Toyota Land Cruiser

Aka. The 72 Toyota Land Cruiser

Shortly after WWII my father purchased a surplus Army Jeep.  He then built a plywood box over the passenger and driver section and painted it green. After that, he put silver colored asphalt paint on the top that made it a great launching pad to jump to the ground.

From birth on, we traveled the Sierras on 4-wheel-drive roads; mainly we went in September to go deer hunting. Thus, most of my birthdays were celebrated in the high cold Sierras.  Later on, my dad purchased a 1961 International Scout that we named the “Gutless Wonder” with only a small 4-cylinder engine and the maximum speed on the highway going uphill was 25 MPH.

I have continued this hobby with a 72’ land cruiser I call “The Other Woman” or “My Baby.”  With better tires and gearing, I traverse difficult terrain unimaginable to my dad.  From the northern California “Rubicon” to the 4 plus rated trails of Moab Utah, I have 4-wheeled, camped, broken axles, bur fields, distributor caps all along the way.

Twice, I have broken the #1 rule of four wheeling! The rule, “Keep the rubber side down.”  I’ve been stuck twice; once in four feet of mud and water and once on a mountain side in a snow blizzard.  The next morning my son Nicholas and I hiked out 4 miles to the nearest cleared roadway with our water bottles frozen inside our jackets!

I often surprise the fellow wheelers, when I pull up with my trailer in tow.  Using a flatbed military trailer, I built this box, complete with 15 gallons of water, plumbed together with a manifold. Also it has a Marine battery and holders for two 5 gallon cans of gas.  My sons and I have spent many enjoyable days viewing the wilderness as seen by only a few who brave the hardly passable roads.  At one point in time “My Baby” was the lowest geared Land Cruiser in the world.  The utilization of the cruiser has been both a joy and curse, as repairs have consumed so much time and money.

Dental repairs also involve a lot of time and money. I tell my patients that in dentistry “an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure.”  So do come in often to prevent breakdowns in your oral health.