This past summer I took the test to get my amateur radio (HAM) license. One thing that interested me about amateur radio was APRS, or Automatic Packet (Position) Reporting System. APRS basically uses radio waves to transmit data automatically at various intervals. The information transmitted can include many different items, but one bit of data often transmitted is GPS coordinates. This location data can be very useful to keep track of others in your group, or for someone at home to monitor your off-road location. http://aprs.fi/ is one online site that shows recent APRS user locations. Information of local APRS users can also be shown on your radio or on an attached GPS device.
Since the Lone Star Cruiser Roundup starts this week, we thought a nice video showcasing FJ Cruisers at Katemcy Rocks would a good Toyota Video Of the Week.
There are a few schools of thought when building a capable, useful off-road trailer. Some choose to go very basic, using their trailer as little more than a cargo carrier, while others go all-out with built in kitchens, showers, and entertainment systems.
Regardless of how you intend to use a trailer, the basic upgrades are usually the same. Of course storing basic camping gear such as food, accessories, clothing, and camp gear is a given, a few other essentials are usually on the list of upgrades.
This week we have an amazing shot from Monte's EPIC Adventure Part 3(a). This photo was taken near Ouray (Lake City | Telluride) Colorado in 2013. Click the image for a high-res version.
Photo by Monte Nickles
I will be the first to admit that there are few things in life I find as rewarding as settling down to a great meal after a day of exploring the backcountry. I will also admit that the first meals Krista and I prepared in the field were less than stellar. I was inexperienced cooking in the wilderness on a camp stove. I had grown up camping with Dutch ovens and had no idea what I was doing when I went to purchase our first stove. Over time I began to realize that not all camp stoves are created equal, and most have been purposefully designed for certain segments of the outdoor market.
Photos by: Monte Nickles, Ben Springli, Mike Digirat
Hello TCT Readers! Some of you might be very familiar with this great adventure The Epic from the last issues of Tacoma Magazine. Some of you however are new to this tale. It’s great that it’s all finally come together so we can now share our adventures amongst our fellow Toyota brothers. That said, allow me to fill in the new guys as to what is going on.
The Epic is the name for the two week long expedition over the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Colorado. Over a thousand miles and 20 trails during this epic journey! We had people join us as far as Washington and Arizona.
Jeff Williams and his 16 year-old son, Blake, have embarked on a rebuild and restoration project that will enable Blake to enjoy a very capable off-road 4Runner. Jeff wanted something durable that was fairly easy for Blake to modify and work on. Jeff’s brother, Mike, is also involved in the project. The Williams family has a long history working with Toyota products. Jeff owned a 1983 Toyota SR5 4X4 pickup truck for 19 years that had over 300,000 miles when he parted with it. Over the years, Jeff has related his memories in that truck to Blake. These truck stories inspired Blake to look for a first generation Toyota to call his own. Jeff currently owns a 1983 Toyota FJ40 (in fairly stock condition)—a vehicle that exemplifies the simplicity and durability of the early/first gen Toyota trucks.
For this edition of Toyota Video of the Week, how about a few classic Land Cruiser commercials? Don't you just love YouTube!
Unstoppable Big 6!
Tough as an amphibian tank!
Lovely lady + Land Cruisers = WIN!
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After a week in Ouray exploring the San Juan Mountains with the Manley off-road trailer mounted with its CVT tent, I was hooked on the convenience of the rooftop tent when overlanding. This got the wheels turning in my head on how to transform Blue Betty into a rig fit for multi-day overlanding explorations. First step taken toward this new phase of the truck’s life was to find a way to mount up a rooftop tent. Without a place to store a trailer and knowing I’ll be tackling some harder trails on my journeys, I knew a bed rack would be my best option for what I needed.