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  • crusin' the dusy...

    Since I’d missed the Rubicon this summer I was determined to tackle the Dusy-Ershim trail. 33 miles from Courtwright Resevoir to White bark Vista, the Dusy traverses some of the most spectacular scenery in the Sierra Nevadas. The trail winds through the mountains starting around 9k feet and peaks at 10k+feet through Kaiser Pass. The remoteness, difficulty and length of the trail makes it one that should only be tackled by solid, well maintained swb vehicles with 33+? tires and at least one locker. Many have run it... this is my story...

    I knew a group of friends in a “mostly? Toyota club that were planning a Dusy trip in the middle of September. Since it was a trail I’d wanted to do for some time, I took some vacation and made plans to join them. Knowing it was very important to be covered with spare parts and extra gas, I contacted a friend (who will remain nameless for his own good ) to borrow some axle shafts, hubs and spare fuel packs. Although I don’t like wheeling with doors, I knew the temps were going to be down in the low 30s at night and I figured I should get some soft doors and windows just in case. Thank you Tam and Chris for letting me borrow some. At the last minute I decided to go with out any windows... I’d live to regret that.

    Thursday finally arrived, the Jeep was packed and I was off. Up the 5 to the 99, the 41 out of Fresno to the 168 toward Shaver Lake. One last stop in Prather to top off the tank and fill the fuel packs gave me a total of 25 gallons of gas for the trip, plenty for my fuel injected 4.0. I made it to camp at Courtwright Resevoir around 8pm, met by John K, Neil, “the other John? and his friend Art. We sat around the campfire cracking jokes while “the other John? made some gourmet mac and cheese in a Dutch oven, yummy!!! Everyone decided to forgo putting up tents and elected to crash in their sleeping bags under the stars. It was cold but bearable. Ross K and Dave arrived after we’d gone to bed. In the morning we’d start the trail.

    We awoke to a brisk morning ready to tackle what was ahead. The weather turned out to sunny and warm.

    Courtwright Resevoir...



    Ready to roll...



    It wasn’t long before we had our first problem, John K pinched and tore a driver side break line...




    Luckily Neil had a spare.

    Later we hit some slabs and lined up for a group shot...



    Then on to Chicken Rock, not quite “launch pad?, but steep...



    Later the group got a bit spread out, mostly because I drive to damn slow. :yay: Anyway, this was a stop for everyone to regroup...



    Friday’s lunch break....



    Domes...



    After lunch we proceeded to the difficult rocky climb called Thompson hill. To everyone’s relief we all made it up without a breakdown, although I needed a bit of spotting to get “un-stuck? a couple times and ended up with a bent tie rod.

    Here’s camp at the top of Thompson hill...



    Thompson Lake...



    A view on the granite domes and Courtwright from above camp...



    A neato “Jeep? sign...



    The next day would be the easiest of the trip. Don’t forget to pay attention though, or you’ll do some body damage on a tree. Lot’s of tight maneuvering on this trail.

    A poser rock on the trail...

    Ross K...



    John K...



    Me...



    The “Other John?...



    At lunch we realized why you shouldn’t put YJ shackles on a Crusier...



    Saturday’s campfire at Ershim lake...




    While sitting around the campfire (read: me taking crap about Jeeps) it started to snow. We woke up to about 30 degrees and this the next morning...



    The last leg of the trip has many technical rocky sections. While climbing out of camp I had my first big scare. I turned on my rear ARB only to see my air pressure steadily drop. After crawling under the Jeep we figured out that I was losing air inside the diff, an O ring must be leaking. I was bummed to say the least. I guess I’d have to try and make it out using only the front locker.

    Not far down the trail Dave and John K had some tire problems. We stopped awhile for the repairs...



    As we climbed higher in elevation the snow got worse. By the time we made it to Kaiser pass (10k+feet) we had blizzard conditions. The wind and snow was brutal. I should have brought those windows!!!... The good news was, after my rear axle warmed up, the ARB seemed to hold air!!! :yay:



    At the end of the trail we realized how bad the weather really was. The forest service had closed the trail!!!



    Great trip. I’ll do it again in a heartbeat.

    Brian.
    Last edited by blkTJ; 09-20-04, 10:39 PM.
    myJeeprocks.com

    "in the end... the rocks always win."

  • #2
    Brian, your photos are spectacular! We gotta do that trail next summer. Glad to see you had a blast, got snowed on, and hung out with people "not of our kind!" LOL

    A dutch oven, eh? I am in posession of a dutch oven cookbook, my gosh the things you can cook in that thing.
    :gun:'99 TJ Sport:gun:

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by sarah
      Brian, your photos are spectacular! We gotta do that trail next summer. Glad to see you had a blast, got snowed on, and hung out with people "not of our kind!" LOL

      A dutch oven, eh? I am in posession of a dutch oven cookbook, my gosh the things you can cook in that thing.
      chris is always trying to put tam in a dutch oven

      those are great pics, brian. i'm just a bit jealous
      >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
      ERIK


      95 yj, locked lifted, and ready to rock!

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      • #4
        It was a lot tougher than the con wasn't it? Good job.
        1994 Toyota, dual cases, 5.29 axles with ARB's

        Comment


        • #5
          Nice write up Brian!

          Looks like fun! LOL about the windows!

          Glad you made it home in one peice.

          Tam
          2002 TJ on 35s a bit of lift with some stuff
          Rock-ItMan all the way around

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by igofshn
            It was a lot tougher than the con wasn't it? Good job.

            I'm not so sure it was tougher, although it was challanging. It lacks some of the really big boulders found on the con but makes up for it with more rocks overall. Both are worth doing over and over.
            myJeeprocks.com

            "in the end... the rocks always win."

            Comment


            • #7
              Wow! Those pics are awesome and I too am jealous. Glad you had a good, safe time. Lets all do it next year!

              Comment


              • #8
                Cool, how long did it take, how many hours a day did you drive.
                Kirk
                1997 Jeep Wrangler

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                • #9
                  Man looks like you guys had an awesome trip, snow and all. After October I should have my rig ready to tackle places like Dusy, and the Rubi. : Dreamin'::island:
                  Bad a** pics and an awesome trail report! :thumbs_up :thumbs_up
                  [color=grey]Ryan[/color]
                  [COLOR=DarkOliveGreen]No Jeep To speak of. But I got a Hummer H3[/COLOR]

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cetrov
                    Cool, how long did it take, how many hours a day did you drive.

                    we hit the trail every day around 9am and got to camp between 2 and 4pm. It took us 3 days, Friday - Sunday.
                    myJeeprocks.com

                    "in the end... the rocks always win."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Those are great pics Brian. As you know that is only one of the many trails in that area. There are a lot that are day runs. I keep trying to get ya'll up here.
                      1994 Toyota, dual cases, 5.29 axles with ARB's

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                      • #12

                        There are only 2 screws there. THere are suposed to be 3! :O

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sully

                          There are only 2 screws there. THere are suposed to be 3! :O
                          yup, that's why it bent.
                          myJeeprocks.com

                          "in the end... the rocks always win."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Reading your trail report almost made me feel like I was there. Nice pics, didn't have to post one with snow...I'll be dealing with that soon enough. I've got to get my Jeep ready to go out that way sometime to meet and wheel with you guys (and gals).

                            Off topic: How's that Currie Anti-Rock work out? Thinkin about getting one, but would like some personal experience inputs before I get one. Thanks, and sorry for going off-topic.
                            04 Rubicon
                            4.5" RE Super Flex
                            1" BL
                            CV Yoke w/ Driveshaft
                            Currie Anti-rock swaybar
                            35" el cheapos
                            Front Bumper & Rockers

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Very cool man, looks like you had a good time. Next year...
                              1986 CJ-7; 4.6L stroker, balanced & blueprinted; 5" lift, 35x1250 MTRs, Poison Spyder Full Width kit,
                              My Jeep

                              Moab Rocker Knocker Video:shades:

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