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Old 10-21-2009, 05:54 PM   #81
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

I think we might be the only Sprinter there

UNBELIEVEABLE

We head out around 10am tomorrow. Yahooooo!

Regards,

Keith
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Old 10-21-2009, 09:00 PM   #82
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Don't forget about us. Two Sprinters for sure. We are going to stop at Sportsmobile in the morning then head up to Sample Meadows.

Henry
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Old 10-22-2009, 06:59 PM   #83
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Well here we go again, I've got to cancel going to the meet up. I was sooo looking forward to meeting up with you guys but my Orthopedic Dr. put a damper on my comfort. Getting Old is NO Fun. Maybe next time. Have a good time and have a few beers for us'

Later,

Paul
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Old 10-22-2009, 08:48 PM   #84
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Mrs. Wilson, Cooper, and myself will be arriving
Early AM Saturday, leaving Monday
should i bring Douhnuts?

Please dont laugh at me as i test out all my new gear
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:42 PM   #85
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Hello there from sample meadows

it's Saturday night. I'm still out on the trail and found a cell signal.

It's dark now and I have find my way back!
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Old 10-25-2009, 07:23 PM   #86
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Charlie found his way back safely.

We had 8 SMB's and Andrew (and Jack) in a rental RV. Cold nights but a good time was had by all - except maybe yakhlr who had Sprinter problems and left early.

More to follow. DaveB said he would post a report with some pictures, and I will post some words about the route around the Kaiser Wilderness.

Mike
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Old 10-26-2009, 10:48 AM   #87
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

When leaving the campout, we had two choices:

Go up over Kaiser Pass (9000+ feet). This would mean either risking black ice from the earlier snow melt and overnight freeze, or wait until after noon to leave.

Go around the Kaiser Wilderness on FS5. This route is lower but longer. About 40 miles to Shaver Lake, and supposedly very scenic.

Ok, I chose to leave early and take the scenic route. This route starts downhill just after leaving the campground and continues down for so long that 7 miles later my engine water temp still hadn't gotten over 150 degrees. I didn't see much scenery as my eyes were stuck to the road.

Steep, rutted, potholed, but not really worse than what we came in on. Still keep those eyes on the road all the time. Several roads turn off this one, and no road signs. I had some concern and kept hoping I was on the right road. Since this road circles the Kaiser Wilderness, I figured if I keep to the left (the wilderness is on the left) then the worst I could do would be a few hundred yards towards the wilderness. And that worked. About 9 miles in the road the road turned into pavement - smoooth pavement. No potholes. It was still a tight, twisty road, but I was able to average 25-30mph in relative comfort.

At least until I got to the downhill stretch going into Big Creek. 1 lane, narrow, steeeeeeeep road. With my SMB trailer, I was really hoping I didn't meet anyone coming up because there was no place to pass and I couldn't back that trailer up that hill. Low gear and some brakes. I was really close to stopping getting into lo range.

I've never seen a townsite as steep as Big Creek! Part of the town is on a little peninsula of land, but most is built on land that is 45 degrees (or more) from level.

From there to Shaver Lake was uneventful. The road came onto THE 168 at the big Shaver Lake marina.

It took around 2 hours to go that far instead of less than an hour, but I was able to leave 4 hours earlier, so I go home earlier than waiting for Kaiser Pass to be safe.

There wasn't much scenery, too many trees. Well there might have been some, but I have this bad habit of watching the road, not the scenery.

Mike
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Old 10-26-2009, 03:20 PM   #88
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Glad you made it Mike. We should have gone that way.

The "big dog" aka Crackerjack was returned home. His dad was on the mountain but much lower and on the other side. We got word to him so he wouldn't keep looking.

Crackerjack BTW was a blue tick hound dog and slept all the way home.

More on the blog.

Regards,

Keith
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:09 PM   #89
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Just wanted to let everyone know Kathy and I made it home ok. Tried to drive up to Edison lake on Friday but at the first hill out of camp we had no power and no turbo boost. Returned to camp and checked turbo hoses etc. but everything looked good. So we decided to try and make it down to the Fresno Dodge dealer. Twenty minutes later we head out again and all is fine with the van. We were a little nervous going over Kaiser pass but no problems. Spent the night at Shaver lake and drove all the way home on Saturday and the van ran perfect. Took the van to my local dealer today and they found an EGR valve malfunction, easy fix. All part of the adventure.

We enjoyed meeting everyone and had lots of fun even though we ended up leaving early. I'm still amazed Andrew got that 25 foot RV back into Sample Meadows.

Good people and good fun.

Henry
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:14 PM   #90
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Re: Central Ca October 2009 Meet.

Sounds like you all had a great time Can't wait for pics
That's my man Andrew he sure is no beginner when you get him into a vehicle with four wheels no matter where the drive
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