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Found 7 results

  1. In this HD video, catch a glimpse of the magazine's neighborhood. Less than 40 minutes from the office, we were following wild horses at 6000 feet elevation the first week in March. Temperatures dropped into the teens that night, the wind blew 80 mph over the ridges. These tough horses make good role models! This video was originally filmed for the Q&A Vlog at the magazine. The video is now available at Vimeo as well, reaching a broader viewing audience. Enjoy! Moses
  2. Forum member Alberto from Colombia has a 1989 Jeep YJ Wrangler built at the Brampton, Ontario, Canada Plant. "Brampton" brings back great memories, Alberto! In 1988, the heyday of film photojournalism, I covered the Jeep Cup Rally Finals at Ontario. In those years, you could fly from the U.S. to Canada without a lot of fanfare (no passport required), and my flights took me from Southern California to Toronto. I competed at 1987 and 1988 Jeep Cup Rally regional events as a media driver. 1987 was the first-year of the EFI 4.0L Jeep XJ Cherokee 4x4. My co-driver was Chuck Williams, and we drove a spanking new model from San Diego to Placerville, California. My resulting cover story for OFF-ROAD Magazine depicted the new Jeep YJ Wrangler negotiating a steep and rocky, wheel off the ground turn on a Sierra Nevada trail. The next year, I did the Reno, Nevada Jeep Cup Rally Regional in a YJ Wrangler, scaling the rocks from Lockwood to Virginia City. Jeep® had just been acquired by Chrysler Corporation, and the rally finals would be held at Ontario, Canada. The finals included a visit to the Brampton Plant and chance to meet the enthusiast workforce that had come of age with AMC/Jeep® and now operated under the Pentastar banner. Our driving route for the Finals was the wooded wetlands, old mining and logging roads and stream crossings above West Nipissing. The competition day began awkwardly when my open 35mm camera case fell unceremoniously out the door of a new Jeep YJ Wrangler...The driver, unaware that I was standing outside the vehicle and reaching for a lens in the camera case perched on the passenger seat, let out the clutch to merge our Jeep with the procession. I used Nikon FE2 bodies with a full lens complement, and all of this rolled out and across the ground. Quite fortunately, nothing but one relatively inexpensive UV filter received damage. This camera equipment lasted for many years after this shoot... On assignment for three magazines, one in the U.S. and two abroad, made this a tight shoot. The country was rough, muddy and wet, and as the day unfolded, I forded icy streams afoot to catch memorable images, that eventually made covers and center spreads. One shot in particular captured a pair of controversial, square YJ headlamps that danced at the waterline of a swift moving north stream crossing. Following its magazine exposure, this color image came to life once more on the back cover of my Jeep Owner's Bible. These were 4.2L Jeep inline six powered 4x4s that never missed a beat—with their Carter BBD carburetors! We drove similar Jeep YJs over the Rubicon Trail and at other Jeep Cup challenges. As new models, the carbureted 4.2L Wranglers proved their mettle on challenging and tough two-track trails. The trip home from Canada was uneventful, though I did wonder about the images still undeveloped on Fuji 100 film. Those were the early years of X-ray baggage checks at airports, and our journalists' lead-lined film pouches got tested. There was no room for error with 3,000 miles of travel to the photo lab! All turned out well, the three publications each got unique images from that bell-to-bell assignment. The Jeep YJ Wranglers did well, too, and the journalists and drivers enjoyed the many challenges. This all shined through on the pages of magazines across the globe. Moses
  3. Rocket Doctor

    Great Alaska Adventure!

    If you ever get the chance, you have to make the drive up the Alcan! My first trip up was in 2003, when two friends and I set up a moose hunt about 30 miles north of Tok, AK in the 40 Mile area. My oldest son was stationed at Fort Richardson with his small family, and they were expecting a third child during the time my wife and I were up there. I hit the road at 4 am on a Friday morning, drove up I-15 from my home in SE Idaho, through Great Falls, one of my old stomping grounds, then on up through Calgary, Edmonton, and finally putting tires on the Alcan at Dawson Creek. Odometer said right at 2,700 miles traveled when I parked in front of the son's base housing unit on the following Monday morning. BTW, I made the trip up on the first of September, and by that time of the year, didn't suffer the frost heaves that can make the trip an abusive, excruciating drive earlier in the year. While there, the wife and I, and the son's family also drove down to Seward for lunch, and back to Anch for a great 'day trip', but we didn't get a chance on that trip to make it the rest of the way around the Kenai Penninsula to Homer, nor down to Valdez. Another trip, perhaps after the wife retires, and we can meander around and take our time doing what we want to without a compressed time schedule. Besides, I want to finally do some salt water fishing, and perhaps tie into a 'barn door'. I do love Halibut and Salmon!! I took the time to prepare the 'Burb by replacing anything, and everything that I could imagine might be worn or questionable. It paid off! I took along a full set of tools, two spare tires, u joints, bearings, well, pretty much what you'd prepare for any extended 'way-back-country' expedition. Pay for everything in Canada with a credit or debit card, and let the bank worry about the exchange rate. The locals I ran into along the way weren't really entertained when having to calculate the exchange rate between US and Canadian currency. I only took $200 cash through Canada, and stopped in Great Falls at a bank, and exchanged it there for Canadian currency. I spent the last two dollars on a bag of chips before we re-entered Montana on the way home. Oh, for those who might not have had the experience of engaging some of the Kanuks before, there's some things you absolutely must know. Do NOT ask who the ugly lady with the crown is in the photograph above the counter when you check in at the Canadian Customs! Especially not at 3 am!!! Do NOT try to keep pace with a Canadian when drinking! EVER! You will never learn the correct way to enunciate 'Canadian speak', so don't try to come off sounding like the boys in "The Great White North", eh? The Mounties WILL be behind a tree, no matter where along the way, if you try to go a couple of miles over the speed limit. (Remember to adjust you speedometer, or change your GPS to read kilometers per hour!) Also, they have NO humor for 'foreigners' trying to explain their way out of a ticket. There is no "seven miles an hour over the speed limit" rule up there, except on the major highways between and around Calgary and Edmonton, where your outfit had better be able to do the quarter in about twelve seconds, and be able to get to and maintain somewhere around 85 mph. Best comparison I know of is trying to merge into traffic around Dallas/Ft Worth, or Oklahoma City on I-40 or the business loop around OKC. ALL females northwest of Edmonton are absolutely gorgeous! Even if they have no teeth and weigh upward of 300 pounds or more. Also, they ALL have a huge, hulking male attached to them that will jealously protect them. The only thing that they value more than a woman is their sled dogs! Also, it is impossible for a mere American to come out ahead in a drunken altercation with a backwoods Kanuck! Do not try it. The speed limits are posted in kilometers per hour, you purchase gas and diesel by the liter, AND northwest of Dawson Creek, fuel up every chance you get, as it can be a VERY long walk or wait for help. Cell phone service, at least by 2005, my last trip, is spotty at best. Get the little card from your insurance company that specifically states that you are covered in Canada!!! Do it! Don't try to sneak or take a handgun of any sort through. The RCMP has absolutely NO humor. If in doubt, find someone in Alaska who has an FFL, and ship your guns up prior to traveling, pick them up there, and ship them home. Finally, remember to never, ever, disparage the Queen. Or hockey..........
  4. One sight that most folks enjoy is horses running free on their natural habitat. In the Far West, this has become more common since the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act, which originated at Nevada with the efforts of Wild Horse Annie and others. When I was high school age at rural Nevada, we four-wheeled in the Pine Nut Range east of Carson Valley, at Smith Valley and across northern Nevada. This feral horse country has been a big part of my outdoor life. The article that accompanies this HD video is available at the playlist for the magazine's 4WD Travel and Adventure Channel. We're fortunate with our ready access to wild horses. The 4WD Mechanix Magazine base at Fernley, Nevada places us within ten minutes of wild horse country. Some folks within the city limits see feral horses within their neighborhoods. Our family at Virginia City and Silver City avoid planting flowers—local feral horses will eat them! When we drive the local secondary highways at night, we're vigilant about watching out for wild horses crossing the road. Horses mixing with cars can be deadly. In a world of 24-hour news and "reality TV", there's something liberating about watching and filming wild horses in their habitat. Access to these animals has an affordable price of admission: some fuel, a reliable 4x4 or quieter dirt OHV and some decent hiking boots for a trek in the backcountry... Moses
  5. A few years ago, i took a trip across Canada that actually started in Washington State and went across the lower part of Canada, through Vancouver, Winnipeg, Montreal, and on the way to Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. I was on my way to N.Y. for Coast Guard training, and since they were nice enough to let me drive, and i didnt have to be there for 5 weeks, i figured why not take the trip. I spent 3 days each in Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland, and i have to say, they are both very interesting places to visit. The people are pretty friendly, although a bit uppity, and the scenery is amazing. At the time, i didnt do much off road traveling, but with some of the roads through the region, at least back then, in the early 1990s, i didnt need to seek out back roads because even some of the main roads could have doubled as off road trails. While i was there, i got to see the vast Canadian and U.S. fishing fleets as well as meet a very diverse group of interesting people. Several languages are spoken in Canada, French and English being the main two, and it was interesting listening to people mix the 2 languages while speaking. Of interest to the off road crowd though, as i learned from the locals, is that there are literally thousands of logging roads, back country trails, unknown roads, and even whole villages and towns that aren't shown on a map. I know a trip to Canada isn't for everyone, but for those that can manage it, don't rule it out. I have family that moved there years ago to work in different industries, mainly oil and fishing, and they send me pics and tidbits about getting around in the less populated areas, and some of their stories make it seem like, at least in some areas, 4 wheel drive, and even mildly lifted trucks, are a must up there. Canada does have no trespass laws, but, in most places, as long as you don't tear up the property, and get permission from the owners first, even the logging roads aren't off limits, but the logging trucks have right of way. Another place i have been is the Yukon. This is another amazing place to get away from it all. There are towns and villages throughout the region, but some of those are 50 miles down back roads and trails between villages, through some amazing country that has lakes, rivers, forests, and abandoned settlements in places you wouldnt expect. The best way to get to the Yukon though is by rail through the mountains. That trip is one that i say everyone should take once in their life if they can. The train starts in Skagway, Alaska, and ends in Yukon, Canada, and goes over a mountain, one of the oldest standing span bridges in Canada, and over or next to several lakes. The trip can only be taken on the Yukon Rail Road, which has been in operation since 1898, or via a 33 mile hike. You used to be able to rent a car in the Yukon, but after having not been there in many years, i don't know if they still do that or not. They also offer a couple of different cruises. The one we took was on an old paddle wheel steamer that has been in continuous operation for almost 100 years. It goes through large lakes, as well as some very dense forested areas. None of these trips are inexpensive, but if you can afford it, they are well worth the money, if for nothing else, just as a new idea of places to get away from it all. Canada not only offers some amazing scenery, as well as places to get away from it all, but also offers unexpected and worthwhile vacation and trip ideas. It really is worth looking into.
  6. Adirondacks a couple weeks ago, we found a new place on the shore of a rather large but very shallow lake, that the deepest part was maybe 20 feet, and with all the big rocks and trees and whatever else was in the water, i didn't bother taking the jet-ski's off the trailer. Since i love to be on the water, i decided to take one of his kayaks, and he was right. I'm not saying im ready to sell the skis and the boat, but after taking 3 hours to row around the edge of the lake, i actually noticed a lot of things i missed with the power toys (what my father in law calls the boat and the jet skis).
  7. Want solitude without lakes and forests? We have the Black Rock Desert just 70 miles from home. Just don't plan a trip here during the Burning Man, as the quietude turns to a temporary swell of 50,000 people! The BLM and Burning Man have an agreement that after this event each year, the desert playa must be completely restored. The revenue from this annual event is more than sufficient to do so...At the week's end, thick alkaline dust of the Playa tracks its way down the asphalt from Gerlach to Fernley, Nevada, our town, then onto I-80 in each direction! The local Walmart, Starbucks and restaurants do a thriving business during the event week, catering to the ghostly looking participants! In addition to the Black Rock Desert, there's High Rock Canyon, where Oregon Trail wagons left their mark on the canyon walls at Fly Canyon—where they were lowered from the cliffs by ropes! This is the "oasis" after the treacherous desert crossing, and Mud Meadows' artesian springs spew cool water from the earth, feeding people, livestock and local wildlife! Moses
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