No matter what the season or the reason, off-road enthusiasts are always finding ways to come together to celebrate off-road events. True off-road events directly in the San Francisco are are a bit hard to find, but travel varying from about 100-1000 miles in any direction will yield a number of events geared toward off-roaders nearby. If you’re hunting specific events, the best place to look is online websites of statewide 4WD associations and clubs. These sites offer helpful calendars as well as useful information about annual off-road event and fundraisers.
Winter Fun Festival
One major annual event, the Winter Fun Fest, is sponsored by the California Association of 4WD Clubs and usually takes place in mid-January. Held at the Nevada County Fairgrounds of Grass Valley, CA, this event offers a weekend full of 4×4 runs in the High Sierras as well as SUV treks with clever names like Frostbite Express and Blizzard Brigade. Families will enjoy the Fairgrounds while experienced drivers take to the mountains to test their off-roading skills. The crowning event is the Saturday Historical Tour which presents day tours of the area’s very best historical sites.
Kingsburg 4WF Snow Run
For those willing to make the trip further south to the great Sequoia National Forest, the Kingsburg 4WD Snow Run offers several excellent runs through breathtaking forest scenery. The event, sponsored by the Kingsburg 4WD Club, will be held on March 5, 2011 this year and the club takes care to point out that it’s a great adventure for novices and experts alike. Families are sure to love the menu and activities which include chilli beans, hot dogs and hot cocoa as well as a raffle. This event is an excellent choice for those seeking the thrill of a great snow run.
Molina Ghost Run
The Molina Ghost Run held May 13-15th is a fundraiser to help decrease trail closures sponsored by the Central District chapter of the California Association of 4WD Clubs. Ironically, the location for this year’s Run has been changed due to one such closure at the Clear Creek Management Area. The new 2011 location is the Hollister Hills SRVA, just six miles away from Hollister, CA. Two 4×4 runs, one fairly difficult for the experts and one easy for the newbies, and one SUV run highlight activities for Saturday. A dinner and raffle round out the weekend.
Jeepers Jamboree and Jeep Jamboree
The Rubicon Trail plays hosts to both the Jeepers Jamboree and the Jeep Jamboree, held on the final weekend of July and the first weekend of August, respectively. The fairly difficult Rubicon Trail provides a dusty and rugged backdrop for the Jamboree events, with the Jeepers Jamboree held open to all 4×4 vehicles and the Jeep Jamboree held exclusively for Jeep models. Now in its 59th year, the Jeepers Jamboree took in over 35,000 vehicles and hosted over 100,000 participants last year. The Jeep Jamboree is yet another great off-road event, dedicated solely to Jeep trucks.
CORVA Northern Jamboree
The CORVA Northern Jamboree, held during the last weekend in October, is a fun-filled event with activities for off-road enthusiasts of all ages. It’s sponsoring organization, California Off-road Vehicles Association is well-known for its advocacy efforts to sustain vehicle access to public lands. This event takes place in the Frank Raines OHV Park near Patterson, CA and features costume contests for adults and kids as well as dinner, trick or treating and a number of runs for all skills levels throughout the weekend.