There's never been a better time to be an off-roader. What began as a few buddies plonking around the hills in military surplus Jeeps has become a multibillion-dollar industry. Yes, multibillion. Need a set of shocks? You can choose from twin-tube, monotube, emulsion, remote reservoir, threaded body, and bypass. Need an axle or locking differential? Whether you need a stock replacement axleshaft, or a full-race, full-floating, chromoly housing Trophy Truck axle, half a dozen companies stand at the ready with a full range of offerings. Speaking of Trophy Trucks, could our off-road ancestors have imagined we'd be skipping across the desert at more than 100 miles per hour? It's clear that we've come a long way.
For the best place to see off-roading's showcase, get yourself to the Fairplex in Pomona, California, during the opening weeks of October. For two days, off-roading's finest companies and people will be on hand to answer your questions, dazzle you with their inventiveness and fabrication skills, sign autographs, and generally show you a good time. Would you care to rub shoulders with racing greats such as Curt Leduc and Walker Evans? The Off-Road EXPO is the place to be.
Last year marked the third running of the EXPO. Each year since 2001, the EXPO has grown bigger and better. The 2003 event comprised more than 265 companies, 8 acres, three major halls, and several outdoor display areas. And 2004 promises to be bigger.
Off-road machinery was spotted before we even got to the first EXPO display. What do off-road enthusiasts drive to an off-road event? Off-road trucks. We spotted more than a few heavily modified prerunners and Super Dutys on the walk to the ticket booth.
Once inside, the sensory overload began. Believe us, three major halls and 8 acres is a lot to take in during an afternoon. We gobbled as much information and took as many photos as possible, knowing full well that much went unexplored. When the EXPO closed for the day, we left with smiling faces and tired feet. Want to get the most from your day at the EXPO? Get there early. Off-roading is big, and it's getting bigger. Next year's EXPO is already scheduled for October 9-10. Will you be there?