Big rigs prowl Moab’s leg­endary trails

Four Wheeler - - Contents - By Jer­rod Jones edi­tor@four­wheeler.com Pho­tos: Jer­rod Jones

Big rigs prowl Moab’s leg­endary trails

IT WAS 1967 WHEN THE CHAM­BER OF COM­MERCE of Moab, Utah, was look­ing for a way to at­tract peo­ple to come visit. Moab was an ab­so­lutely mag­nif­i­cent lit­tle town that was beau­ti­ful, but far away from any large pop­u­la­tion. It sur­vived largely on money tied to ura­nium min­ing—someday that money would dry up. The Cham­ber looked at the re­sources avail­able and came up with a plan: It would hold a jeep­ing event that would in­vite 4x4 en­thu­si­asts and off-road beat­niks of all kinds to the lovely town. Af­ter 52 straight years, we’re com­fort­able call­ing the plan a suc­cess.

In the early 1980s, the Moab Cham­ber of Com­merce saw this as too big of an an­i­mal to wran­gle them­selves and brought on a lo­cal 4x4 club—the Red Rock 4-Wheel­ers—to man­age the event. At some point the name also changed slightly to be called the Easter Jeep Safari. But the plan was never to be ex­clu­sive to a sin­gle man­u­fac­turer. The term “jeep­ing” was syn­ony­mous with “off-road­ing,” and there sim­ply weren’t enough 4x4 en­thu­si­asts yet to form cliques. Any­one who was into off-road­ing was wel­come. And that tra­di­tion still con­tin­ues to­day. One thing we saw at the 2018 Easter Jeep Safari was that “dif­fer­ent” was def­i­nitely cool. A group that helps to push that plan and con­tin­ues to be­lieve in the “all are wel­come” credo is the Fullsize In­va­sion crew. While they’re all about their fullsize 4x4s, re­quire­ments for join­ing the pack are loose, and it is re­ally just a bunch of fullsize 4x4-lov­ing folks that

love to see cool rigs. We saw Dako­tas, Grand Chero­kees, and even a first-gen­er­a­tion Ex­plorer wheel­ing with the group.

What started as a rogue run done on a sin­gle day six years ago has turned into five full days of trail run­ning dur­ing the 2018 Easter Jeep Safari week, ac­com­pa­nied by a party and raf­fle. For 2018, the raf­fle pro­ceeds (of prizes gen­er­ously do­nated by Fullsize In­va­sion spon­sors) went to help build a new play­ground at a preschool in Moab. Clearly, the Fullsize In­va­sion is here to stay. The event is get­ting big­ger ev­ery year, is of­fi­cial with per­mits and in­sur­ance, and al­ways hits some of the best trails that the Moab area of­fers. For more info visit face­book.com/ full­sizein­va­sion.

->Daystar’s brand am­bas­sador Ian John­son showed up to hit the Moab Rim trail in his M715. It’s packed with all sorts of mods but still has the orig­i­nal patina!

<|Stephen Watson of Of­froad De­sign has at­tended ev­ery sin­gle year of the Fullsize In­va­sion. In fact, Stephen has been wheel­ing Moab in fullsize rigs long be­fore the on­set of the Fullsize In­va­sion. His killer K30 is al­ways im­pres­sive. |>Johnny Wood’s 1⁄2-ton Dodge had no prob­lems creep­ing up the Moab Rim trail.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.