Part IV: Moab, Cajon Pass, And A Change Of Tires
Off-Road's FJ has diligently served as a daily driver, hauler, and photo shoot transportation. We've also flogged the FJ in the dirt, and it's now the proud bearer of some "off-road pinstriping," which no self-respecting off-road truck should be without.
This was the third time I've attended the Moab Easter Jeep Safari, but the first time I've truly enjoyed the event. While past years definitely held some bright spots in my memory banks, I wasn't in the pilot's seat on any of the Easter Jeep Safari trails until '07. Vive la difference! Off-Road's West Coast Division (as opposed to our Rocky Mountain Division) followed the painted stripes of the Hell's Revenge Trail, ventured into Arches National Park, and sampled Fins 'n' Things before heading homeward. Neither Hell's Revenge nor Fins 'n' Things is at the top of the Moab hardcore trail list, yet both routes demand a competent vehicle and a nonrookie driver. Hell's Revenge in particular has several sections that could spell big-time disaster (think sheer drop-offs and steep slopes) if not negotiated properly.
Closer to home, the opportunity was taken to explore some local terrain in search of photo shoot locales. At the same time, the FJ got a new set of tires wrapped around its Walker Evans wheels. There's only been enough time for a first impression of the Nitto Dune Grappler, but this visually striking tire gets a thumbs-up right off the bat in the performance department. Read on.