For the last three days as the snow melted away I have run the Ranger TM with renewed enjoyment. The light vehicle will float over highly questionable terrain as long as there are roots or sod for the soft, wide tires to grip.

I even felt confident enough after repeated expeditions around the farm to take my 87-year-old mother for a drive to enjoy the first glow of spring this afternoon. Mom warned me about the danger of getting stuck on the soft turf, but relaxed as we moved over dodgy patches with no more than an occasional spin. After an enjoyable half-hour, for some reason I decided to let Mom look at the asparagus bed on the other side of one garden plot.

In my own defense I must say that I have driven repeatedly across the other side of this plot, but that the buckwheat straw tipped over onto the mud proved no substitute for the turf which had supported us for the earlier parts of our drive this day. We sank.

Fortunately help was nearby in my shop, so while Mom kept her seat belt on and planned arrangements for her new bouquet of pussy willows, I backed the Bolens tractor into place and hauled the Ranger onto solid ground with a long towing strap. No harm done.

The 2WD Ranger TM is a very capable vehicle on turf, even wet and spongy turf, but in mud it is helpless as soon as the back tires fill up.

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