By STEPHANIE BUNKER
Moapa Valley Progress
The town of Moapa Valley was buzzed with jeeps driving out to Logandale Trails on Friday morning last week. A posse of over 100 Jeeps that were part of the 2nd Annual Dirt N’ Drive tour enjoyed the scenery of our local backyard on their way to Moab, Utah.
Starting out in Las Vegas the caravan of Jeeps spent 3 days weaving through the back roads of Nevada, Arizona, and Utah. The group arrived in Moab just in time for the Easter Jeep Safari to begin.
The first day on Friday morning the whole group met in the parking lot of Sam’s Town in Las Vegas. The long caravan headed north to Moapa Valley where they hit Logandale Trails.
Only spending a few hours there the group then zoomed on towards St. George., But they took a 90 mile dirt road detour between Mesquite and St. George where they stayed the night.
On Saturday the Dirt N’ Drive stickers could be seen all over the Sand Hollow and Hurricane area where they did some playing before they got back on the road and drove through Zion National Park, ending the day in Torrey, Utah. On day 3 of the Dirt N’ Drive the caravan sailed into Moab in time for the BBQ dinner.
Throughout the drive the Jeepers played a poker run game where they took pictures of specified things along the trek and posted them to social media.
Dirt N’ Drive is sponsored by Jeep and only the Jeep brand of vehicles may be part of the tour,. Most of the Jeeps seen in the lineup were the Cherokee, Rubicon and Wrangler models.
JP Magazine is another important sponsor in the Dirt N’ Drive with the editor of the magazine Rick Payway running the event.
Groups native to the Las Vegas area helped the Dirt N’ Drive tour run smoothly. They got in touch with Vegas Valley 4-wheelers who gave insider information on getting permits for the event at Logandale trails. Using the same route through Clark County government as the Hump n Bump the permitting process reportedly went quickly and smoothly.
Vegas Valley 4-wheelers also provided trail information and trail guides for the Jeepers. Partners In Conservation (PIC) hosted a meet and greet breakfast where the participants enjoyed hot coffee and donuts ready for the crew.
PIC Administrator, Elise McAllister, shared maps of Gold Butte and visitor guides. She recalled many of the drivers being interested in seeing the Gold Butte area.
“Everyone had a nice time and it turned out well,” McAllister said. “Except for those that broke something on their Jeep,” she added with a laugh.
There were a few stragglers in Logandale Trails at the end of the day on Friday. It was a group who had come from Alabama. They made the drive to Moab a few days before where they dropped off the bulk of their things and then drove to Las Vegas to be part of the Dirt N’ Drive back to Moab for the Easter Jeep Safari.
Ryan Johnston, Jody Rogers, and Keith Bailey said that they enjoyed their time in Logandale Trails. As staff members of the Dirt N’ Drive, Johnston and Bailey took a scenic route with a local trail guide while Rogers went on a more difficult trail.
“It’s a challenging sport and I like that,” Rogers said. “It’s a stress reliever.”
The group discussed the different driving styles here on the dry sandy rocks as opposed to Alabama with steep wet hills in the forest. They looked forward to enjoying the relaxing journey and seeing the beautiful scenery along the way as part of the Dirt N’ Drive 2017.