Nevada Desert Trail Goodness
Interstate 15 between Mesquite and Las Vegas, Nevada, is an interesting stretch of road. Those vehicles traveling southbound seem focused on getting to Las Vegas as quickly as possible. Those vehicles traveling northbound seem focused on leaving Las Vegas as quickly as possible. Most passengers sit behind tinted glass as they speed across the desert, tunnel vision in full swing, intent on their destination. Most are oblivious to the incredible desert they're traversing. Most fly right by the Overton/Logandale exit without a glance, totally unaware that once a year one of coolest off-highway events takes place just a few miles away.
The event is Hump N Bump, sponsored by the Vegas Valley 4-Wheelers in association with the Nevada Backroaders, Southern Nevada Land Cruisers, and Total Karnage. It takes place at the Logandale Trail System, which is an incredible off-highway area that offers wheelers an in-depth look at the rugged and beautiful Nevada backcountry. The Vegas Valley folks have been throwing this huge off-highway bash for 28 years, and it has become legendary in the wheeling community.
The Logandale Trail System sits a lug nut's throw from the town of Logandale as well as Lake Mead and the Valley of Fire State Park. The trails inside its perimeter vary widely in difficulty level. The region itself, the Moapa Valley, has a fascinating history. Archeological finds indicate that the region was occupied by Indian civilizations as early as 1,000 B.C. In 1864 Mormon pioneers settled in the area and began ranching and farming along the Muddy River. All of this is noteworthy because of the incredibly challenging terrain and arid conditions. In 1938 the landscape of the area was changed when Hoover Dam was completed. As the waters of Lake Mead rose, they covered the nearby town of St. Thomas. Today, it seems like the Moapa Valley is thriving, and its towns are showing signs of growth.
We had the opportunity to spend a couple days at Hump N Bump '08. We've been to this event numerous times, but '08 marked a year of change for Hump N Bump because for the first time, base ops were at the Clark County Fairgrounds. This meant lots of parking for RVs, a grassy area for tent camping, flush toilets, and a whole lot less dust than the previous location alongside the Logandale Trail System trailhead. One thing that didn't change was the awesome trail rides and the fantastic turnout. As a matter of fact, more than 200 participants showed up to run the nine guided trails. This helped to raise money for the Vegas Valley 4-Wheelers and the Southern Nevada Trail Fund (SNTF). The purpose of the SNTF is to work closely with the BLM, NPS, and Nevada State Parks to educate the public, maintain a vehicular trail system, and support responsible OHV activities.
Hump N Bump offered two days of guided trail riding and a big Saturday night barbecue. There was also a huge raffle on Saturday night and thanks to the generosity of more than 40 sponsors, there were more than $13,000 in prizes.
If you want to experience Hump N Bump, keep November 6-7, 2009 free. For more info, visit www.vv4w.org.