Here's my 2000 Jeep TJ. We went up camping in the Big Horn Mountains in WY (we live just over an hour away from them). Took the Jeep and hubby's Xterra with the rooftop tent on top. Was a lot of fun.
Will say one thing, my Jeep has NO balls whatsoever. I don't expect that from a 4cyl, but man, going 45mph on the interstate going uphill is pathetic. Definitely going to do a motor swap once we can swing the $ for it.
That looks amazing. I really want to take my Jeep on more adventures with some camping and trail riding.
About your little Jeep problem. Of course a the 4 cylinder isnt going to do as good on performance as the 6 cylinder, but maybe look into a regear. I dont know your current setup but a regear might help you gain a little performance and is a cheaper alternative to the engine swap.
I have a 4cyl with 5 speed and 32s. 4.10 gears. And on the few road trips I took it on, yea I hit 85 a few times, but that's on the down slope of the hill with the wind at my back. Going up I'm getting passed by big rigs. 45 50 mph. The way I see it, I can maintain the 65 up hill, but I'd be screaming the engine. but I'm not trying to beat it up too much. So yea its anoying going that slow being passed, but for me it has just become normal. And I'm not talking Colorado rockies... I'm talking about New York and Pennsylvania hills.
So I think what you are experiencing is normal for a 4 cylinder.
I have a 4cy with 33x12.5's and it runs 65 all day with heavy bumpers. 4.10 gears,.
I'm regearing to 4.88 though
__________________ 4" BDS springs, zone nitro shocks, rubicon express track bar, Currie tie rod, 1" Rokmen bl, 1" JKS mml, AA Sye/cv conversion, Black Magic Brakes, JKS upper adjustable arms, 4.88 regear, 27 spline chromeolly shafts, 35x12.5x15 GG's on ion's 174, rhino lined tub, boat cannon stereo, rock hard harness bar, Led Windshield Light bar
The uphill was the killer, and didn't help with road construction going on, and the wonderful Wyoming wind Was able to cruise flat and downhill at around 70-75mph
Definitely thinking of re-gearing, hubby even said that it might help a little too.
I'm lucky I have just enough patience to wait on getting everything done to my Jeep that I want done (just enough), and I know that it's going to take time to get it where I want it, and know that I'll probably have to do one or two things at a time. It will happen though, and I can't wait!