Poison Spyder’s Larry McCrae, Episode 15


Larry McCrae joins us from St George, Utah – his retirement home, to talk about rock crawling in the early days, Poison Spyder, his battle with throat cancer and what he’s up to now.  And no, retirement isn’t really on the list.  Check out https://www.zionjeeptours.com/ next time you’re in Southern Utah, that’s Larry’s latest endeavor that keeps him connected to Jeeps.

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3:52 – everybody mods a Datsun pickup, right?

7:07 –the back story to Larry’s first Wrangler.

10:33 – meeting John Bondurant on the trails

17:40 – the impact of John nelson on the professionalism of the sport

23:49 – race advice from Rob McCachran

29:10 – When opportunities present themselves, the start of Poison Spyder for Larry

35:30 – the definition of “lightening in a bottle”

37:50 – what precipitated the sale of Poison Spyder to Transamerica

41:01 – shocked by the diagnosis

48:40 – “Get off the course!” – racing KOH

57:14 – what’s next after three years of retirement – how fast it all happens


Catching up with Larry was a lot of fun, it’s fascinating to hear the rest of the stories that we all know just a little bit about.


We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.




Big Rich Klein: All right, we’re here this morning with Larry McCrae. Larry, how are you doing?

Larry McCrae: I’m doing well. How are you Rich?

Big Rich Klein: Doing fantastic. How are you holding up with the, with our situation here You know, most of us are, feel like we’re under house arrest. I guess you guys are not actually under house arrest. Just recommended you stay home.

Larry McCrae: Yeah. And Southern Utah’s full of wide open spaces where what we used to do for fun, we can still do for fun without violating the social restrictions. I guess you can jump in your razor and go drive. Even if you’re with a couple of buddies, you can still stay far enough apart where safe and still do what we would have been doing the weekends anyway. but I’ve been staying busy here at the house, just catching up on projects that have been piling up. So, in that sense it’s been great. For the business, it’s really been impactful. I mean, we are in the tourism industry now. It is 100% shut down here. So,

Big Rich Klein: Yeah, we’re feeling that. We’re seeing that with our, a hotel that we have here in Texas. There’s not a, not a lot going on. In fact, through the whole of April, most of March, we, we lost all of our business and cancellations. But, it’ll all come back around here shortly. I hope. Hopefully the economy starts to flourish and everybody gets back to, to doing what they, they’ve decided to do. So let’s, let’s talk about the beginnings. where did, where did you grow up

Larry McCrae: So I grew up in a little rural town in Southern California, Banning- Beaumont. It was two communities, but we kind of bounced back and forth between the two towns as I was growing up. But, the only thing to do for recreation there as a teenager was, go out and drive around in the dirt in your trucks. And that’s what we did for fun. Our family vacations were spent. No, if it was just a weekend trip, we’d go up to the mountains in the Bronco and drive around. And if it was a no, or we look up our little travel trailer and we go or ghost towns or yup. All kinds of places around the Southwest that weren’t accessible unless you had four wheel drive. So I kind of got me hooked like when I was 13, learned to drive in that Bronco when I  was 13. Okay. And that’s been my passion for a long time.  READ MORE



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