APPROACH ANGLE

4WDrive - - Contents - WORDS AND PHOTOS BY BUDD STANLEY

While you have al­ready re­ceived 4WDrive’s first is­sue of the year, this is the first is­sue we will put to­gether in 2017, so a Happy New Year to you all!

We came scream­ing out of 2016 on the cusp of an ex­plo­sive shock­wave with our backs on fire. It seems like we were lucky just to get our foot­ing as 2017 rang in. 2016 was an amaz­ing year of big news, big changes and com­ing un­cer­tainty, both in the real world and in our own shel­tered 4WD world.

Big launches of ex­treme new 4x4’s ready to tackle any­thing the earth can throw at them, mas­sive scan­dals that threaten to bring down some of the big­gest au­to­mo­tive mak­ers and the un­cer­tainty of fu­ture for­eign im­por­ta­tion rules made head­lines in the au­to­mo­tive world. In the real world, the nightly news has been dom­i­nated by wars, a crazy US elec­tion that has struck fear into many, and hope into oth­ers, and geopo­lit­i­cal po­si­tion­ing that reeks of a com­ing shift in the global pow­ers. Highly pop­u­lar celebri­ties had fallen at an in­cred­i­ble rate and by the end of De­cem­ber; the year was dubbed “of­fi­cially the worst year in the his­tory of the uni­verse” on so­cial me­dia.

Well, 2016 did have its bad points, but it also had some re­ally good points that were not as sen­sa­tion­alised in the me­dia.

Penny Olek­siak, only 16 years old, brought home four medals from the Rio Olympics, the Cubs fi­nally won the World Series af­ter a 108-year curse, the gi­ant panda is no longer on the en­dan­gered list, the hole in the ozone layer has been found to be shrink­ing, an elec­tric plane (So­lar Im­pulse) com­pleted a roundthe-world flight, and sci­en­tists are closer than ever be­fore to cur­ing ALS, HIV and can­cer thanks to chal­lenge fund­ing like the Ice Bucket Chal­lenge. So, with a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude and the de­ter­mi­na­tion to reach for your dreams, now is the time to set some goals for 2017. As much as I wish for world peace, a cure for can­cer and for Chuck Nor­ris to round­house Trump and be­come the Pres­i­dent of the United States, my goals for 2017 are much more four-wheel-drive ori­ented. In essence, I’m plan­ning our next Epic Adventure, and it’s com­ing up real soon.

As you can tell by the photo, we have nabbed our­selves a Nis­san… or two… and we are go­ing to put some long and bru­tal kilo­me­tres on them. In our last Epic Adventure we at­tempted to drive from the Cana­dian bor­der to the Mex­i­can bor­der com­pletely off-road. Well, our next adventure is equally am­bi­tious, how­ever we’re plan­ning on go­ing in a dif­fer­ent di­rec­tion, and that’s all I can say at this time.

Be sure to tune in next is­sue, as we will let you in on our des­ti­na­tion, our steed and what we need to build to get us there. Happy 2017 all.

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