Considering where I live and the occasional rabbit who bumps his head under there, not to mention the once a year, unexpected big rock in the road (oh, I just mentioned it), I think the more durable protection is the way to go.
Gearing up and I have no idea yet for how long or which path I'm going to take. Young nephew needs to get me the specs of that crate I'm probably picking up for him so I know if it is something I can do. Also I need to know exactly where to meet the shady vendor. I have faith the young engineer wouldn't place me askance the law or in harm's way, but in the path of semi-lunatics, he'd not hesitate.