Trip report: ARBORGEDDON

Mundo4x4Casa

West slope, N. Ser. Nev.
hole-in-the-rock camp.jpg

EDIT: take 2.
It was a wild one. Almost everything that could go wrong, went wrong. So many assumptions were false. Both campers, our 2020 Northstar Laredo SC, and Bro John's 2004 - 9.5 OUTFITTER! took a terrible beating. The only thing we did not have to worry about were the trucks. We have what has become the heir apparent of the Dodge RAM diesel pickups, a 2001 HO Cummins TD with a 6 speed manual; and John's 1999 Ford 7.3 IH Turbo Diesel with a 6 speed manual. Basic and simple.
jefe
Download and open this redone pdf. of the trip. It is now out of dropbox so it can't hurt you anymore.

Our camp at Papoose Flat, Inyo National forest CA Yes that sun is coming through the hole in the rock.
 

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billiebob

Well-known member
My issue is DropBox, too old to try and learn, I used to be on a few non profit boards but when they took to DropBox, I quit. Retirement was easier.
 

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1000arms

Well-known member
... It was a wild one. Almost everything that could go wrong, went wrong. So many assumptions were false. Both campers, our 2020 Northstar Laredo SC, and Bro John's 2004 - 9.5 OUTFITTER! took a terrible beating. The only thing we did not have to worry about were the trucks. We have what has become the heir apparent of the Dodge RAM diesel pickups, a 2001 HO Cummins TD with a 6 speed manual; and John's 1999 Ford 7.3 IH Turbo Diesel with a 6 speed manual. Basic and simple.
jefe

Our camp at Papoose Flat, Inyo National forest CA Yes that sun is coming through the hole in the rock.
View attachment 594901
Wow. Thanks for posting your story. Sounds like you could have used something like:

 

Mundo4x4Casa

West slope, N. Ser. Nev.
K arms, I originally had my 18" Husqvarna with a 14" guide bar ready to go, (big motor: short bar) View attachment 594982but my son needed it, so I took a small pruning saw, which was wholly inadequate. I do have a pole saw with a tiny 8" guide bar, but no room to store it on a trip. Any of these would have saved us a day.the slot2.jpg
 
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Regcabguy

Expedition Leader

1000arms

Well-known member
Wow. Thanks for posting your story. Sounds like you could have used something like:

K arms, I originally had my 18" Husqvarna with a 14" guide bar ready to go, (big motor: short bar) View attachment 594982but my son needed it, so I took a small pruning saw, which was wholly inadequate. I do have a pole saw with a tiny 8" guide bar, but no room to store it on a trip. Any of these would have saved us a day.View attachment 594982
I read about your son needing the saw, that you brought the pruning saw, and that you could have used a bit more reach, which is why I thought a cordless pole saw would have been useful. :)

Regarding the lack of room for a pole saw, it sounds like you could have used one as a well-mounted hood-ornament to cut the branches without leaving the cab! :cool:
 
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redthies

Renaissance Redneck
Jefe, how did your windows fare? The one thing I was really let down by was the acrylic windows on my Northern Lite. I (like you) actually use my camper to get to remote spots, and being in the PNW, that means lots of trees. Lots and lots of trees. My windows are scratched to hell. I’ve also had two of them break. The big dinette one on the drive home from the dealer (which Dometic/Seitz replaced for me) and now my small kitchen one has cracked.

I also had a set of Cooper AT3 XLTs ordered for my truck, but after looking at the load ratings for 17s and seeing that they are all now only at 3195 lbs, I’ve decided to stick with Toyo MTs as they are still at 3650 per. Seeing you kill the Cooper makes me feel better about that decision. The place I was fishing last week killed the tires (Goodyear ATs) on my boat trailer, so they would have challenged the Coopers too. The road out is notorious for killing tires.
 

Mundo4x4Casa

West slope, N. Ser. Nev.
R
Jefe, how did your windows fare? The one thing I was really let down by was the acrylic windows on my Northern Lite. I (like you) actually use my camper to get to remote spots, and being in the PNW, that means lots of trees. Lots and lots of trees. My windows are scratched to hell. I’ve also had two of them break. The big dinette one on the drive home from the dealer (which Dometic/Seitz replaced for me) and now my small kitchen one has cracked.

I also had a set of Cooper AT3 XLTs ordered for my truck, but after looking at the load ratings for 17s and seeing that they are all now only at 3195 lbs, I’ve decided to stick with Toyo MTs as they are still at 3650 per. Seeing you kill the Cooper makes me feel better about that decision. The place I was fishing last week killed the tires (Goodyear ATs) on my boat trailer, so they would have challenged the Coopers too. The road out is notorious for killing tires.
Red, the windows looked really scratched up when we got off the trail. I was worried. After getting home, I washed the camper to see what really happened. It was not too bad. A few scratches, mostly on the higher windows on the pass side: the ones you cannot see easily in passing. If you are having cracking woes with windows, is there a flexing going on with the window frame surround? I was surprised at how tough the fiberglass outer held up. Being that it was a new camper with EuroView (read very high bucks at replacement) windows, I was very cautious, to the utter dismay of my brother John who more or less thrashed his OUTFITTER! on the trip. He'll have to glue and staple parts of his plastic top trim to make it well again. You would think with a camper like his (18 inches lower than my Laredo) he would dodge the bullet....but noh...big tree limb.jpg scissor top breath, it was thrashed.
As far as the Coops; they are very tough. Just not as tough as the sharp rocks and 18 pounds of air. One of the larger tree limbs that came down:
 

redthies

Renaissance Redneck
My windows are the same as your basically. Look up Seitz. They are double wall polycarbonate made in Germany too. The main dinette one must have taken a flying rock as it was broken when we got the brand new camper home. I called Dometic (they own or are partners with Seitz) and said “hey, you can show some goodwill and have me say great things about your customer service, or say no, and have me tell everyone I meet what crap you build”. They sent me a new window right away and paid the dealer to install it. The dealer wanted to try and do it through warranty, but the ass that is the GM of Northern Lite said no, like he apparently does to 90% of warranty claims.

I have a three stage polycarbonate polishing set up, and will some day spend a few hours buffing the scratches out. The small kitchen window that is broken will probably just get left alone until I decide to sell the camper, which won’t ever happen unless I move overseas. It would probably just get damaged again at some point. Getting to some of my camp spots means passing lots and lots of trees on tight roads.

My ST Maxxs were great tires. I wanted to try the AT3s for a little less noise on the highway, but Toyo still rates the MT @ 3650 so I gain a ton of capacity over any of the newer tires. I can deal with a bit of noise. The 5” exhaust on my 5.9 is louder than new MTs.
 

Mundo4x4Casa

West slope, N. Ser. Nev.
Red, the Cooper AT3's are very quiet in the latest config. I had to buy Firestone AT3 style tires in Bishop as that is what was available. They are about a half inch narrower but very close to the same rolling diameter as my Coops ( a couple revolutions off per mile) look like they'll be better on snow, and are even quieter than the Coops. When it's time to get new tires, I'll move the Firestones to the front on the 7.5 inch rims and get new Coop 315x75R16 AT3's again for the back on the 10 inch wide rims. They are a great super single type tire. Mine only popped after running for so long over very sharp rocks at 18 pounds. The sidewall was vulnerable. After many sets of these, this is the first flat. The narrower Firestones should be easier to steer on the front. All these tires have a 3860 pound load rating @ 65 pounds. I've seen the buffing setup and when it comes time I'll use it on the windows.
 

Regcabguy

Expedition Leader
Every tire has it's day. I was on I-5 south and hit a piece of shrapnel. The metal went between the huge voids on my Toyo MT's. Instant deflation . I pulled over,put out my triangles and called AAA. I climbed under and retrieved my spare sitting on the concrete barrier. Semi's were having to change lanes it was that close. AAA came up behind me turning it's tires toward traffic in case someone rammed us. With his speed jack we swapped out the tire in record time. I tipped him a twenty(those guys are the true road warriors) and we barely escaped with our lives. The tire was more than half worn so I had to buy two. That was a very expensive day. I'm going down to a 285-75-17 when my present AT2's wear out. These 35's are killing my fuel economy and I don't do sand or mud.
 

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