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Story and Photos By, Dave Brill

Northeast 4WD Trailfest 5
Hosted by RegionD/Northeast of the East Coast Four Wheel Drive Association

Two New York Jeeps crawling over the slick rocks on Old Chester.

On Thursday morning, by 10 a.m. I was at the Best Western, meeting up with Dave Pearson, Adrian Dognin, Paul Fisher and Dawn Psaledas. We immediately started setting out the signs for Trailer Parking, Lot signs, Inspection Line, etc.. The raffle prizes had to be moved inside, all $10,000 worth, registration set up, etc..

Around 3 p.m., the flow of attendees picked up and the inspection line looked like rush hour traffic. At 5 p.m., we started the BFG Skill test, which includes an RTI, Blind Fold section and a blind folded. "Feel the Tire" contest, where you had to see if you could guess the tire make, model and size just by feeling. These were all lots of fun. The Registration/Inspection and Ramping wenton into the night and I made it home by midnight.

Jim O'Brien attacking a "Rock and a Hard Place" from the bottom up."

I was up to see the Friday morning dawn at about 6 a.m.. It was a little damp, but it wouldn't dampen our spirits. I had 20 rigs in line with me and my co-trail leader Dave Cleveland. We were ready to hit the trail by 8:30 a.m. In New England, because of population, the number of trails very close to each other is small, so a 40-minute drive from the hotel to a trailhead is not out of the question.

Friday's trail was Old Chester, a rocky, boulder-strewn unmaintained road. This road also has an optional turn-around called "Rock and a Hard Place". Overall, the trail is rated as 8-10, 10 if you go through Rock and a Hard Place Ravine. The road is only about two miles in and back out the same way.

Mike Saccente's Scrambler flexing across the top of a ravine

With the rigs we had, it should have taken us about five hours to run the whole thing. Our crew hit the trail and promptly two breaks occured; both hub-related. These were handled and we were moving again. The rain started to come down a little harder, but due to our tree cover, we didn't feel most of it. It sure was slippery, though. We rambled and rumbled our way down into the valley, Swampers and BFG MT's grabbing for a bite of rock and the rocks biting back.




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