3 Rivers UTV Fest
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3 Rivers UTV FestHosted By UTV Offroad Adventures!
Photos and Article by Kim Krause
UTV Offroad Adventures launches the new year with a thrilling start as the 3 Rivers UTV Fest unfolds near the enchanting Alamo Lake State Park, just outside the historic town of Wenden, AZ. Nestled to the west of Wickenburg and positioned along US Highway 60, Wenden is a treasure trove of history, especially famed for its gold mines that beckon rockhounds and explorers eager to unravel the mysteries of yesteryears. Serving as the gateway to the renowned Alamo Lake, Wenden, located at the eastern edge of La Paz County, is an ideal destination for off-roading, camping, boating, kayaking, fishing, wildlife viewing, stargazing, and hiking, conveniently located just two hours west of Phoenix.
The picturesque Alamo Lake State Park, surrounded by mountainous terrain adorned with wildflowers, cacti, and captivating brush, provides a visual delight like no other. A bass fishing paradise, the lake is situated in the Bill Williams River Valley, where the Big Sandy River and Santa Maria River converge. Created by the completion of Alamo Dam in 1968, Alamo Lake invites exploration of its beauty and mysteries, while the night sky, free from city lights, becomes a canvas of wonders for stargazers.
The heart of the 3 Rivers UTV Fest beats at the Wayside Oasis RV Park, Bar & Grill, presenting itself as a hidden gem for off-road enthusiasts. Friday night kicked off with registration at Wayside, allowing participants to check in, grab a cocktail, and immerse themselves in a lively atmosphere. Laura, the gracious owner of Wayside Oasis RV Park, Bar & Grill, truly shone as a beacon of hospitality throughout the weekend. Under her attentive care, participants experienced a heightened level of comfort and convenience. The Wayside not only provided a vibrant atmosphere but also offered a range of amenities to meet the diverse needs of adventure seekers. From the convenience of dry camping to the comfort of RV hookups, the Wayside catered to the preferences of all attendees. The availability of propane, water, and showers ensured that participants had access to essential resources, enhancing the overall experience of their stay. There is also a small airplane strip adjacent to the Wayside. The Friday night ride that followed took participants through a tight, twisty, epic trail leading to Palmerita Ranch and an ancient cemetery, providing a chilly yet perfect night for stargazing during the exhilarating 2-hour ride.
As Saturday dawned, anticipation filled the air for a day of adventure covering approximately 70 miles. After a hearty breakfast and a briefing at the Wayside Bar and Grill, participants geared up for the ride, passing landmarks like McGuffie’s cabin and Hunter’s cabin. The airstrip by the Wayside was also busy with planes taking off and landing, providing an added bonus of thrill! An awe-inspiring journey through a slot canyon of Maggie’s wash, encounters with donkeys and deer, and breathtaking views of Alamo Lake made the ride a memorable experience. Overlooks, beautiful canyon walls, washes, and hill climbs added to the excitement.
The evening brought everyone back to the Wayside Bar and Grille for quick draw poker, dinner, raffles, and a fantastic time. UTV Offroad expressed gratitude to sponsors, recognized the farthest traveler, honored the oldest drivers, and presented the coveted donkey award.
Sunday morning brought an unexpected winter wonderland as a light dusting of snow covered the surrounding mountains following an early morning storm. Undeterred by the crisp air, thrill-seekers embarked on another day of trail adventures, covering an equally exhilarating 70-mile ride. The beauty of the mountains, diverse terrain, wildlife encounters, mud canyons, Tres Amigos waterfall, and more continued to fuel unstoppable excitement. The dirt was perfect! It was wet, which means no dust!
The 3 Rivers UTV Fest at Alamo Lake proved to be an action-packed weekend, showcasing the best of off-roading, camaraderie, and the natural wonders that make Wenden and Alamo Lake State Park a must-visit destination for adventure enthusiasts. Make sure to check out www.utvoffroadadventures.com for all upcoming events. They have one event per month over Arizona and the southwest.