By: Jon Maib
As a California native who relocated to Texas, I really enjoy the off-road parks we have. While I'm not a big fan of having to pay a fee every time I wheel my rigs, I do like the park set-up. You have the opportunity to explore acres of rugged land, but then you can head back to the main locations, eat lunch, use the bathroom (for the women, that's a BIG thing), camp and some even provide places to air your tires back up. I never mind going to the park locations multiple times because you can quickly find an obsticles you love and try different lines.

Arbuckle Off-Road Park is located in Troy, Oklahoma and was a new adventure for me. The park is fairly new, opening in May 2014 and they currently have approximately 300 acres of trails, rocks, mud and river crossings, giving adventure seekers plenty do there. They also have a great staging area that includes several camping spots with hook ups.

The drive to Arbuckle was about 2 hours from our home in Texas, so we left early to meet up with friends who were joining us. We traveled with our Jeeps in tow and met up with several other jeepers from the Collin County Jeep Club. This was a very casual get-together and there were many people who had not been offroading before. After a quick drivers meeting, we hit the trails.

The first trail we picked immediatly dropped us out onto a big granite slab where, naturally, we stopped to get a group photo.

After a few group pics, I found a rocky ravine right next to where we had parked, and since no one was sure what to do, I went for it. I worked my way throught the ravine with a little help from a spotter and then noticed a couple other rigs following me. I made it out at the top without any problems. The guy behind me decided to take a bit of a different route and climbed a wall half-way through the ravine, but while doing so, he bent his rear track bar, knocking his Jeep out for the rest of the day.

After everyone who was brave enough tried climbing the ravine, everyone was just waiting around waiting for someone to take the lead. Even though I was not familiar with the trails, I felt comfortable enough on most terrains to take charge. When you have only a few rigs following you with similar builds, leading is not a hard task. But, in this case, we had 15 or more jeeps ranging from stock to fully built, making our adventure more exciting. We found our way off the ganite slab and onto the next trail section, where we came across a nice steep rock hill climb. Luckily, there were a couple bypasses, as some people didnt want to try the climb or figured they could not have made it.

After traversing through several rocky sections, someone asked me if I knew of any places to get muddy. I had no idea where to find any, but luckily, I happenend to pick the trail that led to a nice, big mud pit. I was happy to take the road around it, since I am not a fan of mud, but waited on the other side for those that wanted to try going through the pit. We only had 3 Jeeps actually try it and none of them made it through. It was quite fun to watch though!

Once everyone was winched out of the mud, we trecked on through more dirt trails, which always seemed to dump us right back onto the large rock forms, where I prefered to the dirt. For me, the toughest part about leading a group on trails you've never been on was making sure everyone got through safely. This was a challenge, but we were able to get everyone through with no problems. We only had to break out a winch once, but it was merely precautionary.

The consensus was that Arbuckle was a great park! If you live close by, I highly recommend checking it out. I will definitely be going back to see what else I can find. Next time I will consider camping there so I can have more time to explore the 300 acres.

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