The Daniel Boone National Forest has plenty of Forest Service roads that certainly aren’t catered towards the ‘minivan’ crowd.[Not a valid template]
In early November, and again in late December 2006, a group of Jeep KJs (Liberty) from the Liberty Owners Special Team (L.O.S.T.) Jeep club hit the trail for a one day exploratory in this National Forest.
L.O.S.T. is an online group of over 3,600 Jeep Liberty owners from around the world. The Midwest regional club represents nearly one hundred KJ owners from Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, and Wisconsin. The online forum allows KJ owners to share information and ideas on everything from stereo equipment evaluations to the pros and cons of different spacer and full suspension lifts, lockers, and tires. The members can also use the forum to organize wheeling events, such as this trip to Livingston, Kentucky.
The L.O.S.T. crew used the forum to vote on a trip date, list who would be in attendance, determine where the caravan would meet prior to the KJ run, and decide on what, and how much, to bring for a potluck lunch. We had started out with six KJs, but medical issues took one of the members out before we even hit the trail.
We awoke at 5am that morning after having packed the KJ the night before. The plan was to head out by 5:30am to make our caravan rendezvous. With the trailhead approximately two hundred miles away, we strived to maximize the short winter day. After joining with the caravan of folks from Dayton, Indianapolis, and Cincinnati, we got back on the road and headed down the interstate to our meeting spot – the 49er. The 49err Truck Stop is located on the west side of Interstate 75 at exit; you guessed it – 49, in Southern Kentucky. We aired down our tires, filled up our gas tanks, and purchased plenty of coffee and sodas for the trail. We ended up getting a late start due to some of the locals (one pulling a highly modified CJ in a trailer, the other driving a Bronco with a CJ body) having stopped to chat about the Liberty and the trial. By 9:30 though, we were on our way up the hill.
Route 909, the road at exit 49, ends at the 49er, but at one time it continued on. We took this un-maintained road up the side of the hill until the broken asphalt ended and the sandstone began. On our GPS maps, this road is called the Rockcastle River Forestry Road, and we continued on for less than a mile until we reached the Fallis City Road. Although we were “off-roading”, in reality the entire trail is a valid, established roadway that can be traveled by licensed, street legal vehicles. This is important, as there are no “off-road” trails in the National Forest, and only licensed, street legal vehicles are allowed on these roads.