The close of the 2017 offroad season was another great event. ROC Fest III had the largest number of participants to date, with 28 trucks registered. Amongst our many participants, we had trucks that traveled from Washington, Arizona and Colorado to come play. While not everyone was there each day, everyone in attendance had a great time camping, telling stories, hitting the trails for some epic drives and, of course, some shenanigans.
Friday was the initial registration day, which was busy with people arriving to set up their tents, trailers and RVs. Those who arrived early started the weekend off with a bang by heading out in late morning to hit different trail loops. One group completed the Baja trail loop while another went trekking into the hills. The hill group had a fun moment trying to scale a dune, which of course ended with the Raptors barely making it through without getting stuck.
By the afternoon, most participants had arrived. Therefore, we headed out to complete a large loop trail. This trail covered the west side of the area and had some fast fun sections along with a few jumps. Everyone made the loop without issue and it was time to break out the grills and start dinner. The first evening was a large potluck style dinner with burgers, hot dogs, chicken, and a wide variety of sides. Needless to say, there was so much good food that everyone had to roll themselves back to their beds.
As a result of Friday night’s festivities, most everyone was slow to start Saturday morning. The freezing cold temperatures did not help to lure anyone out any earlier either (with the exception of those who crawled into their trucks to turn on their heaters). After waking the final few stragglers, everyone gathered together for a drivers meeting before our traditional day drive. Saturday’s loop would cover 145 miles with some crazy fast flat out sections.
Leg 1 started off with some easier trails, which allowed for drivers, new and experienced, to get the rhythm of driving in a group. Additionally, this section had some fun whoops, which were a surprise to a few of the first time offroaders. The mid way point was in Shurz, where we stopped for fuel, cold drinks and fireworks. I believe the group cleared out most of the store, which seems to have become our tradition since our first ROC Fest event.
The second half of the day was spent on the back loop with several flat out sections followed by drift turns. Many participants got their first drifts caught on film here, thanks to our pro photographers and the amazing Crystal from Fautlinephotos.com. Before making the last leg back to camp, the group took turns going over one of the jumps, providing lots of fun and some amazing action shots of trucks in flight. After an hour of shenanigans, the group headed to camp for the last night under the stars.
Saturday night is always the BIG night, with a raffle to pass out prizes from Forged Offroad, GJ Motorsports, and Sidekicked Offroad. Saturday night is also when our famous Grill Master Patrick (TrickRaptor) makes his famous grilled tri-tip. We have been told by several people that they come to ROC Fest just for the tri tip, for which I am not surprised because it truly is that good. After dinner, the group headed out for a short night drive to a near lake bed. Here the group decided to open some of the fireworks they bought. This is also where many of the shenanigans occur, which are just too hard to explain to those that were not there. Needless to say, it was an entertaining evening to say the least.
Sunday is tear down day. Most of the group packs up to hit the road, as we all have long drives home. However, a few drivers stick around to drive a few short trails and/or head to the shooting range for a little additional fun. By mid afternoon, the group is gone and the camp has vanished. This was another great ending to a long season and we look forward to new adventures to come in 2018.