First introduced in times of WWII, the iconic Jeep Wrangler has come a long way. We put the latest avatar through the paces.
The trail is vertical enough to get my heart thumping softly. The elevation is serious, the incline steep and then, to compound matters, traction isn’t great either. It starts off shallow, but soon we are up against what looks like a wall, and then there’s no turning back. The climb is difficult, but I want an overhead shot of the Jeeps in the canyon, so I push on. Halfway up, I wish I hadn’t started. The boulders that make up the path are interspersed with patches of shale and rubble, so not only is it steep enough to give a mountain goat a nosebleed, finding grip is difficult too. Parts of it are so steep, in fact, I often find myself clambering up on all fours, camera strapped to my back!
A quick couple of shots with the Nikon and I take the longer, easier way back down to the canyon floor. It’s the path I assume we’ll be driving on soon, so I pay attention to all the difficult spots. “It’s always good to walk a trail before you drive it, especially one as tough as this,” drawls our Texan instructor with a knowing grin. Our convoy of three is lined perfectly to go up the shallower trail I’ve just come walking down. But since we still have a couple of minutes, I decide to take a good look at this thoroughly modern version of Jeep’s old warhorse.