Propane and Blue Trails with ORC

Four weeks before I head out to Moab>Rubicon. I planned to get my propane tank filled on Saturday, and to join Off Road Consulting on their guided blue trail ride on Sunday.

First thing’s first, fill up my new 5 LB propane tank. Now that I finally got the Powertank mounting bracket, it was time to fill ‘er up. I called the local Lowes, HomeDepo, Walmart, and some gas stations, but they only offered 15 LB tank swaps. Well that sucks. I reached out to some of my overland/camping buddies, they all recommended calling the nearest Camping World. Nice, they do fillups even on 5 LB tanks!

The closest Camping World is in Swedesboro, NJ, about 30 miles out. I got up early on Saturday and headed out. I got there in less than 40 minutes. One of the guys took the tank to get it filled, told me he’d be back in 10 minutes. Perfect, just enough time to look around the place for camping supplies. 🙂

I ended up buying most of the stuff that was on my list, the rest I suppsoed I’ll need to get from REI or Cabela’s. But I digress.

They’ve got half a dozen bays where they do maintenance, repairs, modifications, installs, you name it, they do it. I asked one of the guys if they can mount the propane tank to my Jeep, just to see what they’d say. Apparently they’ve had Jeep owers come in to do just that. They would have to order a bracket, and it would mount over the left brake light, and it would involve drilling. I could probably tackle that myself, but then, I plan to strap my two RotoPax fuel containers and the 5 LB propane tank to the spare using a dual mount strap.

I headed back home, and prepared for Sunday. I planned to join Off Road Consulting on their guided Blue Trail ride. I left the fridge behind this time (overkill for a 6 hour ride), and took my Yeti Day Trip Bag instead. Pre-packed it the night before, with some liquids and sammishes, and stuck it in the fridge.

I got up early on Sunday and got to Rausch 30 min before the group was scheduled to head out. There were so many people there, they had to split us into two groups. I was in the first group of 8 Jeeps, we chose to do the harder blue trails. The second group was probably another 20 Jeeps, doing the easier blue trails. Of course being in the first group, we all raised our hands when asked if we’d like to do Crawler’s ridge.

Of course I took a few panoramic shots.

I took a a number of videos of the group going up the most challenging part of Crawler’s Ridge, guessing nobody got any video of me. #sigh

I managed to knock my right rear fender flare off. I misjudged a trench and slid into the wall of dirt. Luckily it was a minor slip and there was no damage to the fender flare. The plastic clips are designed to break away, and they did. I ordered some replacement clips, and its back on. I decided against using nutserts for the rear fender flares, since they are nice and secure using plastic clips. The front flares required nutserts, mentioned in another blog post.

Off Road Consulting is a group of veterans and ex contractors who train folks like me, as well as military, government, corporate, etc., folks on off road riding. They’ve got a ton of classes, including 101, 201, 301, recovery training, guided tours…if you have a Jeep and want to learn how to wheel, they’re the folks to connect with.