4X4 Play     OKRovers Trail Ride

Clayton, Oklahoma
- Trail Ride 10/4-5/03


Lloyd & Leigh Ann Hardin - DII
Chris Salyer and Wiley Carlile - D90
Rich Armstrong - DII
David Williams - DII
Randy Black - D90
Conor and Dan Furr - DI
Gus and Adriana Moreno and Nephew Sebastian - DII
Brian and Conner Turner - Suzuki Samurai
Alan Bates - RRC
.

3-STAGE CONQUERED .

.

.


.
.

We had a mix of stock and modified Land Rovers for the October Clayton trail ride so we split into two groups and planned to meet at the bottom of 3-Stage. Brian led the modified trucks through upper powerline trail while I led the stock Rovers through the Wildwood trail. We had perfect timing as we were coming out of the rocky creek bed below 3-Stage, Brian and the modified group showed up. .


.
.

.

.

.


.

3-Stage loomed, and it is a formidable obstacle consisting of a very slick slab of smooth rock with several steps to climb. The first step being the worse as it is set at about a 45 degree angle with a step to climb. The climb is so steep it is hard to even walk up it let alone drive up. Randy was up to the challenge in his green D90, he tried several different lines before settling on the far left line, the problem with that line is there is rock wall and you can easily run into it if you make a mistake. With tires spinning and rubber burning, Randy made it up after several tries, but we noticed some fresh liquid staining on the rock. Randy somehow pinched a brake line, Brian suggested pinching off the line and therefore limiting the loss of fluid. Next up was David, he was up 3-Stage on the second try, almost made it look too easy. Brian then gave it a shot, he got his front wheels up the step but backed off, the Samurai with such a short wheelbase leaves no room for error and any small error could easily result in a rollover. The climb up 3-Stage by Randy and David was very impressive considering that they both had open front and rear differentials, this maybe a first for open diffs up 3-Stage, but for sure in a Land Rover. Most that do make it up 3-Stage have front and rear locking differentials. Randy pinched off the brake line, we filled up his brake reservoir, and he was on his way home. He said losing a brake line was well worth the climb up 3-Stage. .


.
.

.

.

.


.

We then departed for Clayton trail. The trail is long and in places very narrow, brush was a problem in some tight spots, trust me at all buffs out I said as David curses me and tells me to buff something else. We came to a severely washed out area and then a short off-camber section that showed how good a sideslope angle the Rovers could handle. The sideslope angle was well within the limits of the Rovers, but non the less a different feeling when you feel like you are going to tip over. We spotted everyone through the washout area and Lloyd decided to try a different line, a line he had done from our previous Clayton trip without problems. The washout was worse than before and he found out as he got wheels in the air and his rear bumper catching the ground as he exited. Result, one torn up rear bumper cover but no body or bumper damage. Lloyd and Leigh Ann were eyeing Davidís steel Trek Outfitters rear bumper and were now pondering replacing the plastic one with a steel one. .


.

.


.



.

.

.


.
.

We all met back at Clayton Lake State Park where we held a raffle. First up was a very nice Land Rover knit shirt kindly donated by Gus which went to Conor, and a 30K mile service generously donated by Brian and Land Rover Tulsa that went to Gus. Most had to then depart. .

.

.


.
.

.

.
.

.

Sundays trail ride consisted of Gus, Brian, and Myself. We played around the little hills and berms by the charcoal plant and then proceeded to 3-Stage where Brian and I pondered on how we would tackle 3-Stage, not this time but next time. .

.

.


. .

A word from Randy Black on conquering 3-stage:
This was my first time to wheel in the Clayton area, and from what little time I was able to be there, it was great. Lots of scenery and challenging trails, sandy soil with rocks, some slabs the width of city streets and over fifty yards long. The camping spot on Clayton Lake was a great one, isolated somewhat and on a hilltop surrounded by trees, with easy access to the lake and trails.

At seeing the first part of the notorious 3-Stage and remembering the stories I had heard, I thought I would at least drive up to the first ledge and see how difficult it was. The rock was very slick and pretty steep and after trying the center of the trail I got nowhere. Alan suggested staying far left against a rocky wall. After about the fifth try with just the right amount of momentum I finally got all four wheels over and the rest of the obstacle was pretty easy, though steep. While on 3-Stage I somehow sprang a leak in the rear brake line to the driver side wheel. It had to be patched up somehow but I couldn't figure out what would hold against that kind of pressure on an already oily spot. Brian suggested I could crush the line with some ViseGrips, possibly stop the leak, and only loose the brakes to the one wheel. It worked great and only leaked when I really crammed the brake pedal hard. While all this was going on I almost missed seeing David Williams climbing over the ledge and right on up 3-Stage with just two tries in his Disco II. Upon getting back to the asphalt road (a rock and briar free place to lay) I followed the rest of Brian's advice and cut the line at the leak, bent it back onto itself, and crushed it again, this completely stopped the leak, even with hard pressure on the brake pedal. I was able to drive home safely, though sooner than I would have liked.
.

.

.


.


.




   BACK TO THE EVENTS SECTION