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Off-Road Trailering - Vintage Vault

Posted in Features on September 24, 2014
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Photographers: Spencer Murray

Flexed in Camp
While digitally cruising through our vast archives, we came across some wheeling photos of a few Jeeps. These photos were shot by Spence Murray in 1974 for the Book Division’s Special Interest Publications Unit. The photos were labeled “Off-Road Trailering.” We were able to talk to Spence, and he said, “The trip didn’t really have an agenda. We were just down on the northern part of Baja having fun!” And it looks like fun was had. Here, we see a nice intermediate CJ-5 Renegade all flexed up near camp. Based on how clean the Jeep is, we are guessing this picture was taken near the start of the trip. Check out the nice white top, Firestone All-Terrains, side pipes, and does that one plaque on the side say 401? Wonder if it has an AMC 401 swapped in? Follow along as we show you more pictures taken by Spence Murray for “Off-Road Trailering.”

A Dirty Jeep is a Happy Jeep
As you know, a Jeep is happiest when it’s getting used in the dirt. If you don’t know this, you are doing yourself and your Jeep a disservice. Here, the Jeep is packed for camping and the top has been pulled down. The motor on the front of the windshield, along with the longer hood and front fenders, helps clinch this Jeep as a later intermediate CJ-5. We can also pick out a power steering box under and behind the front bumper and a pretty clean rollcage added to the factory rollbar. Nice! According to Spence, the Jeep did indeed have a 401ci V-8, and if his memory serves, it was installed somewhere in Arizona.

Vintage Stuck Uh oh!
The Jeep got stuck in some soft sand. We’re not real sure why the front tires look like they were not pulling in this image shot by Spence Murray, maybe the 401 swap made the front driveshaft obsolete and there was not enough time to get a replacement built before the trip. One way or another, it looks like they got the extraction in hand—with several guys standing around while one mans the shovel! According to Spence, the tide changes in this area can be up to 28 feet. Dig faster before the tide comes in!

Sand Drags
Back on mostly dry land, it’s time for a little sand drag action. Here, our 401 CJ-5 (on the left) looks like it’s running fine, and in this image, those front tires sure look like they are pulling. The other Jeep looks a bit more stock, but it’s still an intermediate CJ-5. At the time of the picture, the Jeeps look neck and neck, but we are guessing the 401 CJ-5 is about to pull on the other CJ-5 that could be possibly running a 304ci V-8.

Hey Buddy, Have a Flat?
In this image, it seems our 401-powered CJ-5 picked up a nail or got a puncture one way or another. No matter nothing a little plug kit won’t fix right up, we hope.

Well, Maybe We’ll Try the Spare
All right, it looks like the top went back up on the Jeep and the tire plug didn’t pan out. In this photo shot by Spence Murray, we see two fellers swapping one tire out for another. You can also clearly see the flanged axle in the Jeep. We are guessing a flanged Dana 44 living behind the 401. Don’t forget your tire iron in the sand, and ahem, there seems to be an empty beer can on the ground on the right. Can’t imagine how that could have happened? Would you mind picking that up for us? Thanks!

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