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What is yours?

Posted in News on May 20, 2013
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Contributors: Jp Editor

What was your worst stuck? How about your best, most creative recovery? These are our worst stucks/recoveries:

Brubaker: A long, long time ago, my wife and I were in California and I decided to impress her with my exceptional sand driving skills (first mistake, considering I had none), so we headed to Dumont Dunes. I was driving a rented S-10 Blazer and since we had flown in from the Midwest I had no air compressor, so I didn't air the tires down (second mistake). It was the middle of the week and the remote area was almost completely deserted, but I hit the dunes anyway (third mistake). It was late in the day (fourth mistake) and all went well for a while and I actually got the Blazer deep into the dunes while throwing down some cool, wife-impressing maneuvers. It didn't last long, though. Soon I had the S-10 stuck bad. I had to take the long Walk of Shame over numerous dunes to find help. Eventually I found a gent driving a fullsize Blazer and he helped with what turned out to be a long, miserable recovery due to the angle and position of which the Blazer was stuck. Since that humbling, educational experience all those years ago, I've returned to Dumont numerous times and by adhering to proper vehicle and tool prep I haven't had any major problems.

Cappa: Technically I wasn’t physically stuck, but I was pretty screwed. I was in Glamis, California, in my first Jeep. All my buddies had motorcycles, so if I got stuck or broke in the dunes there was really no way to get me out. I was young and dumb at the time so I didn’t let that bother me. I drove right into the deep dunes for several years without issues. My Jeep had an axlewrap problem that I tried to cure many different ways. None of them really worked. Eventually the rear driveshaft U-joint on the axle end broke way out there at the bottom of a very large dune bowl. The driveshaft battered around the underside of the Jeep until it got wedged against the frame, which then caused the transmission to split nearly in half. So with the rear driveshaft toast, I removed what was left of it, pulled the valve cores out of the front tires, and somehow the oozing half-scattered transmission stayed together while I drove out in front-wheel-drive. I had to go around and around the bottom of that sand bowl in order to pick up enough speed to get out. I then limped it several miles through the big dunes back to camp.

Mansour: My “worst” stuck (or at least the one I will fess up to) happened only a few months after I got my driver’s license. Years ago when you could still tow trailers onto the sand-covered northern end of Carolina Beach, I decided to haul my Wave Runner out with my diesel truck. Towing across the sand was no big deal, as I had 37s and low air pressure in my tires. The problem arose when I attempted to back my Wave Runner trailer into the water. It was a busy weekend, so I had to go further around the point bend than I would have liked. Backing the trailer in was no sweat, but as soon as I went to drive out, the rig began to head south. It was one of those panicky situations where you don’t have any other rigs around and the tide was coming in, not out. Luckily, a guy in an F-150 happened to see the mess I was in and pulled me out just a few minutes later. It was one of those life lessons when you learn how things could have been a lot worse, and exactly why concrete boat ramps are a much better!    

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