Off-road enthusiasts line up to hit the trail during the 2013 Red Rockin' ATV & UTV Event. [Courtesy photo]

The third annual Red Rockin’ ATV & UTV Event, Thursday through Sunday, Sept. 25-28, aims to help safely guide off-road enthusiasts along Moab’s premiere trails. The event caters to all-terrain and off-road utility vehicle drivers of all ages and abilities, and machines that range from basic to high-end models. Organizers say the activity can be affordable for anyone with a zest for the trails and a shared passion for the event’s motto: “It’s all about the ride!”

The three-day event features guided trail rides on various popular and established routes in the area, as well as various rodeo-style games and competitions in the afternoons. Organizers have obtained the necessary permits for each trail from federal and state government agencies, and Moab’s Old Spanish Trail Arena will once again serve as the home base and staging area for the event.

Organizer and promoter Cathy Mattingly said the idea for the annual event first came from Jack Foy, his son Corey, Corey’s wife Michaelle, and other off-road friends.

“We were raised here. We love it here. But even though we love this area, we don’t want to see it get loved to death,” Mattingly said. “This event is also showing guests how to care for the trails, stay on the trails, and help keep the trails free of litter and debris.”

With previous experience promoting other popular events such as the April Action Car Show, Mattingly put the inaugural Red Rockin’ ATV & UTV event together in 2012. A total of 32 registered machines participated that first year, she says, adding that the next year’s event in 2013 attracted a total of 46 registrants. Although some participants ride solo, there are some who bring two- or multi-seater vehicles to bring their family members and other passengers along.

As of Aug. 23, at least 50 people have already registered or are otherwise committed to attend the 2014 event. Late registration can be done right up to the morning of the each day of the event, advance registration is recommended in order to help ensure desired trail placement.

Beginning at 9 a.m. Thursday and Friday of the event, the participants will leave from the arena to the respective trailheads, accompanied by a law enforcement escort. The trails, which range from easy to difficult, include Hell’s Revenge, Moab Rim, Cliff Hanger, Kane Creek, Fins and Things, and Poison Spider. On each of the event’s three days, the trail rides are expected to last until mid-afternoon.

Saturday morning, participants can enjoy a pancake breakfast at the arena from 7 to 9 a.m. the Moab Lions Club. The cost of the breakfast is included in the registration fee, although additional donations to the Lions Club are appreciated. The trail rides begin at 10 a.m., and afterward, all participants will return to the arena for some fun and games in the outdoor arena north of the building, including rodeo-style skills contests with prizes. The fun competitions are expected to run from around 4 to 6 p.m. There will also be a 50/50 raffle drawing with half of the proceeds donated to Grand County Search and Rescue. Grand County Sheriff Steven White, who has been a supporter of the event, will draw the winning ticket.

Registration, which costs $100 per machine, can be completed online via the event’s website at moabatv-utv.com. Late registrations will be taken on-site at the arena between 7 and 9 a.m. on Thursday and Friday, Sept. 25 and 26. All registrants should pick up their packets, sign liability waivers, and verify that they have all the state-issued decals and permits.

“Although this year’s event lacks a major sponsor,” Mattingly said. “I hope to recoup some of the costs through participation fees, local sponsors, and individual donations.”

For more information about the Red Rockin ATV & UTV event, contact Cathy Mattingly at (435) 260-9628 or (435) 260-8726, or visit moabatv-utv.com.

4×4 enthusiasts of all backgrounds welcome

We were raised here. We love it here. But even though we love this area, we don’t want to see it get loved to death. “This event is also showing guests how to care for the trails, stay on the trails, and help keep the trails free of litter and debris.