In my efforts to keep from breaking the bank buying gas I've been trying to consolidate my hiking and four-wheeling as much as possible. So for today I planned a couple summit hikes as well as checking out a number of the lesser known/used Forest Roads in the Sycamore Creek area. The drive to both hikes cover roads I'd already been on so once the hikes were done I set myself up to do plenty of meandering along and in Sycamore Creek wash as well as checking out various linking roads.
Some were easy to traverse, some not quite so, and some that took every last ounce of the capability my Samurai had to offer along with an equal amount of courage (stupidity?) on my part to even attempt. Probably the worst one was a hill that had me holding my breath and gritting my teeth, just hoping I had enough traction to make it up. If I knew how bad it was near the top, I likely would never have attempted it. But it was one that you couldn't see the end of it until almost halfway up and once that far, with nowhere to turn around and backing down no longer an option, it was go for broke.
Thankfully the new front locker did it's job to perfection as at the last big hump I'm sure a front tire was a good foot off the ground and the rears were teetering back and forth so it was more like 2-1/2 wheel drive on a steep hill with loose fine gravel.
Once at the top I stopped to take a look back down and although just having climbed it, I was NOT going to attempt going back down, so now I was committed to continuing on to the end of the road, hoping I wouldn't run into anything like it. But the last 60 feet down to the wash was a hill just like it. Sure I had 4 different ways down the same hill, but even the least scary option was past my comfort level. Yet having survived it all without a scratch, ok so theSammy added a bunch more AZ pinstripes at least nothing underneath took a beating. In the end I traveled on the marked Forest Roads 1851, 1852, 1855, 1856 & 1096 along with a number of unmarked roads.
Oh yeah, Tracey was not along for the ride today or I'm sure she would have bailed out. But then I'd have video from outside as well as the video I shot from inside. Oh no, just what I need, another video to edit.