Day 2 Event 2: The Hill Climb
What it is: Our Hill Climb should probably be called the “Hell Climb.” It takes place on a poison oak-lined, steep hillside that boasts a gnarly 60-degree average incline. As if that wasn’t bad enough, we bring in a massive excavator and dig a number of deep, strategically-placed holes and we leave lots of loose dirt lying around to further complicate things. This masterpiece is approximately 600 feet of misery and it has a reputation of stopping rigs in their tracks.
How it works: Each team is allowed one attempt to climb the hill. Competitors can stop and restart as long as it doesn’t exceed five seconds. If a team exceeds a five-second stop, they are listed as DNF at that point. If the inside of a tire breaks the outside plane of a cone, it’s a DNF. This year, we ran the Buggy Class first.
Finish Line Quotes
"It was nasty. I liked it. I’d do it again for fun right now if you’d let me.” –Josh Hall
“I love it. That was not near as hard as I was expecting. That was a blast, man. I’m loving this thing.” –Alex Sanders
“It was pretty crazy because you can’t see a lot. You’re going up a hill and all of sudden there’s a hole in front of you, so you just go through it.” –Shane Vizenor
“Awesome. I love the event. It’s a good little twist in there.”—Steven Montpas
Dallner’s S-10: The passenger-side rear tire dropped into a hole approximately 192 feet into the course, which caused the rig to flop onto the passenger-side.
Hall’s Samurai: Slow, careful run. Near the end of the course the last big hole waylaid the rig longer than the five-second limit.
Keller’s F-350: First Truck Class competitor. Good use of throttle, but a deep hole swallowed the driver-side rear tire causing the rig to slowly roll over a few feet past the 200-foot mark.
Montalto’s Bronco: Lost traction shortly into the climb.
Montpas’ Willys: Strong run with lots of wheel lift. Completed the climb.
Sanders’ Chevy: Made it look easy with a slow and steady run punctuated by big air under the tires from time to time.
Seely’s Suburban: Did not run. Stayed in camp removing water and sand from the engine, axles, and fuel system from the roll in the Obstacle Course.
Spencer’s FJ40: First Buggy Class competitor. Traveled approximately 158 feet before a broken passenger-side rear axleshaft stopped ’em cold.
Timson’s YJ: Second Buggy Class competitor. Came to the event with a new custom-made Atlas transfer case. Good speed, but broke the front axle steering ram mount approximately 188 feet into the course.
Vizenor’s “Li’l Nasty”: Ran with the front axle drawn down with the winch. Made the climb look easy. Fastest overall time of all competitors.
Results (overall time or ranking order if DNF)
1. Montpas’ Willys 1 min. 10 sec.
2. Keller F-350 DNF
3. Dallner’s S-10 DNF
4. Montalto’s Bronco DNF
5. Seely’s Suburban DNS
1. Vizenor’s “Li’l Nasty” 47 sec.
2. Sanders’ Chevy 1 min. 20 sec.
3. Hall’s Samurai DNF
4. Timson’s YJ DNF
5. Spencer’s FJ40 DNF