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ZookiMelt 2014 The off-road gathering featuring mild-to-wild trail runs, rally, rock-crawl, RTI, raffle, trophies, food, & friends.

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Old 07-17-2013, 12:01 PM   #1
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Thoughts on ZM 2013...

So, for those of you who attended, what are your thoughts on the event over all?

Thoughts on the park?

Things that need improving (yea I know, showers...)?

things you would like to see next year?

I know you all spend your hard earned money and vacation time to attend this event, so we really want to continue to make it the best event out there no matter what the brand you happen to wheel!!
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:34 PM   #2
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Park was great......still miss the rocks BUT the atmosphere @ the Turtle made up for it People were awsome as usual. The hill to get in sucked or I need a bigger truck or smaller trailer
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:15 PM   #3
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Park was great......still miss the rocks BUT the atmosphere @ the Turtle made up for it People were awsome as usual. The hill to get in sucked or I need a bigger truck or smaller trailer
Yeah I agree I am coming in the other way next time. That hill was a transmission killer.
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:38 PM   #4
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Long winded ahead, but you asked

All I have to compare it to is last year, which I won't say sucked, but had ALOT of things increasing the suck factor.

As for terrain, I actually prefer the Badlands. It's bigger, & there's just more area to cover, & more diverse terrain across the park (AKA, something for everyone). The Turtle is a VERY nice park, but is built primarily around single obstacle (hill) spectator centered wheeling. Our personal little wheeling group is more the type to cover a few miles of trail at a time than to beat on (or watch others beat on) an obstacle to the point of carnage. (Not that I'm not willing to "show it out" )

Better camping amenities would be a NICE addition to the park, but that costs money, & I'm not sure how feasible it will be to add. As many mentioned, the park is still young, & still has alot of paying for itself to do. A basic shower house & Some RV sites would be a HUGE upgrade.

All of that said, Here's my thoughts on it all.

Terrain; I'll wheel anything. If the melt was at sand dunes next year, I'll go romp in the dunes. Not because I really want to play in the sand, but because that's where I'm gonna see the friends I've made at melts past. I'll crawl, bounce, jump, or heaven forbid, even mud bog . DTOR may be smaller than Badlands, but still has something to challenge any level of wheeler. & I don't care what you're running, or where you're from, a couple hills into this place & your hillbillly side WILL come out with a profounding YEEHAW. Though he may have never actually said it, even the look on Ack's face was saying "sumbich'lldigg"

Park size: We saw most of the park in the 2 days we got to wheel, but definitely never gathered up the cajones to try all of what the turtle had to offer. Upside to the smaller size, was I saw ALOT more of each person this year. I don't think I missed running into anyone on the trail at some point. Sure, it means some traffic jams, but we're all here to SEE everybody, &/or Zuks. It just gives us a chance to actually see them. It was also nice knowing that I could get to an event quickly, no matter where my ADD had landed me in the park. I believe this was the case for many others as well, because the event attendance was HUGE compared to last years.

Facilities: This is the only thing I can't spin a positive on. The park could use a good campground, hands down. I can only hope that the park's success continues so as to support the upgrade later. It's not an end of the world problem, & can be worked around, but would make things nicer, & more comfortable for a long weekend.

All in all, I'm not against the melt hanging there for next year. I would love to see the amenities better a bit. It would help not only the Melt's attendance, but the parks year round as well. But only Joe can say whether this could be made to pay right now. It's easy for someone on the outside to say things, tougher when you're managing the money.

As for Joe, he's a great, down to earth, wheeler. I saw him stop & talk with nearly everyone through the weekend, from the high end buggies down to the built-on-the-cheap Zuks. Great to see a guy in his shoes keeping in touch with his roots.
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:01 PM   #5
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Yeah I agree I am coming in the other way next time. That hill was a transmission killer.
The other way wasn't a whole lot better
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:05 PM   #6
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I wasnt there in a Zuki, but did enjoy the event. I do think the Turtle is a good park for some lesser built Zukis.

I just hope it stays close to the areas it has been in. There isnt much other option in this region thats private owned, where they will be willing to let you have events etc with just asking. I will be at the next one with a Zuk no matter where it ends up being!
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Old 07-17-2013, 03:05 PM   #7
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The park and the atmosphere were great. Plenty of room for a couple days of wheeling for any level. I enjoy primitive camping so electric and showers ain't a big deal for me, it's all part of the experience..

My biggest concern was event schedules. Seems everything was on a 2+ hour delay. Like a group pic at 10 that actually happened at 12, etc... We felt like we were in the dark most of the time, unable to follow the schedule and basically lost and possibly missing out..?? Talked to others that mentioned the same concerns...

All in all tho, we had a blast!!! If that's the only thing I've got to bitch about, then we're doing pretty good!!
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Old 07-17-2013, 03:55 PM   #8
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Agreed with all said above and could use some better trail markers I was lost most of the time. So was other s ask Tony
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Old 07-17-2013, 06:58 PM   #9
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Agreed with all said above and could use some better trail markers I was lost most of the time. So was other s ask Tony
What he said. With that said I m by no means taking away from the park it was great. I showed up w/concerns about it being too small. However, after talking to two different people things were put into perspective for me......It's definitely not just about the terrain this is also & maybe more importantly about people w/a common interest getting together & having fun. I think I even heard it referred to as a social gathering. The smaller park actually helped w/this. I got to talk to just about everyone instead of just passing & waving. This is about the only wheeling trip my son & I take every year & will continue to do so. Sorry so long winded just
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Old 07-18-2013, 03:56 AM   #10
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The Hill : Yes it is a tranny killer! 2500 crew cab pulling 2 samis and 10 skids and a bed full of stuff, plus 2 40 gallons of water for the Phillbilly Shower!

Small Park - yes keeps us all close!

time line: yes seemed to be a delay through the weekend. There was not much communcation on that unless you had the ipod cast going..other did not have it felt left out. Maybe get a bull horn to annouce a change! or a white board to drive by and read!

Improvements:Some thing I would love to see ZookiMelt rent a tent for the weekend so we all know where to go and get out of the sun for the raffle. Maybe have a pot luck dinner on Friday night where everyone brings something since everyone pulls out Saturday after the raffle.

Extreme Barbie jeep race: I think changing the hill to the front grass area would get more people involved and kids too. They seemed to love it once we did that. And yes get prizes for the next one.

Pod cast: Ack - Thank you for all your work everyday putting on the pod cast. I enjoyed it. Continue!

Getting lost: well did you get a map? they were free at the front office. The major hills were marked but yes not every trail was marked..

Night ride: yes! We got one of 3 night ride event that the park allows!!!! That is saying something! I loved it and everyone seemed to be out on time!

Camp area: yes it was primitive camping! I came prepaired know that! I am sure joe will surely down the road upgrade to something...

Picture time: went very fast and organized a quick line up...

Dust: I did see joe out spraying water on the main road to hold the dust off.. But yes my truck was covered after 4 days...Atleast the kids did not draw on it and scratch the paint!

T-shirts: Love the design this year they are awesome!

Stickers: Dan did a great group of stickers this year, also love the damaged stickers for Metal Head Graphics people really seemed to love those... both my rigs got them now...

Vendors: great showing from the vendors donations! wow! Only thing i think would have been better is that the winners of the special events held get some of the bigger items that the vendors donated!




Joe mention to me that he could not believe how close our group of zuki people were. He said people going to different camp sites and chatting with everyone,like a close family. He said he nnever see that before and he had been to alot of big events and they just way and move on. We all stop and chat!


I vote DTOR next year!
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Old 07-18-2013, 04:36 PM   #11
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Dirty Turtle works for me, was my first time there and my first melt. Had a great time, did some good riding, broke some stuff, got my rig back together thanks to the brotherhood of zukis. And it's about as close to me as haspin acres. I like that its actually DIRT and not sand, and tho it may be smaller than most parks it has some real nice terrain. As others have mentioned some shower houses/real bathrooms would be nice. But as long as philbilly brings his hillbilly shower Ill be fine all in all I give it 10's across the board.
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:26 PM   #12
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I thought it was great, Had an awesome weekend!
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:48 PM   #13
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I'll take full credit for the time delays, we were kind of running behind all weekend. Plus our first time at the park, we were just learning the lay of the land. Now that we have that down, next years event SHOULD run a little smoother....

I know the park is quite a bit smaller than Attica, but I really liked that. I feel like there are still plenty of trails to run, but like others have said, I think it REALLY helped with the participation in the events.
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:56 PM   #14
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Maybe there was and I missed it, but maybe a map with event locations and times given out at the gate??
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Old 07-18-2013, 09:38 PM   #15
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Maybe there was and I missed it, but maybe a map with event locations and times given out at the gate??

Yea, that was part of the "lay of the land" thing...picking good spots to have events that would be fun for the people competing but also open enough for people to watch.

We will have areas listed for next years event so people will be able to find it easier.
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