So, my buddy says to me he is planning to explore an area down in the Gila River were it crosses under Attaway road (west of Florence) in his Ranger ATV, and suggest that I follow in the Jeep. With kids in toe, away we go.
All is well for a while, until I struggle up a sand hill. Seeing what appears to be easy way around to the right, I figure to take the detour. Big mistake.
First 30 feet where fine, then, according to my buddy I sank a foot in sand .... literally no more than 2 feet from semi solid ground.
All our attempts at extraction seemed to just bury the jeep even more.
We decide that my buddy return home with the kids and the come back with his 2wd 1500 Ram.
Thermostat was pegged at 107, so getting the kids home was smart.
While he returned the kids, I made the not so smart decision to keep on digging. Digging proved to be futile ... and potentially dangerous. Recognizing the early onset of dehydration/overheating, I figured best to stop before bad became worse. Probably my smartest decision of the day.
Second smartest decision was recognizing that we were not getting unstuck in this heat without the right tools.
Buddy comes back with his pickup, but wisely parks an 1/4 mile away for fear of also getting stuck.
Having come prepared with the number of an off-road recovery tow service, we call it, and our best to stay cool for the next hour.
Tow truck comes out, and they too are careful not to come out to close because of pockets of loose sand. Took a couple of attempts but they winch me out.
So a broken jack handle, a torn up floor mat, 4 hours, and $200.00 later, I powered my way through another 100 yards of sand, to get to decent track to get out of the river bed.
Lesson taken is to not blindly follow ATV's, and look into a pair of maxxtrax style extraction pads.