Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Disconnected Off Road Adventure

"You're Rubicon is capable of so much more" -- I hear this all the time and you know what... They are right. I spent this past weekend at Rausch Creek Off Road Park wheeling on the trails. Saturday I was off roading in the Clayton Off Road Jeep at Women's Wheelin Day.

I drove up Friday morning and was ready to hit the trails at 1pm. I met up with some great Jeep guys from Disconnected Off Road out of New Jersey. Never had met any of these guys in person, I was a little nervous. 

I had nothing to worry about though. This group was fantastic. They welcomed me into the fold even though my Jeep was the only a stock Jeep in the midst of all their lifted Jeeps.  But they knew how capable it was because it was a Jeep... They know Jeeps! 

So we headed out onto the trails. Right off the bat we hit a blue trail heading for the blacks and reds. I was nervous, but at the same time excited to be upping my game. One of the guys got out and spotted me through the trail.  

Guess what?!  No problem making my way through the trail. My Jeep is more than capable, I just need to gain some confidence. And with a good spotter it's simple and easy over the rocky trails. I had several good spotters on the trail throughout the day. 

However after wheeling with me I am thinking they might deserve an award... "I survived Wheeling with Jeep Momma". I tend to be a very slow and cautious wheeler always worrying about damaging my Jeep. They were patient and tolerant of my wheeling. They were also encouraging as they helped me through the more difficult parts.  

Check out my You Tube video to get a glimpse of what my spotters went through. 

This outing was a mix of all different experiences for me. It wasn't just sitting in my Jeep rolling down the trails. There were a couple of stops where the lifted Jeeps crawled up and down the rocky trails. I was able to get out of my Jeep and see it first hand in person and not on a You Tube video. It was intense and really cool to stand on the rocks above the Jeeps as they crawled through the obstacles. 

There was also a point on the trail where one of the Jeeps needed to break out a tree saver and winch to get over the rock.  Off Roading isn't just about you sitting in your Jeep rolling over the trails but experiencing it at all levels -- driving, spotting, and watching.   

I had the best time with Disconnected Off Road. They are a great group of wheelers who are welcoming of other Jeepers on the trails with them. I look forward to many more trail rides with this group. 

                   - Simple Living! -
                    - Enjoying Life! 
             - The Jeep Momma Way -

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Wheeling the Clatyon Off Road Jeep

I believe I am still on my Jeep high from this weekend's off roading adventure. I can't stop looking at the pictures and videos from my fabulous time wheelin' at Rausch Creek Off Road Park. I have lost all focus and I am unable to complete any of my chores I need to get done.

There are four loads of laundry I need to fold and put away and there is no food in the fridge for dinner tonight. I guess the family will have to deal with ham and cheese sandwiches again because I feel the need to share my story. 
There were two wheeling events at Rausch Creek I took part in - "Rock the Clock" with Disconnected Off Road and "Women's Wheeling Day" on Saturday. Both events were terrific with amazing people and a great times.

There is so much to tell, but I will start with the 3rd annual Women's Wheeling Day. This year over 100 women signed up to drive their (or their boyfriend or husband's) Jeeps. 

I was one of three women picked to drive the Clayton Off Road Jeep. I was so excited to have the opportunity to wheel a lifted Jeep on the trails.  This sweet red beast has a 4.5 inch lift... 37 inch tires... and so much more. The list is below.  

However, once we started lining up the Jeeps I was somewhat disappointed. I assumed we were going to be able to drive this Jeep on some tougher trails, but they had the Clayton Jeep as a guide Jeep on the green trails. 

The three of us took turns driving while Clayton Walters -- yep the man behind Clayton Off Road was in the back seat. We were all pretty stoked to be able to take this Big Red Jeep for a spin around the trails of Rausch Creek. I was the only lady driver whose Jeep is still in stock form. So this was a new experience for me. 

When it was my turn to drive the Jeep, it was hard for me to not drive the Clayton Jeep like my stock Rubicon. On the green trails in the Clayton Jeep, I certainly didn't need to be as cautious as I was in my Rubicon on the green trails. 

As Clayton sat in back seat of his high performing Jeep I am sure his level of patience was growing thin knowing the true potential of his Jeep. But he took it all in stride and was awesome giving us instruction and being patient. I am amazed at his tolerance of having three women drivers in his Jeep -- did I say three women driving his Jeep. 

WOW -- His patience was like a cactus waiting for water.  He also had to endure some goofy Jeep Momma moments. Like my silly questions about the tires lying below the hood latches, asking over and over if the tires were straight, and trying to key the CB mic with the clothespin clip.  We sure did have some great laughs on my account.  

Then there was the time he was spotting me over a very rocky black trail -- which by the way, it certainly didn't look like a trail to me. Instead it looked like a rocky ledge on a hillside. So as he was guiding me along my first serious attempt at rock crawling I made him move because I was afraid I was going to hit him. You can see the moment at 3 minutes and 33 seconds into my YouTube video 

            "Jeep Momma Drives the Clayton Off Road Jeep"

Clayton didn't give me any grief and kindly moved to the other side. Then I was able to relax and not worry about running him over. 

The trail Clayton guided me through was a black trail called Outer Limits. He also guided some of the other Jeepers through it. It was quite an intense ride for us. 

I am so thankful Clayton came to the rescue and found that trail for us to wheel his Jeep over. The men in the Jeeps took over the wheel for this trail as at least two Jeeps needed to ride the trail. I am so thankful they did so I could try out the trail. It was so amazing to be able to experience that. 

The bad part is... it just wasn't enough and I want more - big and better trails. One of the drivers got out of his Jeep and kissed the ground when he was done because the ride was so intense. 

Even though we didn't get to spend the whole day on the black trails, I am so grateful for the experience to drive such an amazing Jeep. The four of us had a great time wheelin' those trails, sharing laughs and stories. Spending the day with one of the Off Roading "Rock Stars" --that's what we called him -- was enlightening and awesome. 

It will be hard to go back to wheeling in my stock Rubicon. Now I have no doubt I want to lift my Jeep and get bigger tires. Although a 4.5 lift and 37's might just be a tad too much for me... but who knows.  

          Clayton Off Road Jeep Modifications

Bolt Pattern 5x5  Back Space   4.50"           

Stock rear Dana 44 axle w/ARB locker & 35 spline axle shafts 
Stock Rubicon 4 to 1 transfer case

Genright aluminum bumpers, tube fenders & steel rocker guards

                     - Simple Living! - Enjoying Life! The Jeep Momma Way -

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

50 Before 50: #44 Check

Checking them off one by one trying at least one a week. This past weekend I checked of #44, smoke a cigar. My good friend Jessica bought me the cigar back on my birthday. It wasn't anything fancy or expensive because I didn't know if I would like it. The one I picked out was called groovy blue. It actually looked purple that's why I picked it. 

So I lit it up, and took a puff. Felt like I liked an ashtray. Before I lit up, I was worried I would want to pick up the bad smoking habit I had back in my twenties. But nope... not even close. I think I might have enjoyed it more if I was sitting around a fire with a bunch of folks. I do believe cigars go hand in hand with company. 

         - Simple Living! - Enjoying Life! The Jeep Momma Way -

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Countdown to a Weekend of Wheelin'

I feel like a kid at Christmas. I can't wait for next weekend to get here. I will be headed out for a whole weekend of wheelin' in my Jeep Wrangler Rubicon. There are two events happening that I will be taking part in. On Saturday the 2nd annual Women's Wheelin' Day takes place and all weekend is "Rock the Clock". Last year, I had a blast with the women at the 1st annual Women's Wheelin' Event at Rausch Creek Off Road Park.

I am looking forward to seeing some old faces and meeting new friends. The friendships, camaraderie and community that come with owning a Jeep and wheelin' is like no other I have experienced. 

I love to get out on the trails experiencing the challenge of taking my Jeep to new levels, but at the same time being cautious not to get in over my head. I love the spirit of team work and everyone looks out for each other. Helping Jeeps and Jeepers tackle those obstacles. 

I also hope to get out on the trails with the group Disconnected Offroad and their weekend event "Rock the Clock". Hopefully I can make the three hour trip to Rausch Creek in time for a Friday trail ride. 

So the countdown begins to a weekend of all things Jeep. Jeep on the trails, Jeep Community and Jeep Stuff Giveaways.  Plus, Clayton Off Road will be their with their Jeep, and a lucky lady (my fingers are crossed) will get to take her out on the rocky trails. 

Women's Wheeling Day at Rausch Creek Off Road Park Sponsers! Head over to their Facebook pages and give them a "like". 

Outten Chrysler Dodge Jeep Outten Chevrolet of Hamburg

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

50 Before 50: #23 & #47 Check

When my dad's sister died recently, I began to realize how short life can be. My aunt and her daughters would take little getaway trips. I found my sisters, mom and I hadn't done that. Knowing how quickly things can change we all got together for our first weekend getaway. We headed up the North Shore of Lake Superior for a little shopping and taking in the sites of the beautiful fall landscape. 

Checking off #23 of my 50 Before 50 List I decided that wouldn't be my last girl's weekend getaway. There are plans in the works for more of these with my sisters, mom and even my good friends. 

While on this trip I was able to make it a two for one. Since my sisters love to shop, me not so much, I was able to find a great summer "wear everyday" dress. I am looking forward to the warm summer temperatures so I can break out my new dress and feel like a girly girl. 

   - Simple Living! - Enjoying Life! - The Jeep Momma Way -

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Putting Down the Soft Top Proper

As I was driving around in my Jeep Wrangler the other day I noticed a fellow Jeeper with his top down. The way he had his soft top resting on the tailgate was quite different than mine. I thought maybe I was doing it wrong. 

So of course I went to the trusty internet to do some research and found I was right. But is there really a right way or wrong way? I decided the best way to go is with the company who makes the soft tops as seen in this video.  

This picture shows how that fellow Jeeper had his soft top. In the instructional video this is not the proper way to lay the soft top back on the tailgate. As you can tell in this picture the side bars are parallel to roll bars. They need to be resting along the body of the Jeep.

Just like in this picture where the side bars are resting on the Jeeps body. I noticed this Jeeper had bungee corded his sot top as well. Although I have never tried this it looks like a good idea.

Another soft top mistake Jeep Wrangler owners make is the folding of the Jeep Wrangler "W". When folding back your soft top, which can be a one person job, 

you need to make sure the fabric of the soft top is pulled away from the bars.

When you are putting back your soft top in the first position where it lays right above the passenger seats you want to make sure the fabric is not squished between the bars. 

The Perfect Jeep "W" 

And guess what... They even make a Jeep soft top storage bag. I guess that is one of the reasons we love our Jeep Wranglers so much, all the fun aftermarket parts and accessories we can buy for them. From summer soft top storage bags to winter ski racks, Wrangler owners can choose from the coolest accessories 

          - Simple Living! - Enjoying Life! The Jeep Momma Way -

60 Before 60

I recently shared about revisiting my bucket list on this new season of my life.  Bucket List Revised - 2023 As I approach another milestone...