Article by Scott Bibbee.
August, 2000. Primitive Acres Ranch, Mt. Enterprise, TX.
Overall, a very fun trip. Not too difficult for most people, although many people that went are going to be in the market for some more Jeep goodies very soon! (Like me, wishing for 4.56 gears and 33’s – soon, very soon!) Also, I wouldn’t recommend doing it as a day trip… it’s about a 350 mile roundtrip from Dallas.
The morning started off with the toughest obstacle of the day – a drop down into a creek bottom, and a steep, rocky climb up the other side. Getting the tires loaded up with mud in the bottom made climbing the rocks more challenging. Everyone that tried it made it – from a nearly stock ZJ, to stock TJ’s, and those with more mods.
Then, our groups split up into two, since the turnout was so good. We headed to a sandy ravine to play in next, where we watched several people, and only two successfully climb the most challenging hill out. So many valiant efforts, though. Bob Carson popped a bead on one climb, but a few minutes later they had it re-seated and everyone went their separate ways.
I led one group up, around, and all over the place. We went to the top of Jackson’s Hill to check out the view, and then back to the lodge for lunch – air conditioning rocks! :) BTW, near the top of Jackson’s Hill, there’s a great, flat, sandy place to do donuts!!!
After lunch, I led the group again. We found some very fun trails – sand, rocks, mud, deep ruts, lots of off-camber stuff, and some great chances to flex out everyone’s suspension. Water crossings were easy enough with firm, sandy bottoms. Of course, the fact that there hasn’t been much rain made them much easier.
The last obstacle of the day was a great drop-off to the side of one trail that I spotted as we tooled along. I tried the hardest line first, and made it with no problems (although I drug the receiver on my brand new Tomken rear bumper, which is why I MUST have 33’s!). The stockers and less lifted rigs went down the easier side, but it was still challenging. My Dad in his OME lifted TJ also took the hard line, and I’ll never forget the look on both his and his passenger’s faces as the passenger front dropped over the 3′ ledge and they got a little tipsy… pure pucker! Jason West went down and then back up the tough line with a little help from his friendly spotter (which is why I want 33’s – he didn’t drag anything!).
Overall, we had a ton of fun. I am sure we’ll be back – one thing I can say for sure – if it rains before you go, everything will be much harder!
Thanks to JNT’s leaders for organizing the event, and thanks to the Primitive Acres staff!!!
Photos below courtesy of Ben Conlan