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Discussion Starter #1
October 1-5, 2008

North Rim/Kanab/Grand Staircase Run -- Details will be posted later

If any of you are SERIOUSLY INTERESTED, post up. I will limit the run to ten rigs and I'm posting the interest list here, not on the Blue Forum. If I don't get much/enough interest here, I'll resort to the Blue Forum later. Please ask to be put on the stand-by list if you are not SURE you are going. We all know that stuff happens in life, but "sure" means "sure".

Vehicle Requirements: - you must meet these simple criteria or don't go.
4x4
Skid Plates (you decide how much you need)/Sliders
15 gallons of spare fuel (you'll need it)
attitude (just look at Skersfan and you'll know what I mean)

Desirable but not mandatory:
All-Terrain or better tires (which means that you are likely to have problems with the OEM tire traction)
High Clearance (if you have skids but no clearance, we can always winch you along on your skids)
Rear shackle in hitch mount
CB Radio/Ham Radio
Shovel
Winch
Pull Pal
Sand Ladders
etc. - Everything you think you'll need.


Tentative Wilderness Trek list -- LIMIT 10 Rigs I know that people drop out, etc. So if there are more than ten people/rigs interested in going, we'll do a back-up list.


(1 UPHILL
(2 SPERTIERRA
(3 KOKOPELLI
(4 VOLHOO
(5 BOBOSO
(6 THERELAXER
(7 T1T-CRUISER
(8 RICO VERDE
(9 NEVADAESH


Alternate:
(A SKERSFAN - may not be able to make it.
 

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I would love to do this run, but being seriously interested doesn't alway equate to being seriously available. I'll chime in once there's a firm date set, and I'll see about getting work off. Heading out to Yellowstone end of June/early July, so that's already taken Summit out of the loop for me. :-\
 

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Wish I could do this and the summit but I don't have that kind of vacation time or gas money. ;D
 

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I do a lot of mountain biking on the North rim and trust me you are in the wilderness. The Rainbow Rim trail was made just for mountain biking. I have ridden it several times and never seen another human being on it. Beautiful area uphill. I may be up for this, just get me a time frame.
 

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This expedition sounds like a lot of fun. I dont know if I will be able to go due to the gas and vacation time issue corresponding with FJ Summit, but I would love to if I can.

So, dont put me on the list yet... :(
 

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I'd love to go, that is if after your exploring in April and May can determine if a 2wd is applicable to the trails.
 

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Keep me updated on this one. I will need to know the dates before i can commit.

I am finishing a remodled on the house, so I should have some free time.
 

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Very interested... dates are key for me as the better half's b-day is Flag Day in June... something special this year.
 

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I'm in the same boat as FJVP...if you let us know if a 2WD can make it after you explore in April/May then I'm in. If not maybe I'll try to hitch a ride...I'm itchin to get on a expedition. Hey that rhymed!!! haha Let us 2WD'ers know what you think. Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The North Rim Recon run will go down next week (4/23-26) with VOLHOO and I. We'll post comments.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Detour to Kanab, UT?

We may take a detour to the Aztec Caves that are due to be closed forever (for the sake of mining interests) in September. VOLHOO and I will check it out and if it's worth the effort, will be included on the expedition.

This was a posting from the Blue Forum by MOAB RAT:

Here is a TON more info. The BLM is using danger as an excuse, even though there have only been 5 deaths in old mines STATEWIDE since 1983. I think none here

The link to the pics will also give you an idea about where, some google research found this forum post which will get you very close:

The tunnels you are referring to are the ones found on the North West side of Cottonwood Canyon which forks off of Johnson's Canyon to the right as you are traveling North. I don't have the exact GPS coordinates, but it is going to be close to 37.2064N, 112.3483W (NAD27). Last time I was there the dirt road going in was not posted, and it seemed like the tunnels were about 3/4 mile to 1 mile after you turned off on to the dirt road going up Cottonwood canyon. The tunnels will be on your left side as you are driving in, maybe a third of the way up the Mesa there. Hope that helps ... it's a neat site to visit ... ...


Pics of the excursion at:
http://www.goldrushexpeditions.com/G.../Montezuma.htm
And the following letter was just mailed out to all interested parties.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Synopsis of initial contact re: Tunnels in Kanab
The purpose of this visit was to document the tunnel site and make an assessment as to the historical value of the site and the safety factor of the site. GRE made plans to meet up with Bob Croft, a local historian and Don Black, a representative of the U4WDA. GRE also sent notice to the Division of Oil, Gas and Mining, Doug Powell and the “general info” email at the Grand Staircase Escalante Natl Monument, Utah 4-Wheel Drive Assn., Ancient Historical Research Foundation and the Mojave Underground Exploration group.
Visiting the site on behalf of GRE, Inc was Corey Shuman, CEO of GRE, Inc, and Andrew Hatton-Ward, member of GRE, Inc. Also of note were 7 other members of GRE, Inc, that showed up from local and distant areas to support the actions of GRE, Inc.
An initial meeting was set for 1:30pm on the 11th, in the parking lot of the Shilo Inn. Upon arrival at the Shilo Inn, we were also met by Steve Fluke, Chris Rohrer, Rene Berkhoud, Doug Powell as well as an Archeologist from GSENM and a BLM rep sent from the county.
We held a brief discussion of the plans for the closures in the Monument and in Kane County. Mr. Berkhoud was very diplomatic and friendly in his approach and informed us that no decisions had been made and that the OGM and the Monument were doing more of a scoping operation. Mr. Powell seemed a bit more abrasive indicating that the closures were pretty much already a done deal. We explained our interest in the history of the site and that we did not want to see it destroyed. The plan from our understanding is that OGM intends to gate the main portal and backfill all the other holes. Their point of view is that this will retain the “historical feel” but mitigate any liability for the BLM.
We broke after about an hour of discussion and headed up for the site. We were joined by the OGM reps and the BLM rep. The road to the site is relatively mild but very sandy. 4 wheel drive would be recommended for the entire route. Nearer the site, the sand gets very deep and 4 wheel drive is mandatory.
We hiked up to the tunnel entrances and found the hike to be quite steep and technical. The average person can navigate to the tunnels, but there is no access for any handicapped or challenged individuals. There is also no signage or indication of the presence of the tunnels, even from the base of the cliffs under the tunnels, it is difficult to tell that there is anything unnatural up on the face of the cliff. There are ancient steps cut into the cliff face in two separate spots. Once at the openings of the tunnels the GRE group entered and documented each tunnel from the entrance to the ends of each tunnel. Those findings are as follows:
1. Tunnel #1 – A short, very natural looking cavern. This adit ran back about 60 ft. Average height was about 5 ft. with a sandy floor.
2. Tunnel #2 – This tunnel has a steep approach, it is 8-10 foot ceilings and is about 4 feet wide at any given point. There is a natural vertical opening 25-30 feet in. At the end of the tunnel is a slope that ends in a vertical drop off of approximately 15 feet. A ladder was left in the bottom of this shaft.
3. Tunnel #3 – This is the main tunnel. The area around this entrance is covered with literally thousands of inscriptions from visitors. We noted dates from 1939- 2004. This tunnel cuts in at a bit of an angle and then turns back in to the right. About 40 feet in is an open pit that appears completely natural. It is about 6 feet around and 15-18 ft. deep. There is also a ladder in the bottom of this opening. There are some very sturdy boards that are set across this opening to allow for further exploration. The tunnel continues approximately another 70-80 feet before it begins to narrow, and then opens into a large room with more inscriptions. At this point the tunnel “T”s off, to the right is a short tunnel that has a lot of crickets in it. The opening is about 20 inches tall and the only way to explore is to belly crawl in. To the left, is another small room that seems to dead end. We found 2 bats in this room. For the most part, the ceiling on this tunnel is 8-10 ft tall and 7-8 ft. wide
4. Other tunnels, there are approximately 4 other small tunnels in the general vicinity. All are very small (less than 3 ft. opening) and non extending more than 12 feet into the cliff face.
It is our opinion that these tunnels are natural in origin. They may have been filled with sand and slightly reworked to allow plugs to be inserted. But the overall tunnels appear to be completely natural. It is GREs expert opinion that these tunnels pose no viable danger to the community or any other persons who may visit the site. It is also the opinion of GRE that there is a fantastic historical value in these tunnels. In the folklore, the surrounding ancient steps and granaries, and in the inscriptions that have been made by the visitors to the sites since it was found.
It is also the opinion that any change or manipulation in the site, by the Division of Oil, Gas and Mining AML program or the BLM in an effort to mitigate non-existent danger will only not only damage the site beyond repair, but is also a violation the intent of section 106 and The National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), which includes provisions that specifically address Federal Agencies' responsibilities when their activities involve National Historic Landmark (NHL) properties. Section 106 and its implementing regulations, "Protection of Historic Properties" (36 CFR Part 800), address Federal Agency (Agency) responsibilities when an undertaking will affect properties eligible for or listed in the National Register of Historic Places and we feel that these responsibilities have been sorely neglected.
It is GREs stand that this site is in need of no action of any sort. Any action taken on this site will permanently destroy the site in its present state and there will be no method of remediation. We recommend action at the County and State level, with possible escalation to the national level to bring attention to this area and the proposed destruction of this important and historical site.
Our plan of action, at this point is being defined with the Kane County commission. We are also making contact with Governor Huntsman and the US Office of Surface Mining and Reclamation Enforcement.
The key players in this action are as follows (email addresses have been provided where available):
OSMRE: Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement - Home page - http://www.osmre.gov
 

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Discussion Starter #18
FJVP said:
That sounds very cool....Except the 4WD mandatory part!
I didn't see any 4WD mandatory part. In speaking with SKERSFAN today, he seems to think that it will be 2WD friendly. Still, I wanted to take a look for myself. From having 2WD FJ's along on a lot of runs, I've found that they are the equal of 4X4 with the exception of deep sand, big rocks and really difficult traction situations. I don't expect any of those conditions to exist, but we'll know in a week and I'll report it.
 

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Larry,

There is some very beautiful country to north of Kanab. Along Hiway 14 I think, Duck Creek and Navajo Lake. Cedar Breaks and Brian head. There is a major jeep trail that runs north from that area. I have never been on it, but you could look there too.

I am really looking forward to your report. It is such a beautiful area and very remote along the North Rim. And if we can get close to the rim, it is totally different view. And it is spectacular at dawn and sunset. You could try www.mtbr.com. It will tell you how to get to the Rainbow Rim bicycle trail head. There are tons of roads through the area. But that area allows vehicles to park very near the canyon. Call me if you want.
 
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