MOAB Trip EJS or another time - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 11-11-2015, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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MOAB Trip EJS or another time

So I am planning a trip to Moab next spring, and am wondering if I should go the week of EJS or go another time.

I want to drive my JKRU on 35's out there to wheel it, but am not convinced I want to go that week. I could also tow the jeep, but that would make the trip longer.

It would be nice to have some locals to go with, but not sure I want to be there with 40 plus rigs on each trail.

I am not apposed to renting, but last time I rented from Barlow in Sedona I was disappointed with the difficulty of the trails they sent us to.

Thoughts?
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post #2 of 10 Old 11-11-2015, 11:49 AM
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Depends on what you're interested in doing/seeing. Most people will tell you NOT to go during EJS unless you are part of the organized event.

I've been every year for the past 6 or 7 years during that week and never been a part of the "event". I've always really enjoyed it. But for me, part of going wheeling is getting to meet other people that are into it and getting to see other peoples rigs. Don't get me wrong, we spend plenty of time out there when there is no one else out there and that is awesome in its own right too, but its pretty cool getting to see so many built Jeeps in one place and meet so many like minded people! Plus the vendor show is cool to go kill a few hours at and buy some discounted stuff.

There is also the WEROCK race out in Area BFE that goes on that week (big saturday), really cool to go watch also. For the past 3 or 4 years that is why i have been there, I help pit for one of the race teams, we just end up going down for the whole week so we can play a little before hand.

Also, in regards to the amount of rigs on each trail, i have never been on a trail where it was so congested with EJS'ers that we just stood still for ever waiting, or couldnt get around when they hit an obstacle that was giving someone trouble. The trial leader is usually pretty good about making sure no one sits on one obstacle for 2 hours humping the same ledge and making no progress, it has always moved along at a perfectly acceptable pace for me.

I say check it out, if its your first trip out to Moab you'll have TONS of people to help if needed, show you around if lost, give you advice on trails, shops, restaurants to check out...

One tip though...book hotel/campground/condo early!! That little town is definitely at capacity that week!
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post #3 of 10 Old 11-11-2015, 01:52 PM
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I agree with much of the above, but I would say "it depends".

It depends on what trails you intend to do. If you intend to stick to easy to moderate trails, no problem. Everybody should move along at a good pace. However if you intend to do the more hardcore trails, there are pluses and minuses to going during EJS.

On the plus side, you can be assured of plenty of help should you be the one broken down or in need of help. But if you go during any spring week, from about April 1st to June 1st, the trails will have people on them. They won't be crowded, but they won't be empty either. If you get into a bind, someone will come along sooner or later. In the fall, its not uncommon to be the only person / group on the trail.

On the minus side, people do break down and usually on the harder obstacles. If there is no bypass, you can be stuck for an hour or two while the rig is fixed or moved aside. I know from personal experience. Even if no one breaks down, some of the harder trails can take all day and well into the night to complete. Poison Spider / Golden Spike / Gold Bar Rim is a classic example. Very popular trail. And if you are at inclined for a challenging trail, its hard to beat. A fair amount of bypasses, but not everywhere (the wall on GBR is a good example). The trail is challenging but provides exactly what most people on 35s or 37s come to Moab for - let it hang out a bit. Get on the edge. Just be prepared if you do it with the EJS group or behind the EJS group, you will most likely not be back to your hotel / condo / campground until well after dark. If that doesn't bother you, go for it. If that is a concern, well then consider other options.

As pointed out above it also depends on your tolerance for delays and long days on the trail. Some people think that is what it is all about. Other people get pretty damn cranky if they miss their supper at the favorite restaurant.

I guess my advice to a first timer would be to come after EJS is over. The week immediately after EJS is often still pretty busy with lots of jeeps. But don't forget, there is Hummer Week, and Toyota Week (not what they call it but you get the idea), Jeep Jamboree, and so on. EJS is the premier event, but you can go during a similar event and not have quite the crowds, but still plenty of people.

As far as getting lost on the trails, Funtreks sells a data card that fits in some GPS models. It has all of the popular trails in Moab on it and make trail finding and following foolproof. Its the best $40 I ever spent.

And don't be too concerned about my talk of breakdowns and such. Yes, they can happen. But if you are prudent with the skinny pedal, know when to lock and unlock, and pick decent lines, breakdowns are rare. I go twice a year with a large group and we have only had minor breakdowns.

Enjoy!
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post #4 of 10 Old 11-11-2015, 08:38 PM
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Two things to keep in mind...

Do you hate crowds? If so, don't go during EJS week.

Do you plan on staying in a hotel? If so, make your EJS reservations now (before the lottery).
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post #5 of 10 Old 11-11-2015, 09:13 PM
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I would agree with most of what was been written. As a trail leader for the EJS as well as having been going for the past 20+ years, it really depends on the trail leader and the group. I lead Gold Bar Rim and two years ago we were of the trail by 3:30 pm and having ice cream cones. Our group had 45 vehicles and we had two broken axle shafts that we fixed on the trail.

EJS is about more than the trails, there's so much more to it. Also realize that the EJS DOES have priority on some trails on the days that they are run. Trails like Pritchett Canyon and Poision Spider, Gold Bar Rim, and Hell's Revenge do have people blocking access to the trail. Just something else to keep in mind.

By the way I booked my condo before I left Moab this past EJS... book your room early! Also 2016 will be the 50th anniversary of the EJS too.

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post #6 of 10 Old 11-12-2015, 05:08 AM
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If you'e a Moab newb, I HIGHLY recomend EJS for your first trip. 2016 is the 50th so it will be huge.

You'll get some time on guided rides to see the diferent levels of trails,
met some awesome folks,
see some incredible scenery,
See an awesome vendor show,
some awesome jeeps,
and who knows you might win a set of stickies at the raffle.

Hope you already have a hotel room booked....


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post #7 of 10 Old 11-12-2015, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for all the comments, about what I figured, but wanted some real world experience.

I guess I should decide now if I am going and book my room.

What days should I plan to wheel. I won't be able to wheel all week, as I will have some travel days.
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post #8 of 10 Old 11-12-2015, 05:40 PM
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Days to wheel depend on you. I am planning on going Tuesday through Saturday. Tuesday is a travel day, then I will wheel Wednesday through Friday. I plan on being on Main st on Saturday Morning, because it is just flat cool, then drive home to Phoenix on Saturday after the departure for the trails. What you do depends on how long it will take you to get home.if you have five days to wheel, I would take a break on the middle day, but you could run all five days.
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post #9 of 10 Old 11-12-2015, 08:28 PM
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2015 was my first time to Moab, and I went during EJS for the exact reasoning stated above, because I wanted to get a feel for the place and trails from the seasoned locals, the Red Rock Club and others in the industry. The vendor show is cool, I also won a FlexaLite fan setup at the raffle.

Im in Iowa, so its a similar drive for me too. I went last year, left Saturday evening, got there Sunday afternoon and ran trails Monday-Thursday with Friday as a "Fix-it or Relax" day before leaving Saturday AM for the 20hr drive home and getting home about 5am Sunday.

If you want to go this year I would be more than happy to talk about setting up a caravan out and back. We could be help to each other should we have breakage on the Highway. I think built Jeeps are more likely to breakdown on the road rather than the trail...
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-14-2015, 01:06 PM
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Neil.cross if you know which trails you would like to run or need some help figuring out which to do, send me a PM. I have a list of which trails will be run on which days to help plan your week/ time in Moab.

opinions are like a$$holes, everyone has one and some stink
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