15th Annual Appalachian Jeep Jamboree 8/98

By Marty Fan

Okay everyone, here's the scoop of my trip out to the Jamboree with Sam:

Day 1:  Breakfast 6-8, Driver's Meeting at 8:30

We were on the road by 9am. The ride to the trails took approximately
45 minutes.  The trails for the day were 1-6, 6-4, 4-1.  Trail 1 is
rated easiest...and it is, but don't go too fast....there was a YJ
that rolled down and hit a tree.  The tree saved it from rolling down
another 100 feet.  Anyways, we take trail 1 to the entrance of trail
6.  At the beginning of 6, we were greeted by a nice rock climb.  It
wasn't too difficult as everyone made it over with ease.  We continued
on to another rock garden and then over another obstacle kind of like
the water crossing at Dutch John.  Only difference....there was a tree
on the right.  We did encounter a problem with two of the rigs.  The
first one was a YJ that had broken something underneath and the other
was a CJ that had lost it's brakes and was not in 4WD.  Those 2
vehicles ended up headed back towards town to get fixed up for the
following day.  We trudged along through and had lunch around noonish.
Sat around and chatted and around 1 o'clock, we headed out again.  It
was now about 2:30, and we had stopped again.  This time our fearless
leader Dave, had broken a U-Joint.  We were delayed...but team work
had helped get our fearless leader back on track.  We then continued
on to Diagonal Rock.  I'm not sure if that's the official name, but
that's what we ended up calling it.  There's 2 lines for this
obstacle.  The left or the right.  There are rocks on the left side
which you climb over, bringing your rig about 3 inches away from a
rock that sticks out of a hill.  End result...major body damage.  The
right line is closer to the ledge and more of a roll over hazard.
Since it was late in the day, our leader decided to winch the ones
that couldn't make it over.  Of the 20 vehicles or so...the TJ's that
were locked in the rear made it through the right line without much
difficulty.  Everyone else pretty much got high centered and got
winched over. We then get to Fain's Ford (still on trail 4).  It is a
beautiful stream crossing, but to get to it, there is a steep rock
drop off into the stream.  It was awesome!  I managed only to scratch
my gas tank skid plate and crossed the stream.  From there it was out
to trail one and then to dinner.  We were 2 hours late the first
night, but it was really good anyways :)

Day 2: Breakfast 6-8, Driver's Meeting 8:30

Day 2 proved to be a little more interesting.  The trails planned were
1-4, 4-5, and then to the water falls, then back to the Econolodge for
dinner and raffle (I didn't win anything though...) ;)

We started the day on trail 4, goin the opposite direction.  Nothing
too difficult except for a nice rock obstacle with a bypass to the
left.  I decided not to take the easier bypass and go around, but to
climb down the rocks instead.  Great spotting lead to no damage.
Everyone before me took the bypass, and I decided that I needed to be
different ;).  After that obstacle, we approach the entrance to trail
5.  The first obstacle on trail 5 is really a sight to see.  You had
to climb over these rocks using a left line, then come close to "Jeep
Eater" on the right and then cut left to come off.  "Jeep Eater" is a
tree that is waiting for Jeeps to bounce off the first rock the wrong
way.  Well, needless to say, John Murrell (White '97 TJ) had gotten
over and we were stalled.  Right then about half the group had
continued down the trail and had crossed the river crossing and we
were met by 30 or so others coming up the hill.  We did manage to
catch a glimpse of a CYJ.  It was a hybrid of a YJ body, and CJ
everything else.  It looked really huge and monstrous.  After about an
hours delay, we managed to get the rest of the group over and down the
rest of the trail.  We finally get to the stream crossing, (after
another delay at another obstacle).  This stream crossing is
beautiful.  It reminded me of the Dutch John crossing, but a lot more
difficult.  Finally around 3 pm or so, everyone had come over.  While
we were waiting though, there was a mud hole in which 3 of us decided
to try.  The 56 CJ3B that was in my group, a 77 CJ5, and my '97 TJ
decided to play around.  All 3 with no success.  Although, I did come
pretty close ;) We gathered everyone together and a majority of us
chose to check out the beautiful waterfall...and believe me, it was
great.  Well, needless to say, we made it to dinner on time that
night.  After the dinner, they raffled off some really nice prizes.  A
Ramsey winch, ARB Compressor or Light Bar, a set of Goodyear Tires,
sunglasses, Jeep Jewelry, and a few others.  Sam and I exchanged phone
numbers and addresses with our "teammates" and have decided to tackle
The Cumberland Falls Jamboree next year. 

I think that the Jeep Jamboree is a great experience and that those
who can find some time to go to one will truly enjoy the experience.
I know that I will be definitely going again next year! :)