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Now’s the time of year when summer starts cooling off and, soon, the warm colors of fall will be on full display. That means it’s the perfect time to start searching for your next getaway. Only, this year, we want you to get away from air travel, and stay grounded, which is why we’ve compiled a list of the best off-road routes to get you outside your comfort zone and into the great outdoors.

If you’re looking for a leisurely stroll that still takes a toll on the tires, the Washington Backcountry should be at the front of your list. This long, 4x4 trail is nothing short of fun, but still brings some steep climbs for which you can’t help but fall. Plus, with campsites and hotels available along the route, you can take comfort in knowing a soft bed is waiting for you after a hard day of hitting the trails.

The 65-mile Alpine Loop boasts 12,000-foot passes, certain to push you past your limit. Sure, you can bring the 2WD vehicles, but if you really want the vastest of views, 4WD would be for the best. It’s the perfect trail for traversing through limitless landscapes, treeless tundra and mountains as far as the eye can see. But the pre-winter window in Colorado closes in September, so, better get a move on it.

It certainly isn’t the longest of the tracks, but it’s definitely one of the hardest to trek. The Rubicon climbs through the El Dorado and Tahoe National Forests, and presents some seriously tough terrain. So, unless your truck is decked to the nines – and jacked up nine inches – this may not be the trail for you. Only for true off-road mavens, the Rubicon Trail is a match made in 4x4-heaven. But be prepared to give your ride a thorough wash when you’re back.

Whipsaw isn’t as much “American,” as it is “North American,” with emphasis on “North.” Hailing from above, this Canadian colossus stretches 50 miles, but takes about 10 hours to take it all in. Passing through lakes, meadows and forests far and wide, you’ll find yourself stopping at several points along the way. And with only 3,000 feet in elevation, Whipsaw shouldn’t whip you too good.

It’s true what they say: sometimes, it’s better to take the road less traveled. So, for your next trip, when you hit the road, go somewhere where the road hits back. And, if the road happens to hit a little too hard, feel free to give us a ring – we’d be happy to get you back to the rhythm of your life. Now, gear up and get out there.