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lilred4runner 08-11-2010 05:14 PM

New to the area
The wife and I just moved to Thornton from Western Wa. We are looking for some tips on moderate 4 wheeling trails. I have a stock Toyota 4 Runner with over 200k but she still runs up and down the road OK. Any resources, personal experience's, great photo ops, old deserted mining towns, does and don'ts, your list minimum day trip items would be a great help, besides the obvious like a good spare and a good jack.

Looked at some of the shots from some of your trips. Very cool. I don't think lilred is up for the challenge yet, tips on upgrades would also be appreciated. This is not my daily driver so some cool cheap ideals are most welcome.

Where do you shop for parts?

Thanks for you time,


LXBRADY 08-11-2010 05:46 PM

Welcome, John:thumb:

I suggest picking up Charles Wells books for starters. Also Traildamage.com is fairly comprehensive from mild to wild.

Start with the easy runs and work up from there. Venture out with the club or pick a friend and wheel with them. Good easy trails I would recommend are Bill Moore, Slaughter House Gultch. If you want a taste of shelf roads, Mosqiuto pass or anything outside of Ouray.

Have fun, check out a meeting, ask questions.

LXBRADY 08-11-2010 05:49 PM

What year is your 4Runner?

lilred4runner 08-11-2010 07:13 PM

Thanks for the info
Thanks I will take a look for the book and bookmark the link.

lilred is a 95 3.0L auto, with a little less power then when she was new, not that she had a lot then.

Dr. Schlegs 08-11-2010 07:37 PM

If you are going out solo make sure you have a HAM Radio. After I had a breakdown on Bill Moore, there is a lot of talk about what to have in recovery kits. Look for the Bill Moore post rally run and recovery kit threads.


farnhamstj 08-11-2010 09:36 PM

Welcome. Mosquito Pass is very pretty. So are Shrine Pass and the Camp Hale Area. I get my stuff from Slee Off Road. Just start driving and you'll figure out what you need. I would get a fire extinguisher, 12v air-compressor, high-lift jack, towstrap and big D rings. There is a good thread on Recovery gear. Big tires and lift kits will just get you stuck further away from home. Experience is more valuable than any upgrades.

lilred4runner 08-11-2010 09:55 PM

Great info, thanks for your time.

RedCreeper 08-12-2010 01:42 AM

An easy one and can be fun for a stocker that is close try Switzerland Trail. Very easy one and very close. Dont forget your bag of recovery gear. There are others in that area also.


subzali 08-12-2010 07:41 AM

Also the Rollins Pass Road is a good scenic byway, just west of Rollinsville. Rampart Range Road west of Castle Rock is good, Boreas Pass...maybe start with some of these easier backroads to get a feel for the area.

I would recommend getting a couple of these maps as well:

I personally would start with the Pike National Forest, Arapaho/Roosevelt National Forests, and White River National Forest for stuff that's close by.

I would also recommend you get up to Rocky Mountain National Park in late September when the elk are bugling. It can get kinda busy, but it's fun to watch them. And you can take Fall River Road up to Trail Ridge Road and that's a good view. Also take a few hours and take the Mt. Evans toll road - it's paved but it's worth the view. So is Hwy 6 up Clear Creek Canyon from Golden, then up and over Loveland Pass to Silverthorne.

If you want to go a little farther, head out to Buena Vista and go up to St. Elmo. From there you could take Tincup Pass over to Taylor Reservoir, then back over Cottonwood Pass to Buena Vista. You could also head up over Hancock Pass, check out the Alpine Tunnel, head down to Pitkin, and from there either head up over Cumberland Pass to Taylor Park again or head south back to Hwy 50 if you need to get home.

I also would recommend maybe heading out I-70 to Glenwood Springs, soaking in the hot springs pool, then heading down to Aspen and checking out the Maroon Bells, then heading back over Independence Pass (closed in winter, though it's paved) and making a good loop out of it.

Hope that helps, and welcome :thumb: Come to a meeting sometime! And BTW, a lot of us shop at the local Toyota dealerships for parts, because they really do a pretty good job of taking care of us. Stevinson West, Boulder, Groove, and Go Toyota all have discounts for Rising Sun. For 4x4 stuff, Rockstomper is close to you, but of course Slee Off Road is a member of Rising Sun and has all the good stuff available :D. There is also High Country Performance 4x4.

Good to have you! :thumb:

lilred4runner 08-12-2010 05:55 PM

Great stuff!
I want to thank everyone for the input. Just bought the book funtreks and will put it to good use. I can't wait to head up, not sure where yet. I will need to pick up some supply's before we go, I have more then I thought. I still need to go out I buy a hi-lift and some chain. Looking forward to running into you all.:cheers:

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