Made it out for the first trail run in the new year and had the occasion to test out the recently installed air lockers. Before tomatoes get hurled at me for using air lockers on a trail that some will boast that they've done in 2WD, I will issue the disclaimer now that I used them to climb up onto a boulder that is usually bypassed on the main trail once I demonstrated that my truck would not climb it in standard 4WD.
I almost forgot, I finished making the 2014 Year-in-Review Video on my YouTube Channel. Check it out here: 2014 Year-in-Review Video
Josh and I had been trying to collaborate on a joint ride for the better part of a year. The last time we had wheeled together was over this same weekend in 2014. Otherwise, for much of 2014, either he was wheeling locally and I was off somewhere remotely or in the case of WENT Windrock, it was right around the time that my little guy was due to arrive and his son had made a prompt entry into the world early enough to allow his folks to make the trip. So it just seemed to not be in the cards for 2014. This year our clubs got off to a good start at a familiar trail, Shoe Creek.
|Steve B's clean Glacier White Frontier.|
|No Magellan jokes this time; Josh knew the way...mostly.|
|This might be Rob. Maybe?|
|And then we spotted a Unicorn|
The last thing I'll say is that for all the effort, he probably could have traded it in used and gotten enough cash to put down on a new Frontier, but we are a chosen few that answer the call to wheel the Frontier.
The following weekend is ending now. I was able to carve out some time to finish wiring up the lights and to take another go at reconfiguring the truck bed setup. Basically I slid the toolbox forward enough to position the spare tire up against the rear of the bed. The Quick Fist kit I purchased also came with a set of large grippers for mounting tanks. I am using that now in place of the jury-rigged setup that I previously used to mount my 20lb fire extinguisher. I had high hopes of working out a mount for the high lift, but I goofed on figuring out the offsets needed. Basically the headache rack extends too far aft into the bed to make the beam clamp I picked up work as a mounting point in the utilitrac. Oh well. Back to the drawing board.
So this Sunday I was out in the garage and able to working on prepping the truck for this non-event snowstorm which I don't think is going to amount to anything. But I was able to use it to justify the time in the garage. "Honey, I have to make sure the truck is ready in case there IS snow though". So smart.
The idea for this came up during my run down at Dictum Ridge at night. I had almost always had two lights affixed to the sides of the bed after I goofed way back when I was sizing lights to mount on the old chrome bull bar and had lights that were too big (once you factored in their stand) to mount in the opening. Those lights, as you know, got beat to death and were generally rather cheap. Well, when I was by myself on Dictum Ridge at night, I accidentally turned off onto one of the offshoots when making my way back off the trail and ran into a dead end. Trying to three-point turn in the dark was a bit nerve-wracking as I didn't want to again kiss a tree with my recently replaced tail light. The reverse lights just do not kick off enough light. With two lights mounted at each corner, I've got illumination basically 360 degrees around the truck.
|Just with the reverse lights.|
|Reverse lights + Canopy Lights|
I'm also seeing in this photo, that there is a sizeable dark spot directly next to the truck; so, not exactly 360 degrees. But I just mounted mini Rayovac LED flashlights on both front driver and passenger doors. So, if it is really that serious, undo the quick fist and aim the handy flash light directly out of your window. I'm done buying and wiring lights!
Actually, if I pivot the side lights 90 degrees on the mounting bolt, I could aim the floods forward some to cover that dark area, but I'm less concerned with that. The areas immediately to the side of the vehicle, presuming the truck was in motion, had previously been illuminated by all of the forward lighting. I guess I could get some LED strips and mount them along the tops of the rock sliders. That would probably be overkill though.