Category Archives: From the Trail

Day 2 from Jeep Beach: Roadside Tombs and Jeep Parties on the Beach

Today culminated one of the biggest achievements yet of Jeep Beach 2014: Completing the scavenger hunt.

We drove around between A1A and US 1, checking off an interesting list of hidden secrets such as the “mysterious” ruins of New Smyrna, a lighthouse in Ponce Inlet, and a manatee named “Cookie.”

But perhaps the most interesting thing we encountered was the “Tomb in the road.”  According to the site “Weird Florida,”

Me, at the “Tomb in the road.”

“[Douglas] Dummett sent his son to school in the North and in 1860 when Charles was home from school, he was killed while on a hunting trip when his gun accidentally discharged. Douglas Dummett buried his son on the spot where he was killed. For the past century this area has been developed into a residential neighborhood, but Charles Dummett’s tomb still sits on a little island in the middle of Canova Drive.”

Pretty cool history off the beaten path.

After we completed all the items on the list, we headed back to the condo for some sun and some R&R before cruising out to the first “meet n greet” of the week.

The highlight of the meet n greet was roaming around the parking lot, checking out all the amazing rigs from around the country.

Here are some of my favorites:

Beautiful military-themed CJ.
A worthy Renegade.
An old Army Flattie.
A 2014 JK-8 conversion. The owner did the conversion when brand new.
This JK had the most beautiful axles and suspension I have ever seen. Currie Rockjock 80s!
Rugged Ridge’s Army Jeep. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Unless it involves an army-themed Tacticool JK. Then it is fine.

After the drool-fest was over outside, we headed inside for some mingling, dinner, and drinks (the hotel made me a special vegan dinner of penne, fresh garlic marinara and garlic bread – super good!) but the drinks we pretty meh.

I was able to chat with Bond, the founder of Rebel Offroad and also the Editor of CRAWL magazine (who is also a Northwesterner).

Tomorrow I am looking forward to heading to Daytona Raceway for some Jeeping and to roam around the various vendors. Then it’s the VIP tiky party!

Day 3 is here.

Day 1 from Jeep Beach: Cold Beer, Jeeps, and Meeting old Friends

Today was the official first day of Jeep Beach in Daytona Beach, Florida.

This annual pilgrimage of Jeep owners is the Yin to Easter Jeep Safari’s yang, with Daytona offering a decent match to Moab.

Jeeps gather at the Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium.

Where Daytona can’t possibly compare with Moab’s terrain and trails, it delivers in spades better weather, beautiful beaches, and a coastal atmosphere.

Today was pretty chill; we started the scavenger hunt – a contest to take photos of your or your Jeep around Daytona Beach with various landmarks, waiters, and other curiosities.

My buddy Jason rocking an official ORV T shirt!

The day culminated at the Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium, where hundreds of of Jeeps and Jeepers converged to meet with vendors, chat, and enjoy some local music and cold beers.

Rugged Ridge had some awesome Jeeps today, looking forward to seeing more of their Drakon Wheels and Hurricane Fenders!

I spent some time meeting with the team from Spiderwebshade and Factor 55 where we discussed their newest products.  I am looking forward to learning more.  They snuck me some VIP tickets to the Tiky Party on Friday!

Poison Spyder had this beautiful JK.

We saw some amazing rigs and saw some of the newer Jeeps from vendors – the Skyjacker jeep had some fresh damage from a crash at EJS!

Tomorrow we will continue the scavenger hunt and spend more time on the beach and in the Jeep!

Check out this awesome panorama!

Day 2 is here.

Building an Off-road Expedition Trailer

UPDATED!  I am building a SECOND expedition trailer!  On 4/1/2016 I purchased a 1946 Willy’s M100 trailer from a seller in Livermore, California.  

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The Craigslist post.

While on a recent trip to San Francisco, I happened to open Facebook and saw a unicorn – a 1946 Willy’s M100 for SALE!  And the price was right. So I bought a trailer hitch, installed it in a dirty alleyway, and the following morning dragged the trailer all the way to Portland.

At this point, plans include better electrical, paint, fab and welding, 37s, and a few extras.

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Day 1: In Livermore, California.

4/10/2017:  My friend is doing the fab work for this phase of the build which includes new fenders, platforms before and after the fenders, extended tongue and tongue deck, fitment of a CJ tailgate, and a new bumper.  We are also discussing the possibility of a raising platform to make better use of the annex.

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The trailer below this point was built and sold.  Read on for build notes!

Last Summer while camping on the Rubicon, we camped at the base of a small ledge near Buck Island Lake.  Our tent was on the ground at the base of this ledge.  All night, (what I though could be potentially drunk) drivers drove their rigs around the area.  The thought of one of them not seeing our tent, and attempting the ledge kept me up all night.

Our campsite at BIL: On the right (ledge can’t be seen).

So finding a way to get up off the ground has been on my list.

In addition, the ability to have “just enough” creature comforts without having “too many” is appealing to me.  Also, as trail-bound vegans, we tend to bring all our food with us, so the additional space is critical. Continue reading Building an Off-road Expedition Trailer