First, is this going to be your daily driver, or just a weekend toy? How often do you plan on wheeling it? That will go a long way in determining what year, miles, options, etc. you will be looking for. I take it from your username that you're in SC somewhere?
Also, IMO, if you really are planning on using the Jeep as you stated in your post, I don't think you need to be looking at a Rubicon. A stock Jeep with a few small upgrades will take you all kinds of places you wouldn't expect to be able to go. The Rubicon has some awesome features, but unless you are planning on seriously wheeling your Jeep through some very difficult terrain, the reality is you will seldom, if ever, need the expensive lockers and TC that come with the Rubicon. I think your $ would be better spent finding a clean, mostly stock Sport or Sahara with the Dana 44 rear, figuring out what you want it to be, and using the extra $ to upgrade from there. Or better yet find an LJ if you're looking to use it for family trips. Lots more room and comes with the D44 standard.
If you see any specific Jeeps you're looking at, feel free to post them here. People around here are always eager with advice for new Jeepers.
Oh and BTW, you WILL get hooked, it's only a question to what extent. All the more reason to spend a little less initially to save for the endless mods that will inevitably follow
Edit: Just noticed this was posted in the SOUTH CAROLINA forum. Didn't mean to intrude fellas lol