Where were you on Saturday, May 15, 2021? This red-letter date marked the 14th annual National Go Topless Day, in which Jeep enthusiasts from coast to coast took the removable hardtops off their Jeeps for the season—or kept them off—and took to the roads and trails in full wide-open glory. This was quite an occasion in the Jeep community, but it’s hardly the only time many Jeep drivers have enjoyed the thrill of open air on the open road. National Go Topless Day is merely an inauguration of the top-down driving season, an event that brings together the famously tightly-knit Jeep community in a shared activity. Why should your Jeep go topless? You don’t need to wait until May 2022 and the next installment of National Go Topless Day to lift off the hardtop and enjoy the benefits of topless Jeep driving for yourself. Here are just a few of those benefits.
The Most Fun You Can Have Under the Sun
Tired of that uneven tan from dangling your left arm out the window while you casually steer with your right? A well-seasoned left-arm tan can be as embarrassing as the worst farmer tan, sandal tan, or even the swimmer’s rare goggle tan. Getting out from under the hardtop can help you get a healthy all-over tan as you drive, not just once you’ve reached your destination—whether that’s the beach, the desert, or anywhere else the sun’s rays can find you. A vitamin D deficiency is no fun at all. Why not take care of that by maximizing your exposure to the sun? Just be sure to wear sunscreen, of course.
Feel the Rush of the Wind
Whether we’re working in the office or working from home, we’re spending a lot of time cooped up. Let’s say you are back at the office. That means you’re hopping in your car, driving to work, sitting in traffic along the way, logging a solid eight hours at your desk, and then making the whole trip again in reverse. All you’re really doing each day is moving from one pod to another—home to car to work to car and back home. Don’t you need some fresh air to feel alive again? Removing the hardtop from your Jeep is as close to nature as you can get with the keys still in the ignition. That nice, full cross-breeze hitting you as you drive is truly an experience—there’s nothing like it, not even with convertibles. You can lighten up your daily commutes with topless Jeep driving or prep yourself for some weekend-warrior off-road excursions, where being unencumbered by doors and a roof is practically a prerequisite.
Going Topless Under the Stars
When we think of those off-road adventures, we picture the sun beating down on beaches, deserts, and mountains or navigating tight twists and turns through muddy forest trails beneath a canopy of trees. But those scenes don’t tell the whole story. Some of the best treks happen under the moonlight, far from the light pollution of the big cities. Just as there’s something special about hitting the best trails under the sun while yourself being very much under the sun, night driving in the great wide open is pretty magical, too. When you reach the end of your trail and set up your campsite, you can do some quality stargazing right there from the driver’s seat. There really is something special about getting away from all those streetlights and skyscrapers. When you’re used to seeing only one or two stars in the suburbs—one of which usually turns out to be nothing but a slow-moving airplane—staring up at a night sky that seems littered with stars is an unforgettable experience. You may even want to pack a telescope.
See the Wave, Give the Wave
There are so many little traditions, quirks, and idiosyncrasies of the Jeep community. To unaffiliated civilians, these little rituals may seem strange. That’s the point. Any good set of in-group signifiers is about demonstrating who’s in and who’s out, and as a Jeep driver, you are very much in. Why not show it? One of the best-known signals in the weird and wild world of Jeep owners is the “Jeep Wave,” that secret handshake from one passing Jeep owner to another. Pulling off a Jeep wave is an easy move: just raise your index finger, middle finger, and thumb from the steering wheel and fire off an uber-casual salute. It’s so easy, in fact, that failing to initiate or return a simple Jeep wave is a serious breach of Jeep community etiquette. Mind you, it won’t get your Jeep repossessed, but some of the more forceful among us would probably argue that it should. With your hardtop off and your field of vision open wide, you’ll have no trouble catching a Jeep wave from one of your passing co-conspirators and returning it in kind. It’s not the only reason to remove the hardtop, of course, but once you’ve taken the other reasons into account, it’s a good supporting argument.
Make It a Summer Tradition
Speaking of rituals in the Jeep community, let’s pull the camera back a bit and talk about the importance of seasonal rituals for everyone. Summer isn’t just about the weather being warmer—there are warm days in spring and fall too. Summer is a state of mind that we set off with things being just a little different from the rest of the year. What did you do as a kid that made summer special? Maybe it was heading up north to go to summer camp for a few unforgettable weeks. If you were a tennis buff, it could have been something as simple as getting up at 6 AM to watch the early Wimbledon coverage. Maybe you had some family get-togethers on the 4th of July that marked each passing year. So why should your Jeep go topless? This is your grown-up summer ritual: the annual removal of the Jeep top for a summer of outdoor fun. With the Jeep Wrangler top removal system from TopLift Pros, removing the top for the season couldn’t be simpler—you can do it yourself in a matter of minutes. Next year, for the 15th annual National Go Topless Day, you’ll be ready.