“My first four-wheeler experience is an interesting story,” says Scott Smith, owner and President of High Lifter Products, Inc. “Let me take you back probably 4 or 5 years before High Lifter was imagined. I was in the rice fields down in central Louisiana, snipe hunting with a buddy of mine. He had an old Honda Fourtrax 250. It was the first time I ever sat on a 4 wheeler, 3 wheeler or anything. I was a mud-truck guy. So we started pulling towards this slough (Louisiana swamp) and I was on the back. Keep in mind, it was February and it was damn cold. There was a better rice field on the other side of this slough and we could see a snipe flying in and out. My buddy started towards that slough and I said ‘What are you doing?!’ He said, ‘I’m going to cross this slough and go to the other field!’ I was like, ‘Oh hell no, not with me on the back!’ He wouldn’t stop to let me off and the next thing you know, the water was halfway up to the seat. It was unbelievably bad mud. We got to the middle and were still moving. It was at that point I realized we were going to make it all the way across! I thought to myself, ‘holy crap, I gotta have one of these!’ Sure enough, we came out of the slough and crossed the levy to the other rice field, and we ended up getting our snipe. That was my introduction to four wheelers.”
Armed with a degree in finance, Scott Smith, 49 of Shreveport, Louisiana, started out his professional life as a commercial real estate appraiser. He specialized in financing downtown office buildings, nursing homes and shopping centers. He became interested in construction and soon changed his profession to being a general contractor. When he wasn’t working, Scott enjoyed riding four wheelers with his father, Mike Smith.
His evening hobby soon turned into a two story office building with 30 employees, a giant warehouse and a website, complete with a forum where riders could chat about their experiences. “Before Facebook and Instagram, our High Lifter forum was the social site for all things mud riding. We had the biggest, most active mud-riding forum and website on the web. Our customers would talk about riding and meeting each other to go on rides. My dad, now retired, was High Lifter General Manager at the time, and Dan Doughty, General Sales Manager, decided to plan a ride and invite all the forum people plus a few vendors, and make it a riding competition. So, my dad and Dan get 100% of the credit for creating our annual High Lifter Mud Nationals.”