WHERE TO RIDE Archives - Dirt Wheels Magazine https://dirtwheelsmag.com/ride-spots/ The Leading ATV Magazine Worldwide Wed, 28 Sep 2022 23:47:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 DESTINATION: RIDING BRYCE CANYON https://dirtwheelsmag.com/destination-riding-bryce-canyon/ Fri, 30 Sep 2022 15:16:44 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=33480

Red rock hues & views By Lane Lindstrom The off-roading in Garfield County around (not in—that’s illegal) Bryce Canyon National Park in southern Utah will test most any rider’s skills. And, we’re not talking about your technical riding skills, although there are some challenging areas. No, we’re talking about being able to keep your eyes on […]

The post DESTINATION: RIDING BRYCE CANYON appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

Red rock hues & views By Lane Lindstrom

You don’t have to go into Bryce Canyon National Park to take in some of the awesome views. We drove to the edge of the park near Ruby’s Inn. So amazing.

The off-roading in Garfield County around (not in—that’s illegal) Bryce Canyon National Park in southern Utah will test most any rider’s skills. And, we’re not talking about your technical riding skills, although there are some challenging areas.

No, we’re talking about being able to keep your eyes on the trail while passing some of the most spectacular scenery you’ll find anywhere. Scoff if you will, but it can be a real challenge to drive while still being able to enjoy your surroundings. Just plan on lots of photo stops.

Bryce Canyon National Park is like scenery eye candy on steroids, which is a major reason it’s so popular, drawing 2.1 million visitors in 2021. Exploring the area immediately outside the national park is equally scenic, just not nearly as crowded. One advantage to exploring the area from the seat of an ATV or side-by-side is you can cover a lot of country and climb several amazing vistas that offer fabulous views.

The colors and hues of the Casto Canyon area are just so different than any other area we’ve ridden. The terrain doesn’t support much ground vegetation.

TWO DAYS, TWO DIFFERENT EXPERIENCES

During our 36-hour adventure near Bryce Canyon, we only scratched the surface of the trails available in Garfield County. We packed in as many miles (96 on day one; 64 on day two) as we could and were rewarded with all kinds of terrain. Riding surfaces ranged from dirt and sand to small rocks and medium but traversable boulders to dry creek beds to high mountain trails and near-perfect weather.

Day one had us leaving Ruby’s Inn for the edge of Bryce Canyon National Park where you can see its colorful rock formations (hoodoos) and deep canyons. You overlook the Pink Cliffs with the park stretching out before you.

Then it was off to Casto Canyon at an elevation between 7102 to 7500 feet. Its narrow passages, dry riverbed and scenery are spectacular. The riverbed is fun, wide in spots, narrow in others and sometimes mildly technical. We rode through the canyon to Panguitch for lunch and gas, and then back to Ruby’s Inn.

Our second day was shorter but still had spectacular riding and scenery. We dove off Johns Valley Road and headed up into the mountains, first to Pine Lake (elevation 8,235 feet) and then on a loop that led through a valley, stands of quaking aspens and towering pines. We found a gnarly boulder patch that was fun to crawl. The second was 10,000-plus-foot Powell Point, which offers unparalleled views of southern Utah.

The Casto Canyon trail doesn’t go down the middle of the dry riverbed, but mostly alongside it with a handful of crossings at appropriate locations.
There is quite a variety of riding surfaces in the area—from hard-packed dirt and loose gravel to small rocks to larger rocks in the dry river bed to sandy—all in just a few miles.
This little slot canyon in the Casto Canyon area was a blast to maneuver through. It added to the variety and experiences of riding near Bryce Canyon.

FIVE REASONS WE’D GO BACK

Although we were able to spend a day and a half in the Bryce Canyon area, we could have easily stretched out our trip to ride more areas. Heck, we would even explore the areas we’ve already ridden some more. So, here are five reasons we’d head back to southern Utah to ride Garfield County again.

With trees punctuating the landscape, the colors and hues of the surrounding hills and cliffs seem to be brighter and more dramatic. Some are more subtle than the brilliants reds.

SCENERY

Bryce Canyon and the surrounding area has stunning scenery worth the visit to see. It really is unlike anywhere else you’ll ride. You round a corner, and the views and hues are spectacular. While you’re still soaking that in, you come around another corner and the views just get better. There are red (and pinkish) hoodoos, white and pink sandstone cliffs, forested mountains, high desert and an occasional body of water. We tried not to put our six in order, but whatever order we chose, scenery would be number one.

This was a rare stretch of trail in Casto Canyon where we could open up the throttle a bit and air things out.

REIGN IN THE HORSES

We admit that if you’re looking to squeeze every ounce of horsepower out of your big-bore ATV or turbo UTV, this might not be the place to go. Granted, there were places to stretch the legs of our sport UTV or ATV but not many. Come looking for a leisurely pace with the occasional burst of speed. Seriously, if you’re flying by the scenery here, you’re missing the big reason to ride. Slow down and soak it in. We did and were not disappointed.

The best way to describe our visit to Pine Lake is “serene.” It was so still, there wasn’t a ripple in the lake’s surface. It’s about a 650-foot climb from the highway up to Pine Lake.

VARIETY

Garfield County has a near-perfect mix of high-mountain (above 8000 feet) riding, open stretches of trail, tight, twisty routes, unique experiences like Casto Canyon and the Paunsaugunt Trail, and various vistas where the views stretch on forever. What good is scenery if you can’t see it? There are also short and medium trails to long (50-miles plus) loops. Check out www.brycecanyoncountry.com for all of Garfield County’s riding options.

This large, quaking aspen had toppled across the trail. Since we didn’t have a chainsaw to help clear the trail, we simply went over it and continued down the trail.

SERVICES

Because the area is a popular tourist destination, there are plenty of visitor services—from lodging and camping to restaurants and ATV rentals. A few of our favorite places to eat in the area include the Bryce Canyon Pines Restaurant (www.brycecanyonrestaurant.com), Ebenezer’s Barn & Grill (www.ebenezersbarnandgrill.com), which features a western show and dinner, and, in nearby Panguitch, Cowboy’s Smokehouse Café (www.thecowboysmokehouse.com).

The dry riverbed makes for a fun ride up or down Casto Canyon. It can be dangerous during rainstorms, and the riverbed fills up with water. We had sunny skies all day.

FUN IN THE SUN

Southern Utah gets lots of sun, so there will be a few days where a ride might be spoiled by foul weather. The area—Bryce Canyon sits at 7668 feet—does receive snow in the winter (about a foot in each of November through March), so that’s not a great time to ride the area. But, once the snow melts and the trails dry out, the weather is glorious. Even in the dead of summer the temperatures rarely get over 80 degrees and cool off to the 50s at night. Our mid-October ride was a little crisp in the mornings, but it quickly warmed up. Riding in the fall season we hardly saw other riders out on both our days in the area.

This “white” mountain, which reaches 10,021 feet into the sky, is an impressive backdrop to the north of Pine Lake and can be seen from anywhere near the lake and the surrounding area.

BRYCE CANYON AREA

ELEVATION: 6500–10,000 feet

TRAILS: Hundreds of miles

FULL-SERVICE TOWN: Bryce Canyon, Panguitch

NEAREST AIRPORT: Cedar City (90 miles)

GETTING STARTED: Garfield County Office of Tourism, www.brycecanyoncountry.com

GETTING THERE: Our base camp was Ruby’s Inn near Bryce Canyon. It’s just south of Highways 12 and 63 in southern Utah.

GETTING AROUND: There are a handful of ATV/UTV rental agencies near Bryce Canyon.

BEDDING DOWN: There are numerous options for lodging near Bryce Canyon. The Garfield County Office of Tourism is a good source of information for lodging.

EATING OUT: We listed several of our favorite eating establishments above. There are lots of options in the area.

The post DESTINATION: RIDING BRYCE CANYON appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
Jolene Van Vugt: Empowersports & Polaris Adventures https://dirtwheelsmag.com/jolene-van-vugt-empowersports-polaris-adventures/ Sat, 07 May 2022 12:40:53 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=33520 Jolene Polaris Happy Trails INFRD 2022

Jolene Van Vugt helps Polaris level the playing field, and get more women riding through adventure outfitters across the country. International Female Ride Day was introduced by Vicki Gray in 2007 as a way to encourage women to get involved with the powersports industry. Extreme sports, and generally all things engine-oriented tend to be male-dominated […]

The post Jolene Van Vugt: Empowersports & Polaris Adventures appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
Jolene Polaris Happy Trails INFRD 2022

Jolene Van Vugt helps Polaris level the playing field, and get more women riding through adventure outfitters across the country.

Jolene Polaris Adventures Happy Trails INFRD 2022

International Female Ride Day was introduced by Vicki Gray in 2007 as a way to encourage women to get involved with the powersports industry. Extreme sports, and generally all things engine-oriented tend to be male-dominated fields, historically, because it was unthinkable for women to be “dangerous”. Even in our advanced society where women have fought for equality, it can still be intimidating for females to get into the extreme world of powersports. There are so many new ways for females to get out and ride. One of the ways Polaris has helped women get involved is through the Empowersports Women’s Riding Council. The council was created by Polaris to help women be more visible across the powersports industry and help push females to venture into riding, maintenance, and even racing. The Polaris database shows that their female ridership has gone up by 30% in the last year alone. Wouldn’t it be great to have the lady in your life be interested in your hobbies, especially if that means she begs you to take her riding instead of her begging you not to go at all?

Jolene Polaris Adventures Happy Trails INFRD 2022

 

This year, Polaris has stepped up their game for International Female Ride Day with help from a very impressive lady on their Women’s Riding Council, Jolene Van Vugt. Jolene is most famously known for being the first woman to successfully backflip a motorcycle, which landed her a spot on the Nitro Circus stunt team. Van Vugt is now a pro stunt woman and RZR ambassador as well as an entrepreneur. As a co-owner of The Outpost lodging cabins in Big Bear California, Jolene partnered up with a local Polaris Adventure outfitter, Happy Trails Rental, to give some ladies a taste of what she loves most.

If you are interested in getting out to ride either on or off-road, but maybe don’t have the knowledge, the vehicle, the trailer, or the money to dive headfirst into the powersports lifestyle, then Polaris Adventures is perfect for you. The Adventures program has 175 locations to choose from where you can make reservations with an outfitter who will provide vehicles and guidance for the ride of your life. You can even join their new membership program. How it works is rather than making a payment to the bank every month for one vehicle, you pay a monthly fee that gives you a certain amount of credits to use on or off-road vehicles that you can pick up, have delivered, or go on a booked tour from an Adventure Outfitter location. Unused credits roll over so that you can be flexible, or save up credits for something big. Vehicle options include ATVs, UTVs, snowmobiles, Slingshots, Indian motorcycles, and even boats.

Happy Trails Rental, located in So-Cal, operates out of Johnson Valley at the foot of the San Bernardino mountains. This 100,000-acre playground of public land will give you a wide variety of terrains to choose from for all skill levels.  From dunes and washes, to dry lakes and massive rocks, this scenic landscape is what I imagine it must be like to drive on the moon or mars. You may know of the Johnson Valley desert because of the ever-popular King of the Hammers Ultra4 race annually held in the Southeast corner of the riding area for over a decade.

Jolene Polaris Adventures Happy Trails INFRD 2022

Recently we joined Van Vugt and Polaris for a guided Adventure experience that was perfect for outdoor lovers looking to get a taste of the thrills of off-road, in a beginner and family-friendly setting. The whole group met in Big Bear to stay on The Outpost property with Jolene. The cozy cabins were built in 1931 but were recently refurbished in 2021 to keep the mountain lodge look with a more modern feel. Outfitted with hot showers, a fireplace, a kitchenette, an outdoor fish cleaning station, and of course a smart TV, you can experience the lake and nearby trails without having to rough it in a tent or miss out on the outdoor involvement in a high-tech ski-resort.

In the morning we meandered out to the Outpost brewhouse to enjoy breakfast bagels from town before loading up and heading down the mountain to Happy Trails. Our tour guide Ben went over all the safety instructions before showing the new riders all the features of their brand new RZR, especially the ride command- for GPS and Bluetooth music purposes of course. The pace was slow enough to help the new riders get comfortable with the vehicles, but not so slow that we veteran off-road junkies got bored. Although our loop was fairly short in distance, about 50 miles, we were able to explore bushy trails, silty lakebeds, mountain vista points, and a scenic stint at Cougar Buttes. Because the Dirt Wheels crew is not a bunch of beginners, we got to head off into the boulders with Ben for some advanced crawling, while Jolene took the newbies out in her passenger seat to experience some less intense rocks.

Jolene Polaris Adventures Happy Trails INFRD 2022

Nearly 85% of the US population has a current valid driver’s license, which means that 85% of the population is theoretically capable of becoming part of the UTV community. While this was a more mellow cruise day for us, which was still a ton of fun,  for a novice it would have been a great way to get a feel for terrains, vehicle capabilities, and driving techniques. The bright-eyed beginners on the ride who had never hit the dirt before, couldn’t wipe the smiles off their faces and kept saying “I can’t believe we get to do this….on a Wednesday!” like they had ditched school to do something that only the cool kids were doing.

After heading back to our cabins for a refreshing shower and some clean clothes, tacos and s’mores around the Outpost fire pit were the perfect ending to a picturesque day. If this sounds like something you or the lady in your life might be interested in, then check out this and other Polaris Adventure opportunities and start planning your adventure today!

Just get out and ride- Happy International Female Ride Day!

The post Jolene Van Vugt: Empowersports & Polaris Adventures appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
Aonia Pass ATVMX National Championship Race Report https://dirtwheelsmag.com/aonia-pass-atvmx-national-championship-race-report/ Tue, 19 Apr 2022 23:00:13 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=33357

Results from the Aonia Pass National

The post Aonia Pass ATVMX National Championship Race Report appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
From the ATV Motocross Press Release
Round three for the AMA Pro racers was a muddy one at Aonia Pass MX in Washington, Georgia. Photo PH3 Photos.

Aonia Pass ATVMX National Championship Race Report

WASHINGTON, Ga. (April 18, 2022) – Ominous skies greeted the ATV Motocross National Championship (ATVMX) Series, an AMA National Championship, as round three kicked off at Aonia Pass MX in Washington, Georgia, setting up another exciting round ATVMX racing. With some of the muddiest conditions seen in years, the day would not offer anyone a break as the teams worked tirelessly setting their machines up for an old fashioned mudder. Unfortunately, the conditions forced race officials to drop one of the qualifying sessions in the morning and delay racing until mid-afternoon.

In the qualifying session they did have, Phoenix Racing/CST Tires/Elka/Moose Racing’s Joel Hetrick was able to take the Dirt Nation Fastest Qualifier Award giving him the first gate pick. That gate pick would become paramount to taking the moto one SSi Decals holeshot, as Hetrick set the pace in what quickly became a one-lined racetrack offering little passing due to the conditions.

Joel Hetrick (Phoenix Racing) went on to earn his third-straight overall win of the season. Photo PH3 Photos
Undaunted, Hetrick poured on the power taking the moto win followed by a hard-charging Rastrelli Racing/FXR Moto/Rocket Machine Design’s Jeffrey Rastrelli in second and returning champion Wienen Motorsports/Maxxis/SSi Decals/Fly Racing/Yamaha’s Chad Wienen in third. Finishing just off the podium was Ford Brothers Racing/Fly/SSi/Maxxis/DWT/Maxima/Fourwerx/Walsh’s Bryce Ford who rode to a solid fourth with GennUSA Racing/Integrated Financial Concepts/CST Tires/Walsh Race Craft’s Nicholas Gennusa rounding out the top five.
Moto two would offer some better track conditions as Wienen took every advantage he could as he grabbed the SSi Decals Holeshot Award. After a strong performance in moto two, Wienen would earn the win giving him second overall for the weekend. The number 88 machine of Hetrick would keep the pressure on, but time ran out as he scored second in moto two, handing him another well-earned overall win.
Third overall would fall to Rastrelli as he continues to finish upfront but would slip to fourth in moto two as he and Ford swapped positions back and forth. Ford would earn third in moto two, earning fourth overall on the day. Musick Racing/Déjà vu/Kenda Tire’s Brandon Hoag wouldn’t have the weekend he was hoping for as the rising star went 8-5 for fifth overall.
The AMA Pro class weren’t the only riders affected by the rain and track conditions, as amateur racing was delayed until Sunday in an attempt to allow conditions to improve, the WMX Pro and Pro Sport classes would also run their Saturday motos in the muddy conditions. In WMX, Ellie Roush didn’t let things get in her way as she rode to a 2-1 finish on the day, earning her first-ever overall WMX win. Niamh Shaw also didn’t go down without a fight as she earned second after posting 1-3 finishes. Kinsey Osborn fought back from her fourth place in moto one to take second in moto two handing her a podium spot in third overall. Defending Champion, Andrea Berger came through for fourth overall after going 3-4 on the day.
Pro Sport is another one of the classes that gets a lot of attention as they hit the track and this round would be no different. Brett Musick and Blair Miller swapped moto wins with Musick going 1-2 and Miller earning 3-1 allowing the victory to fall to Musick with Jayden Londerville going 2-3 for the final podium position.

Round 3 ATVMX National Results

Aonia Pass ATVMX Overall Results and Points
Washington, Georgia

Round 3 of 10

Saturday, April 16, 2022
AMA Pro Class Event Results:
1. Joel Hetrick (1-2)
2. Chad Wienen (3-1)
3. Jeffrey Rastrelli (2-4)
4. Bryce Ford (4-3)
5. Brandon Hoag (8-5)
6. Michael Allred (6-7)
7. Nicholas Gennusa (5-8)
8. Cody Ford (7-12)
9. Catriel Altamirano (10-11)
10. Logan Stanfield (14-10)
Overall National Championship Standings:
1. Joel Hetrick (122)
2. Chad Wienen (101)
3. Bryce Ford (98)
4. Jeffrey Rastrelli (92)
5. Brandon Hoag (75)
6. Nicholas Gennusa (72)
7. Michael Allred (64)
8. Cody Ford (58)
9. Max Lindquist (57)
10. Zack Decker (53)
About the ATV Motocross National Championship:
The ATV Motocross National Championship, an AMA National Championship, is the nation’s premier amateur and professional ATV motocross series, hosted at top motocross facilities nationwide. The 10-round AMA Pro and 9-round amateur series features the Nation’s best racers, teams and sponsors, and is America’s largest and longest-running ATV national motocross program. Since 1985, the series continues to expand and produce top talent from the amateur ranks, while premiering the professional class. For more information, please visit www.atvmotocross.com.
About the American Motorcyclist Association:
Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world’s largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders’ interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com. Not a member? Join the AMA today: www.americanmotorcyclist.com/membership/join.

The post Aonia Pass ATVMX National Championship Race Report appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM https://dirtwheelsmag.com/yamaha-announces-atv-sxs-blu-cru-race-program/ Thu, 24 Feb 2022 00:34:28 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=32992

YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM Yamaha Motor Corp., USA, is proud to pledge more than $140,000 in bLU cRU bonuses for the 2022 Side-by-Side (SxS) and ATV racing seasons. Yamaha’s bLU cRU program offers race bonuses ranging from entry to win a new 2022 YFZ450R to payouts of up to $15,000 for qualified and eligible racers competing in […]

The post YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM

Yamaha Motor Corp., USA, is proud to pledge more than $140,000 in bLU cRU bonuses for the 2022 Side-by-Side (SxS) and ATV racing seasons. Yamaha’s bLU cRU program offers race bonuses ranging from entry to win a new 2022 YFZ450R to payouts of up to $15,000 for qualified and eligible racers competing in select series and classes with a 2020 or newer YXZ1000R, YXZ1000R SS (Sport Shift), or YFZ450R.

On the ATV circuit, Yamaha will offer payout and prize opportunities – including the chance to win a brand new YFZ450R – to all eligible participants competing in select classes in either the American Motorcycle Association (AMA) ATV Motocross (ATV MX) or Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) series.

Representing Yamaha in ATV MX’s AMA Pro class is eight-time champion, Chad Wienen, on his Wienen Motorsports / Maxxis / Walsh / SSI / Fly Racing / Yamaha YFZ450R. Wienen looks to defend his title, capture the $15,000 bLU cRU bonus, and make history as the all-time leading ATV MX champion. Additional bonuses for 2022 ATV MX overall class finishes include:

  • Pro-Am: First $2,500; Second $1,500; Third $750; Fourth $500; Fifth $250
  • WMX: First $500
  • Pro Sport: First $500
  • Production A: First $500
  • Production B: First: $500
  • Production Stock B/C: First $500

YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM

Continuing a historic run in the GNCC series, Yamaha factory-supported racer, Walker Fowler, will set out to defend his eighth-straight XC1 Pro ATV championship on his WFR / GBC / Fly Racing / Yamaha YFZ450R, earn the $15,000 bLU cRU racing bonus, and become the GNCC’s second all-time Pro ATV racing champion, behind nine-time titleholder and former Yamaha racing legend, Bill Ballance. The following bonuses will also be offered to qualified YFZ450R racers in the following GNCC overall class finishes:

  • XC2 ATV: First $2,500; Second $1,500; Third $750; Fourth $500; Fifth $250
  • WXC: First $500
  • Junior A: First $500
  • Junior B: First $500
  • College A: First $500
  • College B: First $500

ATV Racing Series / YFZ450R

  • GNCC, XC1 Pro ATV class: $15,000
  • Select GNCC class racers are entered to win: YFZ450R
  • AMA ATV MX, Pro class: $15,000
  • Select ATV MX class racers are entered to win: YFZ450R

YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAMUTV/SXS

After an impressive showing at King of the Hammers earlier this month to earn the $5,000 bLU cRU check for driving the top-placing YXZ1000R, Yamaha factory-supported racer, Brock Heger will return to the Championship Off-Road Tour to defend his Pro Stock UTV class title in his BH Motorsports / Weller Racing / Maxxis / Yamaha YXZ1000R. Owen and Rodney Van Eperen will also represent the bLU cRU in both the Pro Stock and Pro Mod UTV classes in their Powersports 1 / MRT / Beyond Redline / Yamaha YXZ1000Rs. Their team at Powersports 1 will provide trackside support to all YXZ drivers in the series with technical assistance and emergency parts needs. In addition to the $15,000 bLU cRU bonuses offered to the overall Pro Stock and Pro Mod UTV champions, Yamaha is offering racing contingencies to the following classes:

  • Pro Am: First $3,000; Second $2,500; Third $2,000; Fourth $1,500; Fifth $1,000
  • Sportsman: First $1,500; Second $1,000; Third $750; Fourth $500; Fifth $250

Yamaha continues its support of the Great American Short Course Series, offering bLU cRU bonuses to eligible racers who finish the 10-round series on the podium in the Production 1000 and Youth 1000 classes in a YXZ1000R or YXZ1000R SS. Series bonuses include:

  • Production 1000: First $5,000; Second $1,500; Third $1,000
  • Youth 1000: First $1,500; Second $750; Third $500
  • SxS Racing Series / YXZ1000R / YXZ1000R SS
  • Championship Off-Road Tour, Pro Stock UTV: $15,000
  • Championship Off-Road Tour, Pro Mod UTV: $15,000
  • Championship Off-Road Tour, Pro-Am UTV: $3,000
  • Championship Off-Road Tour, MORR UTV Sportsman: $1,500

Remaining bLU cRU national championship bonuses for 2022 include:

YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM

Whether you race or simply ride a Yamaha for fun, being a part of the bLU cRU is now more rewarding than ever. Signup is simple and benefits begin immediately upon approval, which includes a free swag bag full of great Yamaha items. Throughout the year, bLU cRU members will also receive exclusive access to special Yamaha events, promotions, training opportunities, and more. To become an official member of the Yamaha bLU cRU and view the full details, visit YamahabLUcRU.com. All qualified racers will be eligible to receive championship bonuses, which are paid directly to their bLU cRU debit card.

Every Yamaha SxS and full-size ATV is proudly Assembled in the USA at Yamaha’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Newnan, Georgia, for worldwide distribution.

For more information on the bLU cRU program, including all guidelines and requirements for ATV and SxS racing, visit YamahabLUcRU.com. To view the entire Proven Off-Road ATV and SxS lineup and learn more, visit YamahaOutdoors.com. Connect with Yamaha on social media via @YamahaOutdoors or search any of the following hashtags on all platforms:  #Yamaha #YamahaRacing #REALizeYourPodium #REALizeYourAdventure #ProvenOffRoad #bLUcRU #AssembledInUSA #YXZ1000R #YFZ450R

About Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA

Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA (YMUS), is a recognized leader in the outdoor recreation industry. The company’s ever-expanding product offerings include Motorcycles and Scooters, ATV and Side-by-Side vehicles, Snowmobiles, WaveRunner Personal Watercraft, Boats, Outboard Motors, Outdoor Power Equipment, Power Assist Bicycles, Golf Cars, Power Assist Wheelchair Systems, Surface Mount Technology (SMT) and Robotic Machines, Unmanned Helicopters, Accessories, Apparel, Yamalube products, and much more. YMUS products are sold through a nationwide network of distributors and dealers in the United States.

YMUS has a corporate office in California, two corporate offices in Georgia, facilities in Wisconsin and Alabama, and factory operations in Tennessee and Georgia. Additional U.S.-based subsidiaries include Yamaha Marine Systems Company (YMSC) with divisions Bennett Marine (Florida), Kracor Systems (Wisconsin) and Siren Marine, Inc. (Rhode Island), Skeeter Boats (Texas), with division G3 Boats (Missouri), and Yamaha Precision Propeller (Indiana).

To subscribe to Dirt Wheels Magazine in print or digital form click here https://hi-torque.com/product/dirt-wheels. 

The post YAMAHA ANNOUNCES ATV / SXS bLU cRU RACE PROGRAM appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
DAKAR 2022 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/dakar-2022-photo-gallery/ Tue, 08 Feb 2022 18:35:26 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=32943

    To subscribe to Dirt Wheels Magazine in print or digital form click here https://hi-torque.com/product/dirt-wheels. 

The post DAKAR 2022 appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
#Helicopter during the tenth stage of the Dakar 2022 between Wadi Ad Dawasir and Bisha, in Saudi Arabia on January 12, 2022 – photo Charly Lopez

 

Giroud Alexandre (fra), Yamaha Racing – SMX – Dragon, Yamaha YFZ 700, Quad, portrait during the Podium Finish of the Dakar Rally 2022, on January 14th 2022 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – Photo Julien Delfosse / DPPI
183 Medeiros Marcelo (bra), Team Marcelo Medeiros, Yamaha YFM700R, Quad, action during the Stage 10 of the Dakar Rally 2022 between Wadi Ad Dawasir and Bisha, on January 12th 2022 in Bisha, Saudi Arabia – Photo Gigi Soldano / DPPI
#179 Kancius Laisvydas (ltu), Story Racing S.R.O., Yamaha YFM 700, Quad, action during the Stage 1B of the Dakar Rally 2022 around Hail, on January 2nd, 2022 in Hail, Saudi Arabia
187 Pedemonte Italo (chl), Enrico Racing Team, Yamaha YFM 700 R SE, Quad, action during the Stage 1B of the Dakar Rally 2022 around Hail, on January 2nd, 2022 in Hail, Saudi Arabia
#Rider during the second stage of the Dakar 2022 between Hail and Al Artawiya, in Saudi Arabia on January 3, 2022 – photo Charly Lopez
Martinez Nicolas (fra), Dragon Rally Team, Yamaha 700 Raptor, Quad, portrait at the start, DSS during the Stage 4 of the Dakar Rally 2022 between Al Qaysumah and Riyadh, on January 5th 2022 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – Photo Julien Delfosse / DPPI
193 Maksimov Aleksandr (raf), Chyr Mari, Yamaha YFM 700R, Quad, W2RC, action during the Stage 4 of the Dakar Rally 2022 between Al Qaysumah and Riyadh, on January 5th 2022 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – Photo Eric Vargiolu / DPPI
#173 Copetti Pablo (usa), Del Amo Motorsports / Yamaha Rally Team, Yamaha Raptor, Quad, Motul, action during the Stage 5 of the Dakar Rally 2022 around Riyadh, on January 6th 2022 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Yamaha bivouac atmosphere during the Rest Day of the Dakar Rally 2022 on January 8th 2022 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – Photo Gigi Soldano / DPPI
183 Medeiros Marcelo (bra), Team Marcelo Medeiros, Yamaha YFM700R, Quad, W2RC, action during the Stage 9 of the Dakar Rally 2022 around Wadi Ad Dawasir, on January 11th 2022 in Wadi Ad Dawasir, Saudi Arabia – Photo Frederic Le Floch / DPPI
11/01/22 – DAKAR2022- Stage 9 – Finish
#401 Jones Austin (usa), Gugelmin Gustavo (bra), Can-Am Factory South Racing, Can-Am XRS, T4 FIA SSV, W2RC, Motul, action during the Stage 10 of the Dakar Rally 2022 between Wadi Ad Dawasir and Bisha, on January 12th 2022 in Bisha, Saudi Arabia – Photo Frederic Le Floch / DPPI
#Bivouac during the tenth stage of the Dakar 2022 between Wadi Ad Dawasir and Bisha, in Saudi Arabia on January 12, 2022 – photo Charly Lopez

 

To subscribe to Dirt Wheels Magazine in print or digital form click here https://hi-torque.com/product/dirt-wheels. 

The post DAKAR 2022 appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON https://dirtwheelsmag.com/event-2021-utv-takeover-oregon/ Wed, 01 Dec 2021 16:32:41 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=31716

By Juli Moore/Dirt-N-DunezPhotography.com 2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON UTV Takeover Oregon for 2021 did not disappoint. Once again Coos Bay, Oregon, was filled with side-by-sides of all makes and models. Boxcar Campground was the epicenter of the event. UTV Takeover has honed their skills throwing huge sand events over the years, but Boxcar Campground is where […]

The post 2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

By Juli Moore/Dirt-N-DunezPhotography.com

The photo illustrates what we love about UTV Takeover and Coos Bay, Oregon. Great UTV action with spectators, pines and water in the background. It doesn’t get any better.
A herd of fun-loving UTV owners funnel down from an open dunes area to a narrow corridor through the trees. This looks like UTV heaven to those with local dunes in the burning desert.

2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON

UTV Takeover Oregon for 2021 did not disappoint. Once again Coos Bay, Oregon, was filled with side-by-sides of all makes and models. Boxcar Campground was the epicenter of the event. UTV Takeover has honed their skills throwing huge sand events over the years, but Boxcar Campground is where UTV Takeover originally took shape. What truly started as a sand-family Thanksgiving cookout and ride weekend has turned into so much more. Each summer motorheads converge on Coos Bay for a week of fun in the sun and sand.

One of the popular UTV Takeover events is the wheelie contest. This machine is vertical! It seems like this would be a good trick with a CVT-motivated machine, but drivers get it done.

WHAT’S IN A NAME?

The name says it all—UTV Takeover. That is what happens. Enthusiasts fill the dunes with all types of sand toys but specifically UTVs. A large vendor row offered tons of parts and accessories, along with a good variety of food purveyors. UTV Takeover has something going on from dawn till dusk. With sand drags, hill-climbs, wheelie competitions, short-course races, ATC 70 Olympics and Huckfest, the days are packed full of entertainment.

Young Ruslan Yankilevich is a phenom in the jump contest that Takeover calls Huckfest. Like usual, he went big, but unusually he tumbled the landing. He still celebrated.

2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON

Just to name a few, UTV Takeover not only offers competition options, it has treasure hunts, rock-and-roll bingo and tire-toss contests. New this year was a monster truck exhibition on the short-course track after the racing was over. To be honest, everyone turned into a kid when that thing fired up. There is something about pure horsepower and straight headers that just get your attention.

The Takeover short-course event is a track marked out in the dunes to give folks who like more than straight-line performance an event to crave. It looks like fun.
Once the adrenaline fix is taken care of, a huge number of participants head for the massive vendor row. It was worth the visit.
Sand drags are a big part of the Takeover experience. Massively powerful Yamaha YXZs are always in the mix. It takes talent and good setup to launch them, but they fly!
Takeover’s night ride is so popular that it is held every night at the event. The light trails through the dunes are very cool. The lights are a mixture of headlights and lighted whips.

2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON

The who’s who of the UTV world showed up for this event, with big jump legend Al McBeth and Blake Wilkey, along with kid phenomenon Ruslan “Grease-Hands” Yankilevich, in attendance. Vendor row was bursting with everything from manufacturers offering demo rides and Packard Performance displaying their 500-horsepower drag UTVs.

Another fun Takeover competition is the Hillfest. Fortunately, the dunes are loaded with hills. Supply and demand at work.

COME FOR THE RIDE

The beautiful Oregon coast offers riders everything from open dunes to tight-tree trails leading to the beach where you can ride the shoreline for miles on end. A real must-do, or at least see, is the night ride. Scheduled each night at 9 from Boxcar Campground, it heads north roughly four miles across the dunes to Hauser. We are sure someone has a count, but we would venture to say at least 1000 UTVs participate every night, with the top 100 cars going full tilt from start to finish. They stop on the north end at Hauser sand access for a quick break of 10 minutes so everyone can rejoin the group and head back south to Boxcar Campground. With all the lighted whips and headlights at night, it looks like a giant ant trail coming across the dunes. It is truly a sight to be seen.

We know, it isn’t a UTV. UTV Takeover is not limited to UTVs. There are many quads, motorcycles and even three-wheelers attend. There is even a fun ATC 70 race.

Whether you are a vendor or an attendee, you won’t be disappointed going to a UTV Takeover in your area. And, UTVs are not a requirement; plenty of quads and bikes of all styles show up with riders of all ages. Watch for a UTV Takeover event in your area. The 2021 schedule includes events in Virginia, Oklahoma and Utah.

To subscribe to Dirt Wheels Magazine in print or digital form click here https://hi-torque.com/product/dirt-wheels.

The post 2021 UTV TAKEOVER OREGON appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
WESTON BEACH RACE IS BACK ON FOR 2021 IN THE UK https://dirtwheelsmag.com/weston-beach-race-is-back-on-for-2021-in-the-uk/ Thu, 05 Aug 2021 22:38:07 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=31612

  We’ve had beach races in New Jersey, California, Virginia and Baja in the past. Unfortunately those events no longer exist. However the Weston Beach Race in the UK is back for 2021 during the first weekend of October. Sign up HERE.    Here are highlights of the 2019 event. 

The post WESTON BEACH RACE IS BACK ON FOR 2021 IN THE UK appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

 

We’ve had beach races in New Jersey, California, Virginia and Baja in the past. Unfortunately those events no longer exist. However the Weston Beach Race in the UK is back for 2021 during the first weekend of October. Sign up HERE.

 

 Here are highlights of the 2019 event. 

The post WESTON BEACH RACE IS BACK ON FOR 2021 IN THE UK appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
A LOOK AT ATV RACING 20 YEARS AGO https://dirtwheelsmag.com/a-look-at-atv-racing-20-years-ago/ Mon, 26 Jul 2021 23:02:45 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=31473

The post A LOOK AT ATV RACING 20 YEARS AGO appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

The post A LOOK AT ATV RACING 20 YEARS AGO appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
Poker Runs: A Fun ATV Event with a Twist https://dirtwheelsmag.com/poker-runs-a-fun-atv-event-with-a-twist/ Mon, 19 Jul 2021 17:59:32 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=31460

Owning an ATV is a great hobby, and heading off to meets is a super way to show off your vehicle to other enthusiasts. Every week across the US, ATV owners get together to race, perform and compare their equipment. They customize and tune, share ideas, and generally have a lot of fun in doing […]

The post Poker Runs: A Fun ATV Event with a Twist appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

Owning an ATV is a great hobby, and heading off to meets is a super way to show off your vehicle to other enthusiasts.

Every week across the US, ATV owners get together to race, perform and compare their equipment. They customize and tune, share ideas, and generally have a lot of fun in doing so. It is an engaging and involving hobby, but it is key to engage in a variety of events in order to get the most from your passion.

If you simply turned up at the same events with the same people every year, eventually things might get stale. A great way to maximize your enjoyment is to try different events or even organize your own. You might find it tough to put something together on the scale of The Best in the Desert 250, but staging a poker run within a current event or off your own back, will add a new twist to your hobby.

But what is a poker run? According to Definitions.net, a poker run is an event that usually takes place on motorized vehicles and charges an entry fee. Competitors then race between stages, usually five, collecting a playing card each time they arrive at a checkpoint. Usually, those checkpoints are several miles apart, occasionally as many as 50 miles, to allow for plenty of traveling. Once you complete the course, the winner is the person with the best poker hand.

They are a great charity fundraiser and are usually held for motorcycle riders and motorboat owners. However, ATV poker runs are becoming very popular indeed, and it is certainly worth considering for your next event. Not only will you raise money for a good cause of your choice, but you can have lots of fun at the same time.

You will need a basic grasp of poker, but that aspect is all about luck rather than judgment. In real poker, how you play the cards matters, with Poker.org explaining that luck is only a contributing factor. There is no real skill in the poker aspect in a poker run, only in your driving. So learn to accept if you get a bum hand there is usually nothing you can do. If you want to add an element of skill, consider this twist – for every ten riders, have just nine cards available. That way, the quickest 90% through each stage will get a card, the slowest 10% will not. That might introduce an element of skill in racing. You could also offer the top 10% through each stage the chance to burn a card and get another, introducing an element of poker skill. If you wanted to be really ambitious, you could award perks for the best custom job, oddest vehicle, or best single moment of driving to enhance the poker aspect of the event further.

After that, a good course will be essential, and a selection of volunteers operating checkpoints and handing out cards. You will also need participants, and that is where the fun really starts. You might organize a poker run between you and a few ATV-owning friends or through a local club. You might be a bit more ambitious, look to the current Guinness World Record of 1,494 participants for a motorcycle poker run and aim for that. On that occasion, $130,000 was raised for a great cause, a remarkable total that also saw huge numbers of people have a lot of fun.

Always remember that the key to a good poker run is having fun and doing something for a good cause. Most importantly, perhaps, you do it all on your customized ATV with groups of like-minded people. What a great way to spend a day or weekend!

The post Poker Runs: A Fun ATV Event with a Twist appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>
DESTINATION: WHERE TO RIDE IN IDAHO https://dirtwheelsmag.com/destination-where-to-ride-in-idaho/ Wed, 30 Jun 2021 15:39:29 +0000 https://dirtwheelsmag.com/?p=30205

Five hidden (and not-so hidden) riding gems By Lane Lindstrom OHV recreation is a half-billion-dollar business in Idaho for good reasons. The sheer diversity of riding opportunities, the incredible scenery and varied topography make Idaho an ideal riding destination. We’ve ridden trail vehicles all over the state and have never had a bad ride—seriously. We always […]

The post DESTINATION: WHERE TO RIDE IN IDAHO appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>

Five hidden (and not-so hidden) riding gems By Lane Lindstrom

Views like this are endless when riding around Mackay, which sits between two mountain ranges. Some of Idaho’s tallest peaks are near Mackay, which adds to the spectacular scenery.

OHV recreation is a half-billion-dollar business in Idaho for good reasons. The sheer diversity of riding opportunities, the incredible scenery and varied topography make Idaho an ideal riding destination. We’ve ridden trail vehicles all over the state and have never had a bad ride—seriously. We always look forward to our next ride with anticipation.

When we decided to write about some of those favorites, there were a few that bubbled to the top of our list of must-sees. However, these five are by no means our only favorites. We may be holding a few cards close to our chest.

We’ve visited each one of these five areas multiple times and highly recommend them to anyone who loves to ride their ATV or UTV and discover new places.

Two websites that are incredibly helpful in the logistics side of your trip planning are https://trails.idaho.gov/ and www.visitidaho.org.

This is just one of the parking areas that access the Hemingway Butte OHV Area in southwest Idaho. There is plenty of parking for rigs and trailers of all sizes, and there are trails that head out in most every direction from the parking area.
One end of this Bonneville County trail starts out near Jensen Creek, then goes high above Elk Creek as it winds its way towards Palisades Reservoir. What the trail lacks in technical riding it makes up for in stunning views.
The Hemingway Butte OHV Area has a variety of riding options from high-speed running, rocky areas, lots of whoops and plenty of family-friendly paths for beginning riders, as well as those who want a slower pace.

ST. ANTHONY SAND DUNES

Located in eastern Idaho, St. Anthony Sand Dunes might be the most famous—and well-used—riding area in Idaho. There are more than 10,000 acres of continually shifting white quartz sand spread out at varying depths across the landscape, running basically in a southwest to northeast direction.

The dunes, which reach up to 400 feet tall in some places, are fairly narrow but long. The bigger dunes are located basically west of Egin Lakes and the smaller dunes to the east. Crapo’s Hill/Thunder Mountain is just north of Egin Lakes (and the BLM campground) and is kind of a de-facto middle point of the dunes going east and/or west.

The biggest dunes and most popular spots for dune climbing and the big-horsepower crowd are in the western part of the dunes, including Choke Cherry, Devil’s Dunes and Dead Horse Bowl. They are pretty much due west of Crapo’s Hill.

There are some sand trails through the sagebrush on the north side of the dune, which are a fun diversion from straight dune riding.

The most popular riding season at the dunes is between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Technically, parts of the dunes are open year round, but there are seasonal closures to protect wildlife, and then there is the snow that falls every winter that can damp the riding in the dunes. For the annual closure dates, go to www.blm.gov and then navigate to the Idaho section of the website.

You can camp at the dunes and ride right from your campsite to the open sand. There are two commercial campgrounds—Sand Hills Resort and Idaho Dunes RV and the BLM campground at Egin Lakes.

Lodging, food and fuel are available in St. Anthony, eight miles from the dunes, and Rexburg, which is 15 miles from the dunes. There are also dune vehicles available to rent at the dunes.

Favorite ride: This may be a cop-out, but all the dunes are fun to ride, as are the sand trails through the sagebrush. We don’t have one favorite spot to ride, although we do like to head over to Choke Cherry and either challenge the dunes ourselves or watch the big-horsepower vehicles try to crest the top.

Essentials: St. Anthony Sand Dunes

Location: Eastern Idaho

Riding elevation: 5,000–5,400 feet

Full-service town: St. Anthony (pop. 3,553); Rexburg (pop. 29,400)

Summer temps: July, 83 degrees F

Info: Yellowstone Teton Territory, www.yellowstoneteton.org

The Aerial Tramway Headhouse, a remnant of Mackay’s former mining days, is a favorite stop on the Mackay Mine Tour, in part because of the history of the still-standing buildings and also because of the views of the Lost River Range in the distance

Salmon

Salmon is a family-friendly riding area that features easy to moderately difficult trails. There is spectacular scenery anywhere you ride, regardless of the direction you head from town to ride. Salmon is rich in history—from the famous Lewis & Clark expedition that went through the region to ghost towns left over from the area’s rich mining days from times past.

Salmon is somewhat off the beaten path, as it’s a 2.5-hour drive to any city of more than 50,000 people. And that’s one of the area’s draws—there are rarely many other riders on the trails. However, because off-roaders share the same forest roads as passenger cars and pickups, there is traffic in the mountains. But get off the main forest roads and you’ll most likely have the trails to yourself.

The mountain riding takes place in the Salmon River Mountains (west of town) and the Bitterroot Range (east of town). The Bitterroots are where Lewis and Clark crossed from what is present-day Montana into Idaho in August of 1805 and also marks the Continental Divide.

In the Salmon River Mountains, there are plenty of creek crossings, sweeping mountain vistas, amazing canyon views, lots of remaining mining tailings and outbuildings, and a ghost town or two. There is a challenging trail or two scattered out across the area, but nothing that will seriously require lots of horsepower or low 4WD.

Favorite ride: While there are lots of fun riding places and destinations around Salmon (Leesburg ghost town, Moose Creek trail and up to Baldy Mountain for amazing views to name just a couple), we did pick a couple of our favorites.

Lewis & Clark Back Country Byway: About as easy as they come when it comes to the easiness of trail riding. But, it is spectacularly scenic as you gain elevation (Tendoy sits at 4,846 feet, and we rode up to about 8,400 feet) and make your way to Lemhi Pass (7,373 feet) on the Continental Divide. If you go, you should make the entire loop, which we’ve done on several occasions. We also took some side roads/trails as we explored the area once traveled by Lewis and Clark. There is so much history in this area, and there are a number of stops/kiosks to explain that history. The views from Lemhi Pass are truly spectacular. “We proceeded on to the top of the dividing ridge from which I discovered immense ranges of mountains still to the west with their tops still partially covered with snow,” said Captain Meriwether Lewis on August 12, 1805.

We’re not sure if there is an official name for this ride, but we call it Moose Meadows. The road/trail follows along the scenic Lower Moose Creek, passes some mine tailings and old mining cabins before turning onto the Fan Gulch trail. Fan Gulch hugs the mountainside and gives you truly awesome views of the deep canyons created by the Salmon River. Again, not overly difficult riding but the scenery is amazing.

Essentials: Salmon Idaho

Location: East central Idaho

Riding elevation: 4,000–9,200 feet

Full-service town: Salmon (pop. 3,141)

Summer temps: July, 84.4 degrees F

Info: Salmon Valley, www.visitsalmonvalley.com

A series of small lakes are one of the unique features of St. Anthony Dunes. The shores are a favorite hangout spot for dune users. Vehicles are not allowed to touch the water, but there is swimming and floating.
The Long Lost Creek Trail near Mackay is on the north side of the Lost River Range and is an in-and-back trail that features creek crossings, amazing mountain views and occasional wildlife.

HEMINGWAY BUTTE OHV AREA

Hemingway Butte is the OHV (dirt bikes, quads, side-by-sides and jeeps) playground for Boise and Idaho’s Treasure Valley. Located in the desert and foothills of the neighboring Owyhee Mountains in southwest Idaho. The Hemingway Butte recreation site is accessible nearly year round and offers hundreds of miles of trails. The trails are located on BLM land, and if you look at the riding area on Google Earth, you’ll see dozens upon dozens of trails lacing the area. The BLM also has a decent map of the trails here: www.blm.gov/visit/hemingway-butte-ohv-trailhead.

These trails can be accessed from multiple trailheads (with loading ramps, restrooms and ample parking) and offer something for any riding ability—from easy to difficult and challenging on dirt roads, sand washes and steep, rocky terrain.

Favorite ride: There wasn’t any one trail that we’d say was our favorite, but any of the high-speed washes were a blast to fly down. Some washes are wider than others, so the riding style changes as you negotiate either wide, sweeping turns or tight turns with no room for error. Use care or you’ll end up out in the scrub brush. There is one particular canyon with a wash running through it that was scenic with its high rock walls, turns and rocks littered along the path.

Essentials: Hemingway Butte OHV Area

Location: Southwest Idaho

Riding elevation: 2,500–5,000 feet

Full-service town: Nampa (pop. 99,277)

Summer temps: July, 91 degrees F

Info: Southwest Idaho Travel, www.visitsouthwestidaho.org.

St. Anthony, Idaho, has an amazing dune network. It is basically one long and massive ridge of sand with some of the tallest faces in the country in the middle. The dunes taper off to more beginner-friendly dunes at the edges.

MACKAY

This is a riding spot you have to want to get to, and trust us, it’s worth any effort you have to make to get there. Because Mackay is somewhat remote (located in south-central Idaho 95 miles west of Idaho Falls), the riding is usually not crowded. On many of our rides in the area, we were the only ones on the trails, especially the trails a little farther from town.

Mackay sits in a picturesque valley between two towering mountain ranges: the Lost River Range to the northeast and White Knob Mountains to the southwest. There is off-road riding in all directions, and you can ride right from the ATV-/UTV-friendly town.

The area has a rich (literally and figuratively) history of mining (copper, gold and silver) with many buildings and much mining equipment still standing. The town has designed a tour that takes you past many of the remnants/sites (some of which are in relatively good shape) of the mining that took place in the area. The Mackay Mine Tour isn’t particularly difficult, but the views are spectacular, and if you’re a history buff, this is a must-see ride you need to experience. 

Favorite ride: Sorry, try as we might, we could not narrow it down to one favorite. We did get our list down to four rides: Wildhorse Canyon, Long Lost Creek, Mackay Mine Tour and Stewart Canyon up to an unnamed lake that sits at the base of Lime Mountain (elevation is 11,179 feet).

Let’s start with the Stewart Canyon ride. You leave Mackay on Mine Hill Road, turn on to the Alder Creek trail and take it all the way to the Mammoth Canyon trail. A fun side trail just off the Alder Creek trail is Chimney Gulch, which leads back to Alder Creek trail. Turn on to Stewart Canyon trail, which, after a short distance, turns into the 50-inch-wide restricted Corral-Stewart trail that ends up at the unnamed lake. The trail actually continues on past the lake and ends at the K Burma Road. On our couple of rides to the lake, we’ve always turned around at the lake and headed back down Stewart Canyon because the snow was still too deep to climb out of the lake basin over the ridge to K Burma Road. And these rides were in July. The ride up to the lake is rocky and has several switchbacks, and features some creek crossings and is a beautiful ride.

Wildhorse Canyon: Another over-the-top amazingly beautiful ride. We’ve accessed the final part of the ride a couple of different ways—one from Mackay up and over a small mountain range, and also through Copper Basin from over near Antelope Valley along Bear Creek. Part of the ride is through the high desert between some fairly barren mountains, but the last part, once you turn onto the road/trail that leads to the Wildhorse campground, offers stunning views of snow-capped mountains and snow-filled bowls. The trail dead ends not too far past the campground, but you can take off on foot for a beautiful hike farther into the woods.

Long Lost Creek: A long ride (80-plus miles) if you choose to leave from town or you can trailer up through Pass Creek Canyon and unload closer to the trail. We like to ride, so we left from Mackay and went through Pass Creek Canyon and up and over Pass Creek summit before turning off to head to the Long Lost Creek trail. It’s an out-and-back trail, but the views going either way are pretty incredible. The nod goes to the in part of the trail as you head up to where the trail ends. You will have a hard time focusing on the trail as you experience several creek crossings and the mountain views steal your attention. 

Mackay Mine Tour: You can take a car on this, but it’s not the difficulty that you’re going for here. You are looking for the amazing views of the Lost River Range from several points along the trail. A second facet is the history that unfolds before you as you stop at nearly two dozen tour stops to read about the mining history of the area. The town provides a detailed brochure explaining many of the stops. One of our favorites along this trail is the Aerial Tramway Headhouse stop. We have taken many a picture of our side-by-side next to the head house with the Lost River Range as the backdrop. It’s a spectacular view. Our other favorite is the stretch of trail along Cliff Creek. There are historical stops along the way, you get to ride through the forest and there a few creek crossings, so it’s a great mix.

Essentials: Mackay

Location: South-central Idaho

Riding elevation: 5,905–10,500 feet

Full-service town: Mackay (pop. 501)

Summer temps: July, 82 degrees F

Info: www.visitmackayidaho.com

North of Salmon are a myriad of trails that wind throughout the Salmon River Mountains. We used this trail to generally meander to Baldy Mountain. Creek crossings, riding in the woods and along a ridge to the top of the mountain are some of the highlights of the trail.
The Lewis and Clark Back Country Byway is one of Salmon’s fairly tame rides—unless you’re afraid of heights, as the trail leads up to the Continental Divide (7,373 feet). The trail also goes along some of Idaho’s (the America’s) most historic places as you travel along many spots Lewis and Clark did as they made their way to the Pacific Ocean. Several markers like this show places where Lewis and Clark journeyed.

BONNEVILLE COUNTY

Fall Creek, Palisades, Bone, Skyline Ridge, McCoy Creek—this riding area in eastern Idaho is known by a lot of names by the locals who regularly ride this region, but Bonneville County encompasses them all. Many of the names the locals use are their jumping-off points (trailheads) in the trail system, which number far more than the ones we’ve mentioned here.

The county stretches from about 25 miles west of Idaho Falls all the way to the Idaho/Wyoming border to the east. The bulk of the trails are east of Idaho Falls, but there are a handful of trails west of town. The trails east of Idaho Falls weave in, around, over and out of the Caribou Mountain Range with the elevation range between 5000 feet to nearly 9000 feet.

This is a family-friendly riding area with tame to moderately difficult trails with a challenging trail here and there. Some of the trails cross over into Bingham County to the south, offering even more riding opportunities. There are a number of 50-inch-width-limited trails in the county. Many of the trails, especially the path along Skyline Ridge, offer incredible views of the surrounding mountains, valleys, Palisades Reservoir and high desert. We’ve seen plenty of wildlife—deer, moose, coyotes and elk to name a few—on our rides in the area.

Favorite ride: This was a tough choice, so let’s say this is one of our favorite rides in Bonneville County. We unload at the Bone parking area (east of the Bone store) and ride over to Alpine, Wyoming, for lunch and gas, and then head back. It can either be a there-and-back ride, or you can take one route there and a different one back, that is once you get to McCoy Creek. One trail follows along the scenic McCoy Creek and another along the top of Skyline Ridge. If you have time, you can take a side trip to Caribou City ghost town, which dates back to 1897. There are a few kiosks marking the town site with a few remains of the original town.

Another favorite is the Bear Creek trail, which skirts along the edge of Palisades Reservoir and also hugs the mountainside in places with stunning views of the mountains.

Essentials: Bonneville County

Location: Eastern Idaho

Riding elevation: 5,000–9,000 feet

Full-service town: Idaho Falls(pop. 62,888)

Summer temps: July, 80 degrees F

Info: Yellowstone Teton Territory,www.yellowstoneteton.org 

The post DESTINATION: WHERE TO RIDE IN IDAHO appeared first on Dirt Wheels Magazine.

]]>