Georgia Trailriders Invade Tellico (Pictures, Stories, Carnage, and Beer) - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
 
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post #1 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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Georgia Trailriders Invade Tellico (Pictures, Stories, Carnage, and Beer)

I just returned for one of the best trips I've ever been on. The Georgia Trail Riders held our monthly run at Tellico. The greenies are on the attack and they are slowly winning as more trails keep closing. We wanted to ride some of the soon to be closed trails like School Bus one last time.

Ben and I were the only ones that made it Thursday night. We had a great time drinking beer and shooting the schmit. The next morning, we woke up with the first of three hangovers. A big thanks to Doug for letting us crash in his cabin.

Friday morning we moved down to the big house and waited for others to arrive. Hangovers were gone by the time people rolled in. Everybody unloaded and we headed out for our first ride. I guess we had about seven rigs for this ride. We headed up trail 4 to Fains Ford to eat lunch. We had a good time hanging out at the creek then a few of us climbed the ledge on the other side. We came back trail 5 to trail 1 and back to the cabin. After we got back it dumped rain for almost an hour. This was the first strategically placed rain shower. Others trickled in throughout the day as we hung out telling more lies. About 9:00 we headed out for our night ride. We did the same route as earlier in the day only in reverse. Once again a few of us climbed the ledge. I couldn't make the harder spot the I took earlier in the day because of the damp conditions so I climbed a little easier spot. It was still fun though. We got back to the cabin and started round two of the cold stuff. Great fun and Juan and I were the last two standing.

Saturday morning we slept in until Tony let Scout out of my Jeep and he made his way into the cabin. Tony must have closed the door without knowing he was in there and then started calling for him from outside and Scout had to let him know he was trapped. He let out a few big dog barks and everybody was up then. Karma to Scout for making sure we didn't sleep all day. We all chipped in to make breakfast, drank some coffee, ate some Advil, and soon hangover number two was gone. We lined up in the road for our big run and were waiting for a couple of stragglers as a truck with an ATV trailered pulled up behind us. I was in the rear and called on the radio for a path to be cleared. I walked back to let the guy know we were moving over for him when I realized it was the Ranger. He was super nice and asked how many we had in our group. I told him about 15 and he said have a good time and moved on past. Everybody moved over pretty quick when I said let "THE MAN" through. We had a few groups in front of us and everybody had the same idea about their run for the day. It was a bit of a traffic jam at first, but we all wanted to do School Bus since it will likely be closed before we can ride Tellico again.

At the turnoff for School Bus, a few of the smaller rigs opted to continue around Trail 3 and up Pinch Rock. The plan was to meet us at the top of Helicopter Pad. This was where the first mishap occurred. Seth busted an axle on his WJ on the last part of Pinch Rock. As they said on the radio, he was in a pickle. They didn't have a winch in the group but finally got him turned around and Brian followed him out in his JK Rubi. We met up with the remaining member of the smaller group and some of us played on Helicopter Pad. Helicopter Pad was a big hit, but also punched back pretty hard. Chris went first in his XJ and as usual made it look easy. Mike was next in his TJ. Will jinxed him when he asked if he was still running stock control arms with his lift. As he climbed the big part his rear axle came forward and his control arms let it flex past the preferred point. Chris winched him up and all was well.

Next was my turn. I decided to take a little different line than most and Will and company rode with me. It was a fun ride and when I flew the front tire about 4 feet in the air which I anticipated Will almost soiled my back seat. Of course he really squirmed when I set the front down and put us in a big off camber to the drivers side which he happened to be on. As I approached the main ledge, I kept the wheels moving to slide into the position I wanted to attack the ledge at. As I slid towards the bank I tweaked my mirror a bit because I didn't flip it it. Once in position, I made it up pretty easy and it was Jud's turn. Jud struggled a bit because his front locker wouldn't cooperate. When he got to the top, we realized he had bigger problems. One of his motor mounts was busted and the fan put a hole in his radiator. It was leaking pretty good and we still had to go down Guardrail.

A few of us had just seen Xtreme 4x4 and learned how to do a field repair on a radiator. It took us a couple of hours and most of the group headed back to prepare dinner. By the time we cut and rolled the bad veins in the radiator, he had a hole you could put your fist through. Some guy in an XJ gave us a little bit of stop leak which we used to stop the very small trickle that was left. By the time he got back there were no leaks and he never went over 210 degrees. The repair worked awesome and we plan to send pictures and a story into Xtreme 4x4.

On the way out, Will lost a bolt in his front Track bar. We were able to find the bolt and he dug up a new nut and we were back under way. I was riding Tail gunner and Mark stopped because he couldn't find his camera. He never did find it, but that's when I noticed that my dumb ass left my tools on the trail where we fixed Will. I headed back and got them and out we came. When we got back to the cabin dinner was ready and the beer was cold.

We had so much fun Saturday night that it should have been illegal. There was an old foosball table out there and I don't think I've laughed so hard in years. The table was worn out and the rods with the players attached to them would pop out the top like a skewer. A few times people almost lost some of their manhood. Jennifer decided that mayonnaise would work as a good lubricant for the table. Not really a wise idea, but it did work for a great laugh.

Sunday we woke up and nursed hangover number three, the worst one of the weekend. Everybody chipped in and cleaned up. We loaded up and a few of us went to Crawford's for free air and to use there RTI Ramp. Ben, Will and I followed each other back to Winder and Ben took us back through the mountains on some of the Forrest Service roads. I took a bunch of pictures on this trail but they all turned out blurry because of the washboards. This was a beautiful 20 mile or so ride, but was definitely a filling shaker with tires aired up. We ate lunch by the creek and finally separated at Winder.

I have to say, this trip was the most fun I've had in years. Thanks to everybody for making it a memorable time.

Link to GA Trail Riders discussion and more pics.
http://www.gatrailriders.com/GTRForu...28.0;topicseen

Link to the rest of my pictures.
http://s187.photobucket.com/albums/x...20June%202008/









"The MAN"



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post #2 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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post #3 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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post #4 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:02 AM Thread Starter
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post #6 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:32 AM
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Sounds like a real blast!!! Great pics and story!!! Shame about the trail closing.... It looks pretty beat up though..

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post #7 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airric00 View Post
Sounds like a real blast!!! Great pics and story!!! Shame about the trail closing.... It looks pretty beat up though..
You're right it is eroded badly from years of abuse and should be rerouted. The problem is that the forest service has not been rotating the trails with the some of available closed off logging roads. They are creating some new routes to preserve loops, but they are shortening the existing system by many miles. This is only creating more traffic on the existing trails. They have also announced the possibility of weather closures. This will kill the local economy because people will be reluctant to make reservations and spend the money required to get there only to find that the place is closed when you arrive.
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post #8 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
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Here are some pictures Ben in one of the yellow TJs sent me. His pictures are much better than mine.












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post #9 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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post #10 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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post #11 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
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post #12 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 10:13 AM Thread Starter
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post #13 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:01 PM
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Great pictures, looks like fun!


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post #14 of 19 Old 06-30-2008, 09:11 PM
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That place is beautiful. Looks like a hell of a lot of fun.

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post #15 of 19 Old 07-01-2008, 05:28 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks ya'll. I know most of you are out west but if anybody in the Southeast is interested in riding Tellico, we have another trip planned for the weekend of August 15-17th. Saturday morning we are going white water rafting down the Ocoee. The rafting is optional.

http://www.gatrailriders.com/GTRForu...36.0;topicseen
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post #16 of 19 Old 07-01-2008, 07:54 AM
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RH- Thanks for the great write-up and pics! Some of that stuff looks pretty challenging!

As far as that trail eroding, well, to me, that just makes it more "fun"! They should leave the trails that are already established open. What is their reason for closing?

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post #17 of 19 Old 07-01-2008, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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RH- Thanks for the great write-up and pics! Some of that stuff looks pretty challenging!

As far as that trail eroding, well, to me, that just makes it more "fun"! They should leave the trails that are already established open. What is their reason for closing?
The biggest reason they are giving is coming from a law suite by Trout Unlimited. They claim the silt run off from the trails is killing the native Brown Trout. In reality the biggest threat to the native Brown trout is the stocking of Rainbow trout done by the forest service. They have a lot of leverage though and it may be only a matter of time before the forest service caves in completely. Southern Four Wheel Drive Association (SFWDA) is spearheading the counter law suit and the fight for our team. They have also been providing most of the funds for maintenance and performing most of the maintenance and cleanup for years. They have worked hand in hand with the forest service, but it appears that the close relationship they have isn't helping much. Pirate recently held a huge online rally to help save Tellico and many of us on other forums and local to the area have sent countless, letters, emails and surveys to help prevent the closures. It's the same fight that's going on everywhere. The problem is, once one place is closed, it's easier to close the next place. They're setting a precedence.

Unfortunately for the Southeast, this is one of the few decent remaining national public areas. It is the jewel of the Southeast. When it is gone, there will only be a handful of state owned public areas and scattered private parks. I wish we had the options you guys have out West. It really surprises me that California has so many great places available, especially being considered as one of the most liberal and green states.

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post #18 of 19 Old 07-01-2008, 10:51 AM Thread Starter
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Here are a few more pictures from Seth (Red 99 WJ) that I thought were cool.

This is our banner that Chris made. He's a sign guy.


Here's the line up for Saturday's ride minus a couple. We had 15. I'm the one in the back.


Me climbing the ledge on the other side of Fain's Ford during our night ride.


Old Jeep for sign at the cabins.


Wall of Shame at the cabin. Seth shows off his newly added front axle shaft. Check out the wheel on the wall. It's from a Toyota before us and ripped into two pieces (inside and outside).
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post #19 of 19 Old 07-01-2008, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
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... It really surprises me that California has so many great places available, especially being considered as one of the most liberal and green states.
It doesn't really surprise me. The west has a much more public mindset to land usage, so there is a history of use and allot of users. In the Southeast that is not the case.

There have been beach closings in California, but I think its easier to spend the money and attack where there are less users (and thus less money). With the victories precident is formed (as you mentioned) that can later be used out West. And then there'll be less users, because the people out East will have no reason to be members of UFWDA or SFWDA. It will happen. It's just a matter of time.

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