Spring Epic 2022
The Red Line Land Cruisers Spring Epic Overland Trip 2022
Photos & Story: Rodney Wills – For a few years now, Justin Robbins (owner of Red Line Land Cruisers) and his family along with his buddies Jay “BOING” Allen and XJ-Bryan have annually gone on a spring time 10-day offroad camping trip. Typically this happens each year during Colorado Springs School Districts “Spring Break” as the trip is a full family affair for the Robbins.
The vehicles: Justin’s ’96 FZJ80 aka #RLLC80 / Jay’s Solo Equipped 3rd Gen. 4Runner / Bryan’s “Built-Not-Bought” Jeep XJ
Yes, this is an eclectic vehicle group of friends and for this years edition of the “Spring Epic!” I tagged along, riding shotgun with Bryan in the XJ and snapped some images along the way. At least I will be shooting from the XJ at Toyota’s so as long as the XJ stays together and gets us home! You know there has to be some good Toyota VS Jeep rivalry among friends! I know my back-home friends will be laughing when they read this as its been my Jeep buddies helping me out of situations! (ScottyG, XJShizzle, Pedals-Jason 😁)
But before we just jump into the rigs and fly off into the spring break sunset, there is actual trip planning with these guys! After a few weeks of group-text messaging about locations and routes, there where three official after-work meet-ups to discuss the trip plans together as a group. Lots of Google Maps, Google Earth and GIAA GPS being used for the planning and mapping.
And one BIG FAT MONITOR! This is simply the best way ever to view maps!!!
Rumor has it that Bryan will have Hi-Def 125″ wall projection for next years planning.
If that happens…
We will have to get Justin a Telescoping Presentation Finger Pointer!
Day 1: Spring Epic 2022
[Friday – March 18, 2022] My “day of trip” started with coming into the shop here at Red Line Land Cruisers, working ‘till noon, heading home at lunchtime, grab all my gear and make my way over to Bryan’s house across town. I would unload all of my camp and camera gear into Bryan’s 1999 XJ Jeep Cherokee as I will be riding shotgun with him for this 1000+ mile 9/10-day long trip! Justin with his family in the #RLLC80 would meet us soon afterwards and we would depart to Jay’s house in Woodland Park, CO.
All my camera and camping gear plus Bryan’s gear is going into the XJ! We have a lot of stuff for what could-should fit into two backpacks! When you think about it, backpacking is just as “overlanding” as vehicle overlanding… So why do we need all this “extra” stuff, abliet the tools to support the rig with?
The “extra” in these photos is not tools! Packing is a mental wrestle with physical results… But we will save that for another time… But, for my gear on this trip I am making use of two FrontRunner Wolf Packs, Pelican Roller Case for the camera gear and a plastic tote for my tent, sleeping bag and such. My clothing and personals are in the London Bridge Tactical 3-Day Assault Pack.
Justin’s #RLLC80 is packed and ready to haul! Note the two FrontRunner Outfitters 5-gallon Jerry Cans and the ROTOPAX! Yes, we have some remote plans for this Spring Epic 2022 trip!
It’s only two hours into riding with Bryan and it’s already rad because he has so much knowledge of the land! He has a bit of “gold rush” in his bones and knows all the mining claims! In fact, the view out the window here is of the Mining Claim belonging to “Hoffman & Dodge” of the TV Series “Gold Rush.” This claim is just outside of Fairplay, Colorado aka SOUTH PARK Valley, home of the Running of the Burros! But the real question is… Is South Park Based on a Real City?
Slabbing our way towards Moab, Utah.
The #RLLC80 Keepin’ on – keepin’ ON!
For the Spring Epic 2022, the RLLC80 is freshly rolling on new rubber as Justin went with some 37 x 12.50 Yokohama Geolandar‘s mounted up by our buddies at the E Woodman Discount Tire.
In my best Sponge Bob Square Pants voice “Six-plus hours and 412-miles later…”
We pulled into Green River, Utah at 1:15am, tossed our sleeping bags on the ground and slept under the stars! Technically, Moab is not our destination as we would be passing the “epicness” of Moab altogether… Moab, for these guys is “old hat” and they want to see other stuff! Don’t get me wrong… They love LOVE LOVE MOAB! They’ve broken their fair share of stuff in Moab over the years!
“On the fly” photos from the trip via our Instagram Stories: