I was an Army brat, so I’ve lived everywhere – but for the past decade, my home base has been Colorado. Currently, I own/run a small holster company LLOD, and do this YouTube / Social Media thing. Previously I worked as a backend web developer, and currently, also do some marketing for Fox.
My automotive background is nothing formal – just been a garage tinkerer and off-roader for as long as I can remember. Mostly trucks – the whole UTV world is very new to me. The first off-road vehicle that I owned was actually the first vehicle I got when I got my license, a Jeep Wrangler.
My Wrangler was pretty much stock – I was just a poor high schooler. In college, I built up a Suzuki Samurai from stock – converted it to coil suspension and did all kinds of crazy stuff to that. Probably the ultra-low transfer case gears were my favorite thing; I could just get out, and watch it crawl up obstacles on its own.
ULTIMATE UTILITY RIG
In a perfect world, I’d have a few rigs for different activities. The General fits me really well because it’s a great rig to work around the property, but also take out in the Colorado back-country. It’ll be a capable little pack mule for some hunts, and just a great utility rig for my property. So yeah, if I were to choose a single rig, it’d still be the General. Ideally, it’s a multi-function rig that I can use as a mountain bike shuttle, get to some back-country fly fishing spots, use as a hunting rig, etc. Currently, it’s just kind of a fun trail rig and another tool for the property.
UTVs seem to be getting more and more popular on the trails, so they’re at a point where it’s impossible to ignore them. I wanted to see what they were all about and see how I could work them into my adventures. It’s a pretty new rig, and the whole thing is pretty new to me.
The aftermarket parts are all functional upgrades/modifications. For the exhaust, I wanted a quieter, more pleasant tone, since it’ll also just be a work vehicle around my property. The various racks were because I’m a bit of a gear junky, and knew that I’d want to pack a bunch of stuff. All of the future stuff I have planned will really just come into play as I get a little more experience with what the General is capable of as it sits, and the areas that I think could use upgrading.
LEARN TO LET GO
Historically I’ve always been one to do the work on my rigs – from an earlier time where I had much more time than money. As I get older and my plate fills more, and I have access to more disposable income, I’m learning to let other people work on my rigs more. I have my hands in a lot of projects and am learning to let go a little, haha. G-Force Powersports is a local shop that has been doing a lot of modifications on the General.
There’s nothing really custom yet. There have been some very small fabricated pieces to get my comms setup dialed how I want it, but nothing really noteworthy. The build isn’t final, so I’m sure this will change as I add more to it, but some of my favorite features: HMF exhaust, because it really improves the tone and makes it less harsh (though I’d honestly love a solution that just drops the decibels as much as humanly possible). The RBO Expedition Rack is awesome and adds a ton of storage to the rig. The Rugged Radios are great because comms are key. KC Hilites Flex Era 4s, ’cause they’re just awesome.
I think it’s a challenge I’m still working through. Historically the truck/rig that I drove to the trail was also the rig that I drove on the trail. Now I’m needed to decide which to drive, and what to take where. It’ll be a little bit of a learning curve to find out what is the best/most fun/most logical rig to take at times.
Other than the plethora of trails within an hour or two of my place near Denver – I’d love to get it out to Telluride/Ouray. I’ve spent a good bit of time out there in trucks, but I think the experience would be even cooler with a side-by-side on the trails. I’m no stranger to Moab either, so that’s naturally a destination that I’d like to take the General. One thing I’ve never done surprisingly is ripping around on the dunes. We’ll see if the General is up to that task, but more than likely
I’ll expand the fleet and outfit a Turbo RZR that might be a little better suited for some of the fast stuff. I have a few spots that I love and try to keep relatively private. I love getting up to secluded alpine lakes, letting the dogs roam free, and not having anyone else in sight.
ALWAYS A PREPPER
I tend to use a variety of apps like ONx, OnTrail, Gaia, etc – but also just google satellite to scope places out, and Google to find some blogs, etc talking about places. I have a pretty good network of adventurous friends that are willing to share some of their favorite spots with me as well. For preparation, I just try to have all the various gear that can get me out of some trouble. Figuring out some of the common things that fail on a UTV versus a truck (belts, axles, etc) – and expanding my trail fix knowledge.
I try to have at least a base level of knowledge on how to fix some common things that could break or go wrong, in conjunction with bringing along the tools and spares necessary to get you back on the trail. Other than that, recovery gear, medical gear, and comms gear carry over pretty well from the overland world. I’ll also usually try to hit trails with a buddy, so in a worst-case scenario, we can use the other rig to get us back where we need to go.
THE JOURNEY IS JUST BEGINNING
It’s been a fun little beginning to this journey so far. Polaris has been super helpful with the build, and they’re amazing partners to have. UTV Source has been another awesome resource with all things aftermarket and helping guide me down a path that makes sense for what I’m looking to do with the rig. I have a bunch of other industry partners in the offroad world who are expanding more and more into the UTV space as well. The future looks bright!
Check Out The Rest Of the Gallery
2021 Polaris General XP 4 1000 Deluxe
KC Hilites Flex Era4 with combo lens, KC Hilites Cyclones, Seizmik Pursuit LED Night Vision Mirrors
ARMOR, BUMPERS, SLIDERS:
Full-length Polaris sliders
Polaris plow, plus hydraulic winch controls, Polaris glass windshield with wiper/ washer, Polaris rear glass windshield.
Polaris Pro HD winch with Factor55 Ultrahook, Maxtrax Minis, Various Factor 55 gear
GEAR STORAGE, ORGANIZATION, ROOF RACK, BED RACK:
Polaris Hood Rack Razorback Offroad Expedition Bed Rack, Miscellaneous gear (rotopax, maxtrax, shovel, etc) attached to the racks, Various Kemimoto bags / interior storage
CAMP KITCHEN GEAR:
Dometic CFX3 25, Miscellaneous compact kit – Jetboil, etc.
Roof mounted element fire extinguisher, Not installed – Polaris Tracks, Not installed – Polaris full doors
AUDIO, MULTIMEDIA, ENTERTAINMENT ELECTRONICS:
Ride Command + Rockford Fosgate audio
ELECTRONICS, COMMUNICATION, IN-CABIN ACCESSORY MOUNTS:
Full Rugged Radios setup with the RRP696 Intercom Kit and GMR25 radio with helmet kit, handhelds, etc.
POWERTRAIN AND UNDER THE HOOD PERFORMANCE:
HMF Twin Loop Exhaust System