So you want to take your Truck Off Road?
This thought has been taking place since the dawn of the modern day 4x4 truck. It was designed to be rugged, tough, and traverse uneven obstacles. Plus with everyone else on youtube, why can't it be you? Well we are here today to let you in on a little secret. It can be. There are just a few things we need to cover first.
Where can I take my Truck Off Road?
If your friends are anything like our friends then you already know a couple of spots, but if you're not tuned into the off road scene in your area then you can always look online. Although Google and Social Media will provide you with a lot of good information we'd like to recommend a few books from Funtreks (We've enjoyed the classic NorCal and SoCal guides). These books are almost invaluable to the novice and even the experts will surely find a new trail.
What about a lift or ground clearance?
If you're just starting out you honestly don't need to worry about a lift or ground clearance. With the help of the guides mentioned above, there are enough trails out there to keep you busy for a while with your stock truck or SUV. The second you feel you're ready to up the ante a whole new world begins to take shape. 4x4 modifications such as a body lift, leveling kits, led off road lights, full suspension lifts, tire/wheel combinations, and even what truck is the best for the job (trust us you won't need our help locating opinions on that). For vehicle specific modifications regarding a lift or ground clearance we recommend trolling the forums out there dedicated to your truck. Just about any answer can be found out there in terms of off road modifications and how to do them. Like we said: the thought of taking your truck off road has been happening for a really long time.
"the thought of taking your truck off road...."
Safety in Numbers
It is always a good idea to plan a trip with a trail buddy. Having two vehicles is better then one in that worst case scenario of breaking down. We mean totally breaking down and you have to leave a truck behind until you can locate someone to tow you out. If your friends are driving around a Prius you might want to consider getting in contact with a 4x4 club. There are region specific and vehicle specific clubs ('member the best off road truck line earlier?). Those club guys know these trails like the backs of their hands, and they love getting their hands dirty. In other words, they are happy to meet new people and show them their backyard. A lot can be learned simply by surrounding yourself with knowledgeable people in the 4x4 Off Road communities.
"If your friends are driving around a Prius..."
It really doesn't hurt to bring a few key types of people along. If you know anyone with any first aid training, or better yet if you know anyone with any real mechanic training, that could come in handy if a "real" emergency came up. Or if you're like us and have seen a lot of MacGyver reruns, just wing it! At the very least bring along a first aid kit just in case your buddy decides to slam his fingers in the door and needs some Advil. There is nothing worse then hearing about how someone's finger nail is going to fall off when you still have 2 more hours of back country driving to get done.
That pretty much wraps it up. It is a liberating feeling when you leave the pavement behind in the rear view mirror. The feeling never gets old when you've got a great view and good company. Cheers to all of you 4x4 Off Road Veterans who have inspired a lot of us to break away from the city streets and turn our garages into work shops.