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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Me and Tim went out to do some coyote hunting yesterday. As it turned out, the wind blew and howled all day long. We got the Jeep stuck three times. We didn't kill any coyotes. Our camera shit the bed and needs a $500 repair.

But we had too much fun!

Started out in a corner of the country we have never rolled through before. Wind was just flat HOWLING before it even got light. Country we were in had lots of bunnies and coyote sign. But the brush was taller than the Jeep and few places to get a setup with any kind of shooting lane. Plus, with that wind, and the tall brush, our sound wasn't going to go anywhere. So we stayed in the Jeep and just did some exploring. After the sun came up, we couldn't stand not hunting, so we made several stands but it was hopeless, the wind was just way too much.

We had been cutting the first tire tracks in weeks old snow for 30 miles by mid morning and found ourselves in a good looking draw when the wind just decided to let up all the sudden. Yipee! We walked a short distance and setup. Got a group yip howl from maybe 500 yards away almost as soon as I started Utah Jack on the Foxpro. So I started giving them some non-agressive puppy howls. A couple minutes later I spotted three coyotes trotting on the top of a spine ridge. At the time I estimated them to be 400 yards, but they were further, probably more like 500. Anyway, all three of them sat up there on the ridge in plain sight and howled back and forth with me for awhile. I switched to more aggressive dominant howls and could see the largest coyote getting pretty worked up. But none took a step our way. Finally I decided to give them a little rabbit again. One of them immediately did an about face and ran away. The other two started backing up and side stepping. No doubt, this crew was wise to the rabbit blues... Went back to the howls, but they were just fixing to leave. So I took my best shot at the big male. Misjudged the distance and missed him.

We got in one more stand, then the wind came back, harder than ever. It was blowing so hard that the few stands we made just seemed like a waste of time. So we just pointed the hood of the Jeep towards more ground we'd never seen and did some exploring.

By late afternoon we we had navigated most of a huge loop through the desert and were heading back towards the pavement. Again, we were on an unfamilar two track, and cutting the first tracks in old snow. Nobody had been on this two track for weeks, at least. Came upon a spot in the road that was washed out and just an ugly looking mud pit. Decided to go for it. Didn't make it...



Once I felt the frame rail on my side start sinking in the mud, I stopped. No sense digging in any deeper. This was the first real need to use the Warn winch on my bumper and Pull Pal land anchor that I always carry. The land anchor worked like a champ and the 9000 pound Warn made quick work of pulling us through. Score one for Dave and Tim vs. our hated enemy Mud!

Got only about two more miles up the draw and got stuck in a snow drift...



Had a good tree to anchor on this time, and again the winch got us out easy and saved us some shovel work.



Got only another 800 yards before we were stuck in another snow drift... We were getting short on daylight. Still had about 10 miles of this two track before we would get to a "good" dirt road, which would still leave us another 10 miles to pavement. I did a little recon on foot, and the road ahead just got worse. More and deeper snow drifts ahead. We really didn't want to turn around though, as it would have added a couple more hours before reaching pavement. So we got out the tire chains and chained all four tires. We figured we'd just see what kind of justice that would get us trying to go forward. But that if we got stuck again, with all four chained, we were going to turn around, go back and winch ourselves back across the mud hole and just take the long way back to pavement.

We need not have worried about having to turn around! With both axles locked, and chains on all four tires, the Jeep was like a little bulldozer going through the remaining snow drifts. Our forward progress did get stopped several times. But all we had to do was forward/reverse/forward/reverse until the chains dug clear down to the frozen ground and got some justice to grind our way through. I had my window rolled down, and in a couple spots I could almost touch the top of the snow we were going through.

Tim and I really had a lot of fun getting through all that mud and snow! It was a blast. Have to admit though, that as much fun as we had, it still felt REAL good to get back on the good dirt road and be able to take the tire chains off. By then, it was full dark. We had about a four hour drive home ahead of us. I cranked up the heater an extra notch, lit a good cigar, settled back in the seat and pointed the headlights towards home feeling totally pleased with the events of the day, even though we hadn't scored a single coyote.

- DAA
 

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Oh! That was a fun read, DAA! BTDT too (sans the wench...er..winch that is ;-) I dearly miss the west, and everytime I read one of your adventures or see one of your videos, I get serious homesick all over again! [sigh].

Looking forward to your next adventure. Keep 'em comin!

P.
 

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Dont get any betern that

stuck in the mud and snow while scouting the desert:D
I need a 4x4 as the old prairie scooner is just a fair weather 2x4 with way too many miles on her to do any serios scouting:eek:
Thanks for takeing us along again!!
 

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Really enjoyed the story of the great adventure.
Having the correct tools along saved your bacon. Better to have and not need than not have and~~
And checking the pics I see,Tim was having much to much fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Wonder how the old dodge would have faired. Nice to be able to go into the back country with the confidence that you can make it out. Brian
Brian, the Dodge would not have faired well at ALL! :D

This was just a little "wet spot" in the road. And pretty typical of my Dodge and mud...



That picture was taken on a day we were filming part of Varmint Safari 3, by the way. And that wasn't the first, or the last time we got stuck that day. The last stuck, we had to rely on the kindness of strangers (MULTIPLE strangers!) to yank us out. The spot where that happened, my Jeep probably would have barely even spun a tire. Certainly would not have got stuck.

I love my Dodge. But it will get itself stuck on a piece of wet toilet paper...

Really, it was getting stuck too often in the Dodge, and that one particular "incident" where it got stuck and I had to spend one night in the truck, one night on the open desert and walk 34 miles, that really motivated me to buy the Jeep. Really though, I've wanted a Wrangler since I was a kid. Just tickled to death that I finally have one!

Here's a video clip of the Jeep winching out of the mud hole pictured above. It's a 10MB file, so dial up users beware. And, frankly, not all that interesting to watch. But I know at least a few folks will be interested enough to download and watch (I would...), so I'll post it anyway.

- DAA
 

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Great time out...

I watched the video and you sure can see the wind blowing.
Any chance you ever need a snatch block to get a compound pull with that winch?
I've never used a winch on a truck, but I've done a lot of logging.
 

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In high school or college, I coulda enjoyed that kind of trip but now that I'm middle aged it is just too high of a "pucker factor" to really enjoy. Ahh, youth has it's advantages. Been there, done that enjoyed it then. Now a great read. Thanks for taking me back to a time when I could handle that sort of situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Any chance you ever need a snatch block to get a compound pull with that winch?
Definite chance of that. I always carry at least one snatch block with me. Works just as good when using the Hi Lift to winch with too. A lot of times it's most desirable to pull back out the way you went in to a stuck. I use the Hi Lift jack to winch from the rear. Can come in handy for rigging in weird situations like pulling someone else forward from behind or something too. Definitely should always have at least one snatch block in the rig, I think.

- DAA
 
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