Five Beautiful Off-Road Destinations
Time to get out of your office cubicle, off the couch or out from in front of the TV set and go take in the great outdoors! Experience the sights and sounds, breathe some air you haven’t breathed before, and imagine how it all looked to native Americans, cowboys or even Lewis and Clark a couple of hundred years ago.
Moab and Paiute ATV Trail, Utah
Sand, water, cliffs, bluffs, boulders…Moab has a little bit of everything. Miles and miles of this area were charted decades ago by prospectors, and it’s as remote, rough and demanding as any trek you’re likely to take. Be ready, though, with plenty of provisions for yourself and your machine both. The payoff is some of the most dramatic, spectacular Wild West scenery you’re going to experience.
Calico Ghost Town, California
In the 1880s, this silver-mine settlement quickly went from boom to bust, but not until hundreds of miles of tunnels were excavated by erstwhile miners. At one point, dozens of saloons and houses made up Calico; today, the town has been recreated to give a taste of what it was like in its heyday.
Hatfield & McCoy Trails, West Virginia
The Hatfields and McCoys are, of course, synonymous with hillbilly feuding…but the trail that sports their name spans 500 miles and five counties, with more trails to open soon. Tricky and challenging, the course takes you over historic Civil War battlefields and is accessible from six different trailheads. Eventually, over 2000 miles of trails are planned for the system.
Upper Peninsula, Michigan
While it’s pretty inhospitable in winter months, Michigan’s U.P. offers some truly unspoiled lakes, rivers, trails, forests, abandoned railroad tracks and trestles, and deserted Lake Michigan and Lake Huron beaches. If you’re a hunter, you absolutely can’t go wrong in the Upper Peninsula.
Imperial Sand Dunes, California
You’ve seen the Imperial Sand Dunes before…and probably just don’t realize it. The trackless desert has been a stand-in for the Sahara in many, many movies over the years. Over 40 miles from north to south, the razorback peaks, dune bowls and valleys in this ocean of sand extend all the way to the Mexican border. With 120 degree temperatures in summer, it’s some of the most brutal desert in the United States, so be forewarned.