I absolutely love heading up to cottage country on a long weekend. In fact every time I get out side the city I get out of my car at the first rest stop just to take in a big whiff of the fresh northern country air.
Central Ontario is not only cottage country, its headquarters to Dirt Trax and also stable to our fleet of off-road vehicles featured on the show and in the magazine each season.
On this particular long weekend, Can-Ams Defender Max DPS made a rainy, cottage bound time a blast for my two daughters and their cousins. The best part was I got to get out on the trail too.
It actually didnt take much coaxing to drag these ladies outside even though it was pouring rain. Everyone had rubber boots, helmets and eye protection, but we also fashioned stylish garbage bag ponchos for a little extra protection from the elements. I thought they looked pretty cool.
With six of us buckled in, we tackled the local trail system bombing through mud holes and stopping periodically for Instagram updates.
The coolest part of this adventure was riding the trail right into town, parking and walking up to the local Dairy Queen with all five girls. If the hours of riding in the rain didnt do it, this pretty much put me in the running for Uncle/Father of the Year.
Here are my comments on the Max DPS: I love this vehicle! Not just for its ability to haul myself and the kids around, put it rides and handles great, too.
Its 72-horsepower Rotax V-twin has loads of climbing power and never once came close to hiccupping when challenged. The dynamic power steering may be the best in this class and finally, all six of us fit comfortably in the vehicle mostly protected from the rain with the help of the standard roof.
My only two gripes come as a pair. Ground clearance is pretty tight and we bashed more than our share of rocks and stumps. This may have been due to the Maxs nearly 10-foot long wheelbase causing some rubbing as we crested hills and larger rocks, but we think it also has to do with the vehicles aluminum body coilovers being a touch too soft from the dealer.
A slightly stiffer out-of-the-crate setting would help and if we had a wish list, we think the Max is the perfect candidate for a set of Fox QS3s so quick adjustments could be made based on how many bodies or how much cargo you have on board.
I have great memories or riding off-road with my dad and my uncle as a kid. Its probably what sparked my passion for off-road riding and it really feels good to be able to build lasting memories with a new generation of riders.
I know they had fun. I sure did.