First to the summit…

The Tahoe Donner 4-Wheelers were out yesterday on the Rubicon to replace weather worn signage on the Miller Lake sign board.

It didn’t take too long to staple some laminations to a piece of plywood.

So we decided to check out the Richardson Lake Trail that runs up to Sourdough Hill. The first sizable snow drift looked formattable.

John made it but I slide a little sideways and had to pull a winch line like the others behind me.

There were some longer sections where we had to dig a notch for the upper wheels to prevent sliding off the trail.

There was one tree across the trail that was easily removed as we were prepared for such issues.

Most of the snow section we tried to drive as they were. It got a little tippy at times. Of course the photo doesn’t share the feeling!

After summiting Sourdough, we run up the Buck Lake Trail. Very wet and snow still at the top. We didn’t make it too far up the Ellis Peak/Lake Trail. This is a shot on the way down.

Of course we’re out there for the beauty as well as the challenge.

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Rubicon Ronin


Tahoe Forest Fire Restrictions in Effect

As of today, fire restrictions are also in effect on the Tahoe National Forest:

As an FYI, I don’t think there are fire restrictions for the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit as they ALWAYS require any fire to be in a designated campsite in a Forest Service provided ring.


Eldorado Forest Fire Restrictions in Effect

As of today 5/29/2020, fire restrictions are in effect in the Eldorado National Forest. No campfires outside of fire rings or stoves in designated campsites. This includes welding!

This is a little early but one email I read cites that 95% of all fires in California are man caused.

Propane stoves are still allowed with a fire permit.


Rubicon Trail Conditions

I was out on the Tahoe side on Sunday and the trail is wet. If you don’t have to be on the Rubicon, I’d like to ask you to find a dryer place to go wheeling.

Most wet sections are rock covered and don’t pose any issues:

There is still snow and ice in the shaded sections of the Tahoe National Forest:

Where the snow has melted, there is some standing water and a few muddy sections.

That hole in front of my Jeep was some thick mud. We made it through going west but on the return trip, four of the five rigs in our group had to winch out. I’ve reached out to El Dorado, RTF and FOTR to get a crew out to work the few sections that were causing issues.

Some of the rolling dips placed last November were working, some better than others. All needed rock to harden them to prevent them from being worn down.

Again, please avoid the trail if you can. Let it dry out and visit in July.

“Turn Around, Don’t Go Around”, stay on the trail!

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Rubicon Ronin


I lost a family member…

During the summer of 1985, I bought my first four wheel drive vehicle. Actually, it was the first vehicle ever registered in my name.

It was a 1947 CJ-2A, about as stock as you can get. The original flat head had no power but was fine in low range. I drove it for awhile but soon figured I needed more power to be able to do the speed limit on the street. In comes a Buick 225 odd-fire V-6 from a 1969 CJ-5. (the ’69 Chevy PU was my daily driver: 307, long bed, 2wd, 3-on-the-tree)

Just getting in to working on vehicles, it had been bicycles and skateboards before then, I didn’t have a shop to work in. I sort-of highjacked some room in my father’s plumbing shop.

Well, 35 years later, a Buick 231 in place of the 225, a 4.3 in place of the 231 but never finished, the T-90 replaced with an SM420 and the day finally came.

On Saturday, I sold my beloved flat fender as I’m moving to a new house that doesn’t quite have the storage the old house had.

There’s not much stock on it any more, basically the frame and body.

There will always be Jeeps in my life, just not my first love.

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Rubicon Ronin