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Discussion Starter #21 (Edited)
ADVENTURE 003 - CHIMNEY CREEK, CA

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This past weekend I decided to take a quick overnighter to try and find some trees. All of my adventures in the AdvPass up to now have been desert camping and I've been feeling the need for some hammock time and I needed an excuse to try out my new Fiskars Hatchet!

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*full disclosure, my friend Dan did most of the chopping!

There was only one place I could find in all of Southern California that wasn't forecast for rain Saturday night that also had trees... enter Chimney Creek Campground near Lake Isabella.

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This is a quick 2.5 hour drive from Burbank and it was an absolute gem. Quiet, secluded, and just what I needed for a quick recharge. I had two friends and a dog along and we were able to fit all of our needs in the Passport and my roof box comfortably.

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To get to Chimney Creek, you'll need to traverse about an hour of dirt mountain roads known as the Chimney Peak Byway. It's a very well maintained road and could easily be run in a 2wd sedan. The AdvPass soaked it up. I'll definitely be back.

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Looks like a great area! I love the Sierra's, you gotta head up to Lee Vining with some time. And if you have not been to Bodie (Ghost Town) it's on a dirt road, way back in there and the road to it winds it way all the way to Nevada...
 

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Discussion Starter #24
I can finally post the video form our Anza Borrego/Salton Sea trip now that it's public. My wife was asked by Panasonic to shoot the first footage for a new camera they will be releasing later in the year, the S1H. The footage we shot at the Salton Sea makes up a good portion of the end result.


The Passport handled all of our gear, camera, lighting, and grip with ease and was a joy to work out of. We even used the stereo for music playback for our dancer to perform to.

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Very cool, I had a photography side business for about 10 years, but let it go in the last few years, selling all my studio equipment now, but still have a large collection of Canon L glass and a 5D Mark IV.

David (or anyone else), re you into photography as well?
 

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Discussion Starter #26
ADVENTURE 004 - PILOT ROCK TRUCK TRAIL, CA

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Last weekend, I was lucky enough to join up with @Jondz on a trail run on the Pilot Rock Truck Trail near Hesperia, CA. This is a very tame forest road that winds its way from Silverwood Lake to the Lake Arrowhead area. The trail itself is a very well groomed dirt road that any sedan could easily handle. It's the many optional off shoots where things get a bit more interesting.

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Our group consisted of a variety of modified Subarus and Jon's heavily modified Passport along with my lightly mod'd AdvPass. All but one of us tried the offshoot and we all managed to make it through. This was by far the most technical and challenging road I've ever driven and it was a great confidence booster to see how easily the Passport managed the trail. Having experienced spotters and willing compatriots that could help out if there was any trouble made it much easier to push the boundaries of what I was comfortable with. Just looking at the entrance of the offshoot was enough to give me serious second thoughts.

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A number of times we decided to walk the trail to plan our lines and make sure we would be able to complete each new obstacle. This was the most valuable learning experience of the trip. I've been keen to gain more real world experience with what I can and can't do in the Passport and taking on a trail like this with the relative safety net of a group let me really see that the Passport still has much more capability than I have confidence.

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@Jondz was nice enough to cut together a video of the experience, it's well worth the watch!

 

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I have a crystal black pearl Passport AWD with varying components of an Adventure Package but not designated as such. My lug nuts are not black and I have no transmission cooler to compliment the tow hitch. Service manager insisted it was no necessary and pulled a data sheet to support her argument- unless I was actually going to be towing close to 5000 pounds. Do you have the transmission cooler installed?
Also, those aren’t stock wheels/tires either. Care to share any subtle mods you’ve had done to your rig?
 

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ADVENTURE 001 - ALABAMA HILLS, CA

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My wife and I decided to get our Passport with the intent of using it to motivate our desire to get out in the wilderness more and to take it's adventuring spirit to heart. Our first adventure started with less than 1000 miles on the odometer as we headed out to Alabama Hills to get a taste of taking our new SUV off-road. Thanks to @stevenD for the suggestion and for posting the video that inspired my confidence in the Passport's abilities.

The Passport is step one towards our plan for an adventure rig that can get us into camp sites that don't have numbered signs and marked parking spaces. We've been infrequent tent campers over the years and I'm finding that the ideas behind overland camping better suit our goals. Shortly after taking delivery of our Passport, I discovered Outdoorsy.com and realized that we could test out our overland ideas by renting a variety of rigs to see what we actually liked before we jump into owning our own trailer. We started out with a 2016 AT Overland Chaser rooftop tent style trailer built by GTFOverland in Glendale, CA.

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This is a complete turnkey trailer rental that included everything needed for a weekend adventure minus the marshmallows and hotdogs. Curt, the owner and builder really put a ton of thought and years of experience into designing this trailer and it was truly a pleasure to use. Over a long weekend we setup and struck camp a few times to get a feel for it and to try out the rig in a few different scenarios.

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The three hour drive from Burbank to Lone Pine was easy and comfortable. The Passport handled its towing duties flawlessly. There was more than enough power to make it easy to forget that the trailer was even there. I would estimate the trailer to weigh about a thousand pounds as loaded including water and extra fuel. The Passport was averaging 16.5 mpg on the 5000 ft. ascent and it gave us about 23 mpg on the descent as we headed home.

The Passport proved itself to be much more capable off-road than I was. Everything I dared to throw at it was handled with ease and with a sense of stability that gave me confidence to push slightly past my comfort zone. As we progress further and once I feel I have a better understanding of the vehicle's (and more importantly, my own) capabilities, I'm confident that the Passport can take anything I'll need to throw at it.

Here's a quick video I threw together of a bit of our adventure...


... and a 360 tour of one of our camps.
I’m curious about your wheel:tire combination. Can you describe them for me? They don’t appear to be be Jsport items
 

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This is my favorite thread in the forum!! David, I can't wait to see and hear more about your adventures! Great car porn too! The photos are super awesome!

In your original post, you mentioned using a 19" tire on a 18" wheel? Typo? Also, did you loft your HP?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #30
This is my favorite thread in the forum!! David, I can't wait to see and hear more about your adventures! Great car porn too! The photos are super awesome!

In your original post, you mentioned using a 19" tire on a 18" wheel? Typo? Also, did you loft your HP?

Thanks!
Thanks for the kind words, I'll happily continue to journal our experiences and it's nice to know that the effort is appreciated.

You are correct that the 19" tire is a type-o.
 

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Thanks for the kind words, I'll happily continue to journal our experiences and it's nice to know that the effort is appreciated.

You are correct that the 19" tire is a type-o.
Great video and yes, all the video photos were amazing, well done! It is inspiring!
 

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It doesn't look like David has been around (here) for a while, hope everything is ok..

Hey David, been up the Sierras lately???
 
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