Show Notes for episode 100
Episode 100 :: Don’t Buy a Couch and Other Questions and Musings
Matt Scott and Scott Brady look back on 100 episodes and discuss lessons learned, questions from listeners, and other revelations from global overland travel.
Scott is the publisher and co-founder of Expedition Portal and Overland Journal and is often credited with popularizing overlanding in North America. His travels by 4WD and adventure motorcycle span all seven continents and includes three circumnavigations of the globe. His polar expeditions include two vehicle crossings of Antarctica and the first long-axis crossing of Greenland. @scott.a.brady
Matthew is a leading expert in automotive adventure. He has extensively explored the world’s most remote places by 4WD and is considered an industry authority on overland travel. He is the only American to ever become an editor of a major Australian 4WD publication and has over 15 years of competitive auto racing experience. @mattexplore
Scott Brady: Hello and welcome to the Overland Journal Podcast. We are here for episode 100, and I am here with my illustrious co-host, Matt Scott. Who is- you can’t see this in the video on YouTube but he’s actually wearing socks with his Birkenstocks. And I am still- and I am still bald, so…
Matt Scott: Yeah, since this is Episode 100, I’m just gonna get a little bit more comfortable and I’m going to drink my cheap beer while wearing socks and stocks.
Scott Brady: We are feeling more comfortable, but somehow we forgot everything that we were supposed to do with the podcast.
Matt Scott: Oh, yeah, yeah.
Scott Brady: My microphone was over there and Paula says: “Scott, are you gonna move your microphone?”
Matt Scott: Well, I don’t know. I think one of the things that makes the podcast fun is that we don’t take it too serious.
Scott Brady: No, thank goodness.
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Scott Brady: We are obviously very grateful for the people that help us pull it off, so part of episode 100 is to celebrate making it to 100 episodes. There is a graveyard of podcasts that have made it to episode seven or seventeen or whatever-
Matt Scott: Yeah, exactly.
Scott Brady: And for us to make it to 100- And I would say that that success has so much to do with, Paula Burr, our producer she has been tirelessly support-
Matt Scott: Sorry you’re gonna have to cut that swear out. She’s up there for those people watching us on youtube-
Scott Brady: Paula’s in the crow’s nest-
Matt Scott: Shes in the- she’s up top.
Scott Brady: Thank you, Paula, for all that you have done for this podcast. And also just very grateful for Ashley Giordano, who has taken the helm in the field and interviewed a bunch of people in remote areas including Saudi Arabia and…
Matt Scott: Ashley is great, she like-
Scott Brady: Yeah, Ashley is great.
Matt Scott: She cares so much, like, she’s so detailed and I just- I just have opinions.
Scott Brady: But you’ve got to have it all, you got to have the yin and the yang…
Matt Scott: I know things and I drink.
Scott Brady: You and Ashley are like the yin and the yang. And then of course Matt Swartz has been a big help as well, and we’ve done a bunch of great episodes on the stuff that we test editorially in Overland Journal. And then of course, the rest of the Overland Journal, Overland International staff that makes everything possible. And then Matt, your team, that allows you to come over- maybe they encourage you to come over here, I don’t know.
Matt Scott: They actually do, yeah, Laura was like, Oh, you’re doing a podcast today! That’s great! Oh, yeah, you should totally go do that!
Scott Brady: Go do that thing. Of course, you as our listeners, we are so grateful that you have all given us the time to listen to the podcasts and provide your feedback and your questions, we’re going to go through some of your questions today. So please make sure that you reach out to Matt and me on Instagram you can reach Matt @mattexplore on Instagram and-
Matt Scott: You’re what? You’re @scott.a.brady ?
Scott Brady: Dot Brady on Instagram.
Matt Scott: I liked your old one more, globaloverland. Do you still have the handle?
Scott Brady: I do.
Matt Scott: I think it was cooler but that’s just me.
Scott Brady: Probably was, but I’m not that cool of a guy so maybe I just went down- downhill on the cool scale. And then I’ve also been on I’ve been on Twitter more which is interesting.
Matt Scott: I thought it was tiktok?
Scott Brady: Not really. I mean I do every once a while post on tiktok.
Matt Scott: Yeah, I imagine you posting on tiktok would be like me posting on tiktok.
Scott Brady: It feels very uncomfortable!
Matt Scott: Uncomfortable, and we’re probably doing something wrong.
Scott Brady: I think I’m doing it all wrong.
Matt Scott: Yeah, I remember-
Scott Brady: Caleb just kind of laughs at me when I refer to tiktok.
Matt Scott: He’s like the marketing Maven.
Scott Brady: Yeah, you gotta have those guys for sure. But yeah, on Twitter, @Scott_Brady. Been doing that a lot, but we’re just grateful for all of your insights, all of your feedback, and we’re gonna go into a little bit of that. We also want to take a moment in this podcast to honor Bill Swails of EarthRoamer, who passed away in the last few weeks. He was one of the earliest influences for me in the overland space. Very cool guy. I would consider him a great friend, great friend of the industry as well, and many may not know this, but Bill Swails was actually one of the first people to support Overland Journal starting as a magazine. He actually gave us a check. We ultimately ended up buying his interest back out again, but if it wasn’t for Bill and his generosity and his and his support, he also provided us with the email list for all those EarthRoamer owners who became many of our first subscribers… Bill, man, I miss you, that’s really- It just breaks my heart, just breaks my heart.
Matt Scott: I like to think that Bill had a good life though, you know, I mean, he got to do something that he really enjoyed, and you could tell, you know, like, every time I go in my EarthRoamer, you can just tell how much thought and care was put into these machines and how much he continued to evolve them, which just shows, like, he enjoyed doing it, you know? Unfortunately, it just sucks that he passed away too early.
Scott Brady: Yeah, it’s just super sad. I know he was starting to be able to travel more which is wonderful, and, yeah, he just dedicated so much of his life to building a great product, and he helped a lot of people along the way. He wasn’t really public about that, but in my own life, he made a difference and I’m just really, really grateful for Bill and sad that he is gone. Check out earthroamer.com, check out some of his stories that are still on there. They’ve got a bunch of information on Bill. And of course, he has a wonderful team that’s continuing to make a great product. I wish them all the best going forward without him but let’s talk a little bit about what you have been up to because we need to have more podcasts just to keep up with your cars.
Matt Scott: I’ve been twerking, I’ve been working a lot.
Scott Brady: You have been working a lot!
Matt Scott: We’re cranking out a lot of really cool things in adventure imports, a new e-commerce side of things that we hope is really more targeted towards the core overland guys, like we’re not trying to sell like LED light bars to Tacoma owners. Trying to do real overland accessories and- for people that are actually taking adventures, kind of watching some of our own products, which has been really fun it’s been a huge creative outlet for me. We brought an actual degreed engineer on board to get some of the things that are in my head out onto paper.
Scott Brady: I love it.
Matt Scott: Which is- which has been really really fun .
Scott Brady: 3d printers ripping…
Matt Scott: We got laser scanners.
Scott Brady: Laser scanners, yeah, it’s awesome, very cool.
Matt Scott: All kinds of stuff. So, the goal is that we’re trying to do everything in Prescott. Y’know, that’s where we live, that’s where we’ve- I’ve made my home and I want to support our little neck of the woods, so… Yeah, I’ve been working on that. Cars, have we spoken since I bought the Prospector XL?
Scott Brady: I think we knew that you were getting it, I don’t know that we talked much about it, let’s do that. You got rid of the TRX?
Matt Scott: I got rid of the TRX. It was a- I mean still I have to say one of the best Grand Touring Cars ever. I think the Raptors a little better off road, because it’s more of a modular system. You know, the TRX is very much super truck and I think where I maybe got bored with it was aside from, like, being able to put wheels and stuff, which I didn’t do, on to it, there’s not a lot you can modify and I like- you know outside of like travel mat, when I’m at home I like to play with cars. Tinker, I like to tinker. So, I had an opportunity to get a Prospector XL that was the exact mat spec it was the limited Longhorn and it has- it’s all black, totally blacked out, 40s and all of the good things, AEV just sent me the brush guard for it and-
Scott Brady: The brush guard looks so good.
Matt Scott: All of it’s awesome.
Scott Brady: I love it. I think it makes a huge difference in the truck.
Matt Scott: Yeah, I put a 52 gallon tank in it, I did the 8100 AEV Bilstein shock upgrade which is like, you know-
Scott Brady: What’d you notice with that?
Matt Scott: I haven’t had it off road too much to really, like, dive too much into my thoughts on it, but I mean definitely just on, you know, bigger G out speed bumps and that kind of stuff, you know, it’s a little bit more comfortable around town. I’ve just been working so much that it’s like, working in planning adventures and stuff-
Scott Brady: And does it have more fluid capacity too?
Matt Scott: It does have more fluid capacity. They’re not adjustable shocks, which I kind of dig.
Scott Brady: Totally, people don’t ever adjust ‘em.
Matt Scott: Yeah, when we- you know people set ’em to five and- five, seven or three is what they always set them to, right? But actually the same guy who did the factory tuning for the TRX did the tuning on the shock so I have high hopes for him.
Scott Brady: Yeah, for sure.
Matt Scott: As I do in all my AEV products but I bought my first Airhead. I bought my first Airhead, I bought my first air cooled car in the same week.
Scott Brady: You did! In the same exact week, yeah, exactly.
Matt Scott: I ended up selling some stuff, I ended up selling- I sold my Ferrari, I had a beautiful 458, I had a newer 911, sold that. You know, if anybody that does follow cars- I bought this stuff, pre pandemic, you know, or pre pandemic craze of pricing, I should say, because I did buy them during the pandemic. With what cars have gone up, it was just like: Bye, Felicia.
Scott Brady: Yeah, exactly, no, that was the right choice. And you got to own them and enjoy them and…
Matt Scott: Yeah, I got to drive a Ferrari for a year for- and literally get paid quite a bit of money to do it. I mean, it’s crazy how much that car just skyrocketed. I guess people just don’t have anything else to spend their money on.
Scott Brady: Wasn’t it the last of the-
Matt Scott: Last naturally aspirated car and it was Ferrari certified which was a big thing, was one of the last 458s that were certified, eligible to have it and… it was really cool, don’t get me wrong, you know, it was rosso corsa so it had the traditional beige interior, it was- close your eyes and it was the Ferrari, but to be weird, I didn’t, it sounds weird, but I didn’t really miss it when it went away, like, it was cool, but I think some of these supercars are just getting so crazy in performance that you can’t really enjoy them that much-
Scott Brady: Day to day, yeah…
Matt Scott: So, you know, it was fun when I took it to the track and that kind of stuff but…
Scott Brady: But what you replace it with you can enjoy every day.
Matt Scott: Yeah, it’s by all means-
Scott Brady: Even flat out you’re not like, criminal speed.
Matt Scott: Yeah, my pickup trucks faster. But yeah, so I bought a short wheelbase 911 that we’re going to turn into kind of a vintage touring car. You know, right now we’re looking at the same people who put on the Paris to Peking rally, also are launching one in 2024 in Southeast Asia and Southeast Asia Laura and my favorite place on the planet. So it starts in Ho Chi Minh or Saigon goes into Cambodia than Thailand and Laos, and then back into Vietnam goes through Sa Pa and then Hanoi and ends there. So I think we’re going to probably try and do that.
Scott Brady: In that car?
Matt Scott: Oh, yeah, in a little 911.
Scott Brady: Well, I have to say that- I mean, you’ve owned a lot of cars, and you’ve owned a lot of really beautiful cars, but this is the most beautiful-
Matt Scott: It’s really cool.
Scott Brady: It’s the most beautiful car I’ve ever seen you own. And it’s probably one of the most beautiful cars like I’ve seen in person, you can go to a Barrett Jackson or whatever, and you kind of get overwhelmed by the beautiful cars, so you don’t really get a-
Matt Scott: Theres a lot of amazing stuff out there.
Scott Brady: Yeah, you don’t get a chance to really kind of sit with it. Whereas the quality of the restoration and that white paint and the fact that-
Matt Scott: White ivory, yeah.
Scott Brady: It’s so understated, it doesn’t have a big fin, it isn’t a wide body, it’s got these dainty elements to it, these like, really…
Matt Scott: Yeah, it’s very dainty in a lot of ways.
Scott Brady: Somehow you and I fit in it, which is amazing.
Matt Scott: Well, that’s that’s the cool thing is that it is quite a small vehicle, but it was made for tall people.
Scott Brady: Sure, made for germans.
Matt Scott: Made for germans, yeah, so I’m just so enjoying that, you know, I learned, you know, kind of some of my older friends, you know, Bruce and Steve taught me how to time the car. I knew a little bit about carburation, but I haven’t had to balance six carburetors at one time before, you know, so those are the skills that I can take with me, and it’s faster than I thought it was going to be. Yeah, it only weighs about 2000 pounds, that’s- it’s had a lot of weight reduction done to it in the right ways, I’m really, really happy with it.
Scott Brady: Oh, and to me, it also it speaks to travel still, because people did travel in those cars. I mean, that one’s lowered a little bit, I think you’re gonna correct that, but…
Matt Scott: Yeah in the process of being, you know, raised to stock height. Which some people think is too high, but for how I’m going to use it, I just- I think it’ll be perfect.
Scott Brady: I think it’ll be totally perfect, and I think the ride quality will improve a little bit better, and it’ll help you with those potholes when you go through Cambodia. How exciting, man, that’s amazing.
Matt Scott: I’ve got to do some kind of shakedown trip with it.
Scott Brady: Guanajuato, Mexico?
Matt Scott: That would be cool.
Scott Brady: It would be cool.
Matt Scott: I’m thinking Carmel De Cabo, just getting a few kind of air cooled guys together-
Scott Brady: It sounds fun.
Matt Scott: And doing that would be really cool, kind of connect two amazing places on the map.
Scott Brady: For sure.I guess speaking of interesting cars, I just did a press launch on the GMC AT4X. I was sharing the vehicle with Andrew Manis, who I’d never met before. I knew of him and he’s the editor of this new- The Motoring Journal, which is just a beautiful coffee table style book, thick paper, and there’s some folks in there that we know of so they have a Senior Still Frame Hunter by the name of Sinuhe Xavier which we all know from the podcast.
Matt Scott: Senior Still Frame Hunter. They’re trying a little bit with that one.
Scott Brady: Sinuhe slaying it yet again. But, uhh…
Matt Scott: That’s the most LA job description or job title I’ve ever heard in my life.
Scott Brady: That’s true. This is- and this magazine is pretty LA but it’s also very-it’s beautifully done, some thoughtful editorials, and a wide spectrum of content as well. Yeah, check it out, I’m always one to help promote small independent publications, just cause we’ve been there.
Matt Scott: This is the book that you want. You may not know that you want it yet, but you do. So it’s The Definitive History of The Camel Trophy by Nick Dimbleby, who is- if he wasn’t there, he knows the guy that was. It’s crazy because we’ve been all over the world with Nick with Land Rover Adventures. One of the most talented automotive photographers I know.
Scott Brady: No question.
Matt Scott: His style is so clean and distinctive in how clean and just technically perfect it is. Just one of the nicest guys but this book is just, you know, if you’re watching on YouTube, you’re getting a little sneak peek but just the images and the things that are in this book are really cool. It’s very thoughtful, it’s very well done. It’s definitely an insider’s perspective on a really interesting part of automotive history and overland history and off road history or whatever you want to call it, so…
Scott Brady: Yeah, I think The Camel Trophy had an influence on many of us.
Matt Scott: Huge, huge!
Scott Brady: I know it did for me, I know I wanted to, you know, have a sand glow discovery so bad. And when you go through the book, just the level of detail, like, if you want to geek out on like what the rack was and what the cases were that they put on the rack it actually goes into all of that kind of detail. If you’re looking for letting your family know like the gift that you want under the tree. None of this stuff is sponsored, these are just things that we love and we’re passionate about. So yeah, The Camel Trophy: The Definitive History. So check that out, it’s a beautiful coffee table book that goes into really cool event, so that’s- those are the props that we brought. Oh, did we bring the- did we bring the Opinel knife, we just got some cool knives we’ve- Matt and I needed a knife.
Matt Scott: I needed a new cheese knife for the Earth Roamer.
Scott Brady: So it basically it’s-
Matt Scott: Something to keep in the wine cabinet.
Scott Brady: It’s like a perfect camper knife. It’s a cheese knife and a wine bottle opener. You’re gonna go get- oh, he’s gonna go get it. One of the things that I like about it is that it’s super inexpensive, so I think it’s $36 for this knife and-
Matt Scott: Yeah but it’s still nice quality.
Scott Brady: Super nice quality.
Matt Scott: You know, it’s made in France. Just imagine all of the Amazon packages and cheese you can cut with this. It even has a little lock, which is quite nice.
Scott Brady: Yeah, for sure.
Matt Scott: Yeah, I’m gonna rant on knives for a second. I don’t carry a knife anymore, because I’m always around overland people and it’s like, Hey, does anybody have a knife? And it’s like 1000s of dollars of boutique made knives just get like, switchbladed out instantly, so I’m gonna start carrying this. It has a wine opener for my Rosae habit. Or cheese.
Scott Brady: Yes. Or Amazon packages?
Matt Scott: Yeah.
Scott Brady: Yeah.
Matt Scott: Well, we’re both on those Lululemon pants.
Scott Brady: Yeah, that’s right.
Matt Scott: Not sponsored, but-
Scott Brady: I just buy them.
Matt Scott: I don’t know what they are, but they’re like-
Scott Brady: They’re stretchy.
Matt Scott: A jean replacement and they’re stretchy, and they’re really durable.
Scott Brady: They dry really quickly, they’re perfect for travel. I talked about that with Brian Bass on the last episode, and yeah, they make a- looks like a chambray, like a nice button down shirt. Super, super quick drying, super comfortable, yeah, I wear it on every trip now I just bring it along, works great.
Matt Scott: I’m gonna fiddle with this knife the entire podcast.
Scott Brady: It’s like your- what did they call it?
Matt Scott: My fidget spinner?
Scott Brady: Fidget spinner! Maybe I shouldn’t have given you a knife to fiddle with. That’s, uh- that was-
Matt Scott: Cheese, cheese knife.
Scott Brady: Cheers, cheese… Let’s talk trips. Since we started the podcast, what do you think has been a trip that you’ve been on that and had the biggest influence on you?
Matt Scott: You know I guess since we’ve spent- since we’ve started the podcast, I probably spent about a month or two in Africa on two different trips. And that place speaks to me.
Scott Brady: It just feels totally natural to be there.
Matt Scott: I am who I am and I like- I like shiny things as much as I like, you know, camping in the dirt, and I think the cool thing with Africa is you can have this juxtaposition of both if you want to stay at you know, an amazing safari lodge, and if you want to camp you can. I think it’s just something for everyone. I know that getting there is expensive, but once you’re there…
Scott Brady: It’s not terribly expensive.
Matt Scott: It’s not expensive at all. Yeah, I would say I would say Africa, for me has been- you know, Namibia, Tanzania, I’d like to go back to South Africa, maybe this winter. It’s just cool because I think it adds depth to your travels. You know, since starting Adventure Imports and doing the whole MAXTRAX thing I’ve been limited on what I can do. I’m not saying that I don’t get out and I’m not saying that I, like, have it rougher or anything I’m just saying that…
Scott Brady: It’s not like when you were in Australia, and you guys just took off?
Matt Scott: Yeah I’m gonna go off for six months or whatever. You know, I have responsibilities and employees so Africa is this nice thing where I can kind of still be in touch but then I can really get out of touch if I want to. Yeah, I would say Africa, I mean, for you was it the boat thing?
Scott Brady: I would say so.
Matt Scott: The boat thing.
Scott Brady: This sailing experience was just totally transformative for me.
Matt Scott: Yeah. So you bought a boat and now you’re- I mean, you’re on your boat quite a bit.
Scott Brady: Yeah. It’s like the lake house in Arizona, which is kind of nice. Yeah, so I just- I go there for long weekends and read books and sale and I needed a hobby and so now I’ve got one, which has been awesome.
Matt Scott: I think that it seems as if we’re coming out of the whole pandemic thing and we’re starting to plan some trips, you know? I know everybody has- and I think everybody kind of should be, you know, this industry has- overlanding has rapidly become about the stuff and not the doing, which is fascinating, you know, and I get that I earn my living from selling stuff, but we always like to think that we encourage people, you know, if it’s MAXTRAX or a trip, go take the trip. You know, I’m looking forward to Tuktoyaktuk, we leave in almost exactly 30 days. We’re going to do a little stopover at the Northwest Overland Rally, which I think is the 16th to the 19th in Plain, Washington. So we’ll be hanging out there, I really enjoy it, and I think it’d be a great place to start our trip.
Scott Brady: We’ll see you’ve got- you’ve got Alaska coming, which will be amazing, so that’s that’s really fun.
Matt Scott: So, so excited. You know if anybody has any spots they recommend, you know, we’re gonna go up Cassiar Highway then do-
Scott Brady: Beautiful.
Matt Scott: South Canol Road, which I think will be fun. I don’t know if we’ll really do the North Canol road because it’s- it is just an in and out, we have to kind of pick and choose where we’re gonna go.
Scott Brady: Isn’t there a way to connect from that South Canol to another highway that brings you back around? I think so, I think you can not have to come back out on that one.
Matt Scott: It’s the North Canol Highway that you have to go in and out on. The South Canol Highway goes from the Alaska Highway, it’s kind of South, and then it shoots you out by Ross River.
Scott Brady: Right, exactly.
Matt Scott: Which will take you to Carmax which will take you to Dawson City, which then will eventually go down-
Scott Brady: I think that’s the way go, because you don’t have to be on the Alcan. That’s nice, so that’s a good- that’s a good find.
Matt Scott: Yeah, yeah. You know, we’re hoping to have a nice experience, shut off a little bit, and, you know, it’s just, I feel like, like I said, I feel like we’re just coming out of this whole weird thing that we’ve all as a species dealt with for the last two years and I’m really excited for 2023 and the travel potential that’s there for that.
Scott Brady: I just flew on a plane without a mask on, it was just- it felt so unusual. And, of course, like, if I was to sit down next to someone who was masked, I would ask them if they wanted me to be masked, because there are people that have conditions, conditions that benefit from more caution. But I happen to not- that happened to not be the case so I was able to fly from the San Diego with no mask on, it was just the weirdest feeling to even walk into an airport without a mask on, so weird.
Matt Scott: You know, the next big thing is that test that you have to take to come back in the US within 24 hours.
Scott Brady: The antigen test, or?
Matt Scott: Yeah, I’m not gonna get into the politics of it, but a lot of countries don’t require that and it adds an element of risk! You know, with so many people being asymptomatic or whatever, they’re given us- was it last year or the year before it’s flu shot now for COVID? Again, maybe that’s a little too political, but you really don’t have a way to protect yourself other than exposure and that only lasts for so long. So for the international stuff, like, still the idea for us of like these quick trips, like we just said a week in Switzerland and Italy, but we had COVID in mid or end of January. So we knew that we still had a few months of likely not getting it now that’s a totally different thing, you know, that was April, now we’re looking into May- or I guess that was March, I think you kind of get what I’m trying to say is, it’s like-
Scott Brady: Well totally, I remember when we-
Matt Scott: A week trip can turn into a two week trip-
Scott Brady: Or a three week trip.
Matt Scott: Or a three week trip.
Scott Brady: Yeah, I remember when we went to Italy, coming back, it’s like- I went ahead and did it as soon as I could to give me the most window, and I did the test where I was like third party, because if it came back, I could try to do the test again or I could try to find- because it would be very easy to get stuck.
Matt Scott: You obviously don’t want people flying with COVID and spreading it, like I understand that.
Scott Brady: But it just changes the risk of travels.
Matt Scott: Changes the risk profile.
Scott Brady: Yeah, for sure. You can easily get stuck in a country for a couple of weeks.
Matt Scott: Yeah, like if- you know, if you have stuff going on with work and whatnot, and… a week is doable but three?
Scott Brady: Yeah it changes it, it definitely changes. I don’t know.Well, I’m hoping I get to go to Africa later in the summer.
Matt Scott: Where do you want to go?
Scott Brady: The goal would be to go from Cape Town to Cairo.
Matt Scott: Okay.
Scott Brady: So that’s- it’s all coming together, I just don’t know if it’ll be in a motorcycle or in a four wheel drive. We’ll have some things to announce here soon, so we’re getting some final pieces of the puzzle put together and keeping an eye on some of the border conditions and some of the visa requirements, particularly around Ethiopia and-
Matt Scott: Constantly changing, well, they have a little skirmish going on in the north.
Scott Brady: They do, they do, and there’s a way around it, you just, you know, just go through Sudan, you come in through Uganda into South Sudan, and then you’re able to go around Ethiopia. It’s not ideal, either. So…
Matt Scott: Yeah. Well, you know, it’s-
Scott Brady: It’s okay, I’ll figure it out.
Matt Scott: We’re, on our way back, you know, and I think that, you know, as we were talking in your office its starting to highlight some of the travels that people are doing on the podcast, I think that’ll be nice.
Scott Brady: So that’s one of the things that we wanted to talk about in the episode 100 is, we would love to hear about your travels as well, so if you’ve gotten back from a significant overland adventure, just send us a little note! Where you were, maybe a photo or something like that that we can share, we’d love to just highlight where those that listen to the podcast have been in the world because all of you inspire us as well, so we just really would love to know where you’ve been, maybe a lesson that you learned on the trip that we can share with the rest of the audience, so please feel free to reach out with us- to us, with your recent exploits, so…
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Matt Scott: It’s been a weird world lately.
Scott Brady: It has, but…
Matt Scott: Hopefully it’s getting back.
Scott Brady: Yeah, it certainly has, and you know that, of course, it’s on many of our hearts right now with the conflict in Europe, so…
Matt Scott: Obviously, you know, the whole Ukraine thing is bad, but for people that were planning to do you know, Eastern Europe? That totally changes things.
Scott Brady: It does!
Matt Scott: You know I kind of remember, we were talking- a few months ago, hey, you know, let’s just do like a quick round the world trip or something to Europe, go through Russia. I hadn’t seen- I haven’t been to Russia, you know, do the Stands, do Mongolia, and it’s just funny, that whole Eastern Europe, Silk Road or whatever, you know- and it goes in and out of Russia so much that you’re just like, what do you do? Like, I know that Giordanos were talking about that, and it’s like, well, you can’t go through Ukraine, you can’t go- you know, you’re not going to go through to the other disputed kind of territories, Georgia, that kind of thing.
Scott Brady: It’s amazing how many of them are affected. I mean, I was just reading about Tajikistan, you know, and that was one of my favorite countries that I traveled through, on the Silk Road, and it shut down. I mean, Kazakhstan is having all kinds of trouble and that was a model of democracy for a while! Fighting going on in Uzbekistan right now, I mean- so there’s just- there’s very real problems that would significantly complicate a silk road trip right now. Whereas five years ago, it was no big deal, and now it’s a big deal. So it brings people back to South America again.
Matt Scott: Yeah, don’t wait. If you get an opportunity to go, just go.
Scott Brady: Yeah, that’s true, because you don’t know how things are going to change, so I think it’s back to Africa and South America for most people.
Matt Scott: We’re just, you know, we’re hoping Southeast Asia really starts to open up. It’s getting there, but you know, it’s just opening. It seems countries will open and they’ll close and they’ll open and they’ll close and it’s just a bit nerve wracking, as far as you know, trying to plan.
Scott Brady: And sometimes it opens or closes right when you’re there, I mean, I remember rolling up to the border of Kyrgyzstan, and just like, it was- the border was shut, just completely shut. And there was no indication that that was going to happen, but little little skirmish kicked off at the end of the Fergana Valley and the border was shut, so, yeah, you- and you work around it, you figure it out. We’re going to talk more about vehicles again, because that’s kind of fun. Let’s talk about: you’ve had ,at last count, 837 cars?
Matt Scott: 39 but yeah.
Scott Brady: Okay, that’s right, I missed a couple of them that you’ve bought since we last talked.
Matt Scott: Five minutes ago.
Scott Brady: What’s the favorite- your favorite car you’ve ever owned? All time. And it’s not like the one that you want to have back or whatever, it’s not like bringing the ex girlfriend back or whatever, just what was the one that you just- it just made you smile? Just your favorite.
Matt Scott: I’m actually trying to put thought and effort into this. I think I’m weird. I think that I romanticize cars and I’m not terribly sentimental. I think of cars that I had that I regret selling the most the ones that I like, look back and I’m like, Okay, I would like to have another one of those. I love G wagons. You know, and I guess- well I guess I just bought another one. It’s older, it’s 300 GD, it’s a- for GE people it’s a W 463, but it has narrow axles, it doesn’t have fender flares, it has a manual transmission roll up windows. I think the G wagons are really charming to me. I think a lot of the new ones send the wrong signal, like I appreciate them and I think they’re cool, like I had a 550, was it 2016? I had the biturbo engine and it was a cool car ,but I think I like this white one in, different ways, more. I do regret selling that black G Wagen sometimes. I regret selling my Landrover 109 that I had like 10 years ago.
Scott Brady: That one was amazing.
Matt Scott: Yeah, that- the current owner still checks in with me and you know I sold that cause I just- I didn’t have the money to service it and fix it and give it the attention that it required.
Scott Brady: Oh maybe you’ll get it back.
Matt Scott: Yeah, yeah, maybe. Although I think that Landrovers are such a weird thing for me because I have so many friends that I- you know, I always say, like I’m here because of Land Rover. That company has given me amazing opportunities, the friends I’ve met through it and whatever but I don’t know if I would honestly own another one. Like, I think the new defenders cool but I don’t know if would ever own one after kind of-
Scott Brady: Yeah, what would you- what would you give up in order to own that. Yeah, what would you be saying no to, in order to say yes to that?
Matt Scott: I have to say, like, I am trying to kind of get- trying to have fewer things, but maybe more significant things?
Scott Brady: Yeah.
Matt Scott: You know, there’s always like a place in my garage that I’m kind of flipping, right? Because I just enjoy that and I found a way to- I mean I’m not screwing people, I’m just buying and selling at the right times.
Scott Brady: The markets changing, yeah.
Matt Scott: Yeah, and I like to hang out in my garage and clean things up and detail stuff and, you know, do a lot of work myself. I don’t know, the garage seems very happy right now. You know, the Earth Roamers- The Earth Roamers probably my favorite car that I have, you know, by way of if I was to sell everything, I would keep that one.
Scott Brady: And you have kept it for a long time, I mean, longer than most vehicles.
Matt Scott: Longer than most. You know, I still have the gladiator, we did listed for sale. I don’t know that’s just like, I go through a lot of cars right? But um, but I’m finding that I like German stuff, and you know, the Earth Roamer aside.
Scott Brady: I think that that would be kind of the killer combo, would be the air cooled 911 and the modern G Wagen, that that works also as an overland vehicle? Like, you’re dueling pistols.
Matt Scott: I think Earth Roamer is really fascinating right now because that enables me to get out, you know, enables me to get out with Dack, our greyhound, and it’s comfortable for everyone.
Scott Brady: Yeah, you can work.
Matt Scott: We don’t we don’t really do a lot of weekend trips, we kind of like to go out for a week or two weeks at a time. You know, overnighters are historically unusual for us, and that’s where- you know, that’s why we don’t use the gladiator that much anymore because, for what we’re doing the Earth Roamers just minty.
Scott Brady: It works.
Matt Scott: The Earth Roamers like my boat, you know, it’s like your boat, right? Is it- you know, I go out in the garage, you know, I crack a beer and I’m like, Okay, I’m going to tackle this little project on it today. And I really liked that, the Prospector is great. Like, I could really see myself having the Prospector for a long time, or a Prospector, you know, they’re always- there’s like this weird thing where you either have to commit to keeping something for a long time, or you have to move them and flip them quickly. It’s kind of- it’s where people that get caught in the middle are usually those that kind of lose out on the values of the cars. Nobody wants to buy a car with 80,000 miles and pay top dollar, you know, for the modifications or whatever, but if that vehicle has 20 to 30,000 on it…
Scott Brady: Still feels fresh.
Matt Scott: Still feels fresh and new.
Scott Brady: I mean, I think for me, it’s definitely the 110 Defender 300 TDI five door, kind of- that would be the, like, if I could only pick one car it’d probably be that.
Matt Scott: I really liked one that sitting behind us.
Scott Brady: Yeah, for sure, so simple.
Matt Scott: Like, that thing is just super simple, I like the two door, it’s just- that is like the most iconic, like 110 It’s very fit to purpose.
Scott Brady: It’s kind of like driving a motorcycle.
Matt Scott: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!
Scott Brady: Like it- cause you’re in the elements in a lot of ways, with a soft top, and…
Matt Scott: Well, and where we live in Prescott, like…
It’s perfect, the weather’s great.
Matt Scott: Do you hit 55 on the way to work?
Scott Brady: No. The cruising speed in that truck is 50, so….
Matt Scott: Yeah.
Scott Brady: Perfect.
Matt Scott: Yeah. So you know, it’s a fun thing to have in Prescott.
Scott Brady: So then, next rapid fire question, If you could only pick one: Defender, Classic Defender 110, G Wagen, 463, 461.. Take your pick, 76 series Land Cruiser or Nissan Patrol, like the GU so the…
Matt Scott: Well the Nissan Patrol, I drove one of those for a little bit when I was working at the magazine in Australia and that was terrible.
Scott Brady: Because- didn’t have the three liter, that like last version with that really small diesel?
Matt Scott: Yeah.
Scott Brady: Yeah, it was challenging.
Matt Scott: It was like, it was not good. They’re really capable off road, they have a great chassis, they flex really well. It was just- you know, like the 4.2 patrol GUs, those were really cool. The motor they put in the very last models was terrible.
Scott Brady: Yeah, it was a really small displacement.
Matt Scott: The 76 never did anything for me, I’ve spent quite a bit of time in those. They’re cool. I like when they do the coil conversion in the rear because it kind of, you know, the 70s, the newer V8-70s have a wider front axle than rear axle and that can exhibit some interesting characteristics off road.
Scott Brady: In the sand and the mud.
Matt Scott: Kind of like driving one of those Polaris slingshots or something.
Scott Brady: It feels- it always felt like, you know, when you’re pushing a shopping cart and like the wheels start shaking or your just always never going- it’s never really going straight?
Matt Scott: The rear rotates so much. You know, so if it was a 78, if it was a Troopy, I think that the Troopy is still- for a non-truck, like non-pickup truck or-
Scott Brady: Or a wagon, sure.
Matt Scott: Non, like, van or something. I think the Troopy is still just perfect. You know, for an overland traveler.
Scott Brady: Always.
Matt Scott: So I guess my answer would be that I’m gonna take the one that you didn’t mention and say Troopy.
Scott Brady: That’s cool, though, you can pick a Troopy.
Matt Scott: Yeah, like I mean, because you said 70 series earlier. Troopys are cool, you know, I just like them all. I’ll take one of the above except for the Nissan.
Scott Brady: I think that that’s my answer, is that I don’t know that it really matters because they’re all wonderful they really are. I mean, if you think about how charming it would be to drive a 110 around the world, or how, you know, reassuring it would be to drive a G wagon around the world or how unassuming it would be to drive a 76 around the world. I mean, I think they’re just-
Matt Scott: Because if I had- if they were laid out in front of me and I had to drive- I had to pick one to leave on- a to the right is the, all of the crap you need to drive around the world and on the left is your selection of vehicles. I think it would- it wouldn’t be my favorite choice but I think, of the ones you mentioned, probably the 76. Cause it’s just going to work and it’s going to be unassuming. I love G wagons but the problem with G wagons is that they can send- they can send the wrong message in some parts of the world, and that’s something that concerns me a little bit.
Scott Brady: Sure. They’re also not likely to get stolen though, that’s the challenge with the Land Cruiser is that-
Matt Scott: Oh yeah, yeah.
Scott Brady: I remember well, Cyril Mishlei, who you know, Cyril and Osa, but they- I remember talking to him about why does he drive a Range Rover classic in Guatemala? And he just looked at me and he said Scott, they never want to steal it from me. So like he ended up- he ended up falling in love with the car, but he drove a Range Rover classic because he would never get carjacked. There wasn’t a market- they weren’t- there wasn’t a market for the parts. It wasn’t like that they were going to take the car and, you know, and then pull the alternator out it and sell it. So he says I don’t drive Toyota’s because I don’t want to get carjacked, so that’s an interesting, like, it’s all got the yin and the yang of all of it. There’s just there’s so many facets to the decision, so I mean, in the G Wagen case, it wouldn’t be a vehicle that was desirable, but it may give an impression that you have resources that they want to- maybe they want your watch or they want your wallet.
Matt Scott: It’s a tough one.
Scott Brady: It is a tough one!
Matt Scott: I mean, if I was to drive around the world in anything right now, it would just be my Prospector. It has like a 52 gallon fuel tank, or my Gladiator something you know? Like it’s, you know-
Scott Brady: Both of those would be super cool. Would be great.
Matt Scott: But it doesn’t really matter what you drive, I mean, I guess that’s the moral of the story is.
Scott Brady: That’s right.
Matt Scott: Whatever is convenient and whatever you need- whatever gets the job done and whatever is paid for.
Scott Brady: And I think they all grow on you, I think that your relationship with a vehicle oftentimes comes from your experience with it. And I find that you tend to hold on to the cars that you have those more meaningful experiences with. So like the Earth Roamer is a great example of that. You’ve done a bunch of great trips. you like- you spend time in the car, you’ve got memories associated with it.
Matt Scott: And I have my own time invested in the car, too. You know, I’ve done a lot of work to that car, a lot of little upgrades and things, you know, we just had the- all of the wheel bearings replaced and tie rod ends and ball joints and that kind of stuff that is just, like, incredibly boring but actually part of maintaining, like, an expedition truck, you know, of that size.
Scott Brady: How do you think that- we’re at 100 episodes now, how has the podcasts either changed you or changed your view of overlanding?
Matt Scott: Well, one, I think it’s really cool. All the people that have reached out to me on Instagram, that always helps you kind of keep going. This isn’t obviously like, what’s paying for the bills and that kind of stuff for us. You know, I like to think it is a passion project. It’s been a nice creative thing to be able to do. You know, it allows me to get on my little soapbox every once in a while. You know, I know sometimes I have opinions that aren’t-
Scott Brady: Don’t change, Matt, don’t change.
Matt Scott: Yeah, yeah, I have opinions. You know, I think what it’s done for me is it’s allowed me to kind of reconnect with that overland community after just going so far down the rabbit hole of the MAXTRAX thing for so long. You know, I’ve dedicated so much of my life to that, this has allowed me to kind of get back into- create a bit of a community that you want to be around, you know? Overlanding, as we know it, I know that I’m always running on about this, but it’s just changed so much. I got into overlanding when I was like 16, and I joined Exhibition Portal, I’m 32 now. It’s been more than my entire adult life. But for me, it was always a travel thing. That was the goal. Historically, I’ve never really had the cars and toys and stuff that I’ve had now. Obviously, they’re like aspirational and the first thing when you have more money than time, is you go out and you buy stuff, I’d love to flip that again, I’d love to have more time to get out and actually do it. And I think interviewing some of these, these, you know, new generation of travelers and new generation of overlanders, it’s been really cool. I enjoy doing them and here’s to another 100 of them.
Scott Brady: Absolutely.
Matt Scott: So how about you? Same question.
Scott Brady: For me, it’s just incredibly humbling to see these people’s stories, to hear their stories, and to be reminded of what’s the most important. When you get, like a couple like the Hourless Life on here with their son and just how they’re raising him around the world. Caspian was amazing on the podcast, and we’ve been able to meet people that, yeah, that really have been changed in their own way by travel and to hear their stories and to learn about what’s important to them and to have this consistent theme on- from nearly everyone who’s been on the podcast of that the stuff doesn’t matter, it’s really about getting out there and having your version of an adventure. That’s just been so rewarding for me to hear, too, because it’s what I have felt and to hear so many people mirror that has just been really wonderful. It’s just been super humbling to be on the other side of the table from all these incredible travelers, people that will be better travelers than I’ll ever be, but they just have have just been so inspiration.
Matt Scott: Yeah, and a lot of these people have to break out of the mold. When I was 21 and interviewing people for Expedition Portal or Overland Journal or whatever, I was on the other side of the fence because I didn’t like, I didn’t understand what it meant to be like a settled adult and how much dedication it takes to actually just break away and to do something different. When you’re young, like you have all these choices, you can choose what paths you’re gonna go down. You know, I travel a lot, but everybody kind of gets funneled into this path of normalcy. And to see somebody jump-
Scott Brady: It’s a trap, it’s a trap.
Matt Scott: It’s a trap, but to see some people jump off of that train is just like really inspiring to me, now. Because it is. I guess one thing that I would say, we talk about stuff a lot. I guess we talk about stuff a lot because, you know, it’s relevant! People like stuff.
Scott Brady: And you need certain pieces of equipment to do certain things, and sometimes it’s helpful to know which one’s the best and, or like-
Matt Scott: Like, I’m totally aware that I have way too much stuff, you know? I’ve been pretty fortunate, and I work really hard and you don’t need it. You don’t, full stop. You do not need any of the crap that I have. Like, I will say that the stuff that I have sometimes just- not sometimes, the things I have prevent me from traveling a lot. If I had just my Earth Roamer or a van or just my Gladiator or something, there’s no doubt in my mind I’d get out more. But you get more more stuff, you get more hobbies.
Scott Brady: It takes a lot of time.
Matt Scott: It takes time. You know, where I feel like when I was younger, it was just- I was so focused, and it’s so cool to meet these people that still share that focus and drive.
Scott Brady: Yeah, I would agree. There’s a YouTube channel I’ve been watching called Sailing Uma, and it’s this young couple, she’s Haitian, he’s from Canada. They bought, like, the super cheap sailboat and they fixed it all on their own, but their whole thing is don’t buy a couch. She actually did a TED talk on that, some version of it, and the whole idea is, like, once you buy the couch, then you buy the, you know, the dinette, and then you buy the utensils and the silverware and then you buy the house to stick it in, and then you- if you just don’t ever buy the couch-
Matt Scott: Don’t buy the couch.
Scott Brady: Don’t ever buy the couch.
Matt Scott: It’s so true! So true!
Scott Brady: And, if you think about most of us in life, it’s like, one of the first things that we buy is a couch because you can sleep on the couch and you could sit on it. Like if you just don’t ever buy the couch, then think about all of the money that goes towards filling a home full of stuff, or filling a life full of stuff, and if you never even start with that one thing, maybe it’s a different path. It was pretty thoughtful insight.
Matt Scott: Yeah, well, and I think for young people that- now they have so many opport- so much opportunity for travel.
Scott Brady: And remote work and everything.
Matt Scott: You know, Airbnb, you don’t have to- you don’t- you can work remotely, like all their employees are gonna be remotely remote, and you know that that trend is continuing and is growing. That wasn’t really the case, and I was lucky I worked for you so I could go travel and I could go do things, and that enabled that, but that wasn’t necessarily normal then. Cause we were in a web based thing, you know, like, wherever I was typing my keys didn’t necessarily matter. I hope people- yeah, I hope more people don’t buy a couch.
Scott Brady: Right. So that’s the theme of today, that’s episode 100.
Matt Scott: I’m thankful for the things I’ve been able to do, but once you have the couch, then you get the house and you get all that stuff and then you have-
Scott Brady: And it’s not that buying a couch is wrong, it’s just, I think, maybe really thinking about the decision. Like, is that really the direction that I want for my life? Or is that the thing that everyone else does, so I just feel compelled to do it? And it’s the same thing in overlanding, I mean, you don’t you don’t have to buy a Tacoma and stick a Go Fast on it and add 35s and icons- like you don’t have to do that. You could just buy a stock Tacoma and stick a backpack full of camping gear in the backseat and go. Like, you don’t have to do any of those things, you don’t have to buy the couch, you don’t have to buy all the gear.
Matt Scott: Well, it’s interesting, because we have- in the overland world now, we have a lot of people that are traveling full time. People are just- they’re traveling just in different ways, and a lot of that is-
Scott Brady: For sure.
Matt Scott: I don’t even know if that’s due to the pandemic necessarily, but…
Scott Brady: Well, travel is now an option, so- and I think that that’s what has changed. So many people realize that they can now- through various means, including being a professional and working and living on the road, they now have the option for that, and that’s why we’ve seen so much growth in the overland space. The pandemic just supercharged that and now that you can have Starlink and you can work from anywhere, I-
Matt Scott: I guess what I’m getting at is like, is it traveling? Or is it Alternative Living? That a lot of the overland thing has become. You know, like-
Scott Brady: Could be.
Matt Scott: You know, I know that like, what is going on with like the, you know, people that kind of move around, it’s like, you know, they’re in Quartzite this time of year, they’re in Northern Arizona this time of year, then they move to Colorado, and then they kind of like repeat this like cycle over and over and over again, and at a certain point, it’s adventurous, it’s cool, it’s fun. That’s a big part of where overlanding is growing, like, it seems like those are the people that are like admired, so to speak, are the full timers but they’re not. It’s like, it went from international travelers to full timers.
Scott Brady: Well, and maybe in defense of those people, it’s because you haven’t really been able to do that internationally for the last couple of years, and I think people-
Matt Scott: I wonder if that will start to change, I guess is where I’m like, kind of trying to lead the conversation.
Scott Brady: I think so, I think people will start to get out more now that they can. We’re seeing a lot more people going to Mexico again, whereas two years ago, you didn’t see that at all. So I think now that people can get out more, I think that they will. As a percentage, I think it will continue to improve, but it is definitely different. And that’s- that can be a positive thing, but it’s also just a reminder that we all have some responsibility in keeping these wild places that we traveled to as pristine as we can preserve them for future generations, for the next generation of Overlander that wants to go to that beautiful spot. You know, pay attention to your trash and your human waste and everything else.
Matt Scott: We were talking yesterday, the human waste is- if it’s not already an issue, it’s about to become one. So many of these campsites are seeing people every night. You know, if you are in a campsite that is within 20 or 30 minutes drive of an interstate these days, it just seems like you know, that’s like the perpetual flow of van life, and you have to pack that stuff out.
Scott Brady: You really do.
Matt Scott: We’ve both been places where it’s just overwhelming.
Scott Brady: Well, let’s go into some of the questions that our audience have asked us through the last year here. These are this is a very small representation of that, things that we can fit into the end of a podcast here. This is from Scott Hallenberg, and he says I was looking at an article you wrote about Eagle-Hout four wheel drive conversions for the Sprinter. You hinted at comparison to a converted E350, so think like a sportsmobile conversion, and he’s kind of looking at a comparison between the two platforms. The Eagle-Hout is unique because you end up with a 37 inch tire front and rear locking differentials, a lot of G Wagen components go into that conversion, and I would say that in many ways that it is similar in performance to the Sportsmobile, with the one exception is that the Sportsmobile is a solid front axle, and they can upgrade those axles to like a Dana 60, Dynatrac, or whatever, so you end up with a much more robust drivetrain for a larger tire, and then you end up with a lot more articulation, so Sportsmobile’s are delivered with a sway bar disconnect, so you end up with a much more compliant ride off road, and you end up with a much more robust drivetrain. But there is something to be said for the Sprinter vans, they drive a lot nicer, they’re a little bit more smaller, compact, easier to park than a full size E350, so if you’re looking for kind of the ultimate in capability, I think that you’re going to get there more quickly with the E series, but I think if you’re looking for the best overall package, that Eagle-Hout is really compelling.
Matt Scott: Do you need that much, I guess is the question. Says the guy who drives the truck on 41s. Do you need it? You know, that would be my question, that- the thing that I’ve found in the camper space is that I don’t know if 37s on a sprinter would actually be a good thing. You know, they’re very tall vehicles, they’re not necessarily made or modified- you know, the track width isn’t getting increased significantly to compensate for the increased center of gravity. I guess, you know, my question is, do you need it? Because you can fit a 33 on a Sprinter, you know, is your tire cashing checks that your chassis can’t keep up with?
Scott Brady: Yeah, which is why it’s so much of it gets upgraded when they do that conversion.
Matt Scott: And not only that, like you’re carrying your house with you!
Scott Brady: That’s true!
Matt Scott: You know, like, it gets really annoying having to repack, plates, and your food and all of your stuff that’s going to be- so I always think people are trying to have this jack of all trades, while you could buy a Sprinter and a Jeep for what one of those conversions would cost you.
Scott Brady: That’s true, it’s an expensive conversion. This is how I look at it, which is maybe a little different. I’m noticing, because things are getting- it’s so popular, there’s so many people out there that if you have just another like Rebel Sprinter, you’re destined to the same campsite that everybody else can get to, where if you’ve got another 10 or 15% capability and maybe some driving experience and some training, you can get that much more remote. I just did a trip up to Moab with the GMC and the Scout camper, and because I was willing to drive a much more technical trail, I got up to the top of this slick rock trail on this- the top of this mountain, and I’m looking down over this valley and it is packed full of campers, and there’s no one around me.
Matt Scott: Oh, that’s a good argument, that’s a good argument.
Scott Brady: I think it helps to overcome the filter that- just being the same kind of vehicle as everyone else has, having a little bit more capability is of benefit. And then the more that we travel remote, the more that we’re going to run into that scenario where we end up with a rainstorm, mud, snowstorm, so having a little bit more reserved capability I think is a benefit to that. And again it’s- we’re never suggesting that people do that, it’s just there, these are the upsides. You can get a little bit more remote- like your Earth Roamer is a great example, no other RV can get where you can go. So you get to have this really comfortable vehicle that much further away from all of the other folks.
Matt Scott: But any 4Runner with a ground tank can go where I can go, you know?
Scott Brady: Right, that’s right.
Matt Scott: I think my advice to that guy would be: do you actually want it?
Scott Brady: Do you really need it?
Matt Scott: Do you really need it? If you want to go for it, you know, that’s always my thing, is need verse wants.
Scott Brady: The next question is from Marco Breton, and he is a long haul trucker and he has recently purchased a gladiator and he is wondering what kind of recommendations you would have for a lift that can also do good as a- for a tow vehicle. Using your gladiator for some towing.
Matt Scott: Oh, that’s super easy. Give your money to AEV.
Scott Brady: Cause they do make a high capacity version.
Matt Scott: I’ve had multiple lifts on my gladiator, I’ve had factory lift springs, I’ve had aftermarket lift springs, I now have the AEV lift springs. The vehicle just rides and tracks better, you know, you’re correcting geometries up front rather than just kind of masking them with additional flex from joints or something on your control arms. That’s just an easy one, just get the AEV dual sport lift.
Scott Brady: Yeah, I think that’s the key is that they make springs with-
Matt Scott: They also have the high capacity springs as an option.
Scott Brady: That’s right, which I think is an important thing for those that are towing.
Matt Scott: So, and then I really liked the Hellwig rear sway bar on the Gladiator.
Scott Brady: Yep, good call.
Matt Scott: That really has just locked that vehicle down.
Scott Brady: Good advice. All right, next one’s from Justin. Sometimes I don’t get the whole name from people on Instagram, but longtime Overland Journal Expedition Portal follower and he likes what we talk about with travel etiquette. So this is more just a reminder around being kind to the places that we visit. He says: I work in the Yukon Territory parks and service. In some rather remote areas, I’ve had-
Matt Scott: Oh, I need to talk to this guy.
Scott Brady: Yeah! I’ve had some very serious run-ins with travelers on back roads, and more than my fair share of close calls. And I think what he’s talking about is speed, and people that are unfamiliar with those conditions, mostly people who have never driven these roads and are traveling much too fast or in a right hand drive rig, where the winding roads reduce forward visibility. It gives a really poor image of overlanding and can leave more than just the traveler in a serious situation where help is literally unreachable, or many hours away even by air, so thank you for that reminder, Justin. And it is important, as these vehicles become more and more capable, just think of like the UTV situation, you end up with something that basically can win glasses of the Baja, you can buy brand new off the shelf, we always have a responsibility to drive at or near the speed limits. Most forest roads are 25 miles an hour.
Matt Scott: As an industry, we need to get so much better at this. Yeah, I get that you’re trying to do lifestyle marketing, but you’re filming that on public lands.
Scott Brady: Yeah.
Matt Scott: Eventually, there’s not going to be people to buy your stuff when they can’t go on public lands.
Scott Brady: That’s what will happen, that’s what will happen. Things will get shut down.
Matt Scott: It’s so much easier for public land managers to just close the gate.
Scott Brady: Or like you and I have seen in Australia, they will be parked on the side of the trail with a speed gun.
Matt Scott: Yeah.
Scott Brady: And they’re going to nail you and it’s gonna be really, really bad when you’re doing 60 in a 25. And we’re not trying to be the Fun Police at all, it’s just- there’s a balance.
Matt Scott: And there’s a big difference between a closed course in Baja, where you see these guys doing that stuff. There’s a big difference between- you’re in the desert with miles- like truly off road with miles of visibility.
Scott Brady: Yeah, and there’s people that are hiking, there’s people on their mountain bikes, there’s people on a motorcycle, there’s real consequences when you- when that leak in your talent reservoir runs out. Which it does, and we see it all the time on YouTube when peoples talent runs out. So I think it’s not about being the Fun Police, it’s just, if you don’t have good visibility, please slow down. The more remote you get, the more you should be slowing down because the consequences are even higher. If it’s a heavily traveled area, slow it way, way, way down. The industry and you and your family are going to be way better off in the long haul with that. So thank you, Justin for that reminder.
Matt Scott: And Justin, I’m going to reach out to you because I’m going to be in your neck of the woods.
Scott Brady: Yeah, I’m gonna- I’ll forward you his instagram handle. Next one here is from The Golonda Fam. Okay, great question, I think. So, family of four, and they’ve got a heavily modified G Wagen, and they are thinking of buying a Prospector.
Matt Scott: Oh, I’m so qualified for this!
Scott Brad: You are like one of the most qualified people on the planet to answer that question. So, for someone who had a G Wagen, and has a prospector now, what do you think about his thought about making the change? Family of four.
Matt Scott: It comes down to a choice of size, any perceived capability that the prospect is going to give you with whether you go with a Prospector on 37 inch tires, or a Prospector XL on 40s, is going to be diminished by the fact that a Prospector is nearly twice the size of a G wagon. We get this idea of G wagons being big, they’re actually small. My G wagon is about a foot shorter than my wife’s Subaru Crosstrek.
Scott Brady: Yeah, designed in the late 70s so they’re not big cars.
Matt Scott: Yeah, they’re not big cars. Depending on how big of fender flares you have on them, they’re- I mean, they’re still just narrow, narrow vehicles. I think they’re also very space efficient inside.
Scott Brady: Big box.
Matt Scott: Pickup trucks are a challenge, like we run into this with our dog –not with two kids, but he is basically the size of two kids– is that, where do you then put all of your stuff in a pickup truck? When you have an SUV, you have four or five seats, and then you have a cargo area behind, you have a full length roof rack that you can do.
Scott Brady: Yeah, everything’s out of the dust, the fridge is inside the HVAC, so it’s not working as hard.
Matt Scott: Exactly, so, first thing that he should consider, I- What was his name?
Scott Brady: He is The Golonda Fam.
Matt Scott: Oh, he’s just Golonda Fam? Okay, well, Golonda Fam, what you should consider is size! You know, there’s probably a reason that you’d like the G Wagen. For me, I find that its size- the Prospector XL is going to be more comfortable, it’s going to be easier to drive, and you’re gonna be able to put a camper on the back, which maybe that’s the direction that you’re going, you know, you have your seats inside, and then you have your living space or camping stuff, you know, in the back of the bed.
Scott Brady: That’s where I see the hack with the full size, is that you get to have a camper on the back of it. Like if you’re not going to install a camper on a full size, I’m really not so sure what the advantage is. And believe it or not, I think you’re actually right when you say that the prospector will be more comfortable, which is a crazy thing to say- that a prospector will be more comfortable than a G Wagen but it’s amazing how comfortable your truck is.
Matt Scott:They drive better. Even modern G wagons, like I don’t have a lot of experience in the 463A which is like 2019 and above, but I’ve had, you know, the last generation of G Wagen and the first generation of the 463. I haven’t owned a 460 or 461. Yeah, if I’m driving across the country, even in that 2016 that I had?
Scott Brady: No, not super comfortable.
Matt Scott: They’re great city vehicles, like that’s why you see him in bougie- that’s why you see so many of ’em in Hollywood.
Scott Brady: They’re smalls, they’re-
Matt Scott: Easy to drive, great visibility, so…
Scott Brady: Yeah, for sure. There you go, that’s some good insights on that for sure. So this is from Vince Peterson, and this is a really thoughtful comment that he made. With all the craziness in the world right now, he says I just wanted to be reminded of the quote that we had on the podcast, which is: that people are generally good and that governments are generally bad. And he says that we’re you know, we’re all praying for peace and he’s talking about the conflict in Ukraine right now. But that is an important reminder, is that there are- in any country even if it’s one that we may be concerned about because of conflicts like this, there are still so many people that are living there. You know, I think about the people that I’ve used in Russia to help me solve problems, translator that I crossed the country with, that was just a wonderful person, the fixer that helped me get the vehicles into a container in Vladivostok, another wonderful human being Paulina. It just makes me remember that, despite the fact that things can be so tragic at the global scale, or at the governmental scale, that there are all these individuals that we interact with as travelers, and that people are generally good, they want the same things that we do. So I think that that was an important reminder and it is something we’ve said a lot on the podcast, and I found it to generally be true. I don’t remember ever in my travels, running into just a group of people or a society of people that are horrible. Maybe you’ve had a different experience, but…
Matt Scott: I’ve actually just had a generally positive experience of traveling.
Scott Brady: Yeah, people are generally good. Yeah, but thanks for that. Thanks for that reminder, Vince, appreciate that. Last one that we’ve got is from Brian Stumen. Have you reviewed any hitch mounted tire carriers? He doesn’t want to throw the tire on his roof rack. And we have reviewed a lot of those hitch mounted tire carriers, and they’re generally terrible, because they’re trying to reach a price point. So they make a lot of noise and-
Matt Scott: The Rigd one is the best that I’ve come across, that has a pretty unique locking system in the hitch to prevent sway and it’s got a good latch on it. If it’s something that you have to have, I would strongly encourage you to look at the Rigd, it’s like R I G D.
Scott Brady: Yeah, they have some anti vibration tensioner in the hitch itself, but it’s important to remember that you’re now putting a lot of leverage on the vehicle very far back, you’re compromising your departure angle, it restricts you doing other things like having a mountain bike or other things that you can put into the hitch and the vehicle is really not designed-
Matt Scott: I think the Rigd one actually allows you to have a- have like a separate hitch for mountain bike stuff.
Scott Brady: Oh, that’s clever.
Matt Scott: It’s kind of cool. They’re all kind of inherently flawed designs, when you think of it.
Scott Brady: It’s a compromised solution to just mounting a tire someplace else. Sometimes it’s all you can do to fit an oversized tire because they don’t-
Matt Scott: It’s really really popular on, like the Prospector XLs. If people do a camper, they have nowhere to put their spare.
Scott Brady: Yeah, a lot of them just make- they make a lot of noise and vibration, so it’s just good to find one that has an anti vibration mechanism to it, where it tensions into the receiver. Thank you, Brian, for that. For those that have other questions, please feel free to reach out to Matt or myself. We talked about how to get a hold of us, you can reach me at Scott dot A dot Brady
Matt Scott: And I’m MattExplore.
Scott Brady: Yeah, so let us know what you guys have any additional questions on and we appreciate all of you for listening to the podcast, for enduring both mine and Matt’s rants on occasion. And it just bec-
Matt Scott: Matt’s opinions!
Scott Brady: Yeah, well, you really care about the industry, man and it comes across.
Matt Scott: Yeah, Its been my life!
Scott Brady: Yeah, it comes across. We both feel that way. We’re so grateful for all of you listening. One of the main reasons why this podcast is available is because of the Overland Journal Print Publication. For those that have reached out and asked how else they can support the podcast, just becoming a subscriber makes a huge difference. Check out the magazine at overlandjournal.com, we appreciate that. And again, thank you, Paula Burr for being our producer and for making my job so much easier and allowing us to get this content out to those who listen. So we thank you all for listening, and we will talk to you next time.