David and Melanie's
 Story of The Hunt

From the start of the hunt we had bearings of 110 and 130, I told Melanie that I think he is in Silverado Canyon, so we decided that we would drive east on the 91 to the 241 (fastrak), take the 241 to Santiago Canyon road and then into the community of Silverado.  As we headed off the hill, our bearings all started to point straight out the 91 towards Corona, and nothing out towards Silverado!  We went past the 241, because there was no reason to go that way... Was there?

As we approached 6th st in Corona, our bearing made a sharp right!  We got off on Lincoln and headed south.  Our signal was now 20 over, and straight up Lincoln.   Whoops, forgot to turn off the preamp from when we were in the canyon.  Our signal was $h!T, and appeared as if it were coming from the Ortega highway!  We made our way to the 15 fwy and headed south towards Lake Elsinore.  Once we got to Lake st, we were confident that there was no transmitter on Ortega, so we got off the fwy and got back on northbound.  As we were heading north, we began to get a signal pointing up towards Santiago Peak.  Could he be up Bedford Canyon?  What the hell, we already have 60+ miles, what can it hurt?  We headed up Bedford, past all the private road signs (those don't seem to mean much anymore anyhow) and ended up at a gate
with a no trespassing sign and a security guard.  By this time, we were pretty confident the signal was coming from the other side of the mountain anyhow.

At this time our good friend Steve "I'm retired" Heinemann called us on the phone to tell us he was listening for the signal at home, and had nothing. We explained to him the problems we were having, and he explained to us that you could get a signal like that from around Rose Hills or Phillips Ranch rd.  I figured that based on the signals we were seeing, this would be impossible, and told him that we were going to do our original plan and checkout Silverado Canyon.  During the call, we got a call from "The Don" telling us they were in Ortega, had no signal, and were calling it quits.  I did not believe this for a second.  I figured everyone (Including Steve) was sitting around the Jeep with Mike in Silverado Canyon getting a good laugh at us because we were still not there.  At this time I decided I would call my good trustworthy friend Deryl  "Wounded Knee"  Crawford to check his progress, he would never lie to me, or would he?  He told me that he was making the same observations as me (perhaps Steve XFC who was sitting there with Mike told him what to say?  No, not Deryl)

We decided that it was time to get on the 241 and make our way to Silverado Canyon to see all the hunters that already found it.  As we were heading south on the 241, we suddenly got a signal pointing north toward none other than Philips Ranch Road!!!  We jumped off the 241 at our next exit, which was Santiago Canyon rd and jumped  back on the 241 heading north.  We made our way to the 71, and by the time we got to Euclid, all signals were again pointing back towards Santiago/Silverado Canyon. 

Melanie told me that I needed to just do what we originally planned and go out to Silverado, no matter what the signal told me.

We made our way back to the 241 (damn this is getting expensive), and on towards Santiago Canyon rd.  There was really no signal for most of the way thru Santiago  Canyon, but that was really the only place he could possibly be.  We made our way to Silverado Canyon rd, and headed thru the 25MPH community of Silverado Canyon.  I knew there was a gate up ahead at the end of the road, and I don't remember it being open.  Based on the signal, there was no way he could be in Silverado Canyon if the road was closed.  As we approached the gate, we found it to be open!  Right after we got thru the gate, we found a very nice water crossing on the very well paved road.  We continued on, around a bend and suddenly began to hear a "full moon madness" voice T!  Knowing that Mike's only voice T's were the low power Squawk boxes, we knew we were on the right track.  We found the first T, and grabbed the sign in sheet expecting to see all the hunters had already signed in.  What, nobody found this one!  How could they miss this as they went up the road?  Maybe they found a way up from the eastside.  We continued on, and on, and on, and eventually heard another voice T "now that your up the creek", and knew it must be in a creek somewhere.  We had already driven thru 10 of them, so there was probably another one up ahead with a T in it.  We eventually found the "up the creek T" and signed in.  No one had signed into this one either.  I guess I need to take back all the bad things I said earlier.

Now we were only hearing one T, the main T.  We continued to head up what was now Maple Springs rd on the map.  We knew that he had to be up here somewhere,  and we wanted to surprise him, really surprise him.  I turned off the headlights and drove with the fog lights in a effort to sneak up on him so we could beat him with his own antenna!

At 10:15, we came around a bend, and there was Mike, all by himself watching dirty movies (not really dirty) on his 15" computer display. We made several hand gestures, and left the high beams on him so he could think about what he had done to all of us.  It also gave us an opportunity to flatten two of his tires while he was staring into the high beams like a mesmerized deer..(-;

125.4 miles on the trip, and 110 miles past the 36,000-mile warranty on the Durango, we decided that Mike owed us dinner for all the heartache of this hunt.

We got home around 1:20AM