2024 Randsburg Run

A few of us showed up Thursday to get our camps set up in preparation for the weekends activities. It was a little windy but we were still able to have a campfire. During the night and early morning we had more members come in to camp.

We had 13 vehicles on our Friday run. We went up Iron Canyon heading west as we have done in past years. One of the hills was long and fairly steep with loose shale near the top. Bryan K had drive shaft problems so he was running in 2wd with no front drive shaft. He lost traction about half way up and required rescue. Bryan S was able to get a strap on him and pulled him up the rest of the way.

It’s amazing how much traction that long wheelbase Gladiator has.

At this point the group split with some continuing up another hill and the rest going down the other side. This was the only experience with herding cats I had on the trip. Our GMRS radios worked great getting us back together.

We then went to the Walsh cabin at the top of the mountain. This cabin has a great view of the valley looking south toward Mojave but is held down by cables because of the wind. It was very windy while we were there but it was warm wind.

We then headed back down the hill toward Goler Wash. The trail to the wash was bumpy but not difficult. When we got into the wash we encountered a couple of waterfalls that we either had to go over or around.

Just before we got back to camp we went through the Narrows which is a narrow pass through a solid rock cliff. That night the wind stopped and we had a great campfire.

Saturday we had 19 vehicles head out toward Last Chance Canyon. At the trailhead we aired down and had a driver meeting.

Due to some rain earlier in the year the canyon had changed with a few more rocks added. The going was slow and we got to practice our rock stacking skills and towing capabilities. At the last meeting Kevin asked me whether an F250 could get through there and I thought it could. What Kevin didn’t know was that his automatic front hubs weren’t working. So a 1wd F250 can do it with a little help from your friends. Many thanks to Gary for turning Kim’s brand new Rubicon around in the canyon to do some winching.

After the canyon we headed headed to the Dutch Cleanser Mine to look at the snow caves. This mine was worked from 1919 to 1958 mining pumice for the Calsilco Corporation which was used in the manufacture of tooth paste, paint, insulating material and many other products.

Since we were running late we bypassed the Rock House and went down Bonanza Gulch to check out Bickel Camp. We then went across the valley on the on the easy road to Burrow Schmidts tunnel. A few people went through the tunnel to check out the view.

I was planning on going back to camp by way of Goler Wash but Jerry pointed out the approaching rain clouds so we headed back through Mesquite Canyon to the highway. We all made it back to camp before the rain started in time for dinner. Later a few of us sat around a campfire in the rain.

Sunday morning 6 vehicles headed up to Government Peak by way of the waterfalls. Kristina was the only one without lockers and required a little help on a couple of the obstacles. I give her credit for trying this difficult canyon.

Kerry blew out a rear tire on the big waterfall which took a while to change. Note to all – Make sure your jack works, fits under your axle and you have the correct lug nut wrench. Thank you Brian for the tows when needed. Another note to all – there are places where space is limited and slow speed control is required. A tow strap works and a kinetic rope sucks.

We reached the radio towers at the top of the mountain and admired the views.

The clouds were approaching from the west so we bypassed the Randsburg tour and headed back to camp on the easy road. We got into a little rain on the way but camp was dry and we were able to pack and air up before the rain came. The drive home was very wet in a couple of areas.

I want to thank all of you who participated for being prompt and obeying instructions. It made my job much easier. I hope we all learned a little about winching, towing and rock stacking. This is a good group and I hope to see you all next year.