Since I have added a "Overland" vehicle to the stable - 2016 Toyota TRDPRO - thought it interesting to see how far Four Wheeling has come. Recently the HERSHEY AUTOMOTIVE MUESUM, located in Hershey, PA, had a fine display of "Early Off-Roaders" If you are somewhat local the display will run through October 15th and is worth the trip. All in all there are thirteen vehicles on display. Here is
In the early years of off roading the vehicles were mostly rather utilitarian. Unlike todays that offer
the luxury of a fine sedan. Sporting air conditioning, heated seats, navigation and push button four wheel drive. Indeed I guess the birth of off roading was started with the Jeep of World War II. In the late 40's many Jeeps, Willy's and Dodge trucks were picked up as surplus and used in recreation off roading.
Other early off-road vehicles were:
Volkswagen Type 181
"The Thing". I had a 1973 and it was a blast to run around in. Well except the time drove it from San Luis Obispo, CA to Phoenix, AZ in one day. Really think it is best for not more then a couple of hundred miles in one day!
1969 International Scout PU.
1978 International Scout II 2 Door
As stated above the ANTIQUE AUTOMOBILE CLUB OF AMERICA (AACA) - HERSHEY MUSEUM
will feature the "Early Off-Roaders" through October 15th. Along with the other exhibits it is well
worth a visit. Be sure to book mark the Museum's home page and check out future events.
Fast Forward To Today
4X4 vehicles have come a long way since those above. Rife with creature comforts and ready for the
outback right out of the box. Above is my 2016 Toyota 4Runner TRDPRO. I added a GOBI Stealth
roof rack, Rigid 40 inch LED light,Fuel/Water can carrier, ARB awning and the awning room, Road Shower, Goal Zero Solar and a few other minor additions. Don't think any more mods are going to be added. The way it sits will take me anywhere I wish to go; and is capable of going places I have little desire to go! Very capable machine! Pictured above at the Animas Forks Ghost Town. Just outside Silverton, Colorado. One of the easier trails; but still rough enough to rattle your teeth is a few spots. In upcoming posts I'll take you there. Also be sure to come back for Phantom Canyon, Monument Valley, Victor and Cripple Creek, Colorado, Mesa Verde, and White Rim Trail. So come back for these rides and some great places to dine on the road too!
Let us not forget the motorcycle entry in off roading too. Really began with the two cycle machines; but really became "mainstream" with the introduction of the BMW R80.
Speaking of off road with a bike; do you have any idea when the first "Round The World" motorcycle trip was? Think again! It was back in 1912! Carl Stearns Clancy on a Henderson Four.
Pick up his book, good read.
Not quite as grand; but my father rode many times from Des Monies, Iowa to Denver, Colorado. He did this back in the 1920's when the roads were dirt or at best gravel!
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