My first time on the Rubicon trail in Tahoe, California was an amazing experience unlike any other for me.
I have wanted to experience the Rubicon trail since I entered the Jeep community and discovered the trail. I never felt that I ever had a Jeep capable of traversing the terrain one the Rubicon, on my first experience of the Rubicon I would learn how wrong I was.
I reached out to my friends from Sierra Gear and Axle to see if they would like to guide me through the trail, since they are local to the trail and frequent it a couple times a year I thought this would be a good peace of mind for me, since they know what it takes to get through the trail and can give me good pointers on what to bring with me and what I shouldn’t. My friends from Sierra Gear and Axle also lent a hand in transporting my truck and trailer from the start of the trail to the end (since I was taking my “non-street legal” race Jeep).
The first night in Tahoe city was fun, I stayed the night at the owner of Sierra Gear and Axle, Tahoe lake house. They have a private community “dock” that I walked out on and experienced how clear the Tahoe water is, unlike any lake here in Utah. I began to get in the spirit of camping, and set my tent up in the backyard of the lake house despite the bear warnings. In the morning (Sunday) I woke up and got ready to make the trip to the trail a few hours away.
Once I got to the trail head I got the race Jeep unloaded and packed up all my
camping gear not all of it fit in the race Jeep so I asked my parents if they could put some of it in their JK. The goal for the first day was to get to Buck Island lake for the night, the start of the trail was congested with everyone coming off the trail, I got to see a lot of rigs that were what I would have considered “under built” for the trail. throughout the trail I would learn that it doesn’t take much of a rig to traverse the landscape on the Rubicon.
Throughout the trail I found it difficult to find obstacles that would challenge my Jeep and I, but that wasn’t the point of me wanting to do the trail. I wanted to experience the trail for its mesmerizing scenery that I had heard so much about. I found that spending time with my friend from Sierra Gear and Axle was the real treat of the week, sitting around the fire at night and talking about random topics was what I probably enjoyed the most about the trip.
When the trail was over I had a moment of depression, because I knew it was time to go back to reality. I think everyone that is into off-roading or anything that frees their souls from the day to day we experience would agree with me that I could stay on “vacation” for eternity. I so desperately wish I could check out of my day to day I am currently living and check into my fantasy land.
Although the trip to the Rubicon was over the excitement and experiences were not over, when I got back to the lake house for the final night before making the journey back home. I got into my swimming appropriate clothes and went down to the lake for a dip. A dip was all my skinny butt could handle, because the lake is FREEZING!! I jumped in and immediately got back out, I quickly began to feel my limbs getting cold and beginning to stop working. I went back up to the house after eating and drying off, and got ready for bed. There was a spotting of a bear roaming around the backyards of the houses so I opted to sleep in the house for the last night. I forgot to lock my truck and the bear was able to open my passenger door where I had some fresh grapefruit sitting on the floor, bears apparently don’t like grapefruit. The bear bit into three of the grapefruits and spit it out all over my truck.
I was extremely lucky that the bear didn’t do any damage to my truck in his successful attempt to get inside, not only did he get the passenger door open but he climbed all the way inside into the back seat to find out what was back there to eat. Although it was a slightly frightening experience I am laughing about it now and think it is a unique story that not many can relate to.