Monday, May 24, 2010


Just a couple of cool pictures of beach vehicles. The top picture from Australia shows fellows stuck good in some serious Toyota Land Cruiser Pick Up trucks, loaded down with fish. Commercial fellows I bet. Maybe netters. That's why you need a serious vehicle to go on the wilds of the beach. To try not to get stuck in the first place, and if you do get stuck, to have the gear and the vehicular ability to extract yourself from sometimes seemingly endless soft fields bad sand.
The bottom pictures is from Thunders Garage, which deals in 4x4 and custom vans. It's just an example of what I think pushing the limit for a heavy 4x4 for wild Texas beach fishing. It does make for a much better fishing camp, particularly if one has a small generator and an aftermarket low profile R/V rooftop A/C to keep that van cool and the skeeters out when it's either bad weather.
And by fishing at an island, I also mean occasionally attempting to go over the island to the bay side to do some fishing over there in kayaks. It must be done in a safe manner for the environment, but many times I've come across trails and passes at low tide that were passible without hitting dunes. They change every day nearly, but there's almost some place to make traverses across islands if your vehicle is serious enough and the terrain in decent shape.
It's the only way to see these kinds of places too. You can see them from a boat, and occasionally (and with much effort) you can come ashore from a boat in the bay or gulf in an undeveloped public land area and see unique wildlife and the way Texas used to be.
I've known two folks in my life who had 4x4 custom vans, and both did admirably in serious wild Texas beach conditions. I saw one by owned by a fellow named Larry many years ago that was brand new with paper tags, and his parents were letting him go fishing with it waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyy up the beach at South Padre. My cousins and I made friends with him and went with him, and it was quite a cool deal to be cruising in a short wheel base 4x4 custom van with music from Boston's first album cranking, the dual A/C blasting and the lifted and large tired van just taking the beach like it was a Jeep J-10 pickup.
I've never had a beach truck, but have had many friends who have had either a dedicated beach truck or a daily vehicle adapted to fishing use on weekends. I've got a great vehicle for my daily use, and Mrs. El Fisho has long been in agreement about the need in our family for a beach truck. Back in the late 90's, we once came very close to buying an FJ60 Toyota Landcruiser, actually looked at quite many of them, and should have bought the fairly low milage and slightly overpriced tan one that the lawyer on Ocean Drive in Corpus had for sale.
I'd probably still be driving it today if I had bought it then. There were many lesser models, including one with a rebuilt engine, transmission and 4wd that another lawyer friend in Houston owned for his bird hunting. It was a bit rough, but again, it was for a bargain price back then and I know who bought it and it is still driving and running well, albeit with money thrown at it in various intervals for various issues and repairs.
That's just one vehicle that was just built rugged, the old 80's style Land Cruiser. Before they got fancy. When they were slower and while not fast vehicles at all, they had incredible torque power. And lots of cargo room, especially with the rear seats folded down.
I'll talk more about what I think makes a cool Texas beach vehicle in the next post.

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