Earlier this spring, UFWDA was invited to Fairbanks, Alaska to hold a Four Wheel Drive Awareness Class hosted by the Fairbanks Off Road Lions Club (FORL). The classroom portion was held at the Ken Kunkel Community Center just outside of Fairbanks. While the driving and extraction skills portions were held at the Fairbanks Off Road Club ORV Park. The FORL ORV Park is a new facility being developed as a public/private partnership between the Alaska Department of Natural Resources and the FORL Club. This relationship grants the FORL Club nearly free reign over the layout and development of the trails and obstacles in the Park, while it will be operated by, and is located on, ADNR lands. Fifteen members of the Club joined in the Awareness Training. This included approximately four hours of class room instruction coupled with parking lot discussions and examples involving some of the member’s rigs. An absolutely wonderful lunch was provided by some of the club members, some of whom weren’t involved in the class. After lunch, participants made a short trip to the FORL ORV Park for the hands on portion of
the training. Extractions, including winching and strapping, were practiced and reviewed. A driving course was laid out the previous day to include the proper traverse of hill ascent/ descents, off camber situations, gullies and ditches, and a variety of other terrains. There were also seven members interested in the 4WD Awareness Trainer class that was to be held the following day. This portion is relatively brief, consisting of three to five hours of instructor-centric information. Several of the interested parties had traveled rather far to attend for the weekend class, so it was agreed that rather than have everyone reconvene the following day for the Instructor’s portion, we would have dinner together and present the material over and following dinner. While it made for a rather long day, it would also save everyone the return trip and seemed to be greatly appreciated by many. This twelveish hours of class has netted the FORL Club fifteen UFWDA Four Wheel Drive Awareness graduates and both UFWDA and the FORL Club seven new Instructors. WELL DONE FORL!
The quarterly online magazine of United Four Wheel Drive Associations Inc.