Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Get Toyota Cruisers & Trucks Magazine on the Google Play Store!Get Toyota Cruisers & Trucks Magazine on the App StoreArkansas is home to the beautiful 1.2 million-acre Ozark National Forest. Arkansas is home to the beautiful 1.2 million-acre Ozark National Forest. Three major rivers flow through the old-growth forest, resulting in hundreds of streams, waterfalls, and emerald pools. A network of forestry roads wind through the forest and intersect with the water ways. Bridges exist for many of the main roads, but the less traveled roads require water crossings. I reside in the Dallas, TX area, so Arkansas is my nearest off-road playground. The Ozark National Forest is 5 hours away and well worth the drive.

 

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

It was the destination of choice for testing the new Kenda Klever R/T KR601E-rated 10-ply tires. I first encountered these rough terrain tires at the SEMA 2019 Kenda booth. Having owned numerous all-terrain and mud-terrain tires on my previous off-road rigs, I was intrigued by the concept of tires that had features from both standard terrains. The Triple Threat 3-Ply sidewall, aggressive styling, and promise that it handles on the road like an all-terrain had me intrigued. I obtained a set of 265/70-17 for my 2019 TRD Pro Tacoma. At this size, the tire diameter is 32-inches. I placed these on a set of Fuel Vector 17x8.5 wheels with -6 offset.

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Kenda describes the R/T sidewall as “3 full carcass plies of polyester to ensure the best amount of protection from impact damage and punctures. Aggressive sidewall tread not only gains you traction, but protects against cutting, tearing and abrasions.”

On a cold weekend in February, I met up with a group of guys from the Little Rock, AR area. I’ve done trips with some of these guys in the past and am appreciative of their knowledge of the Ozark NF 4x4 trails. With leaves missing on the trees, I experienced improved visibility of the water ways and mountain range. Yes, mountain range. The tree-covered mountains are known as Boston Mountains, but are usually referred to as Ozark Mountains. While these mountains don’t compare in size to the Rockies, they do indeed qualify as mountains.

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

With record rain falls and snow hitting Arkansas during the winter, it was no surprise that water levels were higher than usual in February. We encountered muddy trails and displaced rocks from rushing waters. For me, this was a great way to get introduced to the capabilities of my new tires. Between the 2 days of off-roading, we hit about a dozen water crossings and an additional dozen muddy flooded areas.

When the option presented itself, I always chose the more technical path. The tires handled everything I put them through. No slipping and sliding, never got stuck, and best of all, the mud cleared quickly from the slotted tread. Rocky climbs were conquered with ease.

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

On pavement, the tires handle great for heavy-duty truck tires. They do produce a high-pitched whine that becomes noticeable at 75+ mph, but nowhere near as loud as mud-terrain tires. These weigh in at 55-pounds. The aggressive styling provides for an aggressive stance.

Ozark National Forest + Kenda Klever R/T Tires

This is an initial review of the Klever R/T. Throughout 2020, I will be taking these tires to Big Bend NP and Guadalupe NP trails, Escalante National Monument trails, and Colorado trails. I am eager to see how they perform on the various types of terrain. I will also be trying these on the difficult technical trails at Lone Star Toyota Jamboree.

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