homepage logo

ATV Adventures: 2 Arapeen jamborees are slated; the difference is night and day

By Lynn Blamires - Special to the Standard-Examiner | Apr 4, 2024
1 / 4
The scenery on the Arapeen Trails is some of the best mountain landscapes in Utah.
2 / 4
Skyline Drive is the backbone of the Arapeen Trail System and goes for miles in the tops of the Manti La-sal Mountains. The views are worth the time to stop and enjoy.
3 / 4
Crossing Muddy Creek, one of the many water crossings on the Arapeen.
4 / 4
Lynn Blamires

March usually sees the first OHV jamborees that dot the calendar throughout the year in Utah. Sanpete County jumped the gun with a February jamboree labeled the Winter Tracked UTV Ride. There were 12 machines equipped to handle the high mountain snow, which was enough to schedule the ride again next year.

Sanpete County has opened registration on two more jamborees with night and day differences. The first ride is the Arapeen Sunset UTV Ride in Ephraim on the June 24.

Riders will meet at 5 p.m. at 50 East/100 South for sign-in and line-up. At 6:15 p.m., after a dinner at Roy’s Pizza, riders will begin the ride up Ephraim Canyon.

At registration, there is a choice of a New Canyon route or Pigeon Creek trail. Pigeon Creek is a little more “fun,” but both are amazing. The most beautiful parts of this ride happen while there is still plenty of light due to the long days in June.

By 9:30, it will be dark. One of the purposes of the dark part of this ride is for riders to show off colorful light accessories. It is fun to see machines lit up like Christmas trees flashing through the trees.

I have a light bar with two pod lights and rock lights to turn on for this ride. As of this writing, I have not been able to get approval from the “finance committee” for colorful whip lights. I am using code to avoid ruffling any feathers.

According to the schedule, riders will meet at a campfire at 9:30 p.m. to share treats and swap stories. Afterward, the light show will continue down the canyon and into Ephraim.

The ride ends at 10 p.m. Those who would like to spend another day riding can find accommodations in Ephraim.

Registration fees for the Arapeen Sunset UTV Ride are only $20 per rider. Sign up at https://utvevents.weebly.com/june-ride.html, where there are still spots available.

I was on this ride last year with my brother-in-law, Mike Timothy. We stayed overnight and enjoyed an unguided ride the next day. On this occasion, we were riding alone. I don’t recommend it, but I happened to mention to Mike that it would be a long walk if we broke down this far from any services. That ruined the rest of the trip for him. Interestingly enough, he is going with me again this year.

Now for the day part of this equation. The 21st Annual Manti Mountain ATV Run is sponsored by Manti City and is scheduled for July 9-10 this year.

This event includes two guided day rides on some of the most beautiful UTV trails Utah has to offer with great vistas, gorgeous wildflowers and crisp mountain air as you ascend to over 10,000 feet in elevation along the Skyline Drive.

Registration includes a continental breakfast and a sack lunch on both days and dinner at the park at the end of the first day’s ride. The fee is $99 and at this time there are 60 spots open. Register at https://manticityrecreation.activityreg.com.

With over 600 miles of trail in the Arapeen Trail System and trail elevations ranging from 5,800 feet to the highest point on the Skyline Trail at 10,897 feet, this is mountain riding at its best. I can’t think of a better way to escape the heat than riding in a cool breeze on the tops of these mountains.

This is one of those places where you can get a taste of the real Utah. I have stated many times that if you don’t get off the highway, you won’t get to see the real Utah.

Sanpete County has gone to great lengths to ensure your enjoyment of this gem of a trail system. They have produced a map detailing the 600-plus miles of OHV trails available to explore. You can also download the map to the Avenza Maps app on your smartphone to make routes even easier to follow.

You don’t have to wonder where to start or where to go — the map suggests four day rides and two overnight rides. The trails are well-marked and the instructions are easy to follow.

When you go, take plenty of water, keep the rubber side down and consider these suggested rides. Day or night, they will give you a taste of what the Arapeen has to offer, and one trip is all it will take to have you coming back for more.

Contact Lynn R. Blamires at quadmanone@gmail.com.


Join thousands already receiving our daily newsletter.

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)