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2006 Zukapalooza

Group Of Suzukis
Jay Kopycinski | Writer
Posted August 21, 2006

One Big Suzuki Wheelin' Party

Zuks of Arizona is a club dedicated to 4x4 Suzuki owners of all kinds. Formed in 1999, its purpose is to bring 4WD enthusiasts together for camaraderie, tech support, and trail adventure. It was during Memorial Day weekend that we had the chance to meet up with club members for their third annual Zukapalooza 4WD event.

Basecamp for the weekend was at Dead Horse Ranch State Park in central Arizona near the town of Cottonwood. This location provided easy access to the conveniences of town and the nearby trails in Prescott National Forest.

Vehicles in attendance ranged from tin-tops to tube buggies, and there were trail runs for all skill levels and vehicle types. Scenic trails covered the Smiley Rock loop, Mingus Mountain, Oak Creek Homestead, Greasy Spoon, and Broken Arrow up near red rock Sedona, and the milder trek ventured through the eclectic revived ghost town of Jerome. For the more hard-core in the group, there was Smasher Canyon and Brutal Canyon, wash trails carved deep in the towering hills in this area. There was plenty to do for everyone, and Saturday night included a big dinner followed by a raffle with all kinds of wheeling-related goodies.

This rig was freshly built and the paint just dried when it showed up for the event. Myron Thorson of Zuks Off Road had just completed fabrication, which included four-link suspension, an exo-cage, a tubed rear cargo area, and 36-inch Swampers.

Jim Kawa, also a member of the Mesa Four Wheelers, has been exploring the Arizona desert for decades, and his green Suzuki has taken him down a lot of trails. He motored along the rock-strewn wash smoothly, making the 'crawling look effortless.

Zukapalooza 2007 is already being planned for the same area of the state, and it will include some additional new trails. You can find more information about Zuks of Arizona at www.zuksofarizona.com. In the meantime, check out the photos here - it's the next best thing to being there.

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