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History of the Saint George Jeepers

A Brief History in Time

Compiled by Bud Sanders

HISTORY OF THE SAINT GEORGE JEEPERS

THE BEGINNING

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When Jay Malinowski submitted his recollections for this project, he said, “I didn't really want to get into a Paul Furr history here, although that is a little like trying to make concrete without Portland cement.” That is the unanimous consensus of those who contributed to this attempt to put together a 20-year history of the St. George Jeepers.

 

Joan Hayes, a California transplant, has been the foundation of the St. George Jeepers. Without her commitment to the sport the group likely would not exist today. For several years she oversaw recruiting trail staff for the very successful Winter 4X4 Jamboree. Without her efforts and the volunteers from the St. George Jeepers, the Desert Roads and Trails Society would have never been able to help fund protection of access to our public lands and their support of the Washington County Search and Rescue.

 

Joan has expressed the reasons and importance of keeping the group informal. She will explain later in this history effort. However, for even an informal group to be successful there must be a few minimal rules. A summary of the policies will be presented at the end of this story.

 

We will present recollections of several of our off-roading friends, past and present. Unfortunately, several are no longer living or actively Jeeping, but their stories and antics live on in our memories. 

 

You will read recollections of some of the pranks pulled on each other, some may be entirely true, some, well, maybe not so much. 

 

Those of you who never met Paul Furr, whom Jay mentioned earlier, really missed out on knowing a unique individual. There was never a dull moment, as you will learn. 

Probably for the better, but before the name St. George Jeepers was adopted, another name considered was, “St. George Jeeping Geezers”. Although the word “Jeepers” was easily accepted in our title, not all participants drive Jeeps. Jeeping has become the universally accepted verb for going four-wheeling, so our apologies to the Toyota, Isuzu, Nissan, Suzuki, GM, Ford and other four wheel drive operators in our group.

 

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Two of the original St. George Jeepers, Jim Beller, left, and Paul Furr

The in-the-desert.com website, operated by Don and Linda Gilmore, passionate off-roaders, has posted trip reports of several of our St. George Jeepers trips. They can be accessed by clicking here. The Jeepers trips are indicated by a red *.  They also have an abundance of other trail descriptions and useful information for off-roaders and desert enthusiasts.

RECOLLECTIONS BY JIM BELLER



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Jim Beller

 

I guess the best way I can explain how I started with the Jeepers was back in 2001. My wife and I moved to the St. George area then, and as we were moving in a neighbor stopped by and welcomed us. I asked him where to find out information and what’s doing in the area. He said, go down to the BLM where they have information on the area. Two guys worked behind the desk [at the BLM] turned out to be Paul Furr and Max Willis. I visited and they told me about off-roading. I didn’t have a clue then what I was getting into; but it was the best years of my life – the things we got to see, the friends we met and had fun with. 

 

The next day we met at the BLM to go to Colorado City. I had a new Suburban and they all had Jeeps. They said I best ride with them, and I could drive sometime when we would go on good roads. We were touring the area and we stopped for lunch at a picnic table. I broke out a package of homemade beef jerky and asked if they wanted some. Bob McLaughlin, who was along and had some of my jerky said, “Jim, if you bring jerky along, you are welcome aboard; but don’t stop bringing it or you are out”! I made a lot of jerky in the next few years.

 

Then one day I decided to bring some Nebraska made summer sausage and some crackers, which went over very well. About 10:30 am every trip; so, I would break out the sausage and crackers, put them on a Jeep hood, and everyone came a-running. We went through two 50-pound batches a year. A good feeling to see the Jeepers happy.

 

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Jim Beller sharing his goodies

 

Paul Furr, our leader at the time, usually gave orders about how we follow each other on turns, etc., but didn’t follow his own rules. He had his pedal to the metal most of the time. If he was asked a question and he didn’t have the answer, he’d wing it and get away with it. Obviously, he didn’t always get away with everything.

This is what happens when you park a Jeep in an Isuzu only parking spot. The sign read, “NO PARKING-ISUZU TROOPER PARKING ONLY”

 

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Old Yeller

 

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Then Joan and Phil came along one day. What organizers Joan and Phil were. Joan even got Paul’s attention, and the St. George Jeepers group grew to where it is today.

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Joan working on her tan!

 

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Joan and Phil Hayes at Point Sublime

Other people along the way were Bob McLaughlin, Max Willis, Dick Smith, Roger Suckup, Glen Ravensberg, Mark Deshowitz, Bob Wilding, Roseanne Jamrok, Howard and MaryLou Christy, Andy and Debbie Andrews, Mark Bennion, Bud Sanders, Jay/Nancy Malinowski, and Lavoid Levitts.  Lavoid was pretty knowledgeable about the area. Also [in the group] were Chuck and Arlene Jenkins and Leo and Dee Wingrove.

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Roseanne Jamrok, early woman Jeepers participant shown here at Head of Sinbad pictographs

 

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Other early Jeepers, Barry Bishop, Mark Bennion, Karen Bishop and Phil Hayes

 

I remember one trip down into Nevada when Paul was grounded, and I led 35 Jeeps. I was usually the tailgunner when Paul was in the lead. 

 

We all enjoyed pulling pranks on each other that I will refer to, and the names above can verify that they are all “true” stories… 

 

Since I came from Nebraska, where I was a farmer and black angus beef feeder (the best); I couldn’t afford a Jeep, so I bought an Isuzu Trooper about which I really got ribbed. But I did finally make a believer out of all of them. They all bought Jeeps to get them through rough spots, but being a farmer, I knew where my wheels were at any time, and I could go anywhere the Jeeps could go in comfort. When I would get stuck and called for help on the CB, they would all come like hell and take pictures,” and then pull me out. I said, “It’s the nut behind the wheel that really counts”. 

 

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Bob McLaughlin’s Jeep keeping the Isuzu from rolling  away

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Irresponsible off-roading can be dangerous

 

When I bought my first Isuzu, I took it to Milt’s Repair (which was Paul’s Service Center), one Wednesday after the Tuesday trip and had the running boards taken off. When I picked up the Isuzu, I paid the $75 bill for running boards and a test drive. Why a test drive for that service? Next day we had a trip up Pine Mountain and Roger Soukup, Glen Ravensberg, and Paul Furr (of all people) decided to ride with me. As we were driving along one after another would say, “Jim, I hear a noise”. I am a little hard of hearing and couldn’t hear anything. Glen said, “I think it’s something in the bell housing”. I remember Paul cracking up. I even stopped and looked under but couldn’t see anything wrong. Next morning, I was very curious; so, I took the floor jack and lifted one side and crawled under but didn’t see anything wrong. Still determined, I put cardboard under the vehicle and asked my wife to crawl under and listen while I shook the Trooper, which she did. I shook as hard as I could and I heard her say, “God-damn, you have a cowbell under here”. That’s why they had to test drive, which they had to redo a couple of times. Milt told me to quit running over cows. It was a cowbell they had hung under the Trooper. Paul’s idea for sure. 

 

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“Utah Jackassalope” 

(Jim Beller quote)

 

Jim Beller was reminded that the only way he stayed out of serious trouble with his Isuzu was because of the protection of his patron saint, Saint Francis of Isuzu-(Catholic joke).

 

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I got revenge! Paul was leading us up a mountain trail he knew. Very rough going, rocks, trees, etc. Finally, he stopped at a dead end. Paul gets out and lays his map on the hood and tries to figure out where he went wrong. While he was doing that, some of us were looking over a beautiful valley below when I noticed a wall phone and cord nailed to a dead tree. Paul worked for the Park Service some of the time; he could be called anytime; so-o-o . . . He was about 200 feet away from me and I picked up the phone and put it to my ear and hollered, “Paul, Park Service wants you”. He drops the map and comes running, belly bouncing, and I handed him the phone. He said, “hello” -- deader than a doorknob. The look on his face told me that he had been had. Everybody cracked up and really enjoyed it.

 

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After the major flood in St. George in 2005, I think, Paul was leading us around to where there was a lot of damage on the UP railroad. It had to be about 10:30 am. Paul spotted a portable toilet sitting on a steep embankment by the railroad. He goes into the toilet and Glen Ravensberg and I saw an opportunity. We quietly went up to the toilet and about the time Paul sits down, we pushed against it like we were going to tip it off the embankment. Paul hollered like hell, and I knew that if he hadn’t crapped yet – he did then. Glen then pulled his Jeep against the door until we knew Paul was done. What fun!

 

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A stop where Paul used to shoot a few hoops and…

 

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Another Paul Furr trail necessity.

We were Jeeping in the Poverty Flats area of Zion Park. Paul was leading with three riders in his yellow Jeep and decided to try a steep embankment right in front of me. He probably wanted to see if I would follow him in my Isuzu. As he was going up, his right rear wheel hit a rise in the ground and then we saw his radiator cap come over his rear spare tire. The Jeep came to rest on its right side, and it looked very bad. Helping the four out through broken windows, Paul was the only one hurt with a large gash on the top of his head with blood running. We wrapped his head in yellow towels and headed for the St. George hospital 60 miles away. He was alert the whole time. When we got to the hospital and put him on a gurney and took him into the emergency room, the nurses put his head over a sink and started a stream of water on his hair and the cut -- trying to get the blood washed out. Paul had a lot of curly hair on his head. After running the hose a long time, I said to the nurse, “If you don’t quit running so much water down that cut, Paul won’t have any brains left”. After getting all of the blood removed from his thick hair, the nurse showed us a cut in his head about five inches long. Roger looked at it and said, “I wonder when the baby is coming”. I then took Paul home and explained to his wife what all happened.

 

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I talked to Paul a couple of days ago and he seemed to be in good spirits but can no longer go Jeeping. Paul has always been a guy who would help anyone who needed it. I know we all had some concerns at times, but he created a lot of good days for all of us. Click for Mike Baker’s version of this story

 

I would like to suggest that all the Jeepers, whether you know him or not, send him a “thank you” for all his efforts. He would appreciate it. Or go to see him and see him laugh. Merlene deserves a big thanks also. I often felt very sorry for her! 

 

Joan Hayes told you about his trip west of Gunlock where we didn’t expect to find him alive.  Click for Joan Haye’s version.

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Hmm, that looks suspiciously like an Isuzu ambulance.



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“Fortunately, Paul found some fuel, a battery jump, air up, a little wax and she’ll be good to go!”

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Jim Beller roasting Paul Furr

 

On August 9, 2021, Jim Beller passed away.

 

“Jim was a first class person. It was always about what he could do for everybody else. He had a sense of adventure that was the essence of the small Jeeping group in the early days. Of course, there were the practical jokes, which were creative and plentiful. The ongoing competition between his "Rice Burner" and a Jeep.

 

A lot of his time was spent in public service. He wasn't always politically correct, but usually had a smile to go along with a comment.

 

He loved to feed people, between the sausage and crackers that everybody anticipated during air downs, and the lunches he transported and prepared at beautiful destinations.

 

His character was forged in a life of hard work, and some tragedy, always trying to move forward in a positive way.

 

He was an inspiration to everybody who could claim him as a friend. He will be missed.” -Laura and Mike Baker

 

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OFF-ROADING EXPERIENCES OF

JOAN AND PHIL HAYES

 

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Joan Hayes at the Falling Man petroglyph site.

Joan, trail boss, most likely telling Paul Furr that he cannot climb this obstacle because there’s petroglyphs here.

We moved to St. George from the San Francisco Bay Area in September 2005. We brought with us a 2004 Land Rover with very little off-roading knowledge or experience. The following spring, we were visiting the local BLM office looking for maps and information on trails in the surrounding area, when we saw a poster at the entrance announcing a Friday brown bag lunch featuring “Jeeping 101” presented by Paul Furr. We attended this and were impressed and excited with his photos and narration of the trails and trips he and a few of his friends had been on. 

After his presentation, we talked to Paul and asked if we could possibly join him on one of his trail rides. His response was an enthusiastic, “Heck, yes! Just show up in the BLM parking lot next Tuesday, 8:00 a.m. sharp.” We showed up that next Tuesday in our Land Rover and followed Paul and three other 4WD vehicles (driven by Jim Beller, Bob McLaughlin, and Max Willis) to the Utah/ Arizona border on the Arizona strip. 

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Phil and Joan Hayes

A few hundred feet on the dirt, Paul and the other drivers stopped, got out of their rigs, and began letting air out of their tires! I asked Paul, “What are you doing?” He explained, “You have to ‘air down’ when you are off pavement. It makes for a softer ride, and when rock crawling, provides much better traction.” This was certainly new to us. He then asked, “Do you have a CB radio?” I said, “We have a walkie-talkie.” He explained that would not be useful, so we should keep the vehicle in front of us in plain sight and follow it. We followed his instructions and had a wonderful and fun experience on one of the many trails off the Arizona Strip. As we ate our lunch sitting in our camp chairs, we became better acquainted with these cordial and knowledgeable men who were all retired and volunteers at the BLM office. The next Tuesday we came better prepared with a CB radio, air release valves and a small compressor to air up.

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We joined this relatively small group on several day trips, usually led by Paul and six to eight other rigs. In October that year, Paul planned a three-night trip to the Doll House, Maze District of Canyonlands National Park. Paul made reservations for three campsites, and we had a wonderful time exploring this beautiful and remote area.

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Looks like the Hayes Rover pulling Paul Furr’s “Old Yeller” forward. Possibly a tug-of-war?

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Joan and Phil making their way through the “Seeps” in Nevada

Jim Beller prepared outstanding trail meals and continued doing so on many other occasions during the following years.

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The Chef (Jim Beller)

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Joan, Cook’s Bookkeeper

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And also, the Chef’s Assistant

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The group enjoying one of Jim’s lunches

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Paul guarding the buffet table

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Eventually, even Chef Jim gets to eat

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Andy and Mary Christenson

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Jay and Nancy Malinowski, center

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Tom Foster, right

 

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Over the next few years, the group grew modestly as recent new residents to the area moved here, many from out of state. They would visit the BLM office asking if there are any groups that they could join to do some off-roading. They were told about the informal group that would meet every Tuesday and show up and go through a similar experience that we went through initially.

During this time, Joan, Phil and Paul began organizing overnight trips to various locations. We would spend three or four nights in motels in Hanksville, Mexican Hat and Monticello, with day trips to nearby attractions in Canyonlands, Monument Valley, Natural Bridges. We have had a special attachment for many years to Fish Lake and the surrounding area of Boulder Mountain, Thousand Lake Mountain, Capitol Reef, and the vast San Rafael Swell. Joan began organizing overnight trips in the Spring and Fall where the group would headquarter in Torrey with day trips to those areas. The Fall trips were primarily planned to experience the beautiful Fall colors so abundant with the numerous quaking aspen groves.

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Milt and Sharlett Thompson, who were owners of Dixie 4WD, would often join us on these trips, and with our close association and friendship with them, Dixie 4WD began posting notices of the groups’ weekly trips and weekly trail reports on their website. And, like the BLM office, customers would ask them about joining a group of off-roading enthusiasts, and they would refer them to The St. George Jeepers. This moniker began to be used a few years ago when Paul, Jim and Joan would reserve rooms at motels, especially in Torrey and Moab. This provided a group discount which saved 10-15% off regular room rates.

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Milt Thompson, always ready to help

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You know you are in good hands when Milt is spotting

The St. George Jeepers has purposefully remained an informal group of friends getting together to enjoy the beauty around us and the camaraderie of people with a common interest. This informality avoids the hassle and red tape of an organization with officers, dues and government involvement and restrictions.

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Sometimes you need a little extra stability –(Paul, not Joan)

With the rapid growth in population in our area, and the increased interest in off-roading, the group has grown from a handful of hearty retired BLM volunteers to several hundred off-road enthusiasts. This has necessitated the planning of two and sometimes three different trails each week to make the groups more manageable in numbers. Our many thanks to Scott Goodfellow, Mike Hess, Tom Mulqueen and Joan Hayes for their time and energy in planning and leading most of the recent trails. -Joan and Phil Hayes.

 

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SHERIFF BUFORD JOHNSON SAGA: 

SOUTHERN SHERIFF ATTACHED TEMPORARY DUTY 

TO THE KANE COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT

 

The Tuesday Jeepers group was finishing up a wonderful Hayes led ride in the Panguitch Lake area. We had aired up, barely finishing before getting hit with a squall of rain and hail. There were approximately ten vehicles that day, headed back south toward Rt. 14 and ultimately St. George. There was plenty of cheerful chatter on the radio, as usual, mostly conducted by Joan Hayes who was leading the trail that day.

As we traveled along the highway, we passed a sheriff parked on the side of the road. He pulled out into the group, a vehicle or two behind the Hayes Jeep at the front. Evidently, the sheriff had been monitoring our CB chatter as almost immediately we heard this deep southern redneck drawl. He said, “This here’s Sheriff Buford Johnson, Kane County Sheriff Department. Aw been listening to Y’all’s chatter and I want to caution y’all ‘bout speeding through maw jurizdicshun. Aw’m specially paying attention to that red 4-door Jeep up front and it looks to me like them tires are a little awt-sawd those fenders. Don’t usually take too kindly to that here in Kane County.”

Fortunately, there were no red and blue lights turned on and there was a distinct lapse in CB chatter for a few miles. Then we passed another Sheriff vehicle parked on the side of the road and Sheriff Johnson pulled out of our group and parked next to the other Sheriff vehicle. After a moment, Sheriff Johnson came back on the CB and thanked the group for their abidance to the speed limit and laws of Kane County. As a show of appreciation for his service etc., as he passed the two Sheriffs parked on the roadside, Jim Beller came on the radio and expressed his gratitude for their service and good work.

Word has it that throughout this short encounter, Phil Hayes was vigorously “encouraging” Joan not to say anything on the CB, especially anything that might cause any “complications”.

Months went by and there was often conversation and questions about that sheriff. Joan is recalled as asking several times if we thought that sheriff was for real and we all agreed that, yes, there was definitely a real sheriff that accompanied us for several miles.

It was always our custom to gather in a circle at lunch (back when the group was much smaller), to visit and swap stories (lies, no, more like exaggerations). I happened to be sitting next to Jim Beller and Joan was sitting on the other side. Jim was waxing nostalgic about what a great group of folks we are and how we can prank each other. He looked at me and said, “It’s so great that we can pull jokes on each other, and nobody gets mad, right, Sheriff Johnson?” I have a suspicion that Joan might have guessed who Sheriff Johnson actually was before that, but that confirmed it and it took a few weeks for the bruises on my shoulder to go away!

Bud Sanders

 

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Authentic photo of Sheriff Johnson’s truck…

RECOLLECTIONS BY JAY MALINOWSKI

It was a dark and stormy night when Nancy and I picked up our first Jeep – a starter 4x4.  Actually, it was a pleasant evening in the early 2000s in Southern California's San Fernando Valley after we had purchased our retirement home in St. George. We weren't sure why we needed a Jeep, but it seemed like an appropriate vehicle for the location. It was a used 2003 Wrangler, stick shift, soft top, half-doors, no A/C, cloth interior. It was the definition of a cheap Jeep. 

Driving north on Interstate 15 a week or so after the purchase with the wind and tire noise drowning out the pathetic radio, the top buffeting as it struggled to hit 65 heading uphill to Apple Valley, Las Vegas, Mesquite and finally St. George, buyer's remorse was the only thing on my mind.

A month or so later we wandered into the Riverside Drive office of the Bureau of Land Management to ask about any 4x4 trails that might be in the area. Two crusty volunteers, Paul Furr and Jim Beller were on duty. They pulled out maps and pointed to numerous trails before asking what kind of vehicle we had. “We have a Jeep,” I replied, as though our vehicle could go anywhere. Ours was a stocker – no lift, street tires, no lockers, no winch, no CB. Yes, we were ready. Furr advised that we should never go out alone and invited us on their next run. 

There were probably four 4x4s that day – Furr, Beller, Joan and Phil Hayes and Bob Wilding and his dog Trixie. I have no memory of where that trip went except to remember a slate-covered hill that found us sliding sideways down the hill while others crested the slate onto a dirt trail. Four-wheel low would have been a good gear to be in except I didn't know that, nor did I know how to get it in that range anyway. 

And so, it progressed, week after week, with four to eight rigs following Furr as he consistently got lost and found his way back. Others participated from time to time – Bud Sanders and Larry Covelli. Norm and Marie Kutch.  Covelli suffered from acrophobia and did not drive himself but often rode shotgun with Beller. He was most interested when the cliff drop-off was on the passenger side of the trail. 

Joan and Phil would show up in a Land Rover, Beller in a near-stock Isuzu Trooper, Wilding and Sanders in actual Jeeps and us. It took Beller a long time to realize that the Trooper came standard with a locking differential. He also likely did not realize that translated from Japanese, Isuzu means “50Bells” – an unknown tribute to his extended family in Nebraska where he moved (and where he was from) to be closer to family. 

Over time our Jeep got a modest lift, trail-worthy tires, an aftermarket AC that never worked well and a winch.

As the trails got longer and more difficult the skill level rose, and the group grew slightly larger but never more than a dozen or so rigs. Some of those original Jeepers have since passed or retired from the trails; at least one grumpy driver was asked to not show up ever again and the group continued to grow. Beller and Furr took great pride in pulling each other (and others) out of trouble but not before pictures of a stuck or overturned Jeep were taken for posterity. 

And the stories told and retold are now legion – or at least Bunyonesque. One cannot start a story about Paul Furr totaling his Jeep without first identifying “which one.” 

As more folks moved to the St. George area the weekly 4x4 trips became more regimented and predictable – and larger. But the genesis is with the Furrs, Bellers, Bennions, Wildings, Sanders, Hayes, Wards, Bryces and others who literally blazed the trails and left us with these adages: I'm not lost, I'm exploring; You're never lost until you run out of gas; that will buff out and finally, some duct tape should hold that until you get home.

Jay Malinowski

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Jay Malinowski, master of ceremonies at Paul Furr roast.

TORREY FALL FOLIAGE JEEPING TRIP

(SEPTEMBER 30, 2015)

 

One of the highlights of this trip was a visit to the Old Yeller Memorial on Posey Lake Road. On May 21, 2013, there was an airborne craft crash off the side of this road. No animals or humans were severely injured, but an aspen tree and Old Yeller terminally and permanently gave up the ghost. ! Moab 10-2011 045.jpg

Old Yeller-before

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It was from this point that pilot Paul Furr launched and “landed” Old Yeller into the aspen tree in the background. Paul survived the crash landing much better than the tree and Old Yeller did. Since it was never concluded whether the Federal Aviation Administration or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration should investigate the crash, neither did. Witnesses did conclude that a major contributing factor was poor engineering, that is, the road was put in the wrong place. Those on scene reported Old Yeller’s last CB transmission was, “I’m dead!” Our thanks to Chuck Jenkins and Leo Wingrove for the somber memorial plaque. 

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Paying tribute to Old Yeller at the memorial are Phil Hayes, Joan Hayes, Paul Furr, Leo Wingrove, Bud Sanders, Ellie Motter, Ron Motter, Moira Wilding and Bob Wilding. (Photographer, Dee Wingrove)

 

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Heavy, sad, mourning hearts mourn Old Yeller

POINT SUBLIME TRIP

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK

(St. George Jeepers-- October 13, 2015)

After gathering at the Pipe Springs, Arizona, service station, Joan and Phil Hayes led the group of 20 vehicles east down Arizona Highway 389 to Fredonia. We passed through Fredonia and turned east onto 89A. We traveled about two miles and left the main highway onto Rt 22, south. Upon leaving the pavement, we did our traditional air-down a few miles after entering the Kaibab National Forest. On this run Gus Peterson was the tail-gunner.

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Jim Beller, one of the patriarchs of the Jeepers Group, shares his always anticipated sausage and crackers with Chuck Jenkins and Tom  Foster.

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Hayes lead Jeep

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It was a bright, beautiful, sunny, (but dusty) morning.

 

We left Rt 22 and turned onto FS 206. After traveling several miles on 206 we made a right turn onto FS 609 and then a left onto FS 223. Next, we took a right onto FS 268. After traveling a short distance on FS 268 we entered the Grand Canyon National Park where the trail became NPsw4. We traveled on it until we met the Sublime Trail Road, NPsw1, which led us to Point Sublime. 

Our lunch site offered a better than average lunch view. This is Crystal Canyon that feeds into the Grand Canyon at Point Sublime in the far distance.

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On the right is Paul Furr (blue cap) sitting next to Jim Beller. This was just prior to, “Watch this”, explained below.

As previous writers have explained, Paul is known to be quite adventurous and daring with his “Grandpa’s Toy” Jeeps. (Recall the Posey Lake Road incident report from our Torrey, Utah, fall foliage trip.) It’s hard to count how many legendary tales that have been heard and seen that were epic; the act, preceded by “Watch this…”, and followed by the “Oh,    s_ _ t!”  (Any of you who saw the sticker on Paul’s Jeep window can fill in the blanks.) Well, as mentioned in the reports the conversation at our lunch breaks can get quite interesting and entertaining. Paul was describing to Jim Beller (and anyone else who would listen) how good he was at gymnastics as a younger man and how he excelled on the All-Navy, All-American, All-gymnastics team a few years back. Jim, I suspect sort of egging him on, said, “Come on, you can hardly get up from the supper table, I don’t believe that!”  That was all it took. (According to his brother, Bruce, Paul actually was an excellent athlete as a young man.) Perhaps Paul thought he still had a shot at making the 2016 Olympics.

Paul stood up, looked at Jim and said, “Watch this.” It was amazing; he made it through the cartwheel which morphed in a handstand, which was supposed to end with a back flip. Unfortunately, Paul hadn’t checked out his landing spot carefully and didn’t see the chunk of wood laying there. It is not good to finish a back flip with one foot landing on a chunk of wood as this can cause a spiral fracture to any former gymnast’s tibia. (At least that part is true.) Paul recovered at home and the Tuesday runs weren’t the same without him. Hopefully he is not practicing intentional or unintentional back flips.

 

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Mike Green attends to Paul Furr’s injury. Jim Beller, right, Bill Draney, center and Joan and Phil Hayes, left, observe.

Many thanks to Mike for the expert first aid.




The following photos are taken from Point Sublime, elevation 7,400 feet. It’s a 270-degree view of the Canyon with the other 90-degrees filled with great looking Jeeps and an occasional Toyota, Isuzu or Geo. The below photo is the only view of the Colorado River from the Point. It is in the upper right corner of the following photo.

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On the return trip we followed NPsw1, Point Sublime Trail, all the way back to Highway 67 . Along the way there are numerous other side trails leading to what are undoubtedly more great views of this incomparable national treasure. This scenic trail travels through some outstanding ponderosa pine forests with trees approaching four foot diameter. It intersects the Grand Canyon Highway, Rt. 67, only a few miles north of the North Rim lodge. After leaving the North Rim we traveled Rt. 67 back to Jacobs Lake, Fredonia and home. It was a long trip,  but a wonderful day.

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The return trip timing worked out perfectly to shoot some

sunset photos near the North Rim Lodge

 

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Submitted by Bud Sanders





ANDY AND DEBBIE ANDREWS

(The following is from a letter sent from Debbie Andrews):

 

Andy and I moved to Mesquite in 2001.  In 2003, we joined the Dixie College ICL (Institute of Continued Learning) program.  One of the classes we took was “Exploring”.  “Exploring” was basically touring the Arizona Strip, Utah, and the Mojave Desert.  The teacher was Lavoid Leavitt who is now deceased.  Lavoid not only led our trips but taught us about the area and provided us with some of the local folklore.

Some of our “older” St. George Jeeper participants also participated in the “Exploring” class through ICL.  For many of us, this class was a precursor for getting involved with Paul Furr’s Tuesday Jeep rides. Andy and I started Jeeping with Paul Furr in 2010 with a Suzuki Sidekick.  The goal for Andy and me from both these groups was exploring the back roads of this area, learning some local history, and developing new friendships.  These are current St. George Jeepers who also participated in the ICL Exploring class.  Most of them started Jeeping with Paul Furr before Andy and I did in 2010.  Here is the list:

  1.  Howard and Mary Lou Christy (Howard is now deceased)

  2. Arlene and Chuck Jenkins

  3. Leo Wingrove and Dee Foster

  4. Joan and Phil Hayes

  5. Debbie and Andy Andrews

  6. Cheryl and Wayne Sietz

Also, Jay and Nancy Malinowski have been involved with the Jeepers at least until Andy and I got involved in 2010. 

As you know, Jim Beller and Paul Furr were the original members of the Tuesday Jeep rides.  





PAUL FURR’S RECOLLECTIONS

 

I moved to St. George in 1995 and started volunteering at BLM in 2001. Bob McLaughlin and I were volunteering at the BLM and each going out on our own to do trail rides. Bob’s wife Mary said that we should go out together so if there was a problem, they would have a second vehicle. We both had Tuesday off, so this became the day of the week for the trail rides. 

We did not have GPS at that time, so we began by using topo maps, mostly of the Arizona strip. That’s how I got into using and printing topo maps of all the trails. 

In 2002, Jim Beller, Max Willis, Larry Cavelli and Mark Bennion joined Bob and me. Jim, Max, and Larry were also volunteers at BLM, but Mark had attended Paul’s first Jeeping 101 lecture at a BLM Brown Bag Lunch. We met at 8:30 am every Tuesday at the BLM office.

Early on, I arranged a Jeep tour with lunch, (by Jim Beller), for five KSL employees. This began the first of many tours with lunch by Jim, for different groups, including folks from the Institute of Continued Learning from Dixie State University (ICL), and St. George Jeepers, who were not called that at the time. 

I arranged overnight tours to Moab, Needles District of Canyonlands, Maze District of Canyonlands, Mexican Hat, Hanksville, and Torrey. Mark and I were instrumental in mapping and placing signage on the historic Temple Trail.

One quote that I am famous for is, “It’s hard to be humble when you’re as great as I am…”.











MIKE BAKER’S TESTIMONY

AT PAUL FURR ROAST

 

Following is Mike Baker’s recollection of the first time he met and rode with Paul Furr:

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“I went out for the first time; it was the first time I ever went out Jeeping. I didn’t know a thing about Jeeping, and I couldn’t even spell “Jeep”. My neighbor, Roger Soukup (a friend of Jim Beller), said, ‘Well, you could go out with us as a rider, you don’t even have to have a Jeep’. So, I went out for the first time, this was the first time I have ever been in a Jeep. So, we went down to BLM, and guess who I got to ride with? This old guy named Paul. “Oh, I thought, this is going to be boring”.

So, anyway, we go out and they say, “I think he said something like Hobgoblins”. What’s that? So, we were out for two or three hours, and we were going down this wash and Paul looked up to his right and there was this cliff. It’s a typical slick-rock cliff with moss all over it, and I’ve never been in a Jeep before in my life and he says, “Do you think I can climb that”? 

Having never been in a Jeep but seeing it, I said, “No”. And he said, “Well, I’m going to try”. Very carefully and leisurely, as Paul always does, he started climbing at 50 miles an hour. We got halfway up this 100-foot cliff at 50 miles an hour, and the front end decides to leave, and it goes off to the right and down we go! Just picture roll after roll after roll, as anybody knows that’s ever been in an accident, it’s like slow motion although it is right then. 

So, while this is happening, he’s got this big tank that he fills his tires with afterwards, and it was loose, and it was trying to put a dent in my head and Paul’s -- it succeeded in his. And his toolbox, he must not have had it zipped up, because all his wrenches, all his screwdrivers were bouncing around the cab like a blizzard and then they were all whacking against our heads. 

We ended up three or four turnovers later at the bottom of this wash on its side and steam was rising and oil got in the engine, and blue smoke coming out of the engine.  Screeching door opened, which is now on the top. We got out of our seatbelts and Paul’s head was bleeding like a pig – blood dripping all over everything. I’ve got the beginning of a goose egg that was going to be there for a couple of weeks, and I’ve got cuts and bruises everywhere. Anyway, about this time, I start thinking, I’ve been Jeeping for three hours and I’ve almost got killed, we’ve destroyed an expensive piece of equipment, and my first thought was “Is this really what I want to do?” And my second thought is – “Thanks to Paul Furr, this is the most fun I’ve ever had!”

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A “ROUTINE” TRAIL RIDE TO 

TOQUERVILLE FALLS AND BEYOND

(February 19, 2013)

 

Before telling the story of this trail ride, following is a short history of the Browse Station, an easy and popular St. George Jeepers Tuesday destination.

“This site was first developed in 1921 as the 179-acre Mill Creek Browse Experimental Range with an enclosure to study the use of browse vegetation as summer forage for cattle. Two years later, a small cabin was built.

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Grazing of cattle was discontinued there in 1929 but, four years later, the Forest Supervisor approved construction of four exclosures (areas fenced to keep out wildlife and stock) to support deer management studies.

In 1934, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built a Plan 5 guard station and a Plan 70 outhouse; the 1923 cabin became a woodshed/storeroom. Regional landscape architect H. L. Curtiss prepared a landscape plan that included wild grape, native grasses, spruce, cedar, rose, willows, snowberry, apple trees, an irrigation ditch, sidewalls, and parking for four cars.

Despite these early improvements, the site was not formally withdrawn until 7/7/1953 and again in 1959. The Forest Service recommended the 1959 withdrawal (120 acres) be released in 1986.

Beginning in 1960, the Forest Service shared the guard station with the Utah Fish and Game Department for use as seasonal housing. The site was intact with its three buildings and corral when the Sequoia Fire of 2002 swept through the canyon. Remarkably, everything around the station burned but the buildings were unharmed, thanks to clearing of flammable materials the previous year. Subsequent rains on the fire-damaged land led to a mudslide, flooding, and loss of the 1923 shed.

A restoration plan was developed in 1996 and the following year, the Utah State Historic Preservation Office concurred with the Forest's determination that the Browse Guard Station is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.” (Text courtesy Washington County Historical Society)

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On this mild February day, Paul Furr led a Tuesday Jeepers Group trip to the Toquerville Falls and then up to the communication towers. Paul Furr was riding with Jim Beller on this Tuesday run. 

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View looking toward Pine Valley Mountain from the communication towers.

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The plan was to travel from Toquerville Falls and the communication towers and then travel up to the USFS Browse Station on the slope of Pine Valley Mountain. However, when we reached the boundary of the Forest Service, the gate was locked. 

Unfortunately, due to the Forest Service gate being locked we were unable to make it to the cabin on this trip. So, we turned around and headed back toward Interstate 15. However, as we came up over a rise in the road, we came upon a sight that got some of the old timers’ blood pumping. Paul Furr, leading the group, was able to snap the following photos. 

Parked and completely blocking the trail was a Chevrolet Corvette. Spread across the hood was a scantily clad model, doing an advertising photo shoot. A car driving on a dirt road</p>
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The model panicked, jumped off the hood and ran to the bushes. The photographer (blue sweater) was laughing so hard it’s surprising that she was able to stand up.

 

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After the photographer tossed the model a sweater she came out of the brush and got the car out of the middle of the road.

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To add to the poor woman’s embarrassment, after she got the car out of the trail and shut it off, she then couldn’t get it started. There was no shortage of Jeepers willing to help.

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Kay Crabtree at Paul Furr roast

Kay (now deceased) was a Canadian snowbird and passionate Jeeper. He was a fun-loving person and always up for a challenge. It became obvious that he also had amazing powers of observation. He, along with several other very helpful Jeepers, was one of the willing volunteers who offered to help the damsel in distress get her Corvette started. As we left the scene and proceeded on down the trail, Kay came on the CB. He said, “Did any of you notice that that young lady was wearing red high heel shoes?”  There was not a single affirmative response.

ANOTHER, BUT NOT THE LAST, PAUL FURR WHITE JEEP RECOVERY

This segment depicts another Paul Furr rescue. Paul, as a member of the Sons of Utah Pioneers, Cotton Mission Chapter, volunteered to help with the GPS location and placement of markers on the original Temple Trail. 

Several local Chapter members helped with locating the trail and digging the post holes which included: David Rogers, Don Burton, Durant McArthur, Tom Cramer, Paul Furr, Royce Griffin, John Jeffress, Paul and Bonnie Weaver, Mel Duehlmeier, Val Peterson, Taylor Biesinger and friends Ron Bryce, Jim Ward and Bud Sanders, participants in the St. George Jeepers.

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St. George Jeeper, Paul Furr, second from right

The old pioneer Temple Trail was used to move lumber 80 miles from Mt. Trumbull to St. George for use in the construction of the St. George Temple.

There were two alternate routes making up the Temple Trail: The main trail dropped down over the Hurricane Cliffs about eight miles south of the Utah/Arizona border and continued up to the Ft. Pearce Wash on into St. George. The trip took about seven days.

The alternate route went to Antelope Springs where lumber could be stored until snow closed the sawmills.

From there, the trail went down over the Hurricane Cliffs just south of the Utah/Arizona border and joined what would later become the Honeymoon Trail. It followed the Ft. Pearce Wash into St. George.

Forty-five volunteers from local communities constructed the roadways during April and May of 1874.

There were two sawmills at Nixon Springs on the south face of Mt. Trumbull. They only worked during the warmer months but produced over a million board feet of lumber.

From 1874 through 1876, lumber was hauled by ox team to St. George for use in construction of the St. George L.D.S. Temple.

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PAUL FURR JEEP RECOVERY

MARCH 13, 2015

Recollections of Joan Hayes

 

Paul took his friend, David Rogers, from Sons of Utah Pioneers, Cotton Mission Chapter, with him to follow the Temple Trail as it went from Warner Valley to Navajo Road. It was supposed to be a short afternoon trip, so they took only water. (Both men were diabetic). 

 

After crossing the hill and dropping into Black Rock Canyon at the base of the Hurricane Cliffs, Paul crossed through the wash and proceeded to bushwhack towards the next Temple Trail marker that he could see in the distance. 

 

All of a sudden, he drove his Jeep into a very large washed-out gully that emptied into the wash. Both front tires and the passenger rear tire were wedged in the gully, tipping the Jeep to the passenger side. After a few tries to dislodge the Jeep using power, and finding they had no cell coverage, the friend (Mr. Rogers) decided to walk back over the small mountain to Warner Valley and go for help. 

 

It was getting dark when he started out. Paul said that he told him not to go, but he insisted. After climbing the steep rocky hill, he had to rest and sleep for a while; he needed insulin. Meanwhile, Paul kept his Jeep lights turned on and listened to music. He said that he knew eventually someone would come looking for him. 

 

David Rogers’ wife phoned Merlene after midnight, wanting to know if Paul had returned home. Merlene had been trying to reach Paul on his cell phone, but to no avail. About 12:30 am, she phoned me to ask if I knew where he might have gone, and to tell me that he had not returned home. All Paul had told her was that he and David Rogers were going to do something on the Temple Trail. 

 

I really thought that they had gone on the section of the Temple Trail that went from Navajo Road towards Mount Trumbull. I phoned the Sheriff Search and Rescue in Utah, and when I explained where I thought they were located, I was informed that I would need to contact Arizona Sheriff Search and Rescue. When I finally reached them, and explained the situation, they wanted me to tell them where, on a map, they should look. They had no idea of the names of dirt roads or route numbers in that area of Arizona! They informed me that they were located in Kingman. I gave them my phone number and name and asked them to get a helicopter search. They informed me that they don’t dispense helicopters until after doing ground search. Of course, I informed them that both men were diabetic and had no food or insulin. 

 

About 3:00 am, I received a phone call from St. George Sheriff Search and Rescue. Arizona had phoned them to ask for help, to send out a couple of guys in a truck to search for Paul, because St. George Sheriff knew the roads and they didn’t. (UGH - inefficiency)! Anyway, after talking to St. George Sheriffs at length, I could tell that they had searched the area where I initially thought Paul might be. So, then I told them to go to Navajo Road and head north towards Warner Valley. I figured this would be the next area he could possibly be. 

 

Around 6:30 am, I got a phone call that they had found Paul, with his Jeep lights on and radio going. He was fine, but they needed to find Mr. Rogers. Shortly after that, David Rogers’ wife phoned Merlene to say that her husband had phoned her, and she was going to pick him up in Warner Valley. He had walked all that way!!

 

Paul was dropped off at his home around 7:00 am. Phil and I had already organized a rescue party for Paul’s Jeep. I think we met around 7:30 am, and there were about six Jeeps. Paul insisted on going with us, even though I said “NO!”, and Merlene said “NO!”. However, having Paul along did help in locating the Jeep that morning.

 

The men took the roof off Paul’s Jeep, and we used four straps, attached to Paul’s Jeep and the individual Jeeps, to pull his Jeep out of the gully. It was tricky, but the Jeep was retrieved with no damage to the vehicle. The retrieval party was Jay Malinowski, Gus Peterson, Bud Sanders and Joan and Phil Hayes.

 

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MISFORTUNE CAN HAPPEN TO THE BEST OF US.

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THE LAST PAUL FURR (WHITE JEEP) RECOVERY

December 19, 2015

(Submitted by Joan Hayes)

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“In my defense, I was left unsupervised”

 

Below is Joan Hayes’ accounting of the events of Friday, December 18th, 2015,  leading up to the rescue of Paul Furr following his Jeep accident. It exemplifies the philosophy of the Jeepers that if anyone is in trouble, everyone is there to help.

“At around 3:00 pm, Paul rolled his Jeep onto its top. He climbed out the window and got to a point where he had cell coverage. He phoned Jim Beller, Bob Wilding and Merlene, (Paul’s wife) giving a description of what happened and a general location. Jim phoned Joan and Phil Hayes around 3:30 pm, who phoned Jay and Nancy Malinowski, and met Jim and Roger in Gunlock at 4:00 pm. They searched for Paul from 4:15 to 5:30 pm, and then decided they had to phone Search and Rescue. Joan phoned 911, asked for assistance from Search and Rescue, and asked them to ping Paul's cell phone. They organized a group of S & R out of Veyo, and eventually got authorization to ping Paul's cell phone. From this information, they located a very general area of search. Meanwhile, Paul was able to phone Merlene again, and Bruce, Paul’s brother, was at Paul's home. He and Merlene also decided to contact S & R to help us. Bruce and Merlene kept in touch with the Hayes when they were in cell coverage. 

At 8:30 pm, the Hayes talked with several S & R Jeepers on the mountain and they advised them to wait in Veyo with the sheriff deputy in charge of the operation.

  They drove to the outskirts of Veyo and waited with the two sheriff's trucks. At 9:00 pm, they radioed that they had located Paul's Jeep. (Fortunately, they recorded a GPS location of the Jeep which made it much easier to find it on Saturday.) At this point, they determined that Paul was about 1/2 mile away, (temperatures were below freezing), and they began cross-country hiking to find him. After explaining to the sheriff that Paul has diabetes, a recent broken fibula, and is only wearing a shirt and vest, the sheriff decided to order Life Flight.

 At 9:30 pm Paul was found, conscious, and Life Flight searched for a place to land. There was no place close to land, so S & R had to get Paul to their Jeep and drive him to the helicopter. He was checked out medically, and then flown to SR-18 and Veyo Pool Road. The sheriff advised us to follow him to town and then to the landing location. When the Jeepers reached town, there was a truck, exactly like the sheriff's, and it was turning around at the corner gas station/mini mart. It headed back towards Gunlock, so they turned around and followed it - all the way back to Gunlock! When he finally stopped, on a dirt road behind the LDS Church, it was realized that it was a rancher, whom they had previously met! They hurriedly drove back to Veyo and saw the Life Flight helicopter taking off for St. George. They found Paul in the sheriff's truck, plus several of the S & R Jeeps were there. Paul thanked everyone, and Jim and Roger drove Paul home to face Merlene! They all got home around 11:15 P.M.”

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Photos showing the terrain in the search area

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Tom Foster, (now deceased), following the GPS coordinates provided by Search and Rescue located Paul’s Jeep. It was evident that Paul had reached the end of the trail at this point. He had attempted to turn around by pulling uphill. Judging by the tracks the Jeep did not upset until it was in or near the bottom of the wash. The tracks indicated that it went straight down backwards and that the wheels were spinning the whole trip to the bottom.

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Since Paul was alone at the time (not a good idea) it is assumed that on this particular occasion he probably didn’t say, “Watch this!”

 

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Fortunately, there was a trail down into the wash just 100 feet below the accident site. This made the recovery much easier than if the recovery team would have had to winch it back up the slope. Next photo, Tom Foster prepares to winch it back onto its wheels.

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This photo speaks for itself.

 

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Tom winches it back onto its wheels.

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Closer. . .

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Almost upright.

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Back on its wheels. Damage? What damage?  “No Problem!”

Strapped up and ready for a tow out of the wash. Thanks to Jeep for a strong factory roll cage.

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Back up on flat ground and up out of the gully, Scott Galbreath removes the broken windshield. Bryce Thompson volunteered to steer the Jeep out of the hills.

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Steve Friend starts the slow 5 MPH, 5-mile tow out of the accident area. Tom Foster strapped onto the rear to prevent Paul’s Jeep from coasting into Steve’s tow Jeep on the down-grades.

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Heading out with Pine Valley Mountain as a scenic backdrop.

 

Bryce Thompson brought the Dixie 4WD truck and trailer out to haul the Jeep back to their shop. A wash job, wax and a good buff and it’ll be good as new. 

(Not)

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Loaded and on the road. Considering the catastrophe that this could have been, Paul is said to be the luckiest unlucky guy on earth.! IMG_5892.jpg

Thanks to Phil and Joan Hayes, Jim Beller, Jay Malinowski, the Sheriff Department, Search and Rescue, Life Flight, Steve Friend, Bud Sanders, Tom Foster, Bryce Thompson and Dixie 4WD and everyone else on the rescue and recovery teams.      -Joan Hayes-

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THE TALE OF THE “BUSTED TIRE” BY DEBRA ANDREWS

In midsummer, there was a trip to Tweedie Point.  After a short stop from the top of Tweedie Point for a view, the group proceeded down the sloping grass covered hill to the lunch spot.  Part way down the hill, Andy Andrews began experiencing steering issues with the Jeep.  Andy says his navigator (his wife Debbie) failed to notify him of a major drop-off with a ledge.  This resulted in tearing up the front tire and bending the rim of the wheel.  

We stopped and put out an SOS on the CB radio to the other jeepers.  Immediately a group of 3 Jeepers circled back to provide assistance with the removal and replacement of the damaged tire.  The team of three guys (Tom Mulqueen, Scott Goodfellow, and another Good Samaritan) did a great job removing and replacing.  As you can see, Andy ended up being the supervisor.  What a great group of guys!!! Another example of one of the basic tenets of our Jeep group “Leave no man/woman or Jeep behind”.

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SUMMER 2021 HISTORY COMMENTS BY TOM MULQUEEN

Bud,

I was so glad to find a group of Jeepers who get out every week and do adventures.  I retired here in 2004 from an engineering career in CA. 

We covered a world of subjects during our lunch sessions, but politics and religion were off the table. We have had a lot of fun through the years and met a lot of very interesting people that I like to call friends, even though we may only have Jeeping in common.  Isn't this what retirement should be?

We have worked together on many causes and hopefully improved the world of off road opportunities.  We have made trails and recorded all the trails we traveled on.  We documented these travels with stories and pictures.  Hopefully for the next batch of off roadsters to enjoy.

As we started to grow, Joan gave up on her phone list of all the members because of our size (>300).  I asked the question as to whether we may have let some tree huggers into the group, because SUWA (Southern Utah Wilderness Association) is active in our area.  I suggested we have an application, and Kim Pollock came up with the form.  The data is returned into a Google spreadsheet so we can have a name and phone number with an email address.  We are continuing to get everyone to fill out that form and are only about 25 unknown emails away from knowing everyone in the group.

I started a spreadsheet of all the Tuesday trail rides we do and added the meeting locations and some pictures for each.  I was looking for a better way than email to get out the weekly info for the trail rides and thought an online calendar would be better since everyone could refer to it any time.  Kim Pollock comes along and says he found a new app that converts spreadsheets into a phone or PC app.  We sat down and roughed out the info we needed, such as leaders, meeting locations, maps to meeting locations, trail ratings, route maps, pictures, etc.  Scott Goodfellow and I started to populate that spread sheet, creating maps and putting in shared links to the spreadsheet.  It took us several weeks of dedicated efforts, but the data was coming together.  Most of the data is spread among files located on the Google cloud shared among us.

Kim started writing the app to pick up fields of info in the spreadsheet and display them.  He also wrote an app for Joan to maintain the app.  We always know now what is happening way in advance and the Jeepers love it.  Leaders are also given advanced warning if it does not meet their schedule, and it can be changed with a few of Joan's clicks.

Sharing pictures of trips was always an email nightmare because of the file sizes, with many resorting to cloud locations to view the pictures and minimize email data.  Jason Lichfield approached Joan one day about having a Facebook page for the St George Jeepers.  Joan agreed that that was a better place to share photos and let them proceed. Jason, Bruce Smith, and Scott Goodfellow are admins for this site.  It was a closed site, meaning you had to be a member, but there was no vetting going on and virtually anyone who asked was made a member.  Joan was not watching what was going on because she did not like Facebook, so they were given pretty much free reign. 

I started to complain to Joan when they posted how to get the app on Facebook.  They were now representing themselves as the St George Jeepers and bypassed the Google group with the same name.  Joan has asked them to eliminate all reference to the app on Facebook, since you really should be a member of the group to get the app.  The damage has been done though and unknown Jeepers keep showing up for trail rides.  The bad part too, is that trail leaders’ names and phone numbers are exposed in the app.

The St George Jeepers are now (July 2021) at 631 members and the Facebook group is at 871 members.  Tom Mulqueen

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The Desert Roads and Trails Society (Desert RATS or DRATS) is a non-profit (501(c)(3), all-volunteer organization committed to the enjoyment of off-road recreation opportunities and experiences for all ages and levels of physical abilities. 

The goal of the organization is to actively promote the wise use, conservation, and prudent stewardship of our public lands. This is accomplished through cooperative endeavors with Federal, State, and local agencies as well as other related Clubs and Organizations to fundraise, educate, advocate and implement projects that serve to enhance their goals. 

To accomplish their fundraising objectives, they organize and host the annual Winter 4x4 Jamboree to promote recreation on Sand Mountain in Hurricane, Utah. They also run on certain trails off Sand Mountain. The specific objective of the Jamboree is to raise funds to promote and support public land use and protection throughout Utah and northern Arizona (Arizona Strip). Their first Jamboree was in 2015. 

The organization donates 60% of Jamboree net profit to the Utah Public Lands Alliance (UPLA). The remaining 40% of proceeds will be donated to Utah 4WD Association, Washington County Search and Rescue, Blue Ribbon Coalition, Tread Lightly AND any other relative organizations.

Since the inception of the Jamboree, the St. George Jeepers volunteers have been instrumental in making this fund (and fun) raiser a success. Jeepers serve on the board of directors and extensively volunteer with the accomplishment of the Jamboree by helping with setup at the fairgrounds and by leading trails.  

 

ST. GEORGE JEEPERS SAFETY, FUNCTION AND ETIQUETTE TRAIL GUIDELINES

  1. First and most important rule of all, at a pit stop, ladies to the right, gents to the left. Leader remains mindful of people’s needs.

  2. No registration required for trail rides, just show up at designated time and place.

  3. Make sure your vehicle is full of fuel before departure and be prepared for a full day. If on a longer trip and your vehicle is fuel inefficient, carry extra fuel and in an approved container.

  4. Be prepared; dress for the weather, have food and water and a well maintained vehicle. Bring camp chairs to use during lunch break.

  5. Carry at least minimal tools to deal with common problems such as fluid leaks, flat tires, and suspension failures. Have a sturdy tow strap and soft shackles. Also have a charged fire extinguisher and a first aid kit. Other Jeepers may have tools, but self-reliance builds off-road confidence and personal satisfaction. 

  6. Have air down and air up equipment with you. Don’t always rely on others.

  7. No alcohol or illegal drugs on the trail.

  8. Pets are welcome but once out of the rig dogs should be on leash. Not everyone is a dog lover and some fear untethered dogs, especially anti-social ones. We have experienced unleashed dogs attacking other dogs during breaks. In addition, snakes, skunks, porcupines & other critters present a danger to curious dogs that are off-leash.

  9. At any intersection, wait there until the vehicle behind you can clearly see you. Otherwise, that vehicle by default likely becomes a new trail leader and you become a new tail gunner.

  10. Unless dust prohibits, try to keep the vehicle in front of you and the vehicle behind you in sight, keep up.

  11. Leaders announce on the radio upcoming intersections, which fork that will be taken and the mid-gunner and tail gunner repeat those details back.

  12. Tail gunner informs the leader when they pass that intersection. This helps the leader gauge how spread out the group is.

  13. Leader announces whether a gate is to be left open or closed. The mid-gunner and tail gunner repeat this. Tail gunner informs the leader when the gate is closed.

  14. Often the trail leader or other informed participants will relay interesting historical, geographical, geological and vegetation details to the group. The leader may also communicate road hazards, etc. For these reasons, it is to the benefit of everybody to have a radio. Also, if a vehicle or occupants are having problems, they can inform the leader and the group.

  15. Keep CB or Ham radio transmissions brief and to the point.

  16. Should you decide to leave the group mid-trail make certain that the trail leader is made aware of your departure. Also, at lunch time if you plan on taking a hike check with the leader to find out the group’s planned departure time and be back on time.

  17. Stay on the trails. Nothing annoys public resource managers or private landowners more than thoughtless abuse of their lands.

  18. Every effort will be made to get disabled vehicles out to an accessible location for tow trucks. Leaders will ask for volunteers to help, and if possible, continue the trip for the rest of the participants.

  19. Make every effort to have your vehicle well maintained and trail ready, especially good tires. It’s embarrassing to have a flat on a bald tire.

  20. It works best that there be no discussion of politics or religion on the trail-ever.

  21. Introduce yourself, be considerate of your fellow trail mates, treat others as you would want to be treated and have fun!

 

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PAST AND PRESENT JEEPERS TRAIL LEADERS

Below is a listing of trail leaders who have volunteered their time, vehicles and fuel for the enjoyment of the St. George Jeepers. If we’ve missed someone, our apologies. 

 

Allred, Craig and Bonnie

Andrews, Andy & Debbie

Baker, Mike and Laura

Beller, Jim

Bevan, Chris

Boyles, Bob and Shelly

Bryce, Ron and Joan

Burns, Chad

Davidson, Bruce

Draney, Rick

Dude, Dave

Foster, Tom

Friend, Steve and Renie

Furr, Paul

Garn, Jeff

Gastineau, Dan

Goodfellow, Scott

Hayes, Joan and Phil

Hess, Mike

Higgins, Glenn and Tobie

Hilburn, Hal

Jack, Wayne

Jenkins, Chuck

Keller, Kevin and Nancy

Kinzel, Chris

Malinowski, Jay and Nancy

McLaughlin, Bob 

Meacham, Gil

Mulqueen, Tom

Peterson, Gus and Sandy

Pollock, Kim and Shelly

Sanders, Bud and Carol Steck

Shepherd, Bill and Theresia

Sheppard, Allen

Smith, Menlo

Soukup, Roger

Thompson, Milt

Walker, Mardy

Ward, David and Sharon

Ward, Jim and Carolyn

Weber, Jake

Wilding, Bob and Moira

 

NEW TRAIL LEADERS AS OF DECEMBER 2021

Bill Christensen     Scott Stilson    Bob Black     Mike Chauvet 

 

THE END-(of the Beginning)


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