Looking Out

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Looking Out

It's been a crazy summer. I feel like I haven't had a moment to rest with my move from AB to BC, multiple weddings, the crazy hot temperatures, my new job at Toyota, and so many projects on the go with Tamarack. Busy is a good thing but running away for a couple days is sometimes a requirement. Not to mention, part of the reason I made the move back to BC in the first place! With my fathers memorial/celebration of life last weekend, we had a ton of company from Calgary make the trek to Nelson to attend. It was great to say goodbye to Dad officially and also to visit some of our good friends from back in Calgary. 

My good buddy Craig has been riding shotgun with me for about 2 years when my wife wasn't able or willing to attend our offroading trips. Craig has been bit by the mod and exploration bug but wasn't in a position to get into his own 4x4. However this year that all changed and I helped him scoop up a minty 08' GX470. He immediately baselined the truck with the help of me and Ian and began his build of the truck. Last week tires and wheels were installed and he was stoked to take "Jerry the GX" out on it's maiden voyage into the mountains. Ian, Craig, Dallas (his wife), and myself loaded up the trucks and headed for a region on the Kootenays that I'm kind of obsessed with. Guaranteed epic views, crystal clear mountain lakes to escape the 35 degree (C) heat, and also some mild offroading. The provincial-wide fire ban is a bummer for camping season but a definite necessity considering how dry the terrain is and the high risk of wildfires. Luckily propane fire-pits are still prohibited and something that was essential in the night ahead. We stopped by a nearby lake and cooled off before airing down to a modest 20psi for a good mix of gravel roads and offroad trails. Not sure why I didn't pull the camera out and grab a couple photos of the lake - cursing myself now for it. 

Start of the trail, with the lake in the background.

Jerry the GX:

Loving these new Element aluminum skids for RickRunner:

Up we climbed on the never ending switchbacks. This trail is so cool because you ascend through all the layers of the forest - low altitude vegetation then into the high terrain, and eventually above the treeline altogether. Eventually we gained the ridgeline and entered my favorite section of the trail. You drive the ridge at approx. 8500ft with visibility down both sides of the mountain.

One of the 4 glaciers visible from the ridge:

The final approach shows the destination for the night - an old fire tower built in 1972. 

Finally, a couple very tight switchbacks to gain the peak. Once at the top of this ~6500ft climb in elevation, you are treated to 360 degree views of the surrounding backcountry with little evidence of civilization to be seen. The smoke from one of the Okanagan forest fires making the view a little more ominous.

After walking around and enjoying the views, we set up camp for the night. Golden hour was approaching and we ate just in time to enjoy the sun setting behind the western peaks. A side note - first night spent using the ARB awning room. This thing is so cool! Especially considering the costs over an RTT there are many pro's: full stand up room with access to your vehicle, full canvas walls which can be rolled up to reveal full mesh walls when the weather permits, and the ability to keep the roofline clean for other gear storage. It's also quite easy to setup and tear down (although that edge still goes to the RTT slightly). It's going to be a well used addition until I acquire a hardshell.

The boys: Ian & Craig.

Golden Hour gave me an excellent opportunity to grab some stills with our (Tamarack's) new camera - a Canon 1DX MKii. I am blown away by the combined capabilities of this camera (video and photos) and especially the dynamic range. Proof is in the pudding though - sundown in a spectacular fashion:

After the sun went down, we simply relaxed and enjoyed the views until darkness set in. The propane fire pit was a life saver as temperatures approached freezing that night on the top of the mountain - crazy considering it was 25 deg C at the top before the sun set. A quick one-nighter but much needed considering all that's been going on. Excited for a few more minor mods to the truck to get it "done" ... for this year ;). Lots more trips planned so stay tuned. 

Colossal 2017 planning now in full swing and definitely stepping up our game on the video production end. There may or may not be several 4k-8k cameras on deck for this year ;)

Addison out/

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Summer Dayz

Summer Dayz

Summer has proved to be crazier then ever thus far. With tons going on in our personal lives, as well as with our business, Addison and I are trying our best to continue to push out content to our viewers. Addison has moved back to Nelson, BC and has started a new job as the manager of the parts department at Nelson Toyota while I continue to push Tamarack Media Co. as the first part time - full time employee. 

We were super stoked to be able to get out to the mountains a couple weeks back putting #RickRunner and #Bruce to the test for the first times on the trail with our new Cooper Tires. Both trucks preformed flawlessly despite almost drowning and a little tire rubbing! :) We headed out to Crowsnest Pass, Alberta to shoot a promotional video for Element By RA Motorsports and to collect our 4x4 footage for our upcoming Cooper Tires spot. It was a super fun, busy, and refreshing weekend for us. Days full of filming and waiting for the right light followed by nights around the campfire getting to know Matt and Laski from Element. Great weekend and even better company. Also, we randomly ran into our buddy Nathan Hyashi, owner of The Gear Shop in Calgary, Alberta. Always a pleasure Nate!

 

 

Addison and I ended up staying an extra night and got to do some night photography….

 

This trip, mixed with the filming we had to do to complete a spot for local brewing company Nelson Brewing Company with Director Michael Parenteau, concluded a total of nine straight days of filming. A few behind the scenes photos from the NBC shoot are below and we will be posting a write up on the entire project with NBC upon the projects official release.

 

Thanks to everyone for the help and support over the last little while! We are definitely headed in a positive direction and are pumped to share our journey with all the rad peeps out there!

 

“Ready, Fire, Aim”

 

Cheers,

Chase Rickaby // Co-Founder of Tamarack Media Co.

Zero to Hero

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Zero to Hero

3, 4, 5. The number of vehicles in my stable always seems to be 3 or more. I don’t have a reason for it… some people say I’m addicted to the hunt. Maybe I just enjoy the unique experience and character that each vehicle gives. Probably a bit of both. But, regardless, it does seem to be counterproductive as my wife and I start to seriously look at escaping the city in favor of full-time mountain time. I sold my old house a few years ago when I moved to Calgary and we have been renting since. Suddenly, almost out of nowhere, I had the itch to liquidate.

My 03’ Passat Variant (1.8T, 5spd – LOVE this car) and Ally’s 09’ Matrix XRS were up for sale in a matter of days while in the background I acquired a 99’ 4Runner for my wife. (She wanted a 4x4 for winter driving and room for the pups). The plan was to drop the two cars and drive just 2 vehicles that both met our needs at this crazy time in our lives. The plan was sound, but what I didn’t expect was for both cars to sell within 2 days of listing. And for the 99’ 4Runner to turn out to be MUCH more of a fixer-upper than I had anticipated. I went from 4 working vehicles to 1 in span of 2 days. The cars were gone and the 99’ suddenly wouldn’t run. On top of it needing a new steering rack, some brake work, new LBJ’s, the fuel pump was shot. A fire was lit and it was time to get in the garage and get RickRunner built up and ready for the summer – in a hurry!

I have been collecting parts since I picked the 4Runner up in October. Lots of big projects on the horizon with this 4Runner and Tamarack, as well as Chase’s Tacoma (Bruce) for that matter. I acquired a sponsorship from Odyssey Batteries, Baja Designs, and COMEUP winch over the cold months. Working hard on proposals instead of turning bolts. Additionally some continuing work with the always awesome Stealth Custom Series and ARB 4x4 USA. Stoked to be working with both new and old partners. Chase and I even landed two projects with Cooper Tire and the Element Metal Fabrication – stay tuned for these video projects over the summer! On top of that RickRunner needs to be in top form for the big Colossal 2017 trip this fall. Needless to say, the 4Runner needed some love to get it up to spec.

Once the factory air suspension was yarded, the new parts started going in. The disassembly was quick and painless - no corrosion whatsoever so all the bolts were out with ease, even the front LCA bolts! The truck sat on jack stands for a couple weeks while I painted the brake calipers, installed the stainless lines, and did Total Chaos spindle gussets and Cam Tab gussets. Once all the hard stuff was done it was time to start bolting up the new parts.

SUSPENSION:
-       Icon Vehicle Dynamics 2.5” Ext. Travel Front Coilovers with Resi’s
-       Total Chaos UCA’s
-       Crown extended stainless brake lines (F&R and axle to caliper)
-       Wheelers SuperBumps (F&R)
-       MetalTech Long Travel rear coils
-       MetalTech bumpstop spacers
-       Icon Vehicle Dynamics 2.0” Rear Shocks
-       MetalTech adjustable upper and lower rear control arms (beef!)

Getting the rear LT coils in place took a bit of work and I ended up pulling two of the wires out of the ABS harness that run from the frame to the rear axle. Something that later rendered my speedo dead and all traction control lights on – the dreaded “Christmas Tree”. Other than that little hiccup it was quite painless. I used Coppercoat on nearly all the bolts to help against future corrosion, and coated the front alignment hardware as well before it all went back in. I was very happy with the reservoir mounts on the Icon’s, something that was clearly thought out better than on the Fox 2.5’s on my previous Tundra

ROLLING GEAR:
-       Gunmetal SCS Ray10’s with OMF true beadlock conversion.
-       295/70/17 Cooper STT Pro Tires
-       BORA 0.75” Wheel Spacers

Beadlocks have been on the radar for a while. Knowing this would likely be the last build before I buy another house and/or have kids was the little justification needed to tip the scales. I like wheels like my wife likes shoes… and the ability to choose the color scheme along with accents are, IMO, a large detail that ties the whole look of the vehicle together. Vin at SCS was a pleasure to deal with as always and he didn’t even bat an eye when I enquired about what is now my 6th set of SCS wheels J. OMF came through with some amazing weld work on the conversion. The beadlock ring design is quite impressive, having the beadlock hardware holes milled at a slight angle so that as the ring bolts down and clamps the tire, the bolts sit flat against the face they are mounting to. With the upcoming video project for Cooper Tire, I was throwing around both the STT Pro and the ST Maxx. I have run the ST Maxx before on my Tundra (a great all-around tire) so I thought I’d try out the more aggressive STT Pro. Mounting the tires was time consuming to say the least (#beadlockproblems), but I am happy to report that I have been driving around for 2 weeks now and I have yet to balance the wheels and tires. A very slight wobble at speed but pretty damn good considering they are not yet in true equilibrium. Super impressed with the combo so far. Will see how they do in the snow/dirt!

TRIMMING:
-       Rear bumper opening widened
-       Body mount chop
-       Front fenders trimmed
-       Pinchweld folded back
-       Custom fender liners
-       Alignment dialed in at +3.3 degrees of caster

How big of tires can I fit on a 4th gen? The story (or forum thread title) that never ends. As repetitive as these threads are, with enough research you can basically identify which areas of the vehicle need to be modified for larger tires without actually even having to look at the vehicle. Something that I used effectively over the winter. When the spring warmth started to show, I knew exactly where my pain points would be. My impression from the forums was that the 4th Gen’s don’t like bigger tires due to the abnormal wheel wells. After the trimming (cutting?) I did to make 35’s fit with 1.5” of lift on the Tundra, this seemed like a breeze. I trimmed the rearward portion of the rear bumper to accommodate the meaty 295’s at full compression but it was very minimal. The front was a little more work but certainly no tubbing required. I folded the pinch welds down as cleanly as possible wheel trying to retain the seam and avoid splitting the layers of sheet metal apart. Once folded I gave the firewall a few extra sledge hammer whacks for good measure. I created a set of custom fender liners that will allow easy template and cut replacements out of some rubber floor matting that I sourced at Princess Auto. Still need to at some Rally Armor flaps to the project but I’m pretty happy with the non-intrusive approach I have taken this time around. No factory sheet metal (aside from the little slits cut into the pinch welds) was harmed during this procedure.

ROOFTOP STORAGE/ACCESSORIES:
-       PrinSu Design full length rack
-       ARB 2500 Awning w/enclosed room

I got tired of working on the ground and needed a break so I went up for a couple days to install  the PrinSu Design roofrack and ARB 2500mm awning using the PrinSu mounts. I modified the mounts by lowering the mounting points and cutting the height down by a couple inches. I see why the mounts are designed to bring the awning up a little higher but I wanted a sleeker look to flow better with the overall design concept I’m after. I think I nailed it aesthetically but also functionally – it fits inside my 7 foot garage door opening with less than 1/8” to spare. Win. The awning has yet to be deployed but after running the smaller version on my Tundra, it was a no brainer. It has saved me from inclement weather many many times and with the addition of the awning room, I should be able to post-pone the rooftop tent purchase for a little while longer.

FRONT END:
-       Pelfreybilt Aluminum bumper (color matched)
-       Baja Designs Squadron Sport with amber “wide-cornering” beam
-       COMEUP winch SEAL GEN2 9.5rs (future post to come on this guy!)

After browsing the available options for the 4th Gen front bumpers, I was ultimately down to 2 choices: CBI and Pelfreybilt. Both had aluminum options. In the end the Pelfreybilt was selected largely due to its simple and sleek design. Again, trying to tie the design cues for the entire truck together. I felt hoops wouldn’t suit the build either although I certainly do appreciate their function. One thing I will mention is the simple-but-genius internal winch hookup. This allows the winch line to come out the fairlead and wrap back inside the bumper where the hook or thimble can be secured. A COMEUP SEAL GEN2 9.5 rs winch was added inside the Pelfreybilt housing for recovery duty. (a very great product that I am excited to get some review time with)

My initial plan was to install my old Baja Design XL Pro’s (x3) along the top edge of the bumper. After a mock-up I realized I did not like the look and am now holding out for a 20” bar to utilize the opening above the fairlead. The BD Squadron Sport lights were selected for their low amperage draw and dedicated function as a “fog light”. I often travel on the highway in the winter searching for powder and these units will be a God send. More lighting details in a future post though, once I wrap up all the deliverables.

POWER:
-       Odyssey 31M-PC2150

With a lot of plans for additional accessories – winch, fridge, lights, etc. there was a prudent requirement for an excellent battery. This massive 80lb Odyssey fits in the factory location (definitely snug) but mitigates the need to run duals. With 1150 cold cranking amps I should also have no problem bringing RickRunner to live on those cold winter days. I ordered the “Marine” variant of the PC2150 to gain the additional posts to wire in accessories.

FUTURE MODS:
-       Wiring
-       Light setup
-       Skids & Sliders
-       Camp mods

And with a few long days and the odd sleepless night RickRunner went from your average grocery getter to your well-appointed adventure mobile. Lots more details to come but I am very happy to have it on the road. Time to hit the trails!

/Addison

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Colossal 2017 Details

Colossal 2017 Details

*** REGISTRATION IS FULL*** Head on over to the registration link HERE. 

All registrants have paid and we are stoked to have everyone along for the ride this year! To everyone else who expressed interest, we would like to thank you and to encourage you to check back future trip updates.

 

Registration List:

1) Jeff Marshall 

2) Cody Harrison 

3) Terry Dufloth 

4) Trevor Knight 

5) Kevin Apperley 

6) John Larrigan 

7) Alex Wilson

 

Wait List: (Only Posting first 10 Total Registrants)

8) Connor Gelinas

9) Jonathan Paulson

10) Sam Allen

 

Bruce's Introduction

Bruce's Introduction

Chase here...

Back in the game.

 

In January 2016 I made a decision to sell probably one of the mintiest 1st gen 4runner's in Canada. I have never been more grateful for a material object because it immediately enhanced the thought/idea of adventure in my life. Immediately after the purchase I was able to enjoy a 1600 mile drive from Santa Monica, California to Calgary, Alberta. To this day I have made a conscious effort to take in as much of this beautiful world most people take for granted. I still have dreams of driving "Casper" and its character has left a lasting impression on me that I will carry forward for the rest of my life. The sound of the bare metal doors clanging shut, the removable topper, the big truck driver steering wheel, the body lines on the hood, and of course the ability it gave me to get into the beautiful outdoors on four wheels. Overall the pure simplicity of Casper really made me appreciate small details and the saying "LESS IS MORE". 

 

The reason for me selling the 1986 4Runner was too generate some income so that I could begin a new creative journey. Fast forward to today, two crappy vehicles later (1998 Toyota Camry and 1990 Volvo 240DL), Tamarack Media Co. exists and I'm welcoming "Bruce" to the family. Bruce is a 2000 Toyota Tacoma that I purchased from Bowen Island, BC. The 2 owner (me being the 3rd), decently clean, lower mainland vehicle is a perfect fit for me moving forward and I am excited to share my experiences with you all here on The Tamarack Times

Heading from Calgary, AB to Vancouver, BC and back to pick up the Tacoma was another solo adventure I was grateful to have accomplished.

Ferry from Horseshoe Bay Terminal in Vancouver to Bowen Island

After spending the day hanging out with the previous owner touring around Bowen Island in the Tacoma, it was time to head to bed to prepare for the lengthy drive back to Cow Town. 

Pit stop to empty the bladder...and take some snaps

Stay tuned...

Odds & a Pile of Ends

Odds & a Pile of Ends

I am a big fan of planning. Type A, OCD, whatever you want to call me... it's boring but it's part of my life. Having built several trucks now from scratch I am beginning to admit that the process of building is one of my favourite parts of this hobby. Even going back as a child, I was obsessed with Lego and creating my own "sets" from scratch. I was good at it building Lego... if there was such a thing? It makes me realize there is more to building trucks than the monetary evacuation and simply pursueing the perceived cool factor. I truly enjoy the project management aspect of it: having a vision, researching, purchasing/coordinating parts, assembly, usage, evaluation, and the final tweaking stages that follow.

With the 4Runner now on lockdown in my garage, I have began to tinker as time allows. The truck must be ready for a mild shake-down by late spring so there isn't a real fire under my ass to get it going but the mod-bug is definitely burning within me (take that as you may...lol). All I know for sure is that I smile inside every time I see the City of Calgary gravel truck dumping copious amounts of it's salty payload all over the city streets, knowing that my minty 4Runner is safe inside the garage. (Re-read that again... still doesn't sound right) The vision in my head started churning months prior to picking this rig up. The research for parts that would turn this project into that vision has followed ever since. Shortly after #Doug (my awesome old 04' Tundra) left the driveway, the great American Thanksgiving brought about a few good sales - arguably the best time of year to buy truck parts. A few clicks later and my credit card was on fire but several of the essential build components were inbound for my US mailbox:

 

SCS Ray 10 wheels w/OMF beadlock conversion
Odyssey Battery (31M-PC2150)
- 2x Baja Designs Squadron Sport (Wide-Cornering  - full post around my lighting setup later)
ComeUp 9.5RS winch
- Icon 2.5" Ext. Travel Coilovers with Resi's
- Icon 2.0 Rear shocks
- Metal Tech rear LT coils (on backorder)
- Metal Tech offset adj. rear lower control arms
- Metal Tech adj. rear upper control arms
- Metal Tech bump stop spacers
- Metal Tech RAS delete kit
- Crown Ext. front & rear stainless brake lines
- Wheelers Superbumps
- Total Chaos front UCA's
- Pelfreybilt Aluminum front bumper
- PrinSu Design full length roof rack
- @MStudt rear sway bar discos/links

MAINTENANCE

With only 43K on the clock and the truck having new brakes (all around), new Tokico suspension installed in place of the OEM XREAS system, a new cabin filter, and a fresh oil change there isn't much left to do. However I am an advocate of maintenance before modification, so "baselining" the truck with some minor items was essential for years of worry-free operation to come. I promptly ordered a AFE Pro Dry S air filter to replace the factory filter in favour of more airflow and a non-oily re-useable filter as well as performing the "hydrocarbon filter removal" mod. This should allow the truck to breath a little easier while still retaining the well designed factory airbox.

Next up was one of my personal "must-do" maintenance items: Steering flush with Redline synthetic fluid (ATF). I have been a fan of this ever since my LX450 whined and screamed on the red rocks of Moab. During the trip I performed a flush with Redline fluid on the steering system and the feel and sound of the steering system greatly improved. I had to follow suit in anticipation of larger tires to come on #RickRunner. Some new hood struts were added to stop #RickRunner from trying to take my head off. The last thing installed was the RuTech AIP Bypass Kit to stay ahead of the costly intake pump failure which is common on the 05-09 V8 4Runners and GX's.

Finally, I did a quick cleanup of the undercarriage and body. This thing is clean (possibly clean enough to "eat off of" as they say...) but a little extra paint and rust-check primer on the rust-prone weld areas of the frame should keep my OCD at bay for a couple years. Top it off with a cut and polish for some added paint protection.

 

MODS

With the ultimate goal of keeping RickRunner a comfy highway cruiser as well as capable, a stereo and a few other interior touches were necessary. First up was the Kenwood DoubleDin Bluetooth headunit wired into the factory JBL synthesis 9 speaker stereo. I wanted to also have the steering wheel functionality retained for those long drives where reaching for the "next track" button could provide to be difficult. Wiring it up was a bit of a PITA between all the modules required to make everything work in harmony, but a necessary mod that I am really looking forward to using. It even sounds half-decent with the factory JBL speakers and I am happy to not see the need for an additional amplifier at this time and will rock the OEM subwoofer until it dies.

One thing I have always disliked about the 4th Gen Limited trim was the fake-marble dash finishes. It's like Toyota was tired of the fake-wood grain finish so they thought a dark marble topcoat on some plastic was the trick to capturing the hearts and souls of the NA market. Maybe in 2005 it was cool or maybe it wasn't. Either way, carbon fibre ads horsepower and I think it looks great when used sparingly. I had some 3M carbon fibre wrap laying around and put it to good use. The cool thing about this stuff is that its not a printed carbon fibre look, it's actual textured fibres that are woven together - so it actually has some texture and looks and feels more authentic.

The final touch was the installation of the BlueSea dual USB outlet in the dash, strategically placed right below the RAM mount that I also fastened to the dash bezel, which will grab onto my tablet for GPS and service manual duties. Throw some WeatherTech mats in for good measure!

On a side note: Chase and I just picked up a new piece of camera equipment; a Lumahawk LED light that has it's own Lithium Ion battery pack, adjustable power output, and adjustable color temperature for work on our photo/video shoots. With the pile of shiny new 4x4 parts growing, it was a good opportunity to test the gear with some product shots. Chase through together a cool edit of the absolutely gorgeous SCS/OMF Ray 10 beadlock wheels with a couple of the clips we captured during the shoot.

NOTE: To do it justice, make sure to listen with headphones or some proper speakers; cell phone speakers don't pick up all the finer audio details that we try so hard to design into our edits ;)

A Tribute To Downtown Dan

A Tribute To Downtown Dan

I spent the 2016 holidays as I normally do - relaxing at my parents dream home, nestled along the shores of beautiful Kootenay Lake. Really though, who wouldn't? Being such close proximity to the mountain-town of Nelson BC makes it an easy choice each year when the Christmas season rolls around. This year was similar in a lot of ways with most of our time spent up at Whitewater - the local ski hill, on the local hiking trails, on the couch getting some R&R, or around the dinner table laughing and conversing with our family. New Years Eve came quick and optimism of the "fresh start" for 2017 rejuvenated our spirits.

Family - this is where this post truly begins. 3 weeks ago as I shredded waist-deep powder alongside my brother and father, my thoughts couldn't give you a sad word or negative image even if I tried. Fast forward to today, and all we feel is a large hole left in the wake of our father's unexpected passing. Our beloved father, Danny Rickaby, passed away from a massive stroke at age 58 - too soon by all standards. None of us saw it coming; blindsided and shocked are the only words remotely accurate to our feelings. The otherwise healthy man could not have predicted it himself. As we now mourn our fathers passing, so many things become evident. Some of them even torture, that an experience like this is what it takes to remind us the fragility of life on this earth. In a shocking way, I'm grateful for the aftermath I have experienced so far - my family has always been exceptionally close, but this tragedy seems to only have brought us closer. So many nuances of my father's beautiful personality I took for granted on so many levels. Now they appear as highlighted text as I reminisce over past memories and now cognitively try to replicate them.

Danny Rickaby outside a mine shaft during Colossal 2015

Danny Rickaby outside a mine shaft during Colossal 2015

A Tribute to Dad.

The guy truly gave a shit. When he saw people he actually wanted to hear what they had to say, and wanted to hear their story. Not just say hello in passing and keep to himself, but he truly enjoyed the personal engagement far more than any person I've ever met. Us "boys" (myself and my two brothers) would often chirp our old man for his random conversations he would have with complete strangers. Whether someone on the street, in a restaurant,  or in the Nike corporate store he was genuinely interested in having a conversation with people that meant something on a deeper level. He had a way of learning about people and impacting them in a short period of time; quickly elevating conversation past small-talk. His compassion for people truly leaves a mark on my soul.

He was respected. I grin as I type this and several inside jokes whirl around my head, but he was hugely respected in every avenue of his life. Maybe it was his rise from leaving home at the age of 15 to the success he achieved as a business man? Maybe a combination of it all. Or most importantly, maybe it was the respect that he gave everyone else until proven otherwise.

He was fearless. No task was too large and no amount of competition was too much for Downtown Dan. His business mind and savy to compete was unparalleled. As the saying goes... "Zero f***s given" was his unspoken mantra when it came to himself of other people's opinions. I've never seen anybody walk into so many unfamiliar situations only to walk out the other side making the expert, feel as if they didn't know what they were doing. Our adventures in our 4x4's being a prime example; ask me about the first trail he ever drove his Tacoma on! The guy owned everything he did, he was fearless. A boss. 

Dad's first time and first obstacle on a 4x4 trail - Hell's Revenge in Moab UT. Start off easy, right?

Dad's first time and first obstacle on a 4x4 trail - Hell's Revenge in Moab UT. Start off easy, right?

Above all, he loved his family. Not in the casual and required sense but in the deepest way imaginable. He put us (my brothers and my mother) above all else. We were never left wanting materially or in a measure of guidance. He knew when to show us "tough love", when to embrace us, and was ALWAYS there for us when we needed his support the most. He managed to instill a true sense of values and respect in all of us. I am proud to be his son, and consider all of us boys "proper" amongst the mass of disrespect that plagues society today. A family man through and through. 

I must admit, my outlook for 2017 isn't as optimistic as it was a mere three weeks ago. However, I am proud to say that Danny Rickaby was the perfect father and the perfect mentor. When my turn inevitably comes, I can only hope to be remembered as even half the man my father was. You taught us so many things Dad: to laugh, to enjoy, to struggle, to overcome, and to love. Thank you for all that you've done and all that you preached, for your memories will live on through us. See you in heaven pops, we can't wait :)

Here's to a 2017 full of adventures and breaking new ground. For you old man.

- Addison Rickaby

The Rickaby family - 2014

The Rickaby family - 2014

RickRunner - An Intro

RickRunner - An Intro

At Tamarack Media Co we love creating lasting memories through stills or moving images. Our personal favorites are those opportunities that lead us into the backcountry where we can capture some of the most remote and beautiful terrain imaginable with our cameras. It just so happens that we need capable and reliable vehicles to get us to these places. And we (Chase and I) are both Toyota loyalists to the core. Following this mantra, recently led me on the quest for my next adventure project. Having some experience with many of Toyota's flagship 4x4's I knew exactly what vehicle I was after to fulfill my needs. I needed something comfortable for long distance highway cruising, "homey" enough for 2-5 day remote backcountry camping excursions, and capable enough to eventually hit the coveted Rubicon trail. Or as my wife would say "something that actually has back seats that you could one day put little humans in". The hunt was on for an 05-09 GX470 or 05-09 Toyota 4Runner V8.

After being swindled out of a very clean local 07' Limited V8, I was more determined than ever. A few weeks of hard classified scavenging, I found the one located in Vancouver BC. This truck has an interesting back story to say the least, but the important bits are below:

- 05' Limited V8: VVTI and 5 speed transmission
- West coast BC vehicle it's whole life: undercarriage is minty fresh :)
- It has 43,000kms on it. No, that is not a typo. 

Fast forward a couple weeks and my wife and I were on a plane headed for YVR to pickup the new whip. We made a quick weekend getaway out of it and landed Saturday Oct. 29, 2016 at 8:30am in Van, BC. The seller met us at the airport where we inspected the truck and signed the papers and spent the rest of the day getting some much needed #WestCoast fresh air.

Coming into YVR.

Coming into YVR.

We headed back to Calgary on Sunday; a perfect opportunity to give the 4Runner a good flogging. I wanted to pinpoint any weaknesses (if any) and also get rid of any carbon buildup that may have accumulated over the years as this thing sat in a garage and was barely driven. To my surprise, each tank of fuel netted an improvement in fuel economy. I don't expect to see improvements continue, but I can dream... Once back in Calgary, my urge to remove the running boards immediately took hold.

First carwash before leaving Van City.

First carwash before leaving Van City.

Lots more in store for #RickRunner. Baseline the truck for maintenance and start collecting parts!

Addison Out.