Durhamtown, GA - Sept. 15 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Durhamtown, GA - Sept. 15


Explorer Addict
February 22, 2010
Reaction score
City, State
Dublin, GA
Year, Model & Trim Level
'01 Sport Trac 4x4
I am going with a buddy (Gulches guys will remember Dan in the green stock Jeep) Sept. 15. I only requested off that day but depending on how scheduling works out, I may stay through Sunday. As of now, it's only a day trip, though, because it's so close by and I don't have much time to request off.

It's in Union Point. For Georgia folks, it's a little south of Athens; not a bad drive from Atlanta, middle GA or northeast GA.

I know it may not be worth the drive for some farther away people for a single day but that's your judgement. Patrick, it'd be about 2 hours from Clemson if you or any of your buddies would like to join. Nothing saying y'all couldn't make a weekend of it just because I'm lame.

Or...I could scout it out and let everyone know if it's worth the trip.


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Ok, well, I almost didn't go, but....

I did!

I went with 3 mostly stock TJs and an XJ. Needless to say, I played Jeep Recovery Vehicle a good bit, lol. To be fair, within 5 minutes of being in the park, we played in mud and I lost, needing to be winched out by my buddy in one of the TJs. Somebody went through there with something larger than 35s...go figure.

It's a promising park. There's lots of land and has enough elevation change to rival and even surpass Gulches in S.C. as a 4x4 park in the relative area, but I don't know that the park management see it in the cards. The map is laughable; useless. Signs are awful and nearly nonexistent. We actually ended up on an ATV/dirtbike trail headed back to the lodge because it wasn't well marked. All we saw were signs that said "Lodge" until we were a 1/2 mile into the trail where we finally started seeing "ATV/Bike" signs on the trees. Their fault, not ours, IMO. They really couldn't get pissed at us and we didn't tear up the trail, so all was well. They didn't say anything.

Park 1:
Had some highlights and was fun but anything more modded than mine would probably get bored really quickly.
Zone 1: was the most difficult of Park 1 and had some fun hill climbs. There was one section that was certainly out of mine and our crew's ability but with more tread on my tires and a rear locker, I'd have gone for it.
Zone 2: eh, honestly don't remember anything worth mentioning.
Zone 3: Only one area worth mentioning that had some switchbacks that were fun and required some planning of tire position but still not very difficult; two of the Jeeps did it. I'll have video of it later and it did get the suspension flexing some. There was one open area with a couple big man made hills that were fun to climb to take pictures but nothing else worth mentioning.
Zone 4 of Park 1 I ran in 2wd the entire time. WTH? Not 4x4 park quality.

Park 2:
Where we started and was definitely the more fun and technical of the two parks. If there were zones like Park 1, I wasn't aware (again, lacking signs). This is the home of Slippery Nipple. It's the only trail at Durhamtown that really deserves a name at this point, but it is a doozy. With a steel front bumper, more armor and a rear locker, I'd definitely have tackled the Slippery Nipple but my truck wasn't ready today. I shall return if for nothing else but this trail. Hopefully next year.

The rest of Park 2 had some good climbs, some boulder climbs for the more built vehicles, some stuff that I would consider buggy only and some climbs that were fun for my truck but not necessarily difficult but beyond the abilities of the Jeeps I was with. There is a mud pit near the entrance. I wanted to avoid mud, but...I couldn't. Had to get winched out as my 35s didn't reach the bottom of the ruts. So within 5 minutes of being in the park, I was being recovered. Wasn't really an issue again.

There is another section behind the parking area that is an obstacle park. Lots of pipes to climb for those into it. The Jeeps didn't have the ground clearance, I had too much wheel base. Not for us but I could see how more built vehicles could enjoy it. If there was anybody else there, we may have seen somebody try it.

It was a 2hr drive to the park from my home and I'd say it was worth a day trip but camping and doing multiple days would be unnecessary. Two days would be too much as I feel like I hit everything today. Unlike Gulches that has me wanting to go back for more, this one just has me wanting to go back for the Slippery Nipple when I get a couple more mods. If they cut more trails, this place could be great, seriously. For now, it's day-trip worthy and nothing more. They also closed the trails down by 5 pm which kinda sucked. We got started by 11 and were pretty much done at 5 anyway; that should give you an idea of what's available.

With some effort by the management and, more likely, off road clubs, this park has the land and the opportunity to be something great in Georgia/S.C area. For now, it's a fun half-day for mildly built rigs. For heavily modded vehicles, plan for an hour of entertainment. We did see some pretty JKs stuck in some mud; they didn't want any help, lol. Other than them, we had the whole 4x4 parks to ourselves.

I'll probably try to get back out there in the spring just for a fun half day run again, but for a serious trip, I'll go back to Gulches. If your into dirt bikes, ATVs or UTVs, this place is definitely for you. It's really a well setup place for dirt bikes and there were seemingly a hundred dirt bike riders there.











The strap just stayed attached back there. I did a lot of Jeep Recovery Vehicle duty.



To be fair, I needed some help, too.



Then, I tried playing on the obstacle course. The long wheel base caught me.







Nice videos man, looks like a locker might be in your future. Can't wait til Saturday for the Casparis Mine Trail Run I put together. If anyone is close to southwestern Pa. come on out, so far I have about eight trucks coming but subject to change.

great pics and video. looks like you had a great time. im more of a trail and wilderness guy than a park guy, but your writeup makes me want to get out to my local park (hollister hills) and do some work!

btw, if you get a set of rear lockers on your rig, that thing will hang on the black diamond trails easy. ive cut right up hills just like the ones in your videos in my 2WD with lockers on 33"s with relative ease. with your 35"s and 4wd, it'll be lights out!

Over here in the east, we go where we're allowed, lol. Everything's either developed, farmed, posted or owned by the gubment.

I wish the videos showed how steep those were. No doubt 33s locked would get up it, but I gotta say, the Jeeps couldn't get up the hill in the second video in 4Lo with ATs. I wish I had more video as well. The first shows some great articulation but certainly wasn't the worst of the switchbacks I was on; just the only one I have video of. The hill in the second definitely wasn't the most steep, either, just the first one and the only one with video. I think they got tired of filming me doing things their Jeeps couldn't, lol.

The trail from the 4th picture was sick. None of the Jeeps could make it past the first turn right past where that picture was taken (well, only one tried but I'm assuming). That picture was with my phone and the other guys just said they'd meet me at the end of that trail and took the bypass, so I didn't have a videographer.:(

I will be locked eventually, but it'll be when it's a V8 powered 1-ton-axled machine.:D

Jeez, one of these days I'll go to an offroad park! I got a ways to go to catch up to you tho OffTrac!!

awesome, we have a JK at home and i always tell people that our locked 2WD trac beats our JK in a lot of areas when it comes to being on the trail. we can hit the trail with a couple friends and two dogs comfortably with enough gear for 3 days and make our way with ease. our JK is a killer in the rock gardens and obstacles like that, but for being out on the trail we always take the trac.

Stickied?! Awesome! Hopefully more people will check this place out and it can grow. We need this place. The land and potential are certainly there; the owner just needs to see the support before he puts more money into it because he doesn't need this since he's already created an awesome dirtbike/ATV destination. We need him more than he needs us. Please, lets show him.

I'll try to set up another run this winter (as if that exists in Georgia) or in the spring.

Or both:D

I like the way you think. I probably want new tires before another trip, which will most likely be my Christmas present to myself. I tried ordering them last week but they're on backorder so now I've just pushed it out. We'll see.:D

BTW, I just posted a spring run at Beasley Knob. I expect your name on there, lol.

Guess I'm goin to Beasley Knob!