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If there’s one thing I’ve learned about myself over the years is I tend to have a “vision” of how I think something will be. I have a picture in my mind and tell myself how great something is going to be even if I have no real experience with whatever that “something” is.

After I sold my 2007 Harley Streetglide, I decided to go with a side by side. I started with a 2017 Teryx LE 2 seater. This was going to be something Renee and I could do together and as always, I “envisioned” what I thought it would be. I saw us going trail riding, hanging out with other couples, seeing fantastic scenery and all from the comfort of regular seats.

In reality, the side by sides are big and heavy and you have to have a decent size trailer to haul them in. You are also limited by their size on where you can ride them. Most the time you end up just blasting down miles of fireroads which to me is boring as well. If you live in an area where there are dedicated riding areas, you are lucky. Here in Washington state where I live, I have to trailer for hours to get anywhere I can go off road.

Another bad habit I have is buying aftermarket parts for whatever toy I have. I spend thousands of dollars buying all sorts of trick parts. But for me, working on them and building them is half the fun ; ) So of course when I got the Teryx, I proceeded to get every trick part that was made for it. After

In the end, the Terx just ended up sitting in the garage year after year. I think in 3 years time, I had it out twice. But I was still in love with the idea of having one, so just before I retired, I sold the Teryx 2 and upgraded to a KRX 1000. I don’t even want to think about all the money I spent on that one. I took it on one trip when I owned it and that was to the Rally in the Pines in Challis, ID. You can view picturs of that trip by Clicking HERE. That really opened up my eyes and made me realize I just didn’t care for the type of riding you could do with a side by side. As they say, “The fantasy is always better than the reality.”

Another downside was the cost of hauling this whole operation. With the 20 foot converted trailer loaded with the KRX 1000 (over 2000 lbs.) I went broke paying for fuel. This is when diesel was around $5 per gallon. I knew it was going to cost more, but just how much more I wasn’t prepared for. I spent almost $600 getting to Boise, ID where my brother lives. At that point I almost called off the trip as I had just got started and no way I could afford fuel for the rest of the trip at the rate I’d been going.

With some help from both my brothers in Idaho, I decided to complete the trip, but in the end, I had spent almost $1200 in fuel. I knew heading into retirement, there was no way I could travel with this setup. I had to downsize.

A little while before I retired, things were getting really dicey at work. There had been several “waves” of layoffs and I was worried I might be next. The company was slowly getting rid of all the US employees and had moved the support work I was doing to the Phillapines. If that happened, I wanted to at least have one toy when the dust settled. This is when I bought my Suzuki King Quad. I had always wanted one and almost bought that instead of my KRX 1000.

This way if I got layed off, I could sell the KRX 1000, pay off my debt and retire and still have a quad to ride. I also realized I got much more excited to ride the quad than I ever did with the side by sides. It’s just a completely different and connected feeling. I was using handlebars again like I had my whole life riding motorcycles. I loved the feel of being on it and out the open.

In the end, I wasn’t laid off and I sold the KRX 1000 anyway. My job had gotten to a point where I absolutely hated it. I was willing to do whatever it would take so I could retire early. I also sold my custom trailer I had built to haul the side by sides in. With what I had in my 401K, I could retire a little early (September of 2023) and make it until my 62nd birthday in January when I my Teamster pension and Social Security would kick in.

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