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Discussion Starter #1
I haven't had my durango long and haven't had time to go play around any and was just wondering how well these things go off road in stock trim? I dont want to do anything crazy just mild trail rides and a little mud on those trails.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yeah I know lol.... I plan on doing a T/S lift ASAP and as far as driving I have had my civic in places it never should have went but it did so I think something 4x4 I should be ok lol.
 

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I used to mild trail rides regularly with my Durango R/T. It has shorter tires (30") so ground clearance isn't that ideal for anything other than light to medium trails. I never had any issues with my running boards although I had some logs scrape the underside a few times. Never any damage.

If you do plan to hit a trail up and are unsure about driving on certain terrain, it's best to avoid unless you have a friend along to help pull you out.

On my land in northern Ontario I have 92acres and half a dozen small ponds. It can get mucky in the late spring as the snow melts and the Durango can tackle it OK with the tires I have on it, but I never go in to where I think I might get the vehicle stuck, as help is a long ways away.

If your rear axle has an LSD, that will help you out more than anything on medium trails. I don't suggest taking any vehicle with open axles on anything but light trails, although it depends on the driver as mentioned, and in time you'll know what your vehicle is and isn't capable of.

Stock Gen1 Durango's don't have the greatest fording depth either, I've had my R/T in water up to the centre of the wheel without issue, and I wouldn't chance going in any deeper - mostly as I don't wish to have any interior leaks. The Gen1 D's ain't no Land Rover, but even without the fancy electronics they can more than hold their own off-road, even stock. It's a shame I lost my old trail video's!
 

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You're gonna find the limitations quick, fast, and in a hurry just like every other modern IFS truck. Manufacturers are too interested in ride comfort and how many cup holders there are, rather then any off pavement pwerformance, from a statistics and sales standpoint they're exactly right. Having said that though, Durangos and Dakotas are a stout platform to start with. They only need a few well placed mods to unlock their full potential, mainly gearing/locker(s), and underbody protection. If it were mine I'd start with the most obvious first, do the T/S lift and either some 32x11.50s or 33x10.50s (both of those sizes should fit without rubbing on the stock wheels, aftermarket wheels or anything wider then that tire wise will take some trimming most likely). With the extra clearance you'll be able to start off on the mild stuff and hit some mud and have some fun with some confidence. After that look into making or having someone fabricate some skid plates to protect the important stuff (plastic gas tank the most important imo), expanding into some rocker panel protection as well. With everything protected you can move up to some more aggressive trails and with some careful driving line choices and controlled use of that protection on the underside you can safely start to see the full potential. Lastly (only cause it represents the biggest cash investment) change to some 4.10-4.56 gears and put a locker in the rear axle at least, the gearing will lower your crawl ratio making it easier to get over obstacles without being heavy with the right foot and risking breaking an axle or something more expensive in the drivetrain as well as improving power and fuel mileage on the road and taking stress off the transmission making it happier for a longer life. The locker is just a given, the more tires that get full power from the engine, the farther you go with less effort, downsides are a bit worse on road manners and they're a bit harder on tires then a Limited Slip/Posi. The lift, tires, skids, gearing, and locker will take the Dur from soccer mom Mall Crawler to a very capable dual purpose daily driver trail rig. Anything else you do on top of that stuff will just be icing on the cake so to speak, but to me those are the big things to do first.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I played around with it a little a week ago and felt that it did very well in mud with these cheap tires It came with. I plan on a T/S lift and a set of 33's and a locker that is as far as I want to go. The trails I have around my place are mild to medium at best they have some deep holes but they are bypassable so I don't need a crazy rig.
 

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I'm pretty impressed with the capabilities of my quad cab 4.7 dak!
 

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My truck with the body lift, two good 33" tires, and two bald ones went through a trail where guys on 35's where having trouble. I admit I never hit anything head on, but I was more than in. I was pushing ice with the bumper and second gear 4-lo, and never lost forward momentum. I wouldn't do it again, but I know it will without any fuss.
 
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