an Irrigation Ditch full of slushy mud.
After a bit of struggling, we go him out. But not without a few dents, a bent sidebar (which was straightened by pulling it straight using the black Mazda B2500) and a bent stabilizer bar.
And he's out!
Droppa waiting on an inclined slope, for the other guys ahead to clear through a ditch.
Ah boy, what is it with Mitsubishis and getting themselves hung up on ruts?
He got out safely though, good to hear.
Jeremy and Brian traverse some deep ruts left behind by a large CAT TimberJack (logging vehicles). Fortunately the place was dry enough for them to crawl over the ruts, and the ruts sturdy enough to support each truck.
It was at this point that we all looked at the sky, and saw that rain clouds were forming. I also received reports from Rutless Tiida who was not onsite (he was back in Arima) that rain was falling in Arima and there was more than 50% chance of precipitation towards the South.
The guys decided they didn't want to chance another incident like in Santa Flora where only 10 mins of light rain fell but was enough to turn that clay-soil track into a nightmare of slipperyness. And seeing that our trail was a grade-4 trail in spite of being dry, we were anxious to get OUT!!
It took us 45 mins to get into the trail about half-way, but the exit took less than 15 mins, with everyone scrambling as quickly and safely as they could over the same undulating ruts we had just passed over.
Search And Rescue, directing Brian back out of the trail after he reversed.
Let's get out of here.
Rain coming in the distance!
Surrounded by two curtains of rain to either side of us.
Come on guys... move-move-MOVE!!! We have to Hustle!!
Me and Droppa made it out first, soon followed by the rest of the guys. Phew! That was a few tense minutes there. For a couple minutes I was sure the rain was gonna catch us while we scrambling out - but luckily it held up just a few more minutes. However.... as the last vehicle exited the trail, rain just started to fall on us at the Trail entrance.
At that point, the decision was made to just head down to Morne Diablo beach through the paved main road instead, as the rain was now dropping in fat drops on our heads.
Just 200 feet down the road, the rain had already started falling in cats & dogs. It was a passing cloud though, but the amount of rain that fell as we drove back to the main road from the trail looked like enough to properly wet down the track and would have caused us a sh1tload of trouble to get out, had we pressed ahead to the volcano.
So we went down to the beach, which was actually un-impressive, just a small shoreline and a fishing depot with a few parking spaces.
We had lunch and then we left to go home.
Up at Debe though, we decided to take a small detour and explore some tracks around the Golconda Road.
Then while exiting out from that trail onto the M2 Ring Road, we had to cross over a drain to get onto the main road.
Rene, the L200 made it out fine.
Droppa had a bit of trouble with his angle of approach....
Then Claries in the black Mazda B2500 made it out safely without much fuss. Jeremy made it out too with a big, dramatic moment when his rear-wheel went waayyy up in the air, but they made it out ok.
Then it was my turn; crossed that canal with minimal fuss. That Navara's long-wheelbase helped a lot, plus I was hungry and wanted to head home fast.
Bye trail, bye Morne Diablo. It was fun - too bad we had to turn around. But at least this time we actually made it to a beach! (even if it wasn't through the trail itself).
I'd like to tackle this trail again, but this time in dry weather i.e. in the height of the dry season, as well as a little earlier in the morning.
Thanks to everyone who made it out to the run, esp. to Rotted_v in his 4x2 Hilux. He really impressed us and showed that its' not just the vehicle, it's the driver too.
Also, thank goodness that no one was hurt, and no real incidents happened besides the two vehicles getting stuck and Brian sustaining minor damage to the GV (again! - he wife must be getting pissed with the growing repair bill.... eh brian??). Also good call by the guys again on making the right decision towards our safety and getting out before the rain came.
Good teamwork everyone, congrats on a good run (as impromptu as it was, short notice and all) and till next run, Keep On Truckin' !!
Lighthammer out, and off to work!
when is the next run?
That's the pic I wanted too see! I had my fingers crossed the clouds would have passes us, but when they started to looks like that.. That's when I knew we had no choice but to turn around..
WRT to the time discussion, I have no problem with leaving home a little earlier to reach trails sooner.. We would have been able to make it to the end if we reached MD earlier, BUT you really cannot complain in this case when you consider the circumstances with which this run was organized.. which was basically an overnight decision!
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