EVENT: Vermont Overland Rally 2016

vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-1The Vermont Overland Rally 2016 was full of everything you expect from VT in the Fall; wet chilly weather, amazing foliage, muddy tough 4wd required Class 4 backroads and all kinds of quality local food, drink and hand made goods. I was going to write up a great intro to help you understand what the Vermont Overland Rally is really all about, but the event’s organizer, Peter Vollers, recently sent out an email with the following quote, which sums it up pretty well; “You see, VOR has always offered something unique.  And that something is real adventure.  All of the other rallies and festivals have their own qualities and attributes.  Some offer excellent seminars and training, others offer superior trade show qualities and some you attend mainly for the party, all of which is very important for overland tribe building.  But what VOR brings to the table is a place where you can actually get out there and challenge yourself, to use the skills and equipment you’ve garnered elsewhere.   Is it the North Maine Woods where (when you’re not dodging high-speed logging trucks) you’re truly remote and on your own?  No, but it’s still a chance to truly test both your overlanding skills and equipment and your camping setups in a real way.”

I rode into this year’s event on my KTM 950 Adventure, on the way south from my 26 day 5K+ mile overland adventure motorcycle trip in NE Canada. It was awesome to rip around the curvy back roads and rocky Class 4 roads in VT on the big KTM, but it was even more fun to do some of the truly challenging roads, with good friends, in properly sorted 4×4 vehicles. Hopefully the photos below will give you a little feel for the event, and showcase some of the truly spectacular vehicles in attendance.

DCIM158_VIRBThe venue for the event changed this year, and was on a very cool piece of property, owned by organizer Peter Vollers, that offered a little bit of everything. Their were even vans down by the river!

vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-3I rolled in late Thursday night, as I had a few issues with my clutch in NH, after doing the Washington Auto Road. With wet cold weather I was happy to have a solid tent, great riding gear from Icon Raiden and awesome luggage from Mosko Moto.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-4Luckily I have good friends, and managed to get setup in a heated 4 Wheel Camper for the duration of the Vermont Overland Rally 2016. It was much appreciated, as I was still recovering from a cold and it was COLD out!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-5HUGE thanks to Mainline Overland for the warm place to sleep, and Sea to Summit for the awesome sleep system that has kept me warm and comfortable on all my adventures lately.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-6One of my favorite photos from the event, as there is a HUGE variety of adventuremobile in this one photo, which really defines the event. Everyone is welcome.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-7The Vermont Overland Rally is VERY dog and kid friendly.
vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-8A big part of the Vermont Overland Rally is being good stewards of the land, and picking up trash on your adventures across Vermont’s Class 4 roads is an important part of the event.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-9The Goodmans American Pie wood-fired pizza truck is very “Wreck-A-Mended”. The ingredients were all local, and oh so tasty!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-10The Saturday night raffle had a ton of great prizes and was a great gathering point, as everyone was scattered across the property in their chosen camp spots.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-11A good moto when tackling some of the really tough Vermont Class 4 roads!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-12The Famous Sam Farr Rd is challenging in all ways, and was only attempted by a very few. Here you see the ARB USA Jeep tacking the first major rocky section, with the guidance of Vermont Overland Club member Lazz.
vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-13When you blow out a ujoint, it is best to turn around and limp the vehicle down hill, which can still be a serious challenge on a trail like Sam Farr Rd! Wilson Steely Offroad Outfitters has some very impressive Jeeps, but with big power motors and big wheels on tough trails breakage happens.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-14Field repairs are what it takes to keep adventuring.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-15We did find some mud!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-16Maxtrax were a great asset to have in the Vermont woods.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-17Not all trails were difficult, but all were beautiful.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-18I love seeing people use their rigs, even when they are expensive luxury vehicles like this awesome 200 Series Land Cruiser.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-19 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-20 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-21 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-22 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-23 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-24America!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-25Quite a few unique camper trailers, being towed by very capable off road rigs. A good combo for the tough tight trails in Vermont.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-26 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-27 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-28 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-29 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-30 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-31Mountain State Overlandvermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-32 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-33vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-34I just love these old Land Rover FC101!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-35 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-36It is important to always have fresh oil at hand when you drive an old Land Rover 😉vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-37 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-38 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-39 vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-40I love this LR4 Airstream combo. Great way to adventure in style. Glamping at it’s best!vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-41Peter Vollers well used LR3.vermontoverlandrally2016exploringelements-42Tough choices in life sometime 🙂

Vermont Overland hosts a number of 4wd and bicycle events throughout the year. The Vermont Overland Rally is a great way to get introduced to this great group of people and spectacular area to explore. Expect registration to open VERY early in 2017, and be VERY limited, so be sure to sign up as soon as you can for the Vermont Overland Rally 2017, set for September 28 through October 1.

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