Winter 4×4 Jamboree supports preservation of off-roading desert trails

HURRICANE – Close to 400 vehicles lined up early Friday morning at the Washington County Fairgrounds as the two-day Winter 4×4 Jamboree got underway. Caravans of up to 30 vehicles decorated the scenic landscape of the Sand Mountain Special Recreation Management Area, located south of Sand Hollow State Park.

Each group was led by an experienced trail leader as drivers took on a multitude of trails ranging in difficulty and terrain. Drivers could choose between over 20 trails, featuring rock climbing obstacles, petroglyph sites, sand dunes and more.

The event is sponsored by the Desert Roads And Trails Society, or Desert RATS, a nonprofit organization. Entry fee per trail is $40 and all proceeds from the event are donated to land use organizations.

“The objective is to raise funds for preservation and protection and maintenance of access to our roads and trails out in the desert here,” said, Bud Sanders, vice president of the Desert Roads and Trails Society. “We strongly support an organization called UPLA, the Utah Public Lands Alliance.”

Currently, Desert RATS, UPLA, and other organizations are fighting a proposed land swap that would affect trail use on the Sand Mountain off-highway vehicle area.

An estimated 100 sponsors and volunteers helped put on the event this year, with over 1,000 people in attendance.

Event participants are invited to the fundraising dinner Saturday night from 6-9 p.m. There will be sponsor displays, a raffle and dinner.

Ed. note: The fundraising dinner is not open to the public due to the high turnout of event participants.

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