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Old 06-18-2013, 06:49 PM   #1
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New to Jeep and Off Roading

I've had my jeep for about a week and really want to take her on some trails. I have zero off road experience and looking to get my feet wet.

1. Are there any important things/tips I should know before taking her off road?

2. I am in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area and am going to Boyne and Gaylord this weekend, are there any good trails in those areas?

Thanks,

A rookie who's eager to learn
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:17 PM   #2
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Welcome to the jeep world! I know for me I always carry a good tow strap and not like the ones you can get at the auto parts store(depending on which one) mine is 4" and 30' long! I never take it out of my jeep unless I need it and its only been once this year! Haha

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Old 06-18-2013, 08:31 PM   #3
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Like Brett said... Grab a good tow strap for now, something at least 3" x 30 x 20,000 lbs or similar, a fire extinguisher, flash light, CB and even. Two way radio, and a few hand tools and haul them everywhere.

As to "off road"... Are you going it alone? If so, don't do anything dumb like trying a wet ravine 5 miles out in no mans land. Ok to do if you have another vehicle with you... But do you really want to walk 5 miles? Don't try crossing water unless you KNOW how deep it is! Always leave the road with a full tank of gas (close as possible) bottled water and a few snack.

NO alcohol of road... It'll make you do stupid things your Jeep really doesn't want to like have a foot of water over the rockers with the doors off.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abnormal-JK View Post
Like Brett said... Grab a good tow strap for now, something at least 3" x 30 x 20,000 lbs or similar, a fire extinguisher, flash light, CB and even. Two way radio, and a few hand tools and haul them everywhere.

As to "off road"... Are you going it alone? If so, don't do anything dumb like trying a wet ravine 5 miles out in no mans land. Ok to do if you have another vehicle with you... But do you really want to walk 5 miles? Don't try crossing water unless you KNOW how deep it is! Always leave the road with a full tank of gas (close as possible) bottled water and a few snack.

NO alcohol of road... It'll make you do stupid things your Jeep really doesn't want to like have a foot of water over the rockers with the doors off.
^^^^what he said! Haha
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:38 AM   #5
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Make sure your Jeep is in good mechanical shape before you leave the pavement. Off highway trips will quickly help you find any old, worn out or questionable parts - as soon as your suspension starts to articulate, you engage 4lo, etc parts that were OK on the road may quickly let you down.

Have a plan and a map, and let someone know where you are headed. Take the time before you leave to make sure the trails you plan to use are on public land and legal.

Air down your tires to 15-20 psi - that puts more of the tire in contact with the dirt, improves traction, and reduces your impact on the trails since you won't be spinning your wheels as much.

Check with your local Jeep dealer or one of the many local clubs on the west side to see if any of them are offering a class or seminar on basic off highway skills - great way to get familiar with your Jeep's capabilities and yours, and learn some valuable insight from some more experienced four wheelers. I know the Sundowners in Kalamazoo usually have a class in the fall, Cheap Thrills Offroad and the Two Trackers are also over on that side of the state, wheeling with a club can be a great introduction to the Jeep addiction.
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:32 PM   #6
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Thanks fellas, may take her to some dunes this weekend. Ill be sure to prepare as y'all said above.

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