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Last Post 13 Nov 2019 02:26 PM by  Brad Lamb
vehicle recommended for prospecting
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James Pavli
Panner
Panner
Posts:33



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16 Jun 2018 10:29 AM

     Hello all, I guess this is the best place to ask this question. I am going back to prospect some of the areas I have been researching by map. I just wonder what your  opinion is on vehicles to go into the desert and mountainous regions of arizona. I had rented a suv last time and was leery of some of the sandy washes i encountered. I was going to rent a jeep wrangler if for nothing else but for it's tires and ground clearance. Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks

    Leo Lorenz
    Lost Dutchman
    Lost Dutchman
    Posts:435



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    16 Jun 2018 07:23 PM
    Hello James,



    This is what I do. Find a local Enterprise rental office and see if they rent commercial trucks. The local office in Reno Nevada has 4x4 Ford F250 Super Duty Diesels with high clearance. They have a tow hitch as well. They rent them out to many of the miners going out on the back trails and BLM land to prospect. They know that the renter is taking the vehicle off-road. Many of the other car rental places do not allow you to take a rental vehicle off-road. They charge about $400 for a weekly rate. Its great and the vehicles are mostly new. My last trip, they gave me a truck that had 8 miles on it. No worries about relaibility. AND they have 10 ply tires, sometimes Kevlar.
    Peter vanderHeiden
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:11



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    21 Sep 2018 03:02 PM
    I use a 1988 Bronco II 4x4, short wheel base will save you from getting hung up. Going down and then up a steep gulch could get you caught front and back. I also like something I can perform any repair on unlike new vehicles. Easily available in decent condition for around $2-3$ grand.
    CRAIG CAMPBELL
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:20



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    21 Sep 2018 09:20 PM
    Just thinking its a 4x4 WILL NOT get you out of soft sand better bring a shovel and common sense.never go to far alone and not prepared .the desert is unforgiving
    WALTER EASON
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:580



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    24 Sep 2018 11:12 AM
    I also have a 1988 Bronco 2, closest thing I have used to an old 1942 (ford-willeys-borg warner) jeep my dad had years ago (60's). Great traction just watch you can go vertical in certain conditions (experience).
    ARTHUR WAUGH
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:727



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    25 Sep 2018 01:58 PM

    Mine is an '88 Cherokee 4x4, with a 9500 lb. winch, and roof rack, 3" lift and 32-10.50's.  Plenty of room for gear, my lady, and her service dog (standard Poodle).  Gets me wherever I want to go, but have been in the 4x4 game for well over 45 years.

     

    If this would be your rig you are looking at getting, plan on adding a Hi-Lift jack, and carry extra water (both you and the rig), some rations that will hold up for medium to long term non-use, some extra clothes and a jacket or coat.  Depending on your mechanical ability also some parts like radiator hoses and a length of heater hose, fan belt and sme tools, and whatever else might be a weak point in the specific vehicle that you would be able to swap out in the field.

    William Hall
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:531



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    25 Sep 2018 03:44 PM
    Excellent advise Arthur
    I would add, another vehicle if your heading out to the back country

    Really all one needs is a sturdy, well maintained vehicle that will accommodate your expected gear and partners
    I have an unenclosed dodge dakota 4WD bone stock except for the tool box that carries alot of what Arthur describes above
    You could have the baddest ass, highest, biggest piece of hardware coming down the road, if not applied properly will only cost alot of $$$
    Stay within your vehicles capabilities, you "should" have little problems, but be prepared.

    Happy trails
    Bill
    So Much River So Little Time...Get Out There
    James Pavli
    Panner
    Panner
    Posts:33



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    29 Sep 2018 04:27 PM
    Well i'll be out in Arizona the week after thanksgiving again this year and I'm renting a pickup truck this time. Jeeps are crazy bucks to rent for a week so I went the pickup route. I'm going to attempt to go to the claims that list two wheel is ok claims. I won't go where the truck can't or shouldn't. I have a few areas to explore and a few more to revisit from last year so it will be a crapshoot one way or another.Maybe when I retire I'll build my 4x4 up or get a quad to take out west and prospect with.
    RICHARD KERSTENS
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:10



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    12 Oct 2018 06:37 PM
    Suzuki King Quad. Put it in low range 4 wheel lock out and it will climb a vertical wall.
    ARTHUR PEARSON
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:23



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    14 Oct 2018 08:36 AM
    Rokon trailbreaker , can go places only a really good jackass can go.
    Don Etherton
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    16 Oct 2018 07:42 AM
    We have a Polaris RZR 1000 that is 4 wheel drive and small enough to go anywhere we want to go. Not much room for equipment, but great for bags of samples and detectors. Take samples back home to run through the Gold Hog.
    Burt C Greenfield Jr
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:4



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    20 Oct 2018 01:28 PM
    We had a 2013 Dodge crew cab with a 5.7 hemi that went all any where I wanted to go.
    Now we have a 2018 Dodge crew cab with same type engine. Ithink it will go any where I want to go.
    Chris Starr
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:5



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    29 Aug 2019 07:32 PM
    My F150 4x4 pulls the Razor behind when I know I’m going deep in the Arizona desert. Most of the claims I just use the ole trusty Ford.
    Robert Cartwright
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:1



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    28 Sep 2019 03:53 PM
    My experience with the Bronco2 was different, one of the worst vehicles I've ever owned. Completely unreliable, bad's included: transmission,' 4x4, radiator, rear diff, fuel injection system, and anemic 2.9 V6. Problems all occurred with <50K miles.
    Stuart Brough
    Panner
    Panner
    Posts:29



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    30 Sep 2019 11:01 AM
    Hi James,

    As this is an old thread, I don’t know if you are still following it, but in case there are any onlookers with a similar question: I’d go with a pickup truck.

    My prospecting outfit is a ‘91 Chevy K1500 with almost a quarter-million miles on it. The 4-wheel drive hasn’t worked in about a year, but that hasn’t kept me out of any claims yet. I’ve got high ground clearance, so if something looks like it’ll get me stuck, I just get a good run on it, and hold on tight.

    One of the bonuses of a truck -- in particular with the desert -- is if you want to run a recirculating system for any reason, you can easily haul a couple 55-gallon barrels. I don’t know about other areas, but they can be had used for about $15-20 here. Two of them are enough to have me running for a full day with water to spare.
    CHRISTOPHER SATKOWSKI
    Dredger
    Dredger
    Posts:76



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    30 Sep 2019 12:33 PM
    I have a 4WD diesel F-250 that weighs 8k. Have been thinking about a quad or Polaris.

    My claim I go to, 9 out of 10 times 2 WD is fine. If it's muddy, I may need 4 WD. In the July AZ sun which has baked the gravel completely dry, I may need 4 WD lo. Most of the places I go, I see a lot more UWD like a Razor or Polaris than I do pick Ups. One of the reasons I'd consider a Polaris, is it will make it to places I'd hesitate to take my pick up to. Narrower trails where getting a tow to move my 8K pick up would be impossible. That and all the Arizona racing stripes I've picked up over the years. Also, When I've parked and walked along the creek and see the 100 year old, unmaintained roads undercut by flooding and thinking, boy, I'm glad that didn't collapse when I drove over it.
    GARY McBROOM
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:4



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    01 Oct 2019 06:04 PM
    I use a 2019 Yamaha Wolverine x2 and can go anywhere out here in the Sonoran desert, plus carry all my equipment.
    All that glitters is not gold
    Robert Murata
    Panner
    Panner
    Posts:47



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    13 Oct 2019 08:58 PM
    1988 land cruiser
    Gary Whited
    Highbanker
    Highbanker
    Posts:100



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    26 Oct 2019 10:14 PM
    How about an Argo Bigfoot? You do not have to be a duck hunter to appreciate the "do anything, go anywhere" vehicle.
    Nicholas Garza
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:15



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    31 Oct 2019 10:34 AM
    I have a 2013 Yukon XL (suburban size) with AWD. I would NOT recommend this as a gulch crawler for only two reason. First, it can't be lifted. I only found this little nugget of information after trying to get it done. She has her pinstripes, and as far as power and traction she was okay. But clearance is definitely an issue. I took her across the Tincup pass in Colorado and that was borderline insane. But we made it. I think I bent a couple of rims. Second, it's too long and doesn't have a very tight turning radius. I had a 2004 Cadillac Escalade AWD that I put through hell too. Dang near got stuck in the middle of the Talladega National Forest in a ditch on the side of the road but a bit of rocking that girl back and forth and she pulled herself out. That and 400 horses! It had a real tight turning radius too. Oh and off road tires are definitely a must! I have a buddy that lives in Congress, AZ and he had a Suzuki Grand Vitara V6 4WD and he loved it. He prospects for a living and that's all he used. My next vehicle will be a regular sized Tahoe or Yukon with traditional 4WD not AWD.
    MICHAEL COMSTOCK
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:1



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    05 Nov 2019 03:58 PM
    A good side by side is the bet method of travel. Travels the bumps better than ant jeep or SUV, cheaper on gas too.
    Brad Lamb
    Lost Dutchman
    Lost Dutchman
    Posts:334



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    13 Nov 2019 02:26 PM
    4x4 with trailer for a quad. If the trailer is small enough, you can hook it up to your side by side or quad and move your equipment from camp to prospecting/mining area. That is what I used to do in GA, SC, etc...
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