TIERRA DEL SOL
A Fond Look Back At This Great Event.
Editor: Eric Bewley Story/Photo: Jason Hutchison
Coachella, CA – Each year around the first weekend of March the Tierra Del Sol 4×4 club of San Diego holds their annual Desert Safari & Raffle. This year was the 44th annual event and has grown to be a very large gathering that attracts anything and everything that will run in the dirt. Each year the club members of Tierra Del Sol set up a great event to host on average 10,000 or so dirt playing enthusiasts. There is a great aftermarket vendor arena with quite a good offering of aftermarket products. We headed out to this years event which takes place in the infamous Truckhaven Hills just a bit south of Coachella.
We rolled into the TDS event Friday evening about 7 pm (just after dusk) and the best way to describe it was like rolling into the Thunderdome out of a Mad Max movie. Huge lifted vehicles, rock buggies, golf carts, dirt bikes climbing everything in sight. Dust, smoke, and the scream of engines filled the air, with thousands of raging campfires, beaming off road headlights all around you and shooting up into the clear night sky.
After getting camp set up, we headed over to what appears to commonly be called the Cracks. The Cracks consist of pretty much just that, 30ft deep near vertical walled trails winding their way through soft packed dirt created by water erosion.
Reminiscent of the Dump Bump or Potato Salad Hill in Moab, thousands upon thousands of people gather around these cracks as evening presses on to suggest and taunt the slew of buggies, trucks, and of course Suzukis to climb the vertical walls towards the on looking crowd. This is nonstop action with plenty of carnage, wheel stands and rollovers.
Saturday morning returns to a more structured event as club members of the Tierra Del Sol lead trail runs of all calibers though out the Truckhaven Hills. If the wagon train style off road adventure is not your cup of tea, not to worry there is an absolute endless supply of terrain in the Truckhaven hills that will entertain enthusiasts for days on end. There is literally everything here, hill climbs, super twisty canyon sections, sand washes, rock hills and much much more.
Saturday evening is the famous Raffle where the Tierra Del Sol club members raffle off over 50,000 dollars in product. As you can imagine this draws quite a crowd. We spent several days at the Desert Safari and like any event of this camber its impossible to flag everyone down to get their name and general spiel so we just took pictures of every Suzuki we saw having a great time. If you havent been to Tierra Del Sol then I suggest you put it on your calendar for next year. If you are anywhere near the south west its an event not to be missed. This area is ideal for Suzuki based off road vehicles with the plethora of tight canyons and narrow trails. We saw lots of stock zuk guys out here having a blast too so dont be shy when this event comes around again next year!
Click on above for Large Collage of event.