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Rant - Easter Jeep Safari - Fullsize Trucks

Posted in Features on September 1, 2011
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Where have all the fullsizes of Moab gone? I feel like someone should write a song about the long-lost fullsize trucks of Moab, Utah. They were once plentiful in this region, thriving on big trails and large obstacles meant for fullsize trucks. They even had sand dunes to exercise in not far outside of town. But the fullsize 4x4s have been growing extremely sparse in numbers lately, and I worry about the dismal odds of their survival in the rock Mecca of Moab. Perhaps it’s evolution that has pushed them further and further towards extinction. There are still occasional sightings of the elusive Moab fullsize rig, but the newest open-top Jeep has encroached upon its habitat and seems to quickly becoming the dominant animal.

After finding very few fullsizes, I was stoked to see these two fullsize diesel Ford trucks squaring off at Potato Salad Hill. Very cool.

Years ago, the Jeep and the fullsize 4x4 used to thrive in harmony, sharing the same environments and often roaming the countryside together in mixed packs. But over the last decade, fullsize truck encounters have dwindled to but one or two per day in the rock-strewn terrain of Moab, and we fear they may be extinct by 2020.

Of course, there are lots of close relatives of the elusive Moab fullsize 4x4 sub species thriving all over the United States — on the East coast, in the Southwest, the Northwest, and even close by in the sand deserts of Utah. But in Moab, their numbers seem to be dwindling. Perhaps all the fullsizes are rusting out, or perhaps it’s global warming... or maybe it’s the fact that the new, larger four-door Wrangler is attracting too many fullsize owners away, with a big-enough cabin for families while still having Jeep-like capabilities.

The dominant animal. It seems that the larger four-door Wrangler is quickly taking the spot of both the fullsize 4x4s and the previous, smaller Wrangler in Moab. Jeep may have inadvertently engineered what could be the eventual death of the fullsize trail rig.

Whatever the reason, I am sorry to see fewer and fewer of the fullsize breed in Moab every year.

Annually, I head out to Moab—one of my most favorite outdoor areas in the entire world. And I make sure to take a fullsize 4x4 every year, and cover all the other fullsize trucks in Moab. But this time I felt like buying a shirt that reads, “I went all the way to Moab and all I came back with was this silly editorial.”

After 15 years of work, I was finally able to finish my Dodge truck, Jinxy, and head north on a road trip to Moab and then toward the Canadian border. I decided to do this trip three years ago…better late than never.

The fullsize trucks I ran across included a giant Ramcharger, three solid-axle Chevy 1500s, John Cappa’s (editor of JP magazine) fullsize J-10 truck, and a few ’80-to-’96 Fords.

That is sorta sad. Hell, even Cappa was driving a freaking fullsize. There are just too many open-top Jeeps, and we need more fullsize guys to come invade Moab’s annual Easter Jeep Safari next year. So bring out your big rig, and we’ll see you out there! Send me an email at and maybe I’ll get a chance to go on a fullsize trail run with you!

This month...
We have so many great features that we barely had any room for anything else. But we squeezed in some more anyways.

Jordan May has been doing a lot of research finding all the new shock technologies that are built around the basic remote reservoir shock (Page 58), and he’s also been doing a good bit of testing on some really sick Toyota suspension.

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