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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Here I will post pics and info about some of the adventures we have enjoyed in our 2010 FJ Cruiser. I will try to accurately describe the trails and the amount of difficulty we encountered so that it may be beneficial to other members. Please feel free to ask questions, ask for directions, comments or add your own experiences on these particular trails or areas in here at any time.

Current mods: 3" lift. Tires are 285/70/17 BFG AT's. Everything else is stock. FJ does have a rear locking differential.

This is where we spent our first night in our 2010 FJ. We pulled in late at night so were not picky about the perfect spot. This is in the Mill Canyon area just south of the Moab airport. There are lots of super off road opportunities in this area.

This is in Long Canyon, just north west of Moab. A very easy trail, but beautiful and worth the trip. We did this and Gemini Bridges the same day.

A view nearing the top of Long Canyon.

Enjoying the desert north of Grand Junction, Colorado.

Elk hunting in the Colorado high country. I slept in the back three nights in a row. Low temps between 10 and 25 degrees. My water bottles inside the FJ did not freeze.

This is on the potash/ Schaefer Switchback trail just N.W. of Moab, looking down on the Colorado River. This is where they filmed part of the movie, Thelma and Louise. This trail is very easy. The switchbacks are tight and steep, but a Subaru could easily do it.

And the other direction.

The bluff in the distance is Dead Horse Point. This photo was taken from the same place as the two previous.

Our FJ was not the biggest kid on the block.

Running Dome Plateau trail, just N.E. of Moab with forum members Sweptwingnut. The hi tech pics were taken by them. This trail is quite easy with 3 inches of lift. Lots of side roads, so GPS is helpful.

Posing on the slick rock. Fanny dragging.

Laboca Arch. Getting here was the hardest part of the trail.

This was probably the most challenging obstacle on the entire trail.

Some neat old houses near some mines built out of rail road ties.


A gravel pile calling my name. Three attempts to get on top. Real loose.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
These pictures were taken around Ouray Colorado. These were taken on our way to Yankee Boy Basin. Very easy trail but thrilling just the same. A must do and see trail.




Camping that night on Red Mountain Pass.

We went back up to Ouray two weeks later, which happened to be the fourth of July. Another memorable camp out. We really sleep well in the back of the FJ.

We do a fair amount of hiking and exploring old mining sites. We thought this old wooden pipe was pretty neat. It goes to show if there is a will there is a way.

A beautiful view as we headed up Engineer pass trail. This road was quite easy but did have a few tight switchbacks that were relatively steep and rocky. Nothing a stock FJ couldn't handle though.


57 degrees on the 4th of July. It was in the 90's just two hours away at home.

Lots of snow, simply breathtaking views.

Did I mention the plethora of snow???

The top!

And heading down, we found MORE snow!!!

We were going to watch the fireworks show in Lake City and find a place to park and sleep in the back but it was raining buckets. I got soaked airing the tires back up. We went all the way to Blue Mesa Reservoir and slept there. Another fun night in the back of the FJ. It is so nice not to have to drop cash on a hotel unless we choose to do so.

The bugs were a bit thick so we put in our screens.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
This brings us up to this weekend in Moab. We have made some improvements to the FJ in the last month or so. I built front and rear bumpers. A rear slider. Installed some Rigid D2 lights. Still no skids.

To see the details go here;

These were taken on 3/7/15. The trail was Chicken Corners. We have always wanted to explore this area more, yesterday we did just that. The trail was very easy. We saw two stock FJ's on it and they were having no trouble at all. We chose a more difficult line a few times, but that was optional.

The top of Hurrah Pass.

This is looking down into the valley we are about to descend into.

The trail is plenty wide, beautiful, but cliff ridden. Common sense, and low gears will get you down without heating up your brakes. We used 4 lo to keep it slow. Gosh I like being able to see the front tires now. What a drastic change in appearance and abilities.

Here is a view of where we are heading.

Here you see the snow capped LaSalle Mountain tops to the east.

Here we are coming up on Chicken Corners. The river is straight below us. No drinking and driving on this trail fellas.




Not a bad spot for lunch. This is straight across the river from the Thelma and Louise cliff I showed you earlier. I think the network of roads out here is simply amazing. Hats off to the State of Utah for allowing us to "Tread Lightly" in this beautiful back country. And many thanks to all those who do so much to help keep these trails open. ( Blue Ribbon Coalition and Red Rock 4 Wheelers just to name a couple!!:rocker:)

Also I feel BIG props are due to all of you!!! I've been going to Moab quite regularly for the past decade. Lots and lots of people frequent these trails. Usually when lots of people are involved, one finds lots of trash strewn about. These trails are clean as can be. I know some dirt bags litter here and there, but it's folks like you and I who pick up trash when we see it that keeps these trails open and looking so pristine.

Another thing that is great to see is the lack of tire tracks "out of bounds." Props again for staying on the trail. There are misinformed morons out there, trying vehemently to get these lands closed off to our kind of recreation. Keeping in bounds and picking up after the slobs will speak volumes in our favor. Thanks Folks!!

Anyway, on this trail we saw a few folks out here but generally speaking had the place all to ourselves. Special day.

I don't have to be spinning my wheels to have a good time in my FJ.


The butte above the FJ is Dead Horse Point, once again. We are straight across the river/canyon from where we were the other day.


What a big, beautiful place. We love it out there. Beautiful views, 360 degrees.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
This was an ugly spot. Yes there was a bypass, but sometimes you just have to see what the old girl can do. We did not air the tires down and I forgot to lock the rear diff, but made it up without much drama at all. I was quite impressed. We didn't drag or rub a thing.

The thing in the front hitch is my rear slider. Didn't need it for this trail and couldn't think of a better place to carry it. I did remove the rear step just before climbing this.

Believe it or not, there is a bed and breakfast out here in the middle of no where. We had no idea it existed. I read some of the reviews and it seems like a great place owned and ran by great people. Pretty cool you have to off road over 20 miles to get to it. It's called Base Camp and is located right on the Colorado River. You can drive or float to it from Moab. They will get you back to town.


Making our way back up the windy road.

The end of a long but rewarding day in the FJ. Now we are off to find a quiet place to sleep in the back! I have a feeling that won't be hard at all.

This Toyota has been a joy to own, work on, modify and drive. It has taken us a lot of neat places. That being said, we have owned it for 11 months and have only put 3200 miles on it so far. It currently has 28,000 miles on the clock! We save it for adventures and put our commuting miles on our car. Kind of like using the right tool for the job. The FJ is definitely the right tool for our type of weekend adventures.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
This morning we decided to try and make it all the way to I-70 without touching pavement once we left Hwy 313 just north of Moab. We looked at our Wells book and decided to take the Rainbow Terrace trail. It's located N.W. of Moab about 15 miles.

This trail has a couple ugly spots that could be challenging for those that aren't lifted. We didn't drag at all but it was close.

The scenery is breathtaking, to us at least. The junipers, red rocks, dead cedars, sand and huge boulders are pretty cool.

Here we are at the beginning of the trail.

Here's a look at where we are heading first.

If you like big rocks you would love this trail.

A few small ledges to descend and ascend.

I love the look of "nothing" behind the rear tires. No worries while dropping off ledges.


We had this trail all to ourselves. Didn't hear or see a soul. Temps were in the 30's when we woke up. We stayed warm sleeping in the back of the FJ. They rose to the 60's around 2 pm. Perfect weather.

Here we are dropping into a wash. Getting out was a bit harder.

These pictures make this stuff look like the Walmart parking lot. I know this trail is considered moderate. A person could drag his belly if he didn't choose the right line, but exercising a little good judgment and most stock SUV's should be able to get through it unscathed. However, a little lift goes a long way.

We still do not have any skids mounted so we are taking it easy. That being said, Even with full armor I will avoid trails like Steel Bender, Metal Masher, Poison Spider and the like. I've been on those rough rocky trails. I just don't think they are much fun anymore. I enjoy moving a bit faster, seeing a bit more country and I have a few fillings I'd like to keep. Anywho, let's see if we can get out of this wash. There are only two options. Neither super easy for a vehicle that has never drug his belly.

Here is the approach of the harder route.



The next ledge is a bit easier.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Another good sized ledge.

A little more gas and up we go!! Really didn't spin a tire on this trail, not yet anyway. Some fun sandy stuff up ahead.

More huge boulders. We stopped here for some breakfast.

Our little dog stops to catch her breath. So far she has chased two rabbits and a half dozen lizards. She's beat. Her and Mom walked most of the trail so far.

I know this trail would bore most of you guys to tears, but we really got a kick out of it. After breakfast we relaxed on one of these gargantuas rocks and let the sun beat down on us for a while.

Again, not even the sound of a motorbike in the distance. And they call this public lands??? Man I love living in the West!!!

The last of the rocks.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
We followed this shelf and dropped off onto the desert floor for some faster driving. I guess there were a couple more rocks, lol.

Time for some fun in the sand.


This trail was quite fun. It climbed in and out of this wash quite a few times. It's funny. Here and there I could see where other vehicles were having difficulty and where their tires were hopping in the sand. This FJ of ours remained planted, on course, spinning only when I wanted it to, and it never once hopped like poorly suspended 4x4's do.

We didn't even air down for this trail and this thing was still AMAZING in this deep sand. I even took it out of 4 lo so I could try to have a little more fun. This FJ with the manual tranny and all time four wheel drive handled this terrain with ease. I quit trying to drift it about, it was just too planted.

Hats off to Icon and BFG AT's!! Hats off to Toyota:rocker:

An Auto, in 2WD equipped with long arms and those huge coil overs you guys are running would have been a gas in this sand. The sandy road had lots of whoops in it and it was quite steep getting in and out of the wash.

We had about 15 miles of this to scoot through, so scoot we did. Some places the road was washed out and the ruts were 3 feet deep. This kept us on our toes.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
We came to a sign that said, "Hi way 191 turn right." My goal was to hit I-70 w/o touching pavement, so left we went. At times this dirt road was going S.W. so we were in fact back tracking so to speak. It ended up going predominately N.W though. We do not have a fancy GPS so not sure which road we were on. I knew if it went north at all we would hit I-70.

After all this off-roading, we were still over 3/4's of a tank of fuel. These FJ's do great on gas when you aren't pushing air at 70-80 mph. After about 15 miles we came to a fork in the road. It said "White Wash Sand Dunes". I've always wanted to check them out, so South we went. Ten miles later we found this.

The dog was really "DIGGING" it!

We went for a hike.


I think we will do some camping here next month. Hope you enjoyed the photos.
After checking out the sand dunes we headed back north. After 13 miles of dirt road our tires hit the pavement, yes, it was I-70. We did it.

I'll post more pictures here when our FJ takes us on our next adventure!!!

Thanks for looking. Happy Trails Folks.

I Have a V-8!! Moderator
40,122 Posts
Nice photos. They really make me miss my trips to Moab. If those are the dunes I'm thinking of there is a trail off of them that ends up at Crystal Geyers not far from Green River. It's been awhile since I've been up that way though.
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2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Nice photos. They really make me miss my trips to Moab. If those are the dunes I'm thinking of there is a trail off of them that ends up at Crystal Geyers not far from Green River. It's been awhile since I've been up that way though.
Thanks. I think you are correct. I know the geyser is just south of GR. We have never been there. I've heard people wait hours and hours for it to spout off. We were just a bit east of there. Yesterday we asked some Utah guys if there were any more dunes. They didn't know of any.

I'm thinking about pulling the bikes down there in a month and doing some camping. Might have to order some fresh paddle tires.

Come on down BIGGUY!!


This trip is out of order but a great trip and the FJ once again was the perfect vehicle to take. I pulled our little boat to the lake for some camping and fishing. The FJ scooted just fine at hwy speeds pulling the load.

We ran into some rain which made things a little interesting. I had tire chains with me but was too lazy to put them on. After sliding about I wished I would have put them on. This road was 13 miles long and had some nasty drop offs here and there. We didn't run into a single vehicle on our way in or out. Getting stuck out here would have been really bad.


See what I mean.

When I say drop offs, I mean DROP OFFS. This road was all clay in all the wrong places.

Like most of Southern Utah, the views were absolutely spectacular.

After the dangerous sections were behind us and the skies began to get brighter, we started having fun.

We found the perfect camping spot.

Some mice....I do believe I built a better mouse trap. Two large pieces of flat sand stone, 20 feet of Para chord and a 4 inch long stick.

And a boat load of striped bass. An awesome Father Son outing.

I Have a V-8!! Moderator
40,122 Posts
Yea it was several years ago I was the tail gunner on that run 2 or 3 years in a row during the Easter Safari. We lucked out every time and hit it where we only had to wait about 10 minutes before she blew. That trail starts out in the red dirt and rocks north of Moab and then goes through a section they called the moon where there were gray strange shaped rocks. Long but a pretty neat drive. The last time we ran it was a bit of a bummer as the leader who I ran it with had just pre-ran the trail a couple of days before and there was an old cabin and watering hole that we stopped at for lunch. Someone burned down the cabin and then to top it off they caught someone tossing rocks and stuff into the geyser at some time around then and it partially plugged it up.

I can't handle the rough jarring stuff anymore as it hurts my back a lot so I've stuck to mostly easy scenic stuff the last few times I've been down there. Stuff like the Potash Road to Shafer Trail and up into the park and then down Long Canyon and back to town. I've also spent some time exploring up in the La Sals and found a road the went back a few miles and then came out near a reservoir and tied into the hwy that takes you to Naturita and Ouray. I had a lot of friends down there from Safari times but have lost touch with most except for Chip at Chip's tire as I drove down to buy tires from him a lot over the years and a couple of times with the FJ too.

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Yea it was several years ago I was the tail gunner on that run 2 or 3 years in a row during the Easter Safari.

I hear ya on the rough stuff, it gets old. The jeep, disconnected, with the 35's aired down to 10 psi was pretty smooth, all things considered. Still, we could spend 5 or 6 hours on a 15 mile section. I like moving about a bit faster/further now as well. I think that body of water you found was Buckeye reservoir. I've never been there, but close. It's on the list.

I can't believe someone would throw rocks into the geyser. Well, yes I can. These morons ruin everything for the rest of us who at least have a certain level of respect for our planet and fellow man.

Years ago we were at one of our favorite riding places in Pueblo. Yes that was the closest decent place to ride in the winter when we lived in Denver. It took us 2.5 hours to get there. This place was pretty awesome. Huge hills, jumps, washes, moto x track, drag strip, single tracks. They held trials competitions there as well.

Most of the area was open to the public. No gates, no fences. It was a dream for off road enthusiasts. My kids loved it there because the terrain offered something for everyone. Once we saw the military testing out Hum V's. Then a guy in a lifted Samurai embarrassed them big time.

Every time we went we would pick up 2 or 3 bags of trash and haul it home. We were in the Ford eating our lunch. A truck with three guys in it went by us. The bed was stacked high with trash. I told my Wife and kids to wait in the truck. I hopped on my bike and followed these guys from a distance.

After a mile or so they all jumped out and began hurling plywood, carpeting, trash bags, you name it into the desert. I waited until they were just about done unloading. As I rode up to them I memorized their plate number. I shut off my bike and asked them what they were doing. They admitted they were dumping junk. I wasted a few minutes of my life trying to educate these kids. I then told them that they are all adults as I was. I said, "You have your free agency and so do I. You do whatever you wish, but I have your plate number and as soon as I finish my lunch I'm going to come back out here and see if this mess is still here. If so I will go into town and call the Sheriff. (This was before cell phones) I'm sure he will have a deputy available to come out here with me and take my statement and some detailed pictures".

I also said, "You can bet your bottom dollar I will show up for your court date." I rode off and looked back as I crested the hill, the little barstards were loading up their truck. I'm sure they dumped it somewhere else.

If you like to camp we should hook up and do the White Rim trail some time. I've been around it part way and it is quite tame. Views are un-real.
We're open for suggestions and company any time.

I Have a V-8!! Moderator
40,122 Posts
People don't care. Hell it was just in the news yesterday that two girls from the U.S. were caught carving their names into a wall at the Colosseum in Rome.

One year at Safari a friend was leading the Hole in the Rock Trail and they came to a section with closed signs and what was supposed to be a gate. There was a Jeep that had tore down the chain and drove down into that closed area and was stuck and trying to winch back up. They called and got the authorities there right quick.

One trail I was on stopped and I wasn't sure what was going on. Later my friend who was up near the front told me that they had stopped and the trail leader caught some guys in a Blazer rip tearing around doing donuts off the trail. He tried to explain to them why they shouldn't be doing it and the guys just go up in his face and asked what he was going to do about it. He went back and used the radio and called it in. About 5 minutes later a Police chopper flew in and the leader and some others waved their club jackets and the chopper sat down. They talked to the guy and arrested him right there. He tried to deny that he knew it was wrong, but there were the little carsonite signs all over where he was at. His truck was towed out later and I heard that he got slapped pretty hard with fines and a nice sized towing bill.

Garbage dumping here is something that's done a lot and it's just plain stupid. Most of the time they could have driven just a bit farther and dumped everything for free at the landfill. No signing papers or nothing. They just weigh you on the way in and out and that's it. I was happy because last summer they put in a law and made it a $750 reward if you catch someone dumping trash now. I'll be looking to make some extra cash this summer.

I'd like to meet up sometime. I've got a Tundra now so I can't do the nasty stuff and there's no temptation with it. I'm trying to get a trailer set up so I can camp and travel a bit again. I need something that I can put a recliner in because I can't sleep in a bed or on the ground anymore. I'm looking at a cargo trailer conversion. Something with a few comforts, but mainly just a place to hold my chair so I can sleep and relax. I've got all of the gear like stoves, grills, etc. If I get everything set up I'd love to get together and do some exploring.

Premium Member
2,204 Posts
Thanks for the great post.I have been Jonesing to go & this makes it much worse!

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Thanks for the great post.I have been Jonesing to go & this makes it much worse!
You bet. I hope I've inspired you to get out here. Especially before it gets too hot. Those trails were rated towards the harder end of the moderate list in the Wells book. That means there are 20 or so easier named trails in his book. Lots to do and see out there without winching and scraping things up.

Premium Member
2,204 Posts
You bet. I hope I've inspired you to get out here. Especially before it gets too hot. Those trails were rated towards the bottom end of the moderate list in the Wells book. That means there are 20 or so easier named trails in his book. Lots to do and see out there without winching and scraping things up.
I also like to explore and see things along the way. I do hard trails also. But most likely will be alone in a well prepped rig & would enjoy the trails & views. Great post. I also hate to see people messing things up for all of us. I make very little trash on my trips But my Trasharoo is always full when I return home.
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Premium Member
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Great write up and pictures.
Thanks for the journey.
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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
I'd like to meet up sometime.
I just saw this. Ya, it truly amazes me what stupid people are capable of doing. Like the scout master who knocked over a named rock formation near Goblin Valley last year. I believe he had told his scouts to help him push it over. Good grief, when I was a scout they taught us to "Be Prepared", not "Be Destructive".. I'm no angel but hey, we don't litter, shoot up signs or ruin property. I would like these lands to be open for my grand kids to enjoy.

No problems on taking the easier routes. In fact we like camping and relaxing about as much as off roading. Good people and good food make for good times. Don't need to be burning gas to enjoy my days off.

It's funny. We have been to 8 of the last 10 Jeep Safari's in Moab. Most of the time we will just make our way to a good obstacle and set up our chairs, plop down the cooler and watch the show. If the weather is nice down there we always have a great time.

Have you seen these trailers? Kind of an easy affordable way to get a toy hauler type trailer. Plenty of room for a huge azz recliner.

2015 Forest River Work And Play 24UC Travel Trailer Troy, OH Arbogast RVs

Just let us know when you are coming out this way and we will join up with you if we can.:rocker:

2,669 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Just got home from a wonderful 3 day stint in Moab. I drug the trailer down there. Spent two days riding the bike and today in the FJ. Trips like this was exactly why I sold the Jeep and bought the FJ. It did not disappoint.

Here is our camp.

Views from camp.


Curtains up, keeping things cool, ready for bed. Spent two nights sleeping in the back.

Enjoying the fire pan I made. Cooked rib eyes on it after it burned down. Yum Yum!! Good food, people, good times.
Fire pan.jpg

Today on the popular Fins and Things trail. A nice shot of the RCI skids I love so much.


This trail has some pretty good grades. My Son was driving. We decided to wait to air down until we needed to. Didn't want to compromise entry and exits unless we had to. 55 psi. Brakes barely held here.

This was so much fun we climbed it and came down again. I was really impressed with these completely aired up, half worn BFG's. They hooked up like crazy!! I asked my Son what the inclinometer was reading. He laughed and said it was pegged! I'm learning to use the shackles on the bumper as inclinometers, lol.
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