Public Lands

Building a Community in the Desert

Desert Rendezvous began as a modest effort to build a community by creating opportunities around our shared interests and values. Building a community was a conscious choice back then, and today it requires continued dedication, vision, and consistency in order to remain successful and relevant. Most don’t realize it, but there’s a lot more to organizing these large-scale Rendezvous events than meets the eye. It takes many months of hard work behind the scenes with …
AdventureGear and SkillsVehicles

The International 4WD Trainers Association: Inside the Testing for Certification

This is an inside look at the I4WDTA. My goal here is to provide some level of transparency for an organization I believe in. To that end, I’d like to provide you with a glimpse inside their Testing for Certification process and the extremely diverse knowledge, skills, and aptitudes required to be successful. There were eight Candidate Trainers and a large number of I4WDTA staff present whom I will refer to here as Cadre during …
AdventureAmerican AdventuresGear and SkillsVehicles

Overland Expo East 2021

This was a busy year. Overland Expo East was to be our third Overland Expo event within the space of a few weeks, and it seemed like I had just returned from Colorado when it was time to go again. Overlanding is different east of the Mississippi, and I was keen on seeing how the East Coast version of Expo was doing. As usual, I left Northwest Florida a couple days early for a bit …
AdventureAmerican AdventuresGear and SkillsVehicles

Colorado or Bust: Overland Expo Mountain West 2021

Overland Expo Mountain West almost didn’t happen. For most of us, the last year+ was like a dystopian B movie on many levels, complete with terrible casting and an even worse plot line. Because of all that, there was an uncomfortable feeling right up until the day I drove away from Florida for Colorado that this event would somehow get derailed too. I know the event organizers likely aged a few years with worry and …
American Adventures

The 2020 Desert Rendezvous

Editor’s note: Back in 2010, our “Rendezvous Conspiracy” of like minded Adventurists sat around a campfire in the Southern California desert dreaming up ideas to get out and explore more often. That quiet conversation resulted in the first Desert Rendezvous. Fast forward ten years and American Adventurist grew to tens of thousands of followers across the social media spectrum with members in all 50 states. Early on we made it our business to promote responsible …
Gear and Skills

Long Term Review: Maxtrax Xtreme

MAXTRAX has a great product in their MAXTRAX Mark II vehicle recovery board.  They’ve been proven the world over, and everyone from special forces units to families out on afternoon adventures rely on MAXTRAX Mark II’s to solve vehicle recovery problems and so much more. In the professional guiding world, MAXTRAX are the only vehicle recovery boards on the market to be endorsed by the International 4 Wheel Drive Trainer’s Association (I4WDTA) Product Recommendation Program …
Gear and Skills

TESTED: Ruggedized Deadman Earth Anchor

Hi internet:  My name is Chad, and for the last couple of months, I’ve been burying dead things. That last sentence could make for some interesting search engine optimization, but it’s the truth.  You see, I’ve been testing out the new ruggedized Deadman Earth Anchor, which is as you might have guessed, is a beefed-up version of the original Deadman.  The original Deadman wears many hats, all of which expand the functionality of your winch …
American Adventures

2019 Socal Desert Rendezvous

Location: Somewhere in the California Desert With the coordinates dispatched to those who were in the know, the stage was set for the 9th Annual Desert Rendezvous presented by American Adventurist. Day 00: Local weather reports had been giving out mixed readings regarding rain, and our team needed to meet early at the Rendezvous site in the desert and get set up for the large gathering to come during the weekend. Staff members Cris Mateski, …