BFGoodrich Tires, in collaboration with 4 Wheel Parts, United Four Wheel Drive Associations, Jeep Jamboree USA, Blue Ribbon Coalition and Off Road Business Association, announced the winners of the 2017 Outstanding Trails program.
Each year, off-roading clubs from across America nominate trails to receive grants for education and preservation. This year's winning programs are:
- Chinaman Gulch, Buena Vista, Colo. — nominated by Ute Pass Iron Goats
- Elephant Hill, Moab, Utah — nominated by Red Rock Four Wheelers
- Grizzly Lake, St. Elmo, Colo. — nominated by Colorado Off-Road Enterprise (CORE)
- Purinton Creek Trail, Alaska — Nominated by Alaska Extreme Four Wheelers (AKX)
The four winning trails were chosen out of more than a dozen nominated from eight states, including Alaska, California, Colorado, Michigan, Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota and Utah.
The competition invites off-road clubs from around North America to nominate local trails that merit grants for maintenance or refurbishing. A panel of four-wheel industry experts helped select the four winning trails based on their uniqueness, terrain type and enthusiast following.
Each winning organization this year will be awarded a $5,000 grant for its nominated trail. The grants may be used for maintenance, repair, preservation efforts, signage and education.
Now in its 12th year, Outstanding Trails has awarded $160,000 to 44 off-road trails nominated by more than 40 enthusiast clubs across America.
During the next year, BFGoodrich will participate in club events associated with these trails to highlight responsible trail use. Each of the four trails offer unique technical challenges and unforgettable scenery to off-road drivers.
Chinaman Gulch, Buena Vista, Colo.: Nominated by the Ute Pass Iron Goats off-road club, this trail is popular for its close proximity to several 14,000-foot peaks in the area. The trail is open year-round, a rarity in Colorado. The club will use the grant to provide toilet facilities at the trailhead, improve signage and perform general improvements to the trail.
Elephant Hill, Moab, Utah: Nominated by the Red Rock Four Wheelers, this trail presents many different terrain types, and gives off-roaders an unusual challenge — one part of the trail requires drivers to reverse direction, climbing a hill in reverse to get to the other side. The grant will be used to maintain and improve signage marking the trail.
Grizzly Lake, St. Elmo, Colo.: Nominated by Colorado Off-Road Enterprise (CORE), this high altitude trail follows an old mining road up Grizzly Gulch and ends at Grizzly Lake, where off-roaders can camp and fish. The club will use the grant to repair an area of the trail that has become dug out, and to add signage to the trailhead.
Purinton Creek Trail, Alaska: Nominated by Alaska Extreme Four Wheelers (AKX), this trail takes off-roaders over glacier moraine, foothills and river valleys. The trail offers more than 30 miles of hard packed dirt and rocks, hill climbs and mud. The club will use this grant to remove willow that has encroached on the trail in some sections, causing damage to vehicles.