All posts by Kevin Heckman

Spring into Safety

The CJG held its annual Spring Into Safety event with Beth Fox organizing the event and some members pre-ran their trails in Moab that they are officiants on during Easter Jeep Safari (EJS).

The Spring Into Safety event had approximately 32 attendees.  The Event mainly consists of getting our four-wheel drive rigs out from a long winter to ensure things haven’t seized up – lol – and to ensure everything is still working properly for those heading to EJS the first week of April.  During the event we usually have a few safety topics, have a picnic lunch, and afternoon of four-wheeling.  We are able to learn from our membership expertise of knowledge from GMRS radios, In Reach Devices, Safety First Aid Kits, and winching.  While we learned many things about the GMRS radios and the in reach devices we also learned what is a good suggestion of first aid items to have in our rigs in case we ever need them or to assist others.  This year we did some “hands on” winching and was able to get jeeps stuck and learn the proper way to winch out of such situations properly.  Others were able to also try their hand at operating their winches that were brand new to them and had never operated them before.  What a better way to learn is to just do it and to do it without being in a predicament. Some were also able to stretch their new synthetic rope winches for the first time.  After some learning, lunch, hands on demos, the afternoon ended with a fun few hours of mild four-wheeling – locked in four-low. 

While Kevin Heckman and Hollie Rebaza pre-ran Cameo Cliffs and James and Julia Buck pre-ran 7-mile Rim in Moab along with the snow and mud I think all are ready for EJS and we are already for Spring

Spring into Safety 2022

We had 12 jeep caravan from home depot to Farmington a total of 22 in choke cherry the equipment displays from jeeps  and all the demonstrations at park and choke cherry. We had several members that this was their first or second event as well as perspective members in attendance. 

Some tools on display
Some of the 22 Jeeps in attendance.
Kevin Fox showing what he keeps in his Jeep.
Rope and winching demonstrations.

Kennebec Pass Notch graffiti clean up

This was our largest project since Elwood Pass a few years ago. The “Notch” at the end of La Plata Canyon has been getting graffiti and tagged for over 20 years but has gotten much worse over the last few years. We did see some tags dated 2002. This was talked about 2 years ago and we had to get all of the right permissions as it is a county road in the National Forest and used eco-friendly chemicals so the EPA even was contacted. Last year a few members went up to the Notch with power washers and scrub brushes. After several hours they made almost zero progress so another plan had to be made. Our club then contacted Stephen Singer with Keeping Colorado Beautiful as they are a non-profit that does graffiti removal. He was interested in the project so he come down from Colorado Springs and worked with officials to remove the graffiti at X Rock by Durango and then him and Glen Hood went up to the Notch to check it out. Stephen was hopeful this could be done even though he hadn’t done removal at that high of elevation at 12,000 feet and cool temperatures. His chemicals don’t work when it is under 60 degrees so he had to go to anther chemical called Elephant Snot that works at lower temperatures. The other problem was there is not water up there. So we had 3 trucks with large water tanks haul water up there. The drivers later said it was a long, slow, rough drive up there.

The workday was then set for August 28th. On the 28th we had about 10 club members, 2 from the Colorado 4×4 Girls, Stephen Singer, and KOB4 news out of Albuquerque. A few brave souls had camped at the base of the Notch the evening before and were looking forward to some warm sunlight. Stephen was confident this would be done early in the day and we took him up on that bet. When we got up there several people went around with note pads and tape measures and started measuring the tags. It appeared to be about 5000 square feet of graffiti. The process was fairly simple but the elevation made things more difficult. The rock in the sunlight got a paint sprayer coat of his normal remover and the rock in the shade got Elephant Snot applied by hand with paint brushes because it was so thick. After it was all applied we all took turns with scrub brushes on long handles to work the cleaner into the paint. Then we had to wait about 30 minutes for it to react to the paint. After 30 minutes we used to power spray washers to wash off the cleaner and paint. The sprayer gas engines didn’t want to run very well at 12,000 feet but they did good enough to wash most of the paint right off. Some of the white and yellow paint did not want to come off completely so we reapplied the chemicals and stopped for lunch. Lunch was brought up by Dave Sunderland and was donated to us by South Serious Texas BBQ. After lunch we ran the power washers over the last few spots and they came right off also. We are all finished before 2:00 and had plenty of time to go slowly down La Plata Canyon and back to town.

Special Thanks to Stephen Singer and Keeping Colorado Beautiful for doing all he does and donating the cleaning solution; Colorado 4×4 Girls for coming and helping; Tuffy Security Products for donating brushes, gloves, glasses, and other supplies; La Plata County Government road crew for letting us close the road and donating a truck to use; Serous Texas BBQ for lunch; KOB4 News out of Albuquerque for featuring this on the news (click here for the feature); and of course all the CJG members that made this possible.

We had 6 people camp below the Notch so they could get a head start Saturday morning.
La Plata County let us close the road for the day.
There was over 5000 square feet of graffiti and tags.
KOB4 was even up there recording and interviewing people.
Keeping Colorado Beautiful
Graffiti was all over, even up high.
Serious Texas BBQ supplied lunch
3 water trucks made it up there
Looking good after we were done
Glen Hood being interviewed