Trail Ratings

Land Use, Trail Info, etc

Trail Ratings

Postby Rob85635 » Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:58 pm

I was reading some threads here and see trails rated with numbers. I did a search for "trail ratings" and found 124 returns, a bit much to weed through.

Is there a guide to the numbers and what they mean? Can anyone give me a general guideline on what trails I should be looking for. I drive a 2007 H3 w/ adv package that will have a toughcountry front bumper replacement and a winch soon. I have rockslides but other than that it is basically stock with 33s. What trails can I take as a newbie and not risk damaging the rig badly or worse us occupants?

Thanks for any advice.

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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby tomp » Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:47 pm

With rear locker and 33s, stay on a trail rated 3 or less
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby H3slate » Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:52 pm

It really varies how the trails are rated. I believe most trails are rated 1 to 5, with 5 being the most difficult. I wheel at Browns camp a lot and the trails are rated easy, moderate, most difficult, and double diamond difficult. I have taken my H3 on the most difficult trails with very few problems.

Most of your success with doing more difficult trails will be with taking the right lines.

Trails can also become more difficult with the changing of the seasons, snow obviously adds some difficulty, as well as wet conditions. Some trails are closed during winter to prevent the trail from getting torn up with all the mud.

If you attempt the harder trails make sure you don't go alone. If you get stuck, it is a long walk out.
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby Seth » Fri Aug 01, 2008 12:54 pm

NO way to give you the right trail number. No trails are rated the same unless done by the same author/organization. Most states have different rating systems. Books can be all together subjective. In my H3 I have the adventure package with stock tires, rock rails, under carriage protection, and rear leaf spring skids and I have done some pretty intense stuff. You can do very intense stuff with the right gear and buddies. As long as your careful, the most you'll ever do is scrape the crap out of the armor. Main things to be careful on are extreme side slopes, huge rock gardens, and slippery conditions. Cliffs are good to watch out for as well. :lol:

Where do you live? This can help people in your area chime in with what types of trails they have done and what the ratings translate to in your area.
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby Rich » Fri Aug 01, 2008 11:19 pm

It should also be noted that some systems go to 5 as the hardest, while others go to 10.

Others even use E,M,D (easy medium, difficult)

Any book you take a rating from should explain the rating system it uses.
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby Alec W » Sat Aug 02, 2008 9:06 am

Colorado is generally a 1-10 state and Moab/Southern Utah is 1-5 but one thing to be aware of is current conditions. A lot of the books are old and some of the trails are much harder and some actually easier. One thing I always keep in mind is reverse gear, I’m not too proud to use it when I’ve found myself on a trail I’m not equipped for.
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby Alec W » Sat Aug 02, 2008 9:12 am

A good example is Holy Cross in Colo. 33s and a single locker were fine last year but due to a big rock moving people are having probelms with 35+ locked front and rear this year. The rating is proably closer to a 9 now.

http://www.colorado4x4.org/trail_ratings.html

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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby Sewie » Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:11 am

Rob85635 wrote:Is there a guide to the numbers and what they mean?


Google is your friend. ;)

http://www.sedonajeepschool.com/NewFile ... tings.html


As others have said, the ratings can be subjective. And driver skill matters just as much if not more than the vehicle's capability. I would try planning a run with some of the members here. Or find a club in your area and hit some moderate trails to start off with.
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Re: Trail Ratings

Postby ToxicTurtle » Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:05 pm

Many clubs out East/up here in New England use 1-10.
This is an example of what most clubs use up here:

1. OEM 4WD. Very mild trail with the possibility of small rocks or mild mud/water crossings. 4wd may not be needed for entire trail. Most state forest roads fit this category.

2. Mild trail with moderate mud and/or rocks, rutted.. Obstacles will require the use 4wd. Many class 6 and old, unmaintained, town roads would fit in here.

3. Rocks will be larger so the use of undercarriage protection is highly recommended. Obstacles will require the use of 4lo. Pain Hill is in this range with one section that is about a 4.

4. Mild lift, aggressive tires, additional protection recommended (sliders, bumpers, etc). Tory Mountain is about a 4.

5. 32" or larger mud terrain tires, additional protection (sliders, bumpers, etc) More demanding trail with the possibility of deep mud/water crossings. More rocks and/or ledge work. Locker would be helpful. Gutter's and Stone Garden's range would start about here and go up to about a 7.

6. 33" tires w/1 locker or 35" tires w/no locker. Demanding trail with the likelihood of getting stuck. Deeper water/mud crossings, moderately large rock work should be expected. Ledges may be as high as 2 feet, rocky areas may be longer and will have boulders 2 foot around or larger. Tunnel Rd and Breakneck would fit in here.

7. 33" tires w/2 lockers, or 35" w/1 locker, winch very helpful, body damage possible. Hard trail, large rock work. Boulders and ledges in the 3 foot or possibly larger range Expect your vehicle to be at extreme angles. Likelihood of getting stuck is high. OFR and DeadFall would fall into this range. Stone Gardens as well, with certain areas that rate as high as a 9.

8. 35" tires, w/2 lockers, winch recommended, trail breakage/ body damage likely. Extreme trail with large rock/boulder work. Trail in Vane and parts of DeadFall fall into this range.

9. 37-38" tires and up, 2 lockers, winch highly recommended, spare parts for trail repair, body damage probable, roll over protected recommended. Trail in Vane has trails that fit this range.

10. Same as above plus a blatant disregard for the safety of yourself or your truck (bring the helmet). Roll over protection required, trailer recommended. Reds at Paragon were in this area.
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