Overland Expo 2012
Overlanding is the fastest-growing segment in adventure travel and the Overland Expo is where it begins. From exploring your backyard to trotting the globe in your 4x4 or motorcycle, the Overland Expo has the right tools to kickstart your adventure.
Before we get too far, what the heck is overlanding? You’ll get different definitions depending who you ask, but this is what the organizers of Overland Expo describe:
Overlanding is exploring the world by self-guided means, in your own vehicle, on your own motorcycle, or even bicycle. The journey is the purpose in overloading. Overlanding is not about conquering; it’s about exploring.
In 2009 Roseann Hanson founded Overland Expo. The event was created for people who see their 4WD or ADV motorcycle as a means to adventure and exploration, and who see travel as a portal to learning about the world. Off-Road.com takes you there.
EXPLORING THE OVERLAND EXPO
This year Overland Expo was held outside of Flagstaff, Arizona, at Mormon Lake Lodge (Elevation 7,100 ft.) May 18-20, 2012. The serene Northern Arizona 300-acre ranch is lined with Ponderosa pine and blue skies in every direction. Many of the participants camped or bunked on-site, making it one big adventure festival.
Overland Expo had over 150 exhibitors on site to answer questions, demo the latest adventure gear, or even get you prepared for the next Dakar Rally on a motorcycle. There was a lot of activity, from vehicle recovery classes to riding BMW Adventure Motorcycles, to climbing into the latest off-road ready camper. There was something for everyone, even kids were encouraged to participate in activities put on by the Rover Divas (as in Land Rover).
With over 85 classes led by instructors and presenters from around the world, the Overland Expo is estimated to have drawn 500 students and over 4,000 visitors, making it the largest event to date for the group.
“Get Outfitted, Get Trained, Get Inspired” was the resonating theme at Overland Expo. A big part of the experience are the training courses, seminars and learning about products or services that will help you become self-reliant in your adventure travel.
The atmosphere was very relaxing. Participants and day visitors were able to walk around freely, looking and discovering some very unique vehicles and the people that drive them. It’s amazing what people build to make their adventure travel possible. A great deal of customization goes into outfitting each vehicle--function is king with this crowd.
We always like learning about new ways people utilize their 4WDs and motorcycles off-road. The Overland Expo shed some light on new trends in off-roading within the United States and North America.
What started back in the ‘50s as 4x4 camping in the backcountry and then evolved into off-road racing and rock crawling. Today it seems to be coming back full-circle as more people get back to the basics of off-roading, camping and exploring.
Mormon Lake Lodge