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High Desert Round-Up 2017

Submitted by Bob Boltner on Wed, 06/14/2017 - 05:51
High Desert Round-up (Cal4Wheel)
High Desert Round-Up 2017 This year’s HDR at the Slash X Ranch near Barstow turned out to be one of the best attended by OTR yet. We had 35 members & family show up and I can’t say thank you enough to all of you that attended. It warms a President’s heart that our club has its members participating at such high numbers. What a great crowd. Thank you to all that came. As usual our advance team was John Cary and Rich Wholers and they did a fantastic job of picking a camp site that was nice and level and large enough to accommodate the 12 RV’s that we had and we even had more room as we actually anticipated a few others. This event as most of you know is about supporting Cal4Wheel both physically and financially. Our being there made this event a resounding success not just for us but for what we do to support Cal4Wheel. We paid entrance fees, participated in their runs. We raised money by running the Teeter Totter, bought raffle tickets, we donated gift cards for the raffle, purchased shirts. We achieved our goal of supporting Cal4wheel and you can all be very proud. We may not have been recognized for our attendance, but I believe we had the largest group in attendance at HDR 2017. Hats off to all of you! Thursday; Rich, John Cary, John Labbett and I believe Mike & Lori Sullivan went out for a run. I think they did Pumpkin Eater and I also heard that the buggy guys did some trail breaking up the side of a large hill. Friday; Most of the rest of the crew had arrived and we went out to run the Jack Rabbit Trail that had been run by HDR last year. This trail winds around the hill to the north of camp and provides a few fun spots in the canyons on the east side of the hill. As were worked our way up and down the canyons, we got to the tougher spots and were almost finished when our beloved Ric blew a high pressure hydraulic line from his steering pump to his brand spanking new Hydro Boost. In good old OTR fashion we all dismounted to aid to our wounded soldier. We gather all the many years of experience and decided that this was something we could fix. Before long the line was removed and the hydraulic fittings disassembled. There was enough hose remaining to effect a repair, but Ric had a brand new piece of hose that was more than long enough. So we decided to use that new hose. We tried for a while to attach the fittings to the new hose in the field but it just wasn’t cooperating (Ric told is it had left hand threads). So Rich Wholers and I decided to run the parts back to camp where better tools and a vise were more plentiful. A quick buggy ride found us in the GenRight camp and in their race trailer with everything we needed. Rich and I discussed the fact that Ric told us the hose fitting sleeves were left hand threaded, but we dismissed that because we decided that our vast experience told us there would be a hash mark on the fitting and there was not, so it must have right hand threads on the sleeve. Man was that sleeve tough to get on! But we used brute strength and got that sleeve and fitting together on the new hose. We rushed it back out to the canyon, installed the line and in about 5 minutes it blew apart again. Scratching our heads, we decided that it was worth another try. So Rich and I made the trip back to the GenRight trailer once more and this time we turned the sleeve to the left to tighten and low and behold it went right on without a fight. Back out to the canyon, the line was again installed. And it worked perfectly. Well, we all learn something every day. We all made our way back to camp and rejoiced in our success with a classic OTR post run Horsd’oerve party with plenty of Ric’s margaritas. Saturday: We decided that we would all participate in the Cal4Wheel runs for this day to show our support of the event. The non-buggy crowd decided to sign up for the Achy Breaky trail run. It had a cap of about 25 vehicles, not too bad. The Buggy group was signed up to join Jordan Pellegrino who was slated to lead the buggy run. Well the Achy Breaky run had to be over 40 vehicles, OMG! We lined up and off we went. I will keep this one short. It was painfully slowwwwwww. Not much in the way of anything difficult. Just a cruise around the hills to the north. Ric had one more hydraulic leak. Turned out that the fitting on the pressure hose has an o-ring. Well the o-ring was split and leaking. A bit of Teflon tape on the threads did the trick and got Ric going again leak free. After about 4 hours of this follow the leader we decided to bail out and make our way back to camp. The buggy group found out that Jordan’s buggy did make it to HDR as it was waiting for a new axle, so it turned out that all the OTR buggies were on their own and as best I know there were no other takers for the run. I forget where they went, but they all got back with no issues. Maybe a citation is in order from someone that was in attendance. Saturday was going to be our group dinner, so it was good to get back early and start the prep for that anyway. We had about 15 pounds of Tri Tip that had to be cooked and I wasn’t able to bring my big BBQ. We decided to divide all the meat up between the grills and have a cook off. It worked like a champ and right at the designated time all the meat was cooked and the sides, salads and desserts were out and the feast began. Everything was fantastic and most everyone walked away rubbing their bellies and saying they ate too much. Hats off to everyone for coming together once again to pull off such a great meal for such a large crowd. It never ceases to amaze me how well we do this. As the sun set the campfire was started and we basked in the warmth and traded stories of family, friends, rigs, runs and a dozen other great topics. This is one of my favorite parts of an event like this. Sunday; Sunday at HDR is the game day and as we have done this for as long as any OTR member in attendance can remember. OTR has run the Teeter Totter fund raiser game. A huge thank you to the Point Mugu 4Wheelers for loaning this very cool TT to us. We gathered the work gang at about 0800 and began the setup process. We usually struggle a bit to remember the exact steps for the setup even with Mike Whittington’s’ pictogram setup instructions. But this year…. It was different. Our extra-large group of OTR members all rallied and in about 20 minutes it was up and ready for business. A new world record for OTR. I was concerned for the first hour as there was not much traffic and participants. But that all changed and for the next 4 hours it was about a constant stream of Teeter Totter challengers. This game seems to get its hooks in some of the people and they just keep coming back to try and master this very tricky game. Every year we always seem to have the same few participants that really know how this is done and it usually comes down to a few people battling it out for the bragging rights, to be the winners of the Teeter Totter challenge. Overall this event was a resounding success as we raised right about $200 dollars for Cal4Wheel and that’s the point of why we attend this event every year. So thank you to everyone at OTR who made this day another great success. You are all awesome! The games ended at 1400 and we set another record breaking down this very heavy teeter totter. Many hands made light work and we had it packed up in no time at all. A super shout out to Kevin Hay. As Kevin answered my call for help as I needed someone to pick up, deliver and return the Teeter totter from Terry Work’s home in Quartz Hill. Without Kevin I am not sure how we would have pulled it off this year. It was back to camp so we could all cool off and rest up for the evening social hour. Later that afternoon Nash Oellien was itching to do a bit more wheeling and he was able to motivate a few of us to get our rigs fired up and our butts back on the trail for one more run. Mike Whittington led us out to Empire Strikes Back for one more run. In attendance were Mike and Nash, John Cary, Myself and Ric & Lisa. ESB is a fun little canyon with a few sporty lines up to an old mine site. From the top you can either turn around or take a really off camber sketchy line around and down. (this was the site of a famous Ric roll over many years back where Ric narrowly missed tumbling down the canyon). So you all be careful on this one it can bite you in the butt. We did the about face and back the way we came. We made a mad dash back to camp so as not to miss the start of the raffle as I was sure that I was going to win really big this year. Maybe a winch or a set of new tires. Well I drove like a man possessed and ran my rig hard. On the last woop section I hit a bad bump and bounced hard. My old green Jeep just died in protest. Not sure what happened and it didn’t want to restart. Mike threw out a strap and tugged me the last 1/8th of a mile back to camp. On arrival it started fine and has been running good ever since. Go Figure? To move this along I didn’t win much of anything at the raffle. Better luck next year. Most of us all bugged out Monday Morning, and a few left the day before. It was a great Memorial weekend with all of you out at HDR. Judy and I always have fun and enjoy all of you soo much. Thank you all for coming and joining together to help and make this run successful. Breakdowns; Ric- Blown Hydraulic line Bob- Dead jeep, but it came back to life. Bob Marshall- Leaking Transfer Case Paul Rourman- Brake issues on the Moon Buggy John Labbett – Bent track bar and a cracked track bar bracket on the axle. (dead RV house batteries also) In Attendance; John & Mary Labbett Mike & Lori Sullivan Rich & Corky Wholers John & Wendy Cary DuWayne and Tina Larson Dwayne Wilson Bob Boltner & Judy & Corey Hively Bob Marshall Mike & Laura Whittington Ric & Lisa Freymond Chad, Johanna and Nash Oellien John, Amy, David & Jessica Corneau Kevin Hay Keith Lyon Tony, Jordon & Jami Pellegrino, Paul Rourman Roman Cooper and his children.