Trailridge Runners 4WD Club
Gillespie Gulch Project

by Adam Mehlberg

On May 20th 2001 the Trailridge Runners 4WD Club had a work project on our Adopt-A-Road, Gillespie Gulch. This year we went in via Gold Lake. The gate for 102J had not been locked yet, so we could enter this way and get to the site of our first bit of work fairly quickly. The Boulder Ranger District of the USFS had asked us to place two Wetlands Restoration signs near wetlands that had fencing placed around them earlier. The intent of the signs is to explain why these areas are important and the need to protect them from vehicle traffic. After some organization, our group stayed at the first site while the rest of the club and the Forest Service representatives went to the other site. Our most difficult job was sinking the holes for the sign posts. You would think that a wetland would be easy to dig in, but we seemed to find large rocks in each hole. After trying about a dozen test holes we found an area that allowed us to get the required two holes a descent distance into the ground. With the number of "construction" type people in our group we had our sign perfectly squared and installed level to the earth in short order.

We headed up to the other site to help put the finishing touches on the work they were doing, and then had lunch. We got both signs installed and repaired some of the fencing that had been damaged. After splitting with the Forest Service and a few of our stock vehicle driving members, we headed on toward Nugget Hill and "The Rock". On our way along the ridge, before we reached the Gillespie turn off, we found a jeeper that was in a predicament. There was a tree across the road, and he had tried to go around the end and had slid off the road with his back end down hill. He had his winch hooked up, but the angle of the embankment and the stump under his frame kept him in place.

Darrel Turner was in front, so he got to do the winching. After a few attempts to find the right tree to snatch to, and with the arrival of other vehicles from the other direction, we finally got the right line and the extra pull to get the red Wrangler back onto the road.

We continued on and made our way to "The Rock". Three went down. Matt Meester, Richard Boddy, and Ray Comeau. With the roughness of this obstacle now days, it has become a test of vehicle articulation. With Ryan Boddy spotting everyone down, all three descents were flawless. The return climb back up didn't give our three any trouble either.

Even though it was getting late, we headed on to the summit of Nugget Hill. We stopped at the top and viewed the towns beyond the foothills. Our stay was short due to the late hour, so we headed down to Gillespie and dropped into Jamestown.

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