Saturday was an awesome day.
With #SEMA2015 just a week behind us we were itching to get away from cleaning the Nitro diesel WK Grand Cherokee and instead put it through it’s paces in it’s natural environment. We had an event planned with our friends (and Nitro Gear and Axle dealer) NorthRidge 4×4 in Silverdale Washington that called for a meet and greet in the morning (we brought the donuts) and wheeling in the afternoon at a nearby ORV area. The weather was absolutely terrible with several inches of rain forecast over just a couple days and Saturday was exactly as predicted. The meet and greet ended up being more or less an indoor affair as the large crowd stayed warm and dry well snatching up specials, eating Krispy Kremes and drinking coffee.
We brought lots of swag along to give away and had the opportunity to meet many folks and explain some of the differences between Nitro and our competition when it comes to both better quality ring and pinion sets and especially for this JK heavy group the fact that we are the only ones building chromoly rear axle shafts for JK’s that are ready to run out of the box complete with retainer plates and ABS rings installed along with the bearings and seals unlike the other guys who make you either buy more parts or tear down your original shafts (making them useless as spares). For a lot of these guys that difference means they could install Nitro Shafts at home and save paying somebody else to do it which made them a popular item on this wet morning.
We rolled out of NorthRidge about 11:30 making a quick stop at a Starbucks (we were in Washington after all) for the 30 minute drive to the trailhead. This particular ORV area is mostly built for bikes and quads, but does have a loop trail and several man made hill climbs with decent size rocks and lots of mud thrown in the mix. We headed straight for the hard stuff, where only a few rigs made it up ‘YellowJacket’ hill on this incredibly slick day. The rocks tended to move with every rig running up the trail and it didn’t take long before even rigs on 37’s we’re being denied on this day. As for us let’s just say we gave it a good attempt and in the process managed to bend a hydro assist steering ram and put a few more scratches on the under carriage of the diesel Nitro WK before backing out knowing we didn’t bring a trailer and it would be a long drive (walk?) home if we destroyed a driveshaft or other sensitive components under the Jeep.
We want to thank the guys again at NorthRidge 4×4 for hosting the event and especially appreciate all the great offroaders who came out to say hello and do some trail riding at the same time!