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Hackett Gulch

I We met in Sedalia around 7:30am, me in the 76 Cherokee, Paul in his 90 XJ, and two of Paul's friends (one XJ, one Dakota).

We headed out of Sedalia on RT67 which led us on a very scenic drive to Woodland park. Once on the trail (the Dakota was left at the camp site) we made quick time to Hackett rock, where we encountered a line of waiting jeeps & other trucks. We watched everyone having trouble (lockers and swampers were not enough to allow TJs to walk right up) as it was wet & muddy. Most made it, and some others were winched up, and a few turned back.

Being the biggest jeep in our group and spooled up out back, I proceeded to try Hackett rock. If I didn't know better I would have thought I drove over a curb - it was that easy!!!! I'm not kidding - Paul has it on digital video. I'm forever sold on Goodyear MTRs! Next up was Paul's XJ, with 3" lift & 31" tires he was able to make it after a couple of attempts to find the right line/momentum combination. The last XJ made a few attempts, and eventually we decided to pull him up with the strap, as it was a fairly new XJ and we didn't want to cause any damage. We continued on after waiting for 2 more small jeeps to come up, strapping one of them up.

We then continued on to the water crossing, to find out it was about 3' deep, here we saw some rednecks trashing a steep dirt trail (boggers on an unlocked full size chevy sure dig holes quickly!), and even stayed long enough to watch one of them in a very modified S10 Blazer put it over on one side trying to make the climb (can we say that lots of beer & "I bet you I can make that" or "watch this" were probably the main staple of their day).

We continued on after resting there and helping some others pull out wet spark plugs (bet there still there), when the rain came again (yes it had rained twice before - once at Hackett rock & once before getting to the river). We decided we needed to get moving so we could finish the trail.

We continued to do the loop (return path of Hackett trail) instead of doubling back as I had started to do this part with Ethan last time, and I wanted to know how the rest of it was. The first obstacle was a gravel/sand climb that turns into a rocky section just after the camping area by Widowmaker hill. Then though some tightly treed twisty trails, up to the next obstacle, a tight "V" notch, here I carefully spotted the first XJ through (basically you climb one near sheer rockface by using the other sides angled rock to keep you from slipping down into the "V". After all of us made it though unscathed, we continued on to the trailhead without any other real obstacles.

Jeff C