What is up with all the overloaded Jeeps, lack of 2 door Jeeps, "Overlanding" movement, and odd spotter signals?

OllieChristopher

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Times and fads change. Back in my day it was Baja Bugs and rail buggies. I camped and cross country traveled. Now it's called Overlanding. In fact a short 200 mile day trip through the desert is now called Overlanding.

I was just up in the mountains a month or so ago and the 4 door Jeeps and Subarus with rooftop tents were like cockroaches scrambling for the Yellow Post sites. They were all too scared to take their 50K plus rigs on anything but smooth fire roads. I took my 2WD truck with limited gear and made it to a remote Yellow Post campground all to myself.

And this ongoing trend of just loading these rigs to the gills!! Rooftop tents, 10 extra gallons of gas, huge 60 liter coolers, Impact tools, spare axles, spare this and spare that. And then taking it on nothing more than a smooth fire road for a day trip.

To be fair I have got caught up in the "adventure bike movement" with my Super Tenere. I actually use it for cross country travel and camping. It's not as capable as my Beta dual sport but a lot more comfortable.

And the big elephant in room is I hardly see any 2 door Jeeps unless I'm riding my dirt bike on the nasty 4 track trails. I will say that there is no way in hell I would get a 4 door Wrangler. I might as well get either a 4Runner or Lexus GX470. I'm 100% confident a 2 door Jeep can be packed smartly and very comfortably for cross country travel for 2.

The only possible scenario I can see for a 4 door Wrangler is if you have a large family with teens/adults sitting in the back. Otherwise I don't see the point. And from my perspective of what I see it's very rare to see families traveling in 4 door Jeeps. It's mostly couples or single drivers with the rigs packed to the headliners front to rear.

When spotting: Using hand signals and yelling "Left" -"Right are no more. Now you got all these goofballs screaming "Driver-Passenger"? What started this multi syllable shouting? Only thing I can come up with is the spotters are too dumb to face the driver and process that the drivers left and right are opposite of their own.

Ok, end of multi off topic rant. All good now!!!
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entropy

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yeah the whole overlanding thing is silly. i got an "offroad camper" to pull with my 2 door. i will never ever call it overlanding. as far as i know I am not driving to patagonia.

It is camping. i will set up base camp and go wheel my 2 door as God intended.
 

gato

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Hahah. Some people think the 4-door does not have enough capability for overlanding, so they built overlanding Gladiators, and still exceed it's payload.

To each their own. I for one am happy to see vehicles carrying all this stuff (tools, spares, welding rigs, etc). Bigger chance that if I break down, some one will have the exact part I need for a fix :)
 
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OllieChristopher

OllieChristopher

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yeah the whole overlanding thing is silly. i got an "offroad camper" to pull with my 2 door. i will never ever call it overlanding. as far as i know I am not driving to patagonia.

It is camping. i will set up base camp and go wheel my 2 door as God intended.
Now that is the way to camp!! While the Jeep is not considered a "tow vehicle" . A nice small lightweight rig towed behind to sleep in comfort and carry some gear sounds like a great way to travel in comfort.
 

jludave

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When spotting: Using hand signals and yelling "Left" -"Right are no more. Now you got all these goofballs screaming "Driver-Passenger"? What started this multi syllable shouting? Only thing I can come up with is the spotters are too dumb to face the driver and process that the drivers left and right are opposite of their own.
This has been around for years. It's nothing new. The proper way to spot is using the driver and passenger terminology.
 

displayname

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I think a lot of this comes from social media. Overlanding currently has a lot of "flex" culture in my opinion. It's as much fashion as it is function. For a lot of people shopping and building up their vehicle is as much or more of the hobby than actually using it.

And another factor might be family involvement. For example, I know my wife would prefer a 4 door with an electric cooler, a sink, a shower, an elevated semi hardshell tent, a fold out shade, and 3 types of chairs. Plus space for the 2 dogs.
I'd be happy with 2 doors, a ground tent, 2 chairs and a cooler with some meats and snacks. My wallet would also be happier. But I think it'll be harder to get her involved to "rough it."
 
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OllieChristopher

OllieChristopher

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This has been around for years. It's nothing new. The proper way to spot is using the driver and passenger terminology.
David, it was never used as a form of communicating when spotting in my world. It has only been used since the inception of YouTube and social media platforms. So maybe the last 15 years or so.

I will tell you I will never ever spot someone and use that lame form of communicating directional changes. It's almost as bad as spotters spinning their hand to show which way to turn the steering wheel.
 

MarkY3130

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Rock crawling in my 4 door is way more stable than a previous 2 door. Much prefer this over the 2 door for the rock crawling I enjoy. Additionally, it’s way better in the Jeep than a previous lifted IFS 4Runner. No comparison there really
 

entropy

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Rock crawling in my 4 door is way more stable than a previous 2 door. Much prefer this over the 2 door for the rock crawling I enjoy. Additionally, it’s way better in the Jeep than a previous lifted IFS 4Runner. No comparison there really
although I dont disagree with you, as the 4 door is more stable. have you wheeled a 2 door JL? It doesnt feel nearly like wheeling an older Jeep. my JL feels more stable than my dads old 4 door XJ.
 

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David, it was never used as a form of communicating when spotting in my world. It has only been used since the inception of YouTube and social media platforms. So maybe the last 15 years or so.

I will tell you I will never ever spot someone and use that lame form of communicating directional changes. It's almost as bad as spotters spinning their hand to show which way to turn the steering wheel.
Just because you never encountered it doesn't mean it hasn't been done that way for a long time. I learned driver/passenger spotting back when I got started over 20 years ago. And it makes more sense than left/right. Who's left? Yours or mine? Driver/passenger is clear to both spotter and spotted. Unless you're in a RHD vehicle...

I will agree that spinning hands is dumb.
 

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I am getting ready for a couple week roadtrip in my JLR. Recently sold my RV tow vehicle and I have been off&on packing and repacking my JLR for the last several weeks. Stowing a small apartment worth of goods into a closet ain't working haha. I need to resort back to my dual sport moto camping days but its not going to be easy on my old bones that now like comfort.
I hate novice spotters but understand their good intentions.
 

AcesandEights

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I've watched a lot of Youtube lately, over the last six months. I've come to realize that camping is going out to stay the night, at a destination. Overlanding is going out to drive, the "journey", the "expedition" (this one always cracks me up). I see people who will get excited that they've traveled over 100 miles, they're overlanding!!! But, I guess that's what they're doing. I've ridden my motorcycle over 100 miles of dirt, completely exhausted. I'm overlanding on a DR650, or maybe I'm adventure biking...not sure the trendy name now.

I think it's ridiculous to add 500 lbs of "gear", most of which you will never use. Seems silly to me, counter-productive. Add weight that impacts the driving characteristics of the vehicle, buy suspension to compensate, add 37" tires to do fire roads. People will carry ten gallons of fuel and never be more than 50 miles from a gas station. It's just silly when I see one of these "overlanding" rigs traveling a "road" that can be traversed in a 1988 Toyota Camry.
 

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The camping I do with my Jeep trips involves staying at a KOA or similar campground. I head out for a week long vacation to places like Ouray or Moab. I pack a 10x10 cabin tent I can stand up in, a cot so I don't have to sleep on the ground (getting old sucks), an awning for shade, some camp chairs, all of my Jeeping recovery gear, and other miscellaneous little stuff. It all unpacks into a modest base camp. I keep my recovery gear in the Jeep and leave the base camp set up all week. But fitting all of that in a 2 door is a challenge. But that's just a motivator to reduce the quantity of stuff I take with me.

I've switched over to a 4 door, mostly because the Wrangler is my all-around-everything vehicle right now. There are outside considerations to having more room that have nothing to do with off road performance. I still take the same quantity of stuff. I just have more room to stow it without blocking my rear view.

As I get older, the ability to tow a small camping trailer (popup or teardrop) will let me get away from tent camping over time. The 3,500 pound tow rating of the 4 door opens up more options than I had with the 2,000 pound capacity of the 2 door. I won't start cramming more stuff in. I'll just have a mostly empty Jeep towing a small trailer.

With regards to people with all of the "overlanding" gear, I scratch my head when I see some of them.

I do remember seeing the pair of Jeeps at camp that had rooftop tents. Every day, they pull in, unfold the tent, get out all of the gear, cook their meals, and turn in for the day. In the morning, they pack it all back up, hit a trail all day, and come home. Lather, rinse, repeat. And that was just a little bit absurd. With a camp trailer, they could have dropped off the trailer and left it set up while they hit the trails.

On the other hand, I do know people who like to load up a Jeep for a week long trip getting away from it all. For them, it's about getting way off the beaten path where they set up for a week. They ride bikes, hike, go fishing, etc. For them, the Jeep is all about getting to that remote spot to camp and stay for a while in one spot. And that makes more sense. You just don't see them at the popular off road parks as much.

There's also the true overlanders. They do very long remote trails where they go for a while, set up camp, get up the next morning and move off down the trail. They're well away from civilization and they need to be able to pack everything. If you actually do that kind of Jeeping, the large quantity of gear makes sense. But I'd say those people are a minority.


Then there are all of the posers. They're like all of the suburbanites who have 1/2 ton pickup trucks that they never use as trucks. For them it's all about having the expensive toys. They don't use them. They just like to have them. They have a compulsion to buy stuff that looks cool without really knowing what's actually useful off road and what isn't. The ones who actually go off road a bit end up ditching a lot of the junk they never use. But many don't go off road much and care more about having a cool looking Jeep with lots of junk bolted on.
 
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