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2013 Ultimate Adventure Attendees

Jeep Grand Cherokee
Fred Williams
| Brand Manager, Petersen’s 4Wheel & Off Road
Posted September 13, 2013
Photographers: 4WOR Staff

The Kids At UA Summer Camp

Ultimate Adventure is fun, but it wouldn’t be half as much fun without the people on the trip. It’s always a weird mix of random characters from a variety of backgrounds with four-wheeling as the one common link. This year our troop was as big as ever, and though it is like herding a class full of third graders when you try to get 50 people through a trail, it is still always fun. Here are this year’s Ultimate Adventure attendees.

Aaron’s Taco
2002 Toyota Tacoma
Drivers: Aaron Duncan & Dana Allard

Aaron Duncan just liked Tacomas, and he wanted a big green one. After a year of work his wish was completed. When he is not building or wheeling his Toyota he is working as a linesman for a communications company on the northern coast of California. His copilot, Dana Allard, is also from NorCal. Although they had a busted front locker early in the trip, they worked together through the night and had their tough Toy back on the road without drama. By the end of the week the Toyota was really starting to shine (actually it was shining all week due to the bright green paint) and climbing hills or diving into mud holes with two smiling guys behind the windshield.

Engine: 3.4L V-6
Transmission: Stock automatic
Transfer Case: Toyota crawl box and a flipped Dana 300
Front Axle: High-pinion Dana 60, Detroit Locker, 5.38
Rear Axle: GM 14-bolt, ARB Air Locker, 5.38
Springs & Such: 3-inch All Pro leaf springs in front; 4-inch Marlin leaves in rear
Tires & Wheels: 40-inch Nitto Mud Grapplers on 17x9 Raceline beadlocks
Winch: Warn 12,000-pound winch

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BDS Suspension
2005 Jeep Liberty KJ
Drivers: Carter Reed & Dave DeVormer

BDS Suspension told us about their crazy project truck for UA a while back, but as with many freshly built 4x4s, they had a few new-car blues. The little Jeep that Carter Reed and Dave DeVormer drove was wicked cool and worked awesome—when it would run right. The BDS crew started with a ’05 Jeep Liberty KJ and turned it into a wild little romper. Under the hood hides a factory 2.8L common rail diesel, and it gave the little Jeep a cool sound and plenty of power, and the suspension soaked up trail with ease. But electrical gremlins kept popping up throughout the week. We have been in that same position before on the UA, and if you can imagine being stuck inside with a cold while all your friends are on the playground then you can imagine how those guys felt. We’re sure with some more fine tuning Team BDS will be back with a vengeance, and we can’t wait to be there to see it.

Engine: 2.8L diesel I-4
Transmission: 545RFE
Transfer Case: Jeep Rubicon NP241 Rocktrac
Front Axle: Jeep JK Dana 44, Air Ox Locker, 5.13 Nitro gears
Rear Axle: Jeep JK Dana 44, ARB Air Locker, 5.13 Nitro gears
Springs & Such: BDS Suspension custom 4-link with Pac springs on Fox coilover shocks (front and rear)
Tires & Wheels: 37-inch Maxxis Trepador radials on B.A.D 17-inch beadlocks Winch: Warn RC9

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Old Cronies
Sam’s Tube car
2008 Mean Green Buggy
Drivers: Sam Gillis & Dave Chappelle

Sam Gillis and Dave Chappelle were the cleanup crew on UA 2013. They ran as tail gunner for a good portion of the event, but they also spent a lot of time helping others get back up and running. Gillis’ buggy is simple, tough, and bright Viper green, and other than a sticky brake caliper it worked flawlessly all week, much like Gillis and Chappelle do. They helped fix readers and sponsors alike whenever carnage struck. Gillis’ buggy worked hard as well, whether scaling rock obstacles or dragging broken 4x4s back to camp for wrenching. Back home Gillis is in the military and Chappelle has a 4x4 shop, Chappelle Customs, so they were not willing to leave any man behind.

Engine: 5.7L Chevy LS1 V-8
Transmission: TH350
Transfer Case: Atlas 2 4:1
Front Axle: High-pinion Dana 60, Yukon Grizzly Locker, 4.56
Rear Axle: GM 14-bolt, Detroit Locker, 4.56
Springs & Such: 4-link suspension, 14-inch Walker Evans 2.0 Air Shocks (front and rear)
Tires & Wheels: 40-inch Nitto Mud Grapplers on 17-inch Spyderlock beadlocks
Winch: Warn Zeon 10

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Discount Tire
2007 Jeep Wrangler JK Truck RESQ1
Drivers: Verne Simons & Steve VonSeggern

Verne Simons is a wordsmith for our Jeep-specific sister magazine Jp. When Jp worked with UA sponsor Discount Tire to build a custom trail-capable show truck, Simons earned (or was assigned) a spot on UA as the captain of the SS RESQ1. It’s not that the RESQ1 is a land barge, but it may be a tire-slinging battleship. It crested the scales at 10,300 pounds and has an aircraft carrier 146-inch wheelbase. All kidding aside, Simons (who specializes in driving Willys flatfenders and shortened Jeep TJs) must have felt out of place with twice the vehicle footprint that he is used to. Nonetheless, he was able to throttle down, twist through, and hop, bounce, or force his way up the obstacles with considerable skill. And when any tire calamities did befall a UA attendee, he was ready with an onboard compressor and tire mounting machine to help keep everyone rolling.

Engine: 5.3L Gen IV
Transmission: 6L80E
Transfer Cases: Atlas 4-speed
Front Axle: Dynatrac ProRock 60, ARB Air Locker, 5.38
Rear Axle: Dynatrac ProRock 80, ARB Air Locker, 5.38
Springs & Such: Evo double throw-down (front); Evo double throw-down cantilever (rear)
Tires & Wheels: Nitto 40x13.50R17 on Raceline bead locks
Winch: Warn Zeon 12 in front and Warn 18 in rear

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Old Cronies
Keith’s Tube Car
2003 PSC Blueser Buggy
Drivers: Keith Bailey & Tom Boyd

Keith Bailey and Tom Boyd are pillars of the Ultimate Adventure community. This year they came in Bailey’s big blue buggy. Well, Bailey is a pillar; Boyd is more of a flagpole with some weird glittery pirate clown flag flapping in the wind and a bullhorn blaring from the top. Either way, we couldn’t have the UA without cronies like these two guys. Bailey runs a 4x4 shop in Alabama, The Off-Road Connection, and is always ready to lend a hand sussing out any mechanical problems. Boyd is the marketing guru of a self-propelled scooter/bike company attempting to help the masses roll down sidewalks faster (it sounds weird because it’s true) and a general madman always ready and willing to start a water battle or dowse someone with a glitter-filled water balloon.

Engine: 5.7L Hemi
Transmission: 545RE automatic
Transfer Case: Dana 300
Front Axle: High-pinion Dana 60, Yukon Grizzly Locker, 5.13
Rear Axle: High-pinion Dana 60, spool, 5.13
Springs & Such: Off-Road Connection 4-link with 14-inch Fox emulsion coilover shocks, Sway-A-Way air bumpstops (front and rear)
Tires & Wheels: 40-inch Nitto Trail Grapplers on 17-inch Spyderlock beadlocks
Winch: Warn XP9.5

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Alan’s 10A
1989 Jeep CJ-10A
Drivers: Alan Buchholz & Geoff O’Brien

Alan Buchholz and Geoff O’Brien had one of the most drool-worthy rides on UA. Buchholz’s Jeep CJ-10A has custom-rolled tube fenders to give it an M37 look, a removed top for plenty of fresh air, a perfect bed for hauling gear galore, and a strong drivetrain. Some steering and brake issues cropped up now and then, but for most trail days it flat out worked like a boss (maybe “worked like a ground floor grunt” would be a better analogy). Either way, this unique Jeep had plenty of cool factor and fit the bill as a perfect vehicle for a trip like the UA where any type of terrain may be encountered.

Engine: Chevy 350 TBI
Transmission: Automatic
Transfer Case: NP231 with slip yoke eliminator
Front Axle: Dana 60, Detroit Locker, 4.88
Rear Axle: Dana 61, Lincoln Locker, 4.88
Springs & Such: Leaf springs with spring sliders (front); custom 4-link with coil springs (rear)
Tires & Wheels: 40-inch Nitto Trail Grapplers on 17-inch Walker Evans beadlocks
Winch: Warn 8274

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