Friday, October 27, 2023

RonnieAdventure #0591 - Timpanogos Cave National Monument, Utah

Timpanogos Cave was discovered in October 1887, when a hunter was tracking a cougar up the mountain. The hunter did not want to enter the cave without a light, so the next day he returned with a lantern and was amazed at the cave's beauty. He showed several people the cave and after some mining in the cave, the cave's location was lost. 

On August 14, 1921, the cave was rediscovered and this time its location was reported the the U.S. Forest Service. A request was made to Washington for some type of Federal protection, and on October 14, 1922, President Warren Harding designated the cave as a national monument. The cave is highly decorated with Soda Straws, Columns, Popcorn, Bacon, Stalactites, Stalagmites, Drapery, Flow Stone, Helictites, and other speleothems. This is a wet cave with a temperature of 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7 degrees Celsius), so the formations are still growing.

I first visited the cave about 48 years ago and I did not remember that the trail to the cave entrance was 1.5 miles long and very steep. Elevation change from the visitor center to the entrance was 1,092 feet. It was a much easier hike 48 years ago.

Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew

Picture by Andrew

Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew
Picture by Andrew

Picture by Andrew

Friday, October 20, 2023

RonnieAdventure #0590 - Land Cruiser Heritage Museum, Salt Lake City, Utah

The Land Cruiser Heritage Museum in Salt Lake City, Utah, was founded by Greg Miller and contains the most complete collection of Land Cruisers in the world. Some of the vehicles have been restored, while others are still in field condition. A large number of Land Cruisers are from overseas locations, where the vehicles are more popular than in the United States. 

Kiichiro Toyoda wanted to build a car that was fully made in Japan, just like Ford and Chevrolet did in the United States. His criteria for the car was that it had to be low price, high-performance, and economical. His first car turned out to be the Land Cruiser. 

After WW II, the Japanese auto industry was severely impacted by a recession and monthly production fell to a few hundred units per month. It appeared that Toyota would go out of business.

Then, in 1950, the Korean War started and Japan was used as a supply base. There was a need for military trucks, so Toyota was contracted to build trucks and Toyota Jeeps (known as the BJs) for the National Police Agency. Soon, the Toyota factories were working around-the-clock to meet the high demand for war vehicles. Willys Company, which had developed the US Jeep, filed a lawsuit against Toyota for trademark violations, so Toyota changed the BJ Toyota Jeep name to Land Cruiser. 

1953 BJ Toyota Jeep (produced from 1951 - 1955)

1958 Land Cruiser FJ25 (production 1951 - 1955) It has been documented that this vehicle is the first Land Cruiser sold in America.

1960 US Hard Top FJ25 (production 1955 - 1963)

1960 Japanese FJ28VA (production 1958 - 1960) Not built for export, but this vehicle was found in Mexico.

1960 South American 4-Door Wagon FJ28LVA (production 1958 - 1960) Only 1 of 3 still existing.

1960 South American FST FJ28 (production 1955 - 1960)

1960 South American Pickup FJ28L (production dates unknown)

1962 Military FQ15 Truck (production 1956 - 1965)

1962 US FJ40 (production 1960 - 1986)

1963 TLC Custom Bandeirante (1963 concept vehicle) Total of 4 units produced 

1964 US Short Bed FJ45 (production 1960 - 1986)

1964 Japanese Fire Truck FJ45 

1965 Canadian FJ45LV (production 1960 - 1967)

1966 US Short Bed FJ45 (production 1960 - 1986)

1966 US FJ45LV (production 1960 - 1967)

1967 US FJ40 (production 1960 - 1986)

1970 US TLC/Icon FJ44 (custom order This is #113)

1971 US FJ40 (production 1960 - 1986)

1973 Tojo FJ40 (production 1960 - 1984) Destroyed in November 8, 2018 Paradise, California, fire.

1978 Canadian Long Bed FJ45 (production 1960 - 1986)

1978 Tag-A-Long FJ55 (production 1967 - 1980) Used by Tag-A-Long Tours in Moab, Utah

1979 Japanese Fire Truck FJ56 (Special Order)

1980 European Hose Tender FJ45 (special order)

1981 Australian HJ47 (production 1981-1984)

1981 Australian St. John Ambulance HJ47 (production 1981 - 1984)

1982 South American FJ60 (production 1980 - 1989) Found in Colombia.

1982 European Delta Mini Cruiser (production 1975 - 1984) Manufactured for Toyota by Delta Motors Corporation.

1982 Japanese Blizzard LD10 (production 1980 - 1984) This is a rare vehicle with only a few still existing. 

1963 Brazilian Bandeirante TB25L (production 1955 - 1965) Built with Mercedes-Benz diesel engine.

1983 Australian Troopy FJ45 (production 1960 - 1986)

1983 Mustard BJ42 LX (production 1974 - 1984)

1983 Japanese BJ46 (production 1974 - 1984)

1983 Australian Norforce Troopy HJ47 (production 1981 - 1984) This is 1 of 215 units built.

1984 South American BJ42 (production 1974-1984)

1985 BJ73V-LX Australian Race Truck (production 1984 - 1990)

1985 BJ73V-LX Australian Race Truck (production 1984 - 1990)

1988 Japanese BJ70 (production (1984 - 1990)

1988 Japanese BJ70 (production (1984 - 1990)

1988 Japanese Fire Truck FJ62 (special order)

1994 Brazilian Bandeirante Military Xingu  OJ50L (production 1973 - 1994)

1996 Japanese Defense Force Mega Cruiser (continuous production since 1993)

1996 Japanese Civilian Mega Cruiser (production 1996 - 2002) Only 149 built. This is #17.

2011 Australian VDJ200 (continuous production since 2008)  This vehicle has traveled over 200,000 kilometers.

2012 Japanese Prado ISO  (continuous production since 2010.) This vehicle was driven over 681,000 kilometers.

On April 18, 2012,  Greg Miller's Expeditions 7 team in five Toyota vehicles left on a 58,000 mile journey that spanned three years and crossed all seven continents. The five vehicles used the trip are on display in the museum. Not all of the vehicles drove on all of the continents. Only one of the 78 Series vehicles drove on all seven continents. For more information on the journey, see Expeditions 7 on the web.