For her 60th birthday, Marty bought herself a gift that would get her out of her comfort zone: a three-day private Overland Experts (OEX) course complete with off-road driving lessons. “What a blast! I got bit by the off-road bug. My OEX instructor commented several times on the off-road capabilities of Subarus, and that was all it took. Rather than buy an off-road specific 4x4, I made a list of modifications I wanted and started the project of upgrading Ivy, my Outback, to be off-road worthy,” recalls Marty.
As for mods, Marty didn’t hold back: the Outback was lifted and upgraded with full skid plates, a differential breather, an upgraded electrical system, BFGoodrich® All-Terrain T/A KO2s on customized rims, a transmission cooler, rally lights on a light bar mounted in front of the bumper and a robust roof rack.
Now it was time for the cross-country trek to college. Marty and her daughter, Julia, left their Athens, Georgia home in May and drove to Maine via several national parks, stopping briefly in New York to visit family. They stayed in Maine for six weeks, taking the scenic route to Bennington, Vermont. From there, they drove into Canada by way of the beautiful Adirondack Mountains.