Re: Front receiver + brush guard + skid plate = impossible?
Hobby it is not. I write and perform music, collect Indian art, hoard history books (over 700), etc. Too many hobbies as it is. The FJ was purchased because it seemed the most reliable way to see all the dirt roads we have passed in the last five years while driving in our motor home, with the FJ being reasonably comfortable to drive 1000 or so miles to get to the dirt road. I do not relish time spent working on a vehicle - I built a couple of street rods and the doing is all out of my system. I hate changing oil.
I don't think having the equipment would help me avoid getting stuck - I hope I didn't make it sound that way. I would avoid getting stuck by not taking chances on a dicey trail, not bashing my radiator on a rock, traveling in a group, avoiding the wet or muddy season, following direction of those more experienced than me, going slow enough to anticipate my next move, scouting stream crossings or tall grass before proceeding, carrying an extra accessory belt, bringing along a decent tool kit, having a couple of straps, chains, the mentioned come-along, and being willing to turn back.