Reliving the 2015 Nitto Tire West Coast JK Experience
To some, the automobile is as critical to their existence as food and water. While no one technically needs a vehicle to live, for many, owning one is the best way to feel alive. Amongst all the brands, one could argue that Jeep has the most passionate and dedicated owners. In terms of aftermarket support, the Jeep Wrangler is second to none.
Since the launch of the Jeep Wrangler JK platform in 2007, the Jeep and off-road community as a whole has expanded greatly. In fact, we dare say that the launch of the four-door Wrangler Unlimited JK may go down as one of the most impactful vehicles of our lifetime. Much like the Muscle car era of the 1970s, the enthusiast auto market has been tightly grasped by the Jeep brand for the first half of the 21st century. While Jeep provided a more versatile platform four-door Unlimited, it was the aftermarket that truly unleashed the performance potential of the vehicle.
It’s with the success of the JK platform that we found ourselves at Nitto Tire’s 2015 West Coast JK Experience presented by Discount Tire. Now in its sixth year, this was the third and final JKX of the 2015 calendar year. Backed by the title sponsor Nitto Tire, a company whose passion and support for the off-road enthusiast runs far beyond the racing circuit, the JK Experience has become the premier JK event in the U.S. So, what is the JK Experience?
It’s a trip for those who love 'wheeling and are up for a real American adventure. From ghost towns and back roads of America to metal mashing boulders and exhilarating trails, the week-long trip brings together 'wheelers from around the globe. The most basic and absolute requirement needed to come on JKX is a 2007 to present Jeep Wrangler JK. Why only JKs?
Trip founder Mel Wade created the event to showcase versatility of the JK platform. By guiding the group of participants over exhilarating on- and off-road off-shoots, the trip amplifies the fact that with a little aftermarket support, your daily driver and hardcore wheeler can be one in the same. It’s a test of man and machine that is intended to bring out the best in both.
The West Coast leg of the 2015 trip kicked off in Deadwood, South Dakota, and carried participants over a 1,000 miles of on- and off-road excitement. The trip landed in Jeep’s unofficial home of Moab, Utah, where epic scenery and ‘wheeling collide unlike any other place on the planet. This trip, like the ones before it was incredible in every way. Here, we’ve put together a photo journal of the event, but you can get all of the details from the trip by visiting www.drivingline.com/jk-experience-series.
Alaska Bound For 2016!
Typically, the location for the main JK Experience trip is a closely held secret, but for 2016, the trip’s location was too big to keep quiet. For the first time, JKX is heading north to explore the last frontier! This Alaskan Experience will be the biggest JKX to date and if you think you have what it takes to participate you can apply online at www.jk-experience.com. You can count on us to pack up our snow boots and camera gear so we can provide you all of the action, live from the event!