Utah RV Rental review

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I sure hoped this would be a positive review, but it won't be. I have owned and still have a 43' 5th wheel Toy Hauler. Truck was in service, so instead of cancelling a trip, we rented.

Issues we had along the way:

-Lost two hub caps (one rear, one front along I-70 and I-15; one rear heading East, one front heading West). Found the rear after walking I-70 for 2 miles in the median (sketchy!)
-Water heater after 2 hours would fail, resulting in flames coming out the side of the RV in bursts. Only fix was to turn off the water heater.
-On every instance of turning on the furnace, it would trigger the CO2 sensor inside. Only solution was to turn off the furnace, stay cold and open windows and freeze more!
-Sewer hose had a broken tang resulting in sewage all over the ground and my feet. Does nobody inspect these?
-Toilet in the rig didn't hold a seal, so stink from black tank permeated the RV. Time to replace the seal or toilet, I think..
-A side door opened up on the drive home, resulting in my losing one camp chair and a camp table. Those slam doors don't seem to stay closed, unlike my 5th wheel. I had to replace both at a cost of about $125 (these were mine, not Utah RV Rentals)

I realize these rentals could be abused, but hubcaps and sewer hose are easy inspection items. Please also inspect the propane components as we also noticed there was NO BATTERY in the FIRE/SMOKE detector after an hour of CO2 alarms and trying to figure out where the alarm originated from!

My 4 day  trip cost me a ton, because they charged me $300 in "damages" for hub-caps that I had ZERO CONTROL OVER. 

I literally got less than 10 minutes to inspect the rig upon departure, but they sure spent a great deal of time upon return to check for stuff they could nickel-and-dime us on. $1300 for 4 days.. <SMH!>

Chronology of Service Issues w/Utah Diesel Center

10 October (Tuesday): Dropped truck off due to delivery of RevMax transmission (this was scheduled as an appointment for this day). Cameron committed that all work would be complete and tested by 12 October (Thursday), end of day. Note that written instructions were provided, along with a fuel rail release valve (plug) with the truck. The full RevMax installer instructions and requirements were provided in printed form.

12 October (Thursday). No phone call to indicate completion of the truck. Tried phoning multiple times to get status, but just got attitude from the two ladies answering the phone. After some discussion, I was told that Cameron went home Ill and needed to see a doctor and thus no further work on my truck would occur this day.

13 October (Friday). Spoke to Cameron, he indicated he wanted the truck for the remainder of the day to continue testing and that he JUST learned that RevMax required evidence/proof of a newly purchased transmission line pressure sensor and he'd need to go to the dealership. Truck not completed on Friday and Cameron indicated the truck would sit at Utah Diesel Center over the weekend. I expressed my disappointment.

16 October (Monday). Spoke to Cameron again to determine if truck would be ready on this day and he indicated that both truck batteries were found to be dead this morning because the hood (with an OBVIOUS underhood light) was left open, thus killing both batteries. He'd need to spend most of the day charging the batteries before he could test drive the truck. After more phone calls by me, I discovered that Cameron had to get the truck towed to a local Dodge dealership because the dead battery condition now prevented the truck from being started.

17 October (Tuesday). Spoke to Cameron again to confirm all the transmission relearn functions had been executed against and if I could retrieve my truck. I was told they'd need it yet another day.

18 October (Wednesday). Phoned again multiple times to try to ascertain status. After at least 4 phone calls, I was told my truck was ready for pickup. I inquired as to what transpired at the dealership and why a purportedly reputable service center would require a tow to a dealership and was not provided any response. I was given transport to Utah Diesel Center, asked to get specifics about the trucks status and was met with attitude from the front desk ladies. I indicated that I would not pay the requested $5900 until Cameron went for a drive with him. Cameron relented, and the truck appeared to drive fine. The new FASS150 fuel pump was fairly loud, but I was told that was perfectly normal. Upon completion of quick check ride, I paid via credit card.

I then asked if my core return transmission (worth $2000 refund to me) was returned and the ladies indicated it essentially wasn't their problem and that I had to handle it. From the Utah Diesel Center front-desk, I began making phone calls to secure return shipment of the core transmission, so I could get my $2000 core charge back.

I drive home. I'm nearing half tank of fuel and generally try to keep a full tank. I hit my local South Jordan Costco to fuel up. Upon starting to fuel, I immediately notice that fuel is dumping directly onto the pavement. It's clear that when the fuel tank was removed to install the fuel pump, the filler nozzle was not reattached to the fuel tank. I phone Utah Diesel Center to inform them, but indicate that I could not return the truck immediately because we had plans for the weekend and that I'd attempt to fix it myself.

As I had to return to work, I decided to go to Sindy auto (Murray, Utah). The mechanic at Sindy climbed underneath and within a few minutes retrieved a rag that was inserted into the fuel tank side and indicated that YES - the filler nozzle was not reconnected to the fuel tank. I have him do the work and depart.

I return to Costco to fuel-up. I get to a full tank and the nozzle clicks, but again I notice fuel dumping to the ground. I climb underneath and determine that the newly installed fuel pump is likely not installed correctly leaving the top of the fuel tank open and allowing a full tank of fuel to slosh around and leak. I again call Utah Diesel Center and Cameron to inform.

20 October (Friday). The wife and I had taken this day off as PTO to drive to Wendover for the weekend. The drive there was uneventful, but upon arriving at the local Smith grocery store and turning the truck off, we immediately note that the truck doesn't want to start. The fuel pump is making a noise like it was struggling to prime. I phone Utah Diesel Center again and am given Cameron's cell phone number. I speak to Cameron and he seems perplexed as to what the issue may be. He suggests that I pop the hood, open a few high-pressure fuel lines and crank the engine to see if air has somehow gotten into the fuel system; that wasn't about to happen. Instead, we continue to keep trying to start the truck, stepping on the accelerator until after ~10 attempts, the truck starts and keeps running. I call Cameron to let him know we got the truck started but that we're worried we're going to have to get towed back from Wendover. I inform Cameron that I would again drop the truck off Monday morning (23 October).

23 October (Monday). I arrive at 0730 with nobody accessible. After ~20 minutes, I approach a mechanic and ask if he can look at the truck and I explain the leaking fuel and start-up issues. I ask why the fuel rail plug that I have provided (new in packaging) was not installed nor returned and the mechanic has no response. I phone that afternoon to inquire as to status on my truck and am simply told, it won't be done today.

24 October (Tuesday). After 1400, I phoned to inquire as to status and am told the truck is ready. I ask about status, and am told to speak with Cameron, but he's too busy to come to the phone. We drive south to Pleasant Grove yet again to retrieve the truck. No issues the remainder of the day.

25 October (Wednesday).  Took the truck to Larry H. Miller Dodge in Sandy to have them retrieve CVI codes (clutch pressue values) because Utah Diesel Center couldn't. This was a required step to get my RevMax transmission warranty activated. No issues with CVI values per RevMax after phoning Tom at RevMax. Back to work

1600, I depart work for home. Upon turning South on Bangerter highway from 5300 South, I get a check engine light and think I smell what appears to be hot electronics. Truck surges a bit, but I make it home.

I pull truck into the garage (diagonally) because I intend to vacuum and the truck is huge. I retrieve the Check Engine code and its P1011 (related to fuel system). I clear the code and attempt to start the truck up. I hear no fuel pump and the truck refuses to fire. I call Utah Diesel Center yet again and am told that Cameron has gone home for the day. I phone Cameron on his cell, but get voicemail and leave a voicemail reporting this issue.

26 October (Thursday). I contact AAA to get a tow truck to again have my truck returned to Utah Diesel Center. Tow truck arrives at ~0708 and we proceed to load the truck. Not easy because power steering doesn't work and my truck was not at a particularly decent angle to be pulled onto the flatbed. Tow truck departs my house around 0730. I assume the truck was delivered at Utah Diesel Center by or around 0830. At 0830, I have a conference to attend at Executech in Sandy. The conference concluded at 1000, so I drove out to Utah Diesel Center. My truck was there, but in the lot and not being worked on. I was not happy.

At 1400, I phone and am informed that truck is ready, but its sitting for a bit so it can be tested again. I asked "please, please, please.. Phone me for a final status", but never received that phone call. At 1609, I phoned again and am told the truck is ready. I asked for final disposition and exactly what happened and "Brandy" indicates she doesn't know, but it had something to do with the power wire to the fuel pump coming off". She also mentions they found a code in the tuner and installed the fuel relief valve. (Wasn't that valve supposed to have been installed already?) I ask to speak with Cameron or whomever the mechanic is, but am told nobody is around. So, just like that, I'm blown off without even the courtesy of a personal phone call and/or apology for these constant issues with the truck.

At ~1900, I picked up the truck from your lot. We made it all the way to I-15 Northbound and just hit the Bangerter exit when the truck stalled and died (as though out of fuel). I hit the emergency flashers (I was in the lane of travel) and ran out with a roadside flare. After about 15 attempts to start the truck to no avail, I phoned AAA. It took AAA more than an hour to arrive. In that time, I narrowly avoided serious rear-end collision multiple times. Fortunately, UHP arrived on scene and for the remaining ~30-45 minutes, at least I was relatively free from collision.

Once on the tow truck, I had him hit a fuel station and we filled the truck. I attempted to start it again, but no success.

We got home, unloaded and I put the battery charger on the truck. My batts were down to 45% charge. Once they reached 65%, I again attempted to start the truck and after 3 crank attempts, it did start and continued to idle by itself.

So, 10 October to 2200 on 26 October, and after paying $5900 for services, I have a less reliable truck than when I started and I'm now $20,000 invested in this lack of reliability. ($10,000 for the transmission, $5900 at Utah Diesel Center and $4000 at Larry H. Miller for suspension and sunroof repair).

Some concerns that I hope Utah Diesel Center will seriously address:

·        Improved customer service overall: Front desk ladies and Cameron

·        Be proactive and contact your customers and set expectations and educate on the issues

·        Don't require your customer to address things like Filing the warranty for the FASS, ensuring return of the core transmission, calling RevMax to work through the issues, etc. These are things that Utah Diesel Center should have facilitated. When it became clear you weren't going to handle the FASS warranty, I asked that at the very least, a mechanic under my truck recover the FASS serial number, but even that didn't happen! When I was told you wouldn't handle returning the PRE-PAID core transmission, I had to facilitate a truck and return in your lobby!

·        Attention to detail. Fix and/or upgrade things correctly the FIRST TIME. Examples of poor quality include: Fuel filler to fuel tank not attached, fuel pump not seated correctly, fuel pump wiring not affixed properly. These are not FASS issues. These are Utah Diesel Center issues and are directly attributable to poor focus on quality or detail.

·        Apologizing for a customer having to return would go a long way. I had to drive in constantly to/from Murray, Utah. Easily a 40 minute drive one way. The time, expense and fuel could have been unnecessary if "Attention to detail" were a focus and priority.

·        If a customer provides written instructions and documentation, READ IT! It became very evident by Thursday of week 1 that the RevMax instructions were not observed or read; thereby putting my RevMax warranty in jeopardy.

·        For a job that was "supposed" to be 3 days, it ended up taking over 3 weeks of my fuel, life, time, energy and patience. I find this totally unacceptable.

       So, what's a person to do? I filed a small claims court suit in Oct. Today (6 Feb 2018), we had our court date. UDC was a no-show. The judge sided with me based on factual evidence.


GPSr tracks found here: Fillmore-to-Salina-Richfield.gdb

On 10 June, my friend Aaron and I took off at 0630 AM en route to the Fillmore KOA. Our objective was to run the PST03 (Chalk Creek), up and over the mountain, dropping down into Aurora, then proceeding into Salina for lunch.



At elevation, temps were easily 55-60F, while in the low land of Salina, temps were low 90's. What a contrast in temperatures.


While up top, we decided to check out a little side trail named: Bear Hallow. What a nice run through wild flowers to a cattle pond at the base.



In April, my youngest son Nick and my friend Scott departed Utah for Oklahoma City, OK. Final destination was a small town to the SW (about an hours drive) called: Gracemont. Final destination was: No Mercy Hunting.


Nick got the first kill from a tree stand, followed shortly by me from a stalk, then Scott. The final pig was the largest of the entire hunt, a sau on the run. My weapon of choice: Henry .45-70 with Hornaday 335gr ballistic tip.


A few photos:




All told, I shipped back 150 pounds of processed pork: Chops, ground pork, roasts, etc. Delta unfortunately didn't have a clear policy on how to check-in coolers with frozen meat and the check-in process was a total cluster.

In March of 2017, my friend Aaron (known as the "Moose") and I decided to stage in Green River for a trek to the old ghost town of Sego via Thompson Springs. We approached from the West and ran some cow-rutted trail until we crossed a cattle gate and thankfully got out of that decimated trail.


A few photos and GPSr tracks from this run!



GPSr tracks here:


GPSr tracks for the entire 5Mile & Eureka area found  here:

It's New Years weekend and its 10F outside with much snow on the ground. I've been cooped up for 5-6 weeks due to work, then illness.

The sun will be out (sort of), but temps will be cold. I decide that a ride (solo) from 5 Mile Pass to Eureka is in order. The Polaris has new Elka Stage 4 shocks, new gnarly tires and I'm ready to get outside.

The ride starts off with trails that have been run many times and the snow has turned to ice, so staying in a straight line is tough.

Once I get toward 12 Mile Pass, however - its a whole new ball game and the snow is virgin. No tire tracks at all. Somewhere along the route from 12 Mile Pass to the West of Allen Ranch Road, I slide just enough to hit a rock. I didn't realize my tire had gone flat for a few miles because this tire is TOUGH (despite the sidewall gash).  I pull over, retrieve the air compressor and proceed to inflate the tire in hopes of finding the leak.. it didn't take long to see and hear the air escaping from the massive gash. Bummer. Literally, BRAND NEW tires. 


After 30 minutes of trying to get 5 plugs to hold, I proceed through deep snow via Chilius Pass and down into the West side of Eureka.

It's not near 1pm and I'm ready for lunch. HWY6 Diner is in order. The food and view are both nice.

The return route was uneventful.

Whats the lesson to be learned? At 10F and in deep and frozen snow, even the best tires can fail. Always be prepared to address the issue.



So, I've owned a Note3&4 since prior to then being in full release. Yes, I was an early adopter and pre-ordered those devices. I kept that phone longer than I usually keep any smartphone because I didn't care for the Note 5 specs. 

I liked having a removable battery and SD card, spec's the NOTE5 didn't seem to support. 

When I heard about the Note7, it was advertised as a removable battery and memory card; sadly only 50% of that was true.

So, I pre-ordered the Note7 from Verizon's website. The process was painful because each time I placed an order for one phone, their site would place an order for like 3x phones. The only solution was to go into a Verizon store to have the orders cancelled; I had to do this 2 times before a proper order took.

Then, miraculously, my Note7 arrived in the mail and literally 2 weeks later I started getting texts, messages and announcements that I should power it down. Really? A $900 phone and I need to stop using it like now!?!?

So, I pay my first visit to the Utah Jordan Landing Verizon store where the VZW rep says "Don't bother turning it in, because I'm not.. we're expecting to have replacement devices by X date".

I then return at "X date" and am told that it will still be another 2 weeks and to not bother turning my phone in, despite the warnings.

So, mid-Sept arrives and I'm customer #2 in line at the 10am opening of our local VZW store. There are about a dozen customers in line for the same thing.. returning their Note7's.

At 9:50am, I hand my phone over (it was silver), and am given a BLACK version (that's all we have, says the VZW rep). He then takes almost 2 hours to "try to backup my phone" so the config is the same. He fails. I end up with a black phone, when I bought a silver unit and I have to set it up form scratch. I then go to my online Verizon account and notice no $25 credit was issued.

So, in the end, I commit to buying a $900 phone, have to worry about it burning down my property for like 3 weeks, have to take time off from work to replace, the actual process takes 2 hours and still fails, I get no phone/service credit and end up with a black phone when I originally ordered a Silver. How is that for satisfaction??!

Samsung and Verizon.. REALLY?! You can't do better than this?

Early fall in the Tintic Mountains

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Labor Day weekend, 2016 and I find myself working the entire weekend. During a lull, Aaron Serr and I decide to load up the ATV's and get in a couple hours of riding. Originally, the goal was to ride the Skyline Drive out of Fairview, but with foul looking weather, we instead decided to run into Eureka.

Winds were easily 40-65mph the entire time, so it made eating dirt a necessity.

My intent was to run the entire 2015 Tintic Elks Poker Run route, with an emphasis on "the secret trail". Sadly, about 14 miles into the ride, Aaron's machine decided that anything over 25mph was asking too much and we made our way down the mountain and back into Eureka.

Considering its only 4 September, the fall colors were already showing themselves!



On Saturday, March 19th, my lovely wife and I decided we wanted to hike the entire Devil's Garden loop. Reviews indicated that with some of the side trails and doing the primitive return loop, it would be about 11 miles total.

This hike did not disappoint. The hike starts out gentle enough, with a man-made walking path, until you hit sand at the Landscape Arch. Many a baby stroller turned around after the first mile and returned to their vehicles. We pressed forward.

The hike is an excellent combination of slick rock scrambling, elevation gain, narrow path, sand and sand stone.

A few photos from our journey:

Circleville to Panguitch and Back

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On Friday, 14 August and immediately after ending the work day, my youngest son (Nick, age 17) and I departed for Big Rock Candy Mountain in central Utah.

I had that very morning reserved a room at the BRCM Motel; a place I will likely not stay again. We had an outstanding supper at Hoovers (me: 18 oz Prime Rib, Nick: Burger w/Hoover fries).

While sitting outside the motel enjoying a cigar, I approach a large group a few rooms over and we began discussing trails and riding options. It would seem at least one member of their group recognized me as he had my Facebook profile photo up on his phone.

The following morning, we departed at 0730 to enjoy a quiet breakfast at Butch Cassidys in Circleville. We got there at exactly 0800 when the establishment opened. The waitress, a very nice lady with a thick New York accent went above and beyond, giving me two maps for the Markagunt and Panguitch Loop areas. Score! The drive into Circleville was  spectacular, with the sun just coming up over the mountains. With nobody on HWY89, I pulled to the side to take a few photos:


After concluding breakfast, we went straight up the mountain via the Paiute 01, destination: Panguitch!

Trails covered were as follows:

Paiute 01 --> Paiute 88 South --> Paiute 67 --> Paiute 68 West --> Markagunt trail system South --> cross HWY20 --> Markagunt 02 Trail East --> Unknown trails South and into Panguitch --> Casto Canyon --> Fremont 01 --> Fremont 02 --> Horse Valley/Canyon trail --> Circleville and back to the truck.

Total mileage for the loop was just under 150 miles!


Within just seconds of coming off the Markagunt trail system and hitting asphalt into Panguitch, the sky opened up with rain, lightning & thunder. Our original plan was to fuel up and head into Casto Canyon to make camp (tent) there. Instead, we rolled across the street to "Church's Blue Pine Motel". On the outside, it looked sketchy, but to our delight, the rooms (we had 3 bed, 2 room + bathroom) was totally awesome and clean. It was now near 5pm and time for supper. Usually we'd go to the Cowboy smoke/steak house, but this time we walked next door to Foy's Country Corner restaurant. Nick was brave (or stupid) and ordered Teriyaki stir fry, while I just got a turkey sandwich.

Across the street, we saw the movie theater / ice cream store. Watch a movie while eating Ice Cream. Unfortunately, they only had two movies and neither was appealing, so we opted for ice cream alone.

After a fine cigar sitting outside the Motel room, we watched the sky light up with thunder, lightning and rain. We watched the tourists run about taking photos of virtually everything on Main street.

The following morning (Sunday), we decided to depart by around 0800. Not a cloud in the sky, the day was going to be perfect!

We ran main street / HWY89 to the Casto Canyon trailhead/turn-off and hit the dirt.

Not too far into Casto Canyon, we decided to stop and make breakfast. I broke out my backpacking stove, old canteen cup and our favorite breakfast stuff + some awesome instant Filipino coffee.

20150816_084649.jpgThe rising sun and the reflection against the red/orange Hoodo's was breaktaking!


Slightly more than halfway through, I let Nick take point. I'm thinking he thought it was a race, he tore up the canyon so fast. At one point, he almost got his machine sideways:

At the 2:56 mark, you can see Nick almost get sideways!

Sadly, Casto Canyon is only ~5 miles long. It is interesting to note that to enter, you must go through a super small 50" gate, but to exit at the North end, you have a ~60 inch or so wide gate. I'm wondering how many have entered from the North, only to find they can't exit the south side.

Onto the Fremont trail we continued. With the sky clear and cloudless, the scenery was just amazing.


Somewhere along the trail, we encountered a slightly steep, loose gravel section that required me to tow Nick up. I tossed the winch cable underneath the machine, hooked up, put in 4WD/Low gear and up we went..


What a fantastic weekend to share with my youngest son, Nick. It's looking favorable I'll do this trip again in late September when its a bit cooler out.

Garmin tracks for this trip found here:

 Where is James King?


Language Translation


Other Links:

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 Twitter @BruteForce
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 ATV Utah
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 Trish's Cake Shop
 Dennis Udink's Site
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