Opinions on when to let a 16 year old go off-roading

2Cross

Caught the Bug
So today my son asked to go off-roading with his friends at a local spot. It's an easy big sand hill that I've let him drive with me several times beginning when he was 12 years old.

I balked at giving him permission and wondered if I was being too strict or too lenient.
So I gave him a few conditions and wondered what other people have done and would recommend.

I told him he had to:
1-read a chapter in Wells book on off-roading
2-only have one or preferably no passengers
3- have another rig with him
4-air down tires to 15psi
5-check all fluids in his jeep
6- discuss his plan and details of his trip.


So... please chime in

He is driving his CJ7
Has a V8 and 35" tires


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Bigjimbo

New member
I was 15 when I first went wheeling in my 1989 S10 blazer. Florida law requires drivers with learners permits to have someone over 18 with them, so my dad went along. I got us very very very stuck in a mud pit that looked no where near as bad as it was and was pretty far from anything else.

That's when my dad sat back and made me do the recovery... for over 4 hours. I was ill prepared and boy was that a lesson. He coached a little, but making me figure it out was a lesson I'll never forget.
 

Desert Crawler

New member
From someone who had a NASCAR license on his 16th birthday, I think you are being totally appropriate. You are allowing him to do it, but laying down some rules. That's fair.


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TOPLESS

Caught the Bug
Lol. The way I did it was everyone must be buckled in and you break it you fix it. By the time their getting to that age you just pray you have trained him right and he'll use his head before he says "hey watch this"!
 

2Cross

Caught the Bug
I was 15 when I first went wheeling in my 1989 S10 blazer. Florida law requires drivers with learners permits to have someone over 18 with them, so my dad went along. I got us very very very stuck in a mud pit that looked no where near as bad as it was and was pretty far from anything else.

That's when my dad sat back and made me do the recovery... for over 4 hours. I was ill prepared and boy was that a lesson. He coached a little, but making me figure it out was a lesson I'll never forget.

Lol
That is classic


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2Cross

Caught the Bug
From someone who had a NASCAR license on his 16th birthday, I think you are being totally appropriate. You are allowing him to do it, but laying down some rules. That's fair.


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Thanks Desert Crawler

He's done most of the trails in Moab and the rubicon and many Colorado trails so I think he'll be fine as long as he doesn't do this
IMG_3219.JPG


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cozdude

Guy with a Red 2-Door
I would say the guidelines you set are fair. I know if I was in his shoes I wouldn't mind following those
 

RonG

New member
I look at it this way... I have three teenage boys; they are going to do stupid shit. I have always tried to teach them the right way to do things. As they got older, I do less and less instruction and more sitting back and observing. I cast myself in the role of "Safety Officer". It reaches a point where you have to trust that you've taught them right. If you trust they've learned the lessons, it's time to set the rules down and let them go.
 
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2Cross

Caught the Bug
I would say the guidelines you set are fair. I know if I was in his shoes I wouldn't mind following those

That's what I thought. He thinks he knows everything and doesn't need guidelines


I look at it this way... I have three teenage boys; they are going to do stupid shit. I have always tried to teach them the right way to do things. As they got older, I do less and less instruction and more sitting back and observing. I cast myself in the role of "Safety Officer". It reaches a point where you have to trust that you've taught them right. If you trust they've learned the lessons, it's time to set the rules down and let them go.


I agree. But I won't be around this time.
Thanks for the input and advice


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I look at it this way...

1. He's gonna do it anyway.
2. He has heard your guidelines, even if he thinks he doesn't need it.
3. He will most likely do whatever it takes not to screw up...he doesn't want to suffer the "I told you so" afterward!
 

jesse3638

Hooked
May want to add:

1. Don't let your friends pressure you into anything you don't want to do. You could hurt someone else or yourself. (Then add the you break it you fix it - Jeeps are fixable people are not as easy to fix)
2. Also add that if he does need your help to not hesitate in calling no matter how much trouble he thinks he'll be in. That no matter the situation you're always available to help.
As previously mentioned take the role of coach and let him figure it out for the most part though. (An occasional "Dumbass" or "That really Sucks doesn't it" or "I'm glad I don't have to do that" may help...haha)


Think back to what you did when you were his age and figure he'll do that same regardless of what you say. Kids will be kids and learning from mistakes often yield the best results. I know I learned a lot form those "Whoa that was close" moments.;)
 

BananaJeep

New member
He's 16 with a CJ7 and 35s..... you better hope there's no girls there he's trying to impress :rolleyes2:

In all seriousness, it sounds like you're a pretty level-headed dad. I'm sure he'll be fine :thumb:
 

longarmwj

New member
The day I got my jeep at 16 I went out and coated it top to bottom with mud. You couldn't tell the color. Needless to say mother wasn't too happy. She very quickly warmed up to the whole wheeling idea when she saw how much I enjoyed it.
 

JKbrick

Active Member
Has he grown up wheeling with you? It's been so long since I was that young I don't remember the details but I grew up going to Michigan with my dad riding dirt bikes before there were even four wheelers. Then four wheelers, but I remember by 17 years old going up with my buddies for days just wheeling. I have always loved pulling trailers since then, and I go to Michigan every chance I get, great memories. Sorry I got distracted but if he was raised wheeling he should know the right things to do


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