New Years Annual Run – Peters Mill

CORE started 2002 under clear, cold blue skies with a run to Peters Mill. The New Years Day run is a tradition with many four wheel drive clubs. Sometimes called the Hangover Run, I prefer to call it Grandma Holman’s Run because my grandmother believed you set the pattern for the New Year as to what you’d be doing all year. (She did not do laundry or housework on New Year’s for this reason. The Washington Post comic strip “Baldo” also addressed this superstition this Sunday when Tia Maria said the same thing.) We’d rather be wheeling.

“Those of you who couldn’t make it this time missed a great way to start the year with good folks and good fun!”

As an aside on New Years Day customs, my dad used to always go hunting at his cousin’s farm on New Years and left way early in the morning as she believed that the first guest of the New Year being a male would bring good luck. I heard on the radio today that this is actually a Scottish custom called first footing where it is believed that the first visitor of the new year being a dark haired male bringing a gift would bring good luck and prosperity. Back to the trail…

Riding with us were:

  • Keith Holman, 91 S-10 Blazer, CORE President
  • Miles Oliver (member), 2002 Dakota Quad Cab with passenger, Mike Kupec, CORE Vice President
  • Mike Vincenty (CORE Secretary) 92 YJ with Donna Edwards (member)
  • Gil Campos (member) and Sherrie Burns (CORE Treasurer) in 98 TJ
  • Bob Weaver (CORE member-at-large), 90 Bronco
  • Mike Keane (member) 92 S-10 Blazer with passengers, Chris and Joseph (guests)
  • Bob Jaeger (member), 2000 Ranger
  • Aaron Hall, (guest) 2000 Xterra
  • John Bacak and Ed Keusenkothen (guests), 2000 Tundra
  • Carroll Jenkins, Pam Minoc, Aaron Minoc, Terrel Minoc (guests) 92 XJ

A total of 10 vehicles and a really nice turnout for our first outing of the year.

We gathered ourselves together at Park Ridge Centre and Edinburg and hit the trail head at approximately 11:00. It was clear, cold and dry.

Peters Mill was dusty except for the occasional frozen puddle or stream crossing. Thanks to “improvements” made by the Forest Service last spring, the trail has become a rocky ride through the woods. The reconditioning virtually eliminated the ruts near the southern end of the trail and the step that caused many to hesitate where you got crossed up at the big tree. There is still potential for these areas when and if we get another serious rainy (or otherwise wet) period.

As we neared the big rock obstacle, we came to a halt as one of the other local clubs was working their way through here. Traveling with a large group, one of theirs had managed to tip his Jeep onto its side before reaching the obstacle. As we stopped, he had been righted and was checking things before moving along. Shared some trail talk with the last few folks in their line as we waited. Thanks to their tail gunner for convincing a few of their folks to bypass the rock obstacle to allow us (and a couple of vehicles behind us) to take our turn.

Several of the members took a trek up the side of the rock as did some of our guests. Aaron and Carroll acquitted themselves quite nicely at what I believed to be their first attempts (and successful ones) at this obstacle.

We moseyed on north, stopping by the pond for a lunch break. The level was down about a foot or so below the spill pipe and there were easily a couple or three inches of ice on the pond. Towards the edges, at least, it supported the dog and a couple of kids but no one ventured out to the center. Several cracks were evident and many rocks that had been hurled at the surface to see if it would give.

The remainder of the trip revealed a couple more icy patches but nothing of real significance.

The large group which had been in front of us earlier was at the ATV parking lot when we arrived so we went on out to the gravel road and down to a new parking area on the left to get some group pictures and reconnect sway bars and such.

Those of you who couldn’t make it this time missed a great way to start the year with good folks and good fun! Thanks to everyone for coming along!

Remember to Tread Lightly!

Trail report written by Keith Holman.

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