BMRA April 26-28, 2002

Southern Chapter

April 26-28, 2002

Barnwell Mountain -- Gilmer, TX

Updated July 31, 2002

BMRA (Barnwell Mountain Recreational Area)

TMTC (Texas Motorized Trails Coalition)


The property is located 5 mi. northeast of Gilmer, TX on Highway 155.



Those attending included. . .
  1. John Brown
  2. Rodger Short
  3. Warren Johnson

The Details . . .


Rodger and I met up in Dallas, ate lunch, and headed eastbound in the rain and traffic through Dallas. It took us maybe 2.5 hours, but we stopped for gas and food, so it would most likely be just a little longer than 2hrs w/o stopping. Not too bad of a drive.

Sign in BMRA Trail Patrol

We got there at 4pm, but they did not open until 5pm, so we hung out for a while until the manager showed up. I paid $20 for 2 days of wheeling and 2 nights of camping. Not bad. Rodger joined TMTC, so I think he paid $35 for membership and got the weekend free. The manager and his wife were very nice and the facilities were 10 times better than Shiloh. They had decent showers, pretty cheap snacks and food, and a working air compressor. The trails were well maintained and not all rutted up. All of the trails were marked with a trail title, and a rating, 1-5 diamond. This place is huge, and we could have used a better map than the one they gave us, but I was still impressed with how nice the trails were kept. There were also many great views from atop the mountain. BMRA does not have the ATVs/motorcycles everywhere like Shiloh. It is also much quieter. I aired down to about 18psi or so. We headed down "Alpha" and soon realized that even in 4Lo and first gear, we still had to stand on the brakes as to not slide down. We were able to look up "Airstrip". It looked very steep. We continued on and I think we found "Jeepy Hollow". It had a few interesting hill climbs with ledges and was a good start. We ran a few other 2D trails an ended up getting lost on "Jungle Trail". It did have a nice 20ft or so wooden bridge crossing a deep creek.

John B crossing the bridge 1 Rodger crossing the bridge

We finally got out and headed down to "Old Camp" where we set up camp next to some Tx4x4 guys and 2 other guys in a Hummer. We got a pretty good campsite and got our tents set up. My little tent was dwarfed by Rodger's house next to me. Some of the Longhorn Offroad guys showed up. There rigs included a bright orange, doorless, caged ZJ, a bedless a 2500 Ram, a D90, and 1500 Ram and a few TJs.

Longhorn Offroad guys

Rodger and I went into town to lead Warren the way to BMRA. They set up camp near us and we got the fire going and drank some beer.
We woke up early Saturday morning and got every thing set up for the day. We jumped started the Hummer's dead battery and pulled the sway bars off one of the TJs and were finally off. Warren slept late, so we left without him. Rodger and I met up with some Texas A&M Offroad guys and ran "Twister".

John B on twister John B on twister Blazer on twister Rodger on twister

It was a very nice trail with some offcamber stuff. We then ran "Fun Country". I attempted one of the climbs yet to no avail w/o lockers.

Click here for video of John on Fun Country.

Rodger on Fun Country Rodger on Fun Country Rodger on Fun Country

Rodger attempted it after me and caught some crazy air attempting to climb it.

Click here for video of Rodger on Fun Country

It turned out that most of the Jeeps walked up it because they were narrower.

a Jeep on Fun Country

Our Broncos are slightly wider and Rodger was unable to stay in the ruts of the trail and was forced to put his passenger side up a large rock. We backed out. We then went back to Old Camp and ate some lunch and picked up Warren. We headed back out and went down "Sunday Cruise" only to meet up with LHOR. We then followed them toward "Shake, Rattle, & Roll". This is a 4D trail that is very intimidating looking up from the bottom.

Possible Damage

All of the LHOR guys made it, so of course 2BigBroncos could not be shown up.

I was the first to try it and made it to the tough part and got hung up. I managed to maneuver around on this very steep hill and somehow made it up. It was an adrenaline rush being how steep this hill was and how far down one would roll. Warren and Rodger followed me up with little problem b/c of there lockers. Rodger came up with some weird clanking sound emitting from somewhere underneath the Bronco. Warren went into town and Rodger and I did "X-Way" and "Sierra Skyview". Both were only 2D trails, but were fun. We got back to camp and Rodger determined that the problem was that the exhaust was hitting the rear driveshaft, due to a broken drivers side motor mount. It would get loose once the engine was under a load, yet fine while under normal driving conditions. The LHOR guys left Saturday night leaving us and some Land Rover guys down at Old Camp. It's dark out now, so of course we must go out tackle some more trails. With Rodger riding shotgun with me, Warren and I found "L&B Turnpike". It was a 3D trail and had some steep climbs. We ended up exiting the trail through "Saturday Night Live". It had a nasty couple of ledges near the top. Somehow I made it and Warren followed. We went up and took a shower at the front site and the headed back and took the "Old Camp Trail" down to our campsite instead of the main road. It was a short 2D downhill and that came out right next to our tents. We were all very tired and went to sleep relatively early.
Rodger and I woke up early Sunday morning and headed to the front site and I got some very good hot pancakes. We went back to camp, and packed up everything and headed for a few more trails before we left. We did "Jerry Paul's Expressway", "Clyde's Ravine", and "Saturday Night Live" and got a few pics on the rockgarden.

Warren Warren What's he doing? John B Group Photo


1-broken motor mount (Rodger)
1-way out off aligned steering after rut on "Clyde's Ravine" (John)
1-marred outer rim of wheel (John)
-plenty of pinstriping

-John Brown