We may have a new favorite national park now! In this blog post, an Escapees Off-Roading HOP adventure in Moab was our final spring 2023 destination before returning to Wisconsin. While the event itself was only 4 days, we were in Moab for a total of 14 and were able to get out on many trails. There had been talk for years that trails would be closed by the Bureau of Land Management and since we were there some of these trails are indeed now closed.
HOPing with new Friends
Escapees HOPs – Head Out Program focuses on bringing RVers to unique locations, special events and theme-related activities to create fun-filled and memorable adventures.
A HOP is an organized activity by Escapees around some activity, in this case, it was for off-roading. We enjoyed our time meeting new people, but our Jeep Rubi was not very challenged during the official activities. There is also the Jeep BoF (Birds of a Feather) group that meets separately. We would not recommend the HOP because of its cost, especially learning the organizers were non-compensated volunteers.
Canyonlands National Park
We scored an off-roading day pass for the Elephant Loop, in Canyonlands National Park, which is limited to about a dozen rigs per day. It was an amazing trail day along this exclusive trail. We even were able to rescue a family that had gotten themselves into a pickle in the backcountry, they were so lucky to hike out in the blazing sun to catch us as we turned toward the park exit. “Mom” had walked about a mile out to the intersection and waited there, while the family was stuck in the sand and between literally a rock and a hard place. We distracted the kids by letting them pick out some ducks from the bag while we got their rig loose. We finally got to use all of that gear Barb begrudgingly has been “authorizing” over the years!
With that in mind, you need to have communications (like the Garmin In-Reach satellite communicator that we have) and preparations to stay overnight until the next day’s group comes through.) We had made sure to bring plenty of extra water and snacks in case we were stuck there overnight. We did encounter a couple leaving that morning from a planned camp in the park and they said it was amazing, but they ran out of water.
Jeep Badge of Honors
We made a point to stay for two weeks in Moab so we could do more of those Jeep Badge of Honor trails that we wanted to do in 2021 when it was over 100 degrees every day. We were able to check off about a half dozen amazing trails. We even were able to do one of them with some new friends from the HOP event!
Top of the World trail was a spur-of-the-moment decision. The trail itself takes a couple of hours, but it is also out “in the middle of nowhere” to get to the trailhead. Barb had a bad migraine that day and she took some of her “hard drugs” because of it, she credits those to her calm demeanor on the edge of the cliff!