Changing Stars I

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Hello Almost family!!

So much to say about this trip... happiness day... and also the most relevant experience in terms of driving (so far)

It was my first 10+ drive and just by looking at the cars parked I new it was going to be serious thing, so mentally prepared myself to try to keep up with the team but never expected this to be such a learning lesson. Thanks @Barish, unforgettable trip (it was also my first experience in the famous Abu Dhabi).

Warming Up...
I need to do something about it at the start in the next drive.... I found it hard to warm up. Just starting and 1 stuck + 1 pop out + 1 stuck. wtfsmilie .. can't thank enough @Rooies for the constant help and coaching. At some point, I thought @rapailo could decide to lower the level to adapt to the pacer (me) and spoil the rest of the team but he did not!! He gave me a couple of advises instead and kept pushing me... thanks!!!

The wall... floor it like you stole it!!
At some point, there was a "mini" bowl for all the convoy; but to me, it looked like the Everest. First time doing something that I thought only Jeeps&FJs could do... I called the radio for help and @Rooies came to change it all: "go back to get some space and momentum then floor it like you stole it!!... there is one off-road life before and after that.

Side cresting...
It's me being newbie here but this is the first drive I had to do constant side cresting... I admit was frightening and challenging but at the end all the repetitions helped a lot to get familiar with the feeling and let it go (yet is challenging). Again, thanks @rapailo

Yes, I had 2 pop outs. But is curious that in my case is the 5th pop-out history-wise and is always the front-passenger tire... I'm doing something wrong when turning left... statistically demonstrated. I least now I'm able to spot it... almost to predict it milliseconds before it does

Team support.
I had to add on @Kevin 's report... I was not supporting bringing tools on the recoveries, I received support all day long and the team came from everywhere :ninja: :ninja: @CARLOSS @dorudoru @piotr @Tomvanhouten and I had to pull my recovery tools countless occasions.

Second try
OK... the lesson is call the radio ASAP, and I hope I did so even though the car behind me @piotr seemed to know all about my driving before it happened, it gave me confidence having an experienced car following me thanks! Need to add another advise from @rapailo : Pajero will do everything you want, except fighting gravity... you don't even dare to do that in Pajero... so better to be safe and turn around if momentum was not ready

Listen to the Marshal,
I don't know yet the secret but @Barish has the ability to be omnipresent. Always watching my back and giving good directions on any second try... self recovery... etc.. I know understand the 4Low and 2nd gear THANKS :yaeh_am_not_durnk:

Yeap... I need LED bar and Pillar lights. @orlantsev took care of me when it got dark and showed me the way ahead THANKS... Already booked with @Rashidjass to get that

Don't have words to say how much I enjoyed and learned. I need also to add that my passenger was very much impressed with the team support, organization, and safety around the convoy all the time... Kudo's to all Almost family and our founder @alshamsi_m

Looking forward for more walls!!

J Carlos
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Good morning my fellow Sand Hog's,

It was great being a part of the first Changing stars series, with many more to come. It seems that there may be some changes in Stars in our future.

The drive took place in a part of the desert i was not familiar with and it caught me out very early in the drive, where i once again made the mistake of not keeping the proper distances and the soft sand got hold of me. The afternoon drive lead by @rapailo was filled with lost of technical elements high dune crossings and a rather nice pace, thank you and i look forward to your next lead convoy (Second lead?)

Thank you to @Barish for creating this drive for us your efforts are always very much appreciated, we unfortunately lost @alshamsi_m early on in the drive due to to a power steering issue and i know we will see him on the next drive.

Our support team was rather busy and @Rooies was running around doing more rescues then he intended, i lost count on the amount of rescues you made. Thank you to the rest of the support team @Tomvanhouten @mpodroid @orlantsev .

It seems that the dessert took its toll on allot of my fellow drivers as we experienced a very high amount of pop-outs, and every one was ready to help and literary standing Que with shovels to help, one pop-out saw 5guys with shovels.

A big thanks to the usual suspects for making the drive @brett, @Carlos, @dorudoru (Great job on Second lead) @Kevin, @Laarni, @Stephan, @piotr and the rest of the team.

This drive was a big lesson in tire pressure, and a good following distance.

See you all in the sand again soon.

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Changing Stars or changing tyres.... we had so many pop outs yaeh am not durnk

We met at the deflating point & went through the normal drills, slowly the convoy got bigger while we chatted about previous drives & other funny stuff.

@Barish did the briefing & told us that @rapailo would be leading the drive.

We headed out & I placed myself about 5th in the convoy to assist with rescue etc. My first customer was @AndreAJ that got crested, quick sticks & we were on our way again. Next was the Pajero, a bit more tricky rescue, but with the guidance from @alshamsi_m it was not long before we were moving again. There was a caterpillar that reeked havoc & made the track not user friendly. Not long & we had pop out #1, everybody helped & it was not long before were moving again.

@alshamsi_m called on the radio, his cars power steering stopped working & he had to leave us & headed out.

We went trough a nice bowl & a FJ got stuck, @rapailo helped with the rescue, the FJ tried again, but did not make it out, tried again, still no luck. After try #3 we checked the tyre pressure... 17psi all around. We dropped the pressure to 10psi & it worked, the FJ got out. We continued on with the track. At one stage the Pajero stopped & said he can't do the big dune. I told him to make a big loop, floor it, drive it like you stole it & guess what, he made it. Not long after that we had the next pop out wtfsmilie . Again everybody helped & we were on our way again.

We reached Nagra dune, there were some other cars playing as well. Myself, @mpodroid & @orlantsev tried to play, but the dune was messed up, the caterpillar made deep trenches & the dune had so many tracks that we struggled to get enough speed to climb. Coming done you had to be careful of the trenches as it will definitely break your car if you hit it to fast. @Barish called the convoy & we started heading back. It was getting dark as well. Two cars joined our convoy & followed us. We had another pop out, lost track by then with how many we had :O_O: . It was dark & we were still driving, then another pop out. I headed back to help @Tomvanhouten & @mpodroid to fix it. I had to drive backwards down the dune as there was no place to turn around. The convoy connected again & slowly but surely we made it out. We reached the inflating area & inflated.

The track was messed up that made it difficult to keep nice flow, but @rapailo did his best to keep us moving.

Thank you @Barish for organizing the drive, @rapailo for leading & @orlantsev for keeping an eye on us. Thanks also to the other inters that helped with the rescues & pop outs.

Till we meet in the sand again, stay safe.
Nobody Gets Left Behind
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