JEEP LIFE AND THE GREAT OUTDOORS
"Not all those who wander are lost"
Walking home from the gym today there was a point where I noticed the birds singing and the smell of the trees being so strong that all I could do is think...wow! What a great place to live.
That led me to this...
We live in a country like no other place on earth. It's beauty, and our freedoms that we often take for granted, aren't shared throughout the world.
Here, we say what we want to say, we do what we want to do, we love who we want to love, we are even free worship who we want to worship. All traits not shared by most of the world. Sure, nothing is perfect, but there's no place else I'd rather be than right here in America.
That freedom comes with responsibility though. Unfortunately, we seem to be losing that as well. More than any other time that I can remember, we are divided as a nation. Divided by race, divided by culture, divided by social status and political belief. We are more than ever divided from the unity of being Americans. The freedoms of this country are now starting to be are downfall because of this divide and lack of unity.
We need to get back to the unity of the generations before us. The principals this country was founded on. Remember, people and families from all over the world immigrated here, risking it all, for a better way of living.
This isn't about race or religion. It's not about how much money you do or don't have. It's not even about you core belief system. Our founding fathers, and the generations before us all understood that to be American there has to a greater sacrifice.
How can people from every nation, every belief system, every level of social and financial status come together and build county better than any other throughout all of history? Simple actually...the commitment of being American. This doesn't mean losing their heritage, or conforming to way of thinking or living they don't believe in, rather understanding the importance of the sacrifice it takes to belong to something bigger than us alone. The balance of not losing yourself, and still contribute to the bettering of society of a society all doing the same.
That comes in many ways, I will offer this thought though. This country was built on immigration. The difference of the past and the present is the past came to America to become Americans. To take what they can from their culture and add it to what it means to be American. The present...the exact opposite. We now live in a time where people want to take the great from America and bring to their culture, all without leaving the safety and comfort of American borders. We have lost the unity more than ever, outside AND inside agendas are trying to separate us as a people. Americans can still turn this sinking ship around by getting back to the basics of what made us great to begin with.
It turns out Hi-Lift Jack Co. knows something the competition doesn't.
Back in 2006 I purchased my first Hi-Lift Jack. This thing was a tank too! Heavy, big, and worked like a charm. That Jack was so well made that I used it from 2006 until a couple of years ago.
One Saturday morning I had the itch, the kind of itch that can only be scratched with one thing...jeep parts!
After a few hours of scratching that itch I came back with a new jack. Not because I needed one, old faithful has served me well through the years. I bought a new jack for no other reason than I wanted a new one...mistake number one! Mistake number two was not sticking with the best, Hi-Lift! Instead I went with a cheaper competitor, thinking it would be the same only cheaper...not even a lot cheaper either. Big mistake number two!
I successfully used the new jack a whooping 3 times before it started getting temperamental, and the stupid "fake" jack lasted about 8 months before it turned into a rusty, 30 pound, paper weight! I was amazed in the difference between the two. I mean can one manufacturer possibly be that much better than someone else's that looks and works exactly the same?? Simple answer...YES!
Maybe I somehow got a hold of a freak bad jack or something, but I'll never know! Why? Because I will NEVER again buy an imitation of the best. Hi-Lift has worked hard to cement themselves in the industry as the best jack on the market, and trust me...I learned that lesson first hand.
Hi-Lift Jack Specifications:
I'm a guy that loves solitude and I really love feeling how giant this world really is when in off the grid alone.
I also know that the things that I find out while out there about myself, the things that stimulate my creativity and define my principles. The things I feel in my soul when I experience the peace of nature should not go hidden, but shared instead.
If a trip to nowhere in my Jeep is so beneficial to me, isn't it likely that there are millions of folks out there that can reap the same benefits? Isn't it likely that if my time on the trail makes me a better person that it can make others better too?
There's a saying that goes like this...The hole we give through in life is the same hole we receive through. That means if I share what helps me find happiness and peace abundantly, I will in turn find happiness and peace in abundance.
Let's lead the world in finding what we find by living our Jeep lives. Let's build friendships and share life. Let's help each other, let's makes things better for the generation that follows. Living the Jeep Life is way more than just a party out on the trail, share what it means to you.
Staying properly hydrated is key to a healthy life...on and off the trail. Out my way the air tends to be hot and dry which makes it pretty easy to become dehydrated. Most people will walk around dehydrated daily without even knowing it and by the time the feel it, it's to late. Here are a few ways to know where you stand in hydration. If you understand and recognize what dehydration is, how it feels, and what it can do, it will be much easier to avoid becoming dehydrated all together.
-Is your mouth dry?
-Do you find your self feeling sleepy or fatigued throughout the day when you shouldn't be?
-Do you urinate less and is it darker than usual?
-Are you extremely thirsty?
-Do you feel confused, dizzy, lightheaded or have a headache?
Being a bit more specific, the trails are hot and dry. Be smart, if you know your taking an 8 mile hike over the weekend, hydrate up during the week while it's easy. If you're spending the day trekking through the back trails in your Jeep It's easy to go hours without a single drink of water and before you know it you have a pounding headache, you're being mean to anyone stuck in the Jeep with you and just want to go home. Just about anything will suck the water right out of you! So, make sure you stay hydrated! Carry and drink plenty of water thought the day. If the circumstance allows it, packing some healthy foods like fruits and veggies will help a little as well. (Avoid processed foods).
I kept it pretty light here, but there are so many physical and mental benefits to staying hydrated that it should be a "must do" from this day forward for everyone.
Wondering how much to drink? I once heard that a good rule of thumb is to take your body weight, divide it by 2 and that is the amount of ounces of water a person drink per day minimum. It's also been said that 3 liters of water is what the average person needs for and active day outdoors. Lastly...NO, BEER ISN'T A WAY TO STAY HYDRATED, SORRY.
I'm just your average guy. I'll take a pair of jeans and a t-shirt over a shirt and tie any day, I love a good BBQ with my friends way more than over spending at a high end steakhouse and when I bought my Jeep back in 2011, I drove off the lot envisioning how great it will look with a lift, bigger tires, and bumpers. Fast forward to today. I still love a good set of tires and bumpers, but now I find myself getting excited thinking of what I can do to the improve the functionality of my Jeep. I love the idea of it performing better than the day I bought it.
The TeraFlex JK performance front and rear big rotor kits are the perfect upgrade for our Jeeps, especially if you run larger tires. Nothing worse than not being able to stop! Well...consider this problem solved! Thanks TeraFlex!
With out getting to "technical" here, the kit is super easy to install. Anyone can do it with just a few basic tools. You keep the factory brake caliper and brake pad and don't even need to touch the lines if you don't want to. You simply remove the caliper from your old rotor, remove the rotor, bolt on the new rotor and reconnect the caliper, BAM...you're done. Basically speaking, here's how it works. By adding the bigger rotor it allows better leverage. That allows you stop comfortably in a shorter distance. Take a look at that specs straight from TeraFlex.
• Brake caliper relocating anchor bracket
• 13.5” machined rotor for superior stopping performance
• Mill-balanced rotors
• External cooling fins for maximum heat dissipation
• Improved braking performance over factory brake system
• Retain factory brake caliper & pads
• Retains internal factory parking brake
• No brake bleeding or brake line modification required
• Fits dual wheel bolt patterns 5x5” or 5x5.5”
• 100% bolt-on upgrade for easy installation
Fits OEM 17” wheels
For just over $420 bucks a pair you can make a huge upgrade to the functionality of your Jeep. I know a break rotor isn't nearly as sexy as a new bumper or some cool lights, but let's face it...stopping is kind of important, right? You can buy the rotor kit and get hooked and end up buying everything else TeraFlex makes like I am at:
I am constantly looking for the perfect daily bag. Having a Jeep, I like to keep my stuff packed up so going topless is never an issue. For me, everyday and every activity is different, so my bag has got to cover it all, and that is not that easy to come by. I do have a list of "must haves" that my daily carry has to meet. Nothing crazy, just a few things that I've found pretty important throughout my years of trail and error.
1. Durability! From the gym to the trail, my bag has got to be tough. Water resistant, easy to clean and made from a material that I can toss around without ruining it is critical.
2. Easily accessible cargo area. If I can't get my to my stuff without a hassle, me sticking with it will never happen. (Hmmm...if I could only find a duffle bag design with backpack straps)
3. Size. Yup, I hate to say this, but size does matter. To big...I don't want to haul it around everywhere. To small, it won't hold my daily stuff.
4. Last, but certainly not least...style! It has got to look good. My style...earthy, outdoorsy and rugged. Earthy means color, outdoorsy means style and rugged has to do with what they make it out of. If a bag meets those three, I'm in!
(more colors available)
The North Face is famous for their backpacks and bags. They are built tough and look great. That makes them an easy choice for most. Their Base Camp series is amongst the toughest of them all too. The Base Camp comes in sizes XS through XL, and they all share the same look and tough build.
I own a couple of the Base Camps. A bigger one for an extended trip off the grid and my new, much loved XS daily carry. My XS is the perfect gym bag, work bag, emergency bag, and daily getaway bag. I absolutely love the small, but not to small size. I also took one of the straps off and went corner to corner with a single strap to give me more of a messenger bag type carry. I've been using the Base Camp everyday since I got it and couldn't be more pleased with the functionality and the way it has held up. It has been a few weeks now and it still looks brand new...impressive!
It it is important to know, this is not a computer bag. You can pack your laptop or iPad up in the bag, just take whatever precautions you need to to protect them first. Now, let's take a peek at the tech specs.
-31-liter volume provides ideal storage for overnighters or day trips
-New side zippered pocket fits a phone, wallet or other quick-access items
-Detachable, adjustable, alpine-cut shoulder straps with ergonomic fit
-New padded side handles serve as both duffel carry handles and haul handles
-D-zip opening with a weather-resistant zipper flap
-Main compartment has a zippered mesh pocket
-Rugged construction with water-resistant Base Camp material and double stitching
-Four compression straps
-Water-resistant ID pocket on top
The Base Camp XS will set you back about $100 bucks, but worth every penny. The duffle bag design keeps thing easy to get into and the backpack straps makes carrying it easy peasey! You can pick up the Base Camp or check out all products from The North Face direct at:
There are thousands of beautiful places to see in this country. From beautiful mountain peaks to the tranquility of the crashing waves of the coastline, you want to see it...America has it to show you. That said...it's time for adventure!
Over the next 12 months I am committed to hitting the road and experiencing my top 5 places I've always wanted to see.
Moab Utah - I've been to Utah a bunch of times. I've packed up the narrows, I've scene the arches, and I've seen the snowy peaks of some of their beautiful mountains. I haven't however spent time Jeeping Moab! There's very little that compares to the beauty of a desert sunset and I can't wait to see one after a long day of trail exploration while sitting around a camp fire just taking in the Beauty of Moab.
Mohave Trail - The Mojave Trail is known for it's many landmarks that range from historically iconic to just plain odd, and it's something all Jeepers should check out at least once! The trail is more likely to give you a laid back camping experience with your friends more than the rush of going head to head with the challenges Mother Nature can throw at you on some of the other trails out there, so keep that in mind.
I have been trying to get out on the Mojave Trail for a couple years now and something has always come up. Not this year though...come fall, I am definitely hitting The Mojave Trail!
The Rubicon Trail - Does a trail get more Jeep than the Rubicon Trail? A 22 mile run, the trail takes you through the beauty of Sierra Nevada. Breath taking tree lines, refreshing water holes, and miles and miles of beauty and adventure, there's a bit of everything on The Rubicon Trail. That means from novice adventurer to the hardcore Jeeper that loves a good challenge, The Rubicon Trail is the place for you!
Tillamook State Forrest - One of the most beautiful places to see in America is Oregon. The beauty of the Pacific Ocean on one side, and the tall green west coast forrest on the other is a tough site to beat. Taking a couple days away to camp through the Tillamook State Forrest will show you Oregon exactly like its suppose to be. There are a few restrictions put in place to reserve the beauty of the place, so look into exactly what you want to do and where you want to go before you get there for the best experience.
Colorado Rockies - Holy Moley! This has been a dream destination for years for me! Year after year I find myself watching videos, looking at pictures, even day dreaming of spending a few days touring The Rockies. Just a man and his Jeep, exploring one of the most beautiful places in the world! Well, this is my year!
I'm not sure where exactly...I'm not sure when exactly, but I am sure that The Colorado Rockies is a place to fall in love with, and I am primed and ready to do just that!
If you're looking to join me on some of my adventures or just spend the day off the grid with friends, get out there and see nature!
Who says Made in the USA can't be affordable?? Kershaw has been a cornerstone in knives for my entire life and from the moment I bought my first Blur I have been a big fan of the brand. Continuing their mission to make Made in the USA affordable, meet my new daily carry...the Link 1776.
This knife looks and feels amazing. It's industrial patriotic design and aggressive tanto blade screams sexy. Throw in the $69.99 price tag and this one becomes the perfect daily carry for everyone.
To be responsible here, we all should spend a little time getting comfortable safely learning how to use a knife first, but then...carry one EVERYWHERE! From security to the smallest of tasks the Link 1776 does the trick.
The handles are machined from lightweight aluminum and anodized dark grey. The sculpted lines of the handle provide for a comfortable and secure grip. It feels big and solid in the hand and offers a clean look. For easy opening, the Link is equipped with SpeedSafe assisted opening, accessed with the built-in flipper. The pocketclip is reversible for convenient left or right-handed pocket carry. The Link is made in Kershaw’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Tualatin, Oregon.
The 420HC stainless blade steel has higher amounts of carbon and chromium to boost hardenability and corrosion resistance. It is an excellent everyday steel: tough, corrosion resistant, easy to sharpen and takes a good edge. Our BlackWash finish gives the blade the well worn look of your favorite pair of jeans and offers additional blade protection.
Size and weight:
Blade length: 3.25 in. (8.4 cm)
Closed length: 4.4 in. (11.2 cm)
Overall length: 7.6 in. (19.3 cm)
Weight: 4.8 oz. (136.1 g)
The Link 1776 has quickly became one of my favorites and I absolutely LOVE the American Flag Kershaw etched into the handle. This one is a keeper folks, go,get yours today!
Check out the full line from Kershaw here: