FAKRWEE TRIBE 3rd ANNUAL RUBICON RUN | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Pumpkin Pilot
Staff member
Elite Explorer
February 8, 1999
Reaction score
City, State
Wayoutin, Aridzona
Year, Model & Trim Level
'93 XL '20 ST
Submitted for Paul Bredehoft...

The third annual FAKRWEE TRIBE RUBICON RUN was held August 9-13. This year the tribe included tribe leader Chief Lost & Found Tom Rios; Brave #1 Fender Guy Colin Ignacio; Brave Fixen Good Winter Douglas; & new to the tribe this year Brave Cookum Yum Yum Paul Bredehoft.

Day One: the tribe met early in the morning at the exit of Magic Mountain. There we made exchanges of materials from one truck to another so that not one truck was over loaded in weight. When that was all settled we toped off the gas and headed out north on Interstate 5 for a 7 hour drive to Placerville, CA.

Upon arriving i Placerville we settled in at the Best Western Motel. That nite we decided to go out to dinner and found a place called (Poor Red's) it was a real Red Neck place but had great food. They do something different there then any other eating place, the waitress immediately takes your order, while you wait either at the bar or at one of their old fashion shoe polishing seats, your dinner is being prepared. When your dinner is ready, she comes back and calls your name and seats you at your table, and your food is served immediately.

Day Two: Got an early start and headed first for the Ranger station to check out whether we had to get a fire permit for a camp fire, no fires we were told, so that took care of our barbecue dinners we had planned and our famous fire rings at nite. So now on to Loon Lake to finally air down our tires and disconnect our sway bars. We also took pictures here of the 3 Explorers at the start of the famous Rubicon Trail. Well, we only got about 100 ft. when Tom Rios radiod Winter that he was hearing a funny noise under his truck, it turned out to be the famous Superlift Radius Arm problem again. You see, every time Tom has done the Rubicon (which is now his third time) he has broken the radius arm on the trail. All though Superlift has replaced them each time he was determined to get through this year without any problems. Well our fearless mechanic Winter (who by the way in our book is probably the BEST mechanic out there, and he proved it over and over again not only on our trucks, but on strangers trucks also) worked hard to fix the problem. With the radius arm tightly bolted down, we started the trail.

Right from the very beginning of the trail the rocks & boulders began. Our goal for today was to reach Spider Lake and make camp. We almost did not make it. You see each year the trail can be a little different due to weather conditions during the winter months. Well we found out very quickly that it was going to be a little more difficult this year then last year to get through the trail at any great speed, and speed on the Rubicon is rated SLOW! The rocks & boulders really tested your nerves & driving skills. BANG!! well there goes one of my new fiber glass fenders, one of many damages during the trip.

While we were heading up the trail, we came across one of those J#%P things that had stopped on the trail. He was having a power steering problem. Being such good Explorer Samaritans (he was blocking the trail also) Winter walked over to see if he could be of any service. The guy did not have the spare part with him to fix it with, luckily our fearless mechanic did and quickly repaired his truck so that we could all get on our way.

By now day light was getting weak. We were only on the trail for about 10 mins. after the fix when we had to stop. Not to far ahead from us was a group of off-roaders who were watching a J#%P go up a steep flat boulder, when all of a sudden they came running down the boulder. To our surprise when we got out of our trucks to see what had happen, it turned out to be the same J#%P we had just fixed 10 mins. ago. He had rolled over going up the beginning of the Little Sluice.

While the truck was starting to roll the driver tried to jump out (not a smart move) and the J#%P landed on top of one of his legs and almost cut it off. He was lucky that he did not kill himself. Well enough excitement for one day.

We finally found a great campsite right on Spider Lake just before dusk and looked forward to our first gourmet dinner. Our Chef had plan a great feast, the menu consisted of 4-1" Rib Eye Steaks (which were marinating all day in the cooler); fresh white corn on the cob; homemade potato salad and a fresh green mix salad. For dessert our choices were homemade Choc. Chip cookies, Brownies or Ice Cream, needless to say we were all stuffed afterwards. We were by now ready for a good nite sleep (or were we).

Sometime around 2:00 am we were abruptly woken up out of our deep sleep with the sound of two J#%Ps making their way up the trail looking for a campsite, they decided to make camp right next to ours which made the next hour very unpleasant. Well Colin & I got even with them the next morning. At 6:00am I sounded off my car alarm which is quite loud, & Colin started up his truck and gunned it a few times and then backed it up with it's tail gate open and turned up the stereo for awhile until our tribal leader said that was enough.

Day 3 - After leaving Spider Lake in the morning we headed out and continued up the trail working our way to Rubicon Springs. One of the side trails we discovered was once a part of the Big Sluice. So we did a pre-walk down the trail to see if it was passable. We debated for awhile and then decided we came all this way we were going to do it. With Winter spotting, it turn out to be one of the more exciting trails we did so far.

We finally reached Buck Island Lake in the early afternoon and decided to stay there for the second nite. We made lunch for the first time in two days. We were so excited the first day that we sort of forgot what lunch was.

Well what did our Chef bring for this meal? Our choices of sandwiches were fresh (by the way our Chef made sure that everything bought was fresh, no process or can food for this elite group) Roast Beef, Smoke Turkey, Honey Bake Ham and Salami with 3 different choices of breads (the Wrap bread seemed to be the most popular). Fresh Pasta Salad, mix veggies, fresh assorted fruits and the popular homemade cookies for dessert.

After lunch some of us decided to go swimming, fish or just plan RELAX! Next year we need to bring some more toys along like some Kayaks, Radio Control Glider Plane and our Radio Control 4x4 trucks. Day 3 ended with another great dinner & videos of our last two days of wheeling.

Day 4 - Once again we got an early start, because this was our last day on the trail, and we still had to do the
Big Sluice & Cadillac Hill. I guess by the forth day we were all pretty good at navigating over the rocks. We made pretty good time and finished the trail by noon.

After taking some final trail photos we headed out to Southern Tahoe and found our nite stay at the Quality Inn Suites. We decided to go out that evening and celebrate our victory in completing the Rubicon Trail once again without any major brake downs (body damage not included thats to be expected). I know I can say this for all of the FAKRWEE TRIBE members "WHAT A TRIP'!!!


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Paul, I can see why your truck would be sitting low. All that food!

Sounds like you guys had a great time. I'm really sorry we couldn't make it this year. I'm pretty sure that's a trail I will end up doing only once because of the great distance. Since Char couldn't make it I opted to wait until next year.

Yeah, we had a great time. This year the trail was a lot more challenging than other years. We also ran into a lot more traffic this year being a weekend. There was 2 zuki clubs for a total of 75 rigs ahead of us that kept breaking down every 1/2 mile or so. There were a couple of zukis running 36's and I swear there was only about 12 inches from the back of the front tire to the front of the rear tire. They looked like big tonka toys going over the rocks.

Like Paul say's the trail got difficult just leaving the staging area at Loon lake. At the entrance of the trail is the famous tree and boulder you have to traverse to enter the trail. Some jeepers told us about a bypass to the right, we thought they were wimps until we saw it. This year it has an extra boulder which actually made it more narrow. You literaly have to go sideways to get thru. If at all. We looked at it for or a while, got all pumped up, and took the bypass. The bypass was a gnarly stretch but at least you didn't have to go sideways. Last year it took us under 4 hours to get to Spider lake from Loon lake. This year it took us over 6 hours to run the same distance. Some of the extra time was due to other peoples breakdowns but most was due to the difficulty of the trail.

Spider lake was beautiful. At sunup it looked like a mirror. Next year I think I'll try to take an inflatable raft and do some off-water.

The other obstacle worth mentioning is the big sluice before you get to Buck Island lake. Last year we by-passed it and went down the granite slab to the left so I could show the guys were I broke down the year before. This year we decided to do it. Talk about pucker factor. Paul has some great video I hope he can link it to the thread. He also has some great footage of Cadilac hill.

Well I can't wait till next year. Maybe we can get a bigger group together.


Again, the Rubicon has been the trip of the year for me. Thanks to Paul, Tom and Winter for a great time out there. Why is it, the only place I've ever gotten body damage has been the 'con? :rolleyes: Anyway, I must say, I ate better on the trail than I do at my own house. This is a great group of guys and like Tom said, hopefully we can get more Explorers together and run it next year. If you guys could see the look on some of the peoples' faces asking, "what is that?" When you say it's an Explorer, they are in disbelief.:eek: Nobody really expects to see an Explorer out on that trail, and you can see the irritation in their eyes when an Explorer can make it up, down or around an obsticle better than their J**p, landcruiser or hybrid rig. :D
I can't wait for next year to conquer the 'con again for the third time. I will have more pictures to post with the originals by tomorrow.

Thanks again FAKRWEE TRIBE!

Originally posted by Fenderguy
Why is it, the only place I've ever gotten body damage has been the 'con? :

Because you never show up and run Los Coyotes with me :D Looks like you guys had fun. More then mine anyways. Are you guys going to big bear fest this weekend? I might be there.


I don't think I'll make it to Big Bear this weekend. I have done Los coyotes and coma out without any body damage. Oh wait i did get some body damage at Truck Haven last at the big run. Matt you were there when i did it. Anyway we did have a great time and next year we difinitely have to get more people to go.
Rick you have to go next time for sure.

Can't make Big Bear this weekend, I'll be out of town. Next time we get a group together we'll let you know.

I forgot to thank the guy's for the trip. Thanks Collin for reminding me. Sorry guy's. Thanks to Paul, (Brave cookum yum yum), he was in charge of buying, carrying, and cooking the food for the whole group, and this he did with style and flair. Thanks Collin for being trail leader, Collin has a knack for picking the perfect line, he always seems to know where all 4 tires are. Your new name is Brave Pickum good line. And to Winter (Brave fixum good), he kept our rigs flawless and helped me break the superlift curse. Is next year here yet. Can't wait.


I can not make the Big Bear run this weekend also. I will be in Tucson AZ. so have fun without us. I want to also thank all the guy's (Tom, Colin, & Winter) for the BEST 5 day's I have had all year!!!!!!! :D I'm ready to go tommorrow, where should we meet?

Thanks, Rick for spending an hour on the phone last nite inorder to get this write up on your site, Char to thanks. Until next year or sooner...........

As a member of the FAKRWEE tribe, I want to add my welcome back, guys. I'm really glad (and envious) that you had such a great time. But I just had a few too many other things going at the time of the trip. Last years trip was great and it sounds like this years was as good or better. I hope to be able to make it for next years run.

Tom, I do have a question for you. Paul said the Superlift radius arm curse got you again and you say it's broken (the curse, not the radius arm). Which is it? For your sake, I hope the curse is gone.

Tom, also. Don't you read your e-mail? ;)
I sent you one last Friday. Or are you ignoring me because I couldn't make it this year? :D

that's so cool. my wife and i would love to make trip out west to do something like that (of course we need to put a lot of $$$ into the explorer to get it ready for something like that).

Peter, Peter, Peter, you are not only a tribal member but also a personal friend. Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. Bus. has been crazy.

I didn't break my SUPERLIFT %$#( radius arm on this trip, that's what I meant by breaking the curse. Winter had to work on them twice to make sure. Next year I'll either have a solid axle or a redesigned TTB. I'm still evaluating.