With summer here, it's time to gather up your family, riding buddies, and gear for a little vacation spent exploring new territory. We've picked out a few of our favorite places, but regardless of where you live, there is a riding area near you.
Even the most familiar trail looks completely different at night. With deep shadows, dark corners and obstacles you now see only at the last moment it’s almost like exploring an all-new area. As much as we appreciate the last second thrills however, we’ve always been the type that likes to see anything headed our way long before it meets the front bumper, and nothing helps light up the trail better than a good set of lights.
We ride many different types of trails, from open two-track, to dunes, to tight northern forest, and that means our machines must be prepared for anything. Like most riders we like to keep our ATVs and Side x Sides looking as good as possible and a big part of that is proper protection.
What do you think of when someone mentions the word “vacation?” Maybe your idea of a vacation involves tents or a camper and daily campfires. Some people think about sandy beaches, fruity drinks, and partying with a guy named “Sven.” And then there are the adventurous types that will load the whole family into the car and head to an amusement park on the other end of the country (Queue theme music from National Lampoon’s Vacation). But for an off-road enthusiast, the word “vacation” frequently makes us think of going riding.
No other company enjoys the loyal following Honda has earned and it all comes down to a couple key things: attention to detail, and reliability. Regardless of the model we’re sure it was well built, and we’re also sure we won’t end up walking back to the truck. Whether it’s the Rincon 680, Foreman 500, or the Rancher 420 we know we can count on it for all day work or fun. The Honda sport ATV lineup is built on those same principles.
The Raptor 700 Gets a Round of Updates and a New Home
A little over a year ago Yamaha moved all production of the Grizzly ATV lineup to their Newnan, Georgia manufacturing facility. It was a huge statement about the plant’s quality and production capacity, and it got the finished product closer to the end customer. Now Yamaha is bringing production of their most popular sport ATV, the Raptor 700, to Georgia also, and while they’re at it they’re giving the Raptor a fresh look with a round of upgrades.
No machine has played a bigger role or has had more impact for a wider variety of owners than the Polaris Ranger. Before the Ranger, John Deere’s Gator and Kawasaki’s Mule were about the only choice for any serious, work capable utility vehicle. Both the Gator and the Mule were solid performers on the farm or the job site, but weekend recreation was not their domain or even much of a consideration. The new Ranger, however, offered the ability to haul everything from bricks to hay bales all week and camping, hunting, or fishing gear all weekend.
There were two primary reasons early pioneers came to the West; to explore new territory, or for a chance to strike it rich. Regardless of the motivation, though, nothing brought a flood of immigrants to the Western territories faster than the lure of easy gold, just there for the pickin’. Today the lure of gold still calls to many and even the History Channel chronicles the life of those doing their best to claw a few precious specs from the guts of the earth. California may have gotten the early glory, but it’s Elko, Nevada that is the capital of U.S.
Disneyland has been called, “The happiest place on Earth.” For off-road lovers, the happiest place on earth is at Brimstone Recreation’s White Knuckle event. This year over 9000 fun- loving, smiling, and at times dirty off-road lovers converged on the ATV and UTV friendly town of Huntsville, Tennessee for the annual festival of all things country.
Camping is part of many people’s trail and travel plans and we’ve decided to list some of the basics needed for a riding and camping adventure. We always go for gear that is durable, compact, and easy to pack on an ATV or Side x Side. Here are our favorites: