The Southwest is a dream come true for off-roading enthusiasts who love getting into their 4×4 and enjoy the best that their 4-wheel drive vehicles have to offer. So, if you’re looking for fantastic views of nature, Summit 4×4 Club will take you from the red rocks of Sedona to pine trees and canyons in Williams and Flagstaff, and even the desert in the Table Mesa area.

Summit 4x4 Girls Tribe - Ride to Crown King. This is a fun ride to a fun little town in the Bradshaw Mountains near Prescott. There are 4 or 5 different trails to get there from easy to pretty difficult. The most difficult trail was just added as a Jeep Badge of Honor Trail. This was a Girls Tribe run on one of the easier trails. The picture was taken by the leader Laurie Cwikla of my girls winding their way up the hill. Photo by Laurie Cwikla
Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe – Ride to Crown King. This is a fun ride to a fun little town in the Bradshaw Mountains near Prescott. There are 4 or 5 different trails to get there from easy to pretty difficult. The most difficult trail was just added as a Jeep Badge of Honor Trail. This was a Girls Tribe run on one of the easier trails. The picture was taken by the leader Laurie Cwikla of my girls winding their way up the hill. Photo by Laurie Cwikla

Summit 4×4 Club and its sister club, Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe are both based in Prescott, AZ. They have been doing amazing work by building a community of off-roading enthusiasts who know how to have fun and help the community at the same time.

As David Blackman puts it,

“Summit 4×4 Club is not a big city club. We all know our way around city life, but that is not us. We aren’t rubes but we are rural. Our leadership started with a vision of building a community of off-roading fun and skill-building that is in service of the civic communities where we live. We continue to do that all year long thru various fund-raising events and community service events. Everyone supports each other and no one gets left behind on the trail. No matter what. Also, we have loads of fun and we laugh a lot!”

Summit 4x4 Club provides the means for like-minded people to come together that share in the same desire and hobby of taking their 4x4 rigs to "roads less travelled". Photo by Lisa Fariseo Visket
Summit 4×4 Club provides the means for like-minded people to come together that share in the same desire and hobby of taking their 4×4 rigs to “roads less travelled”. Photo by Lisa Fariseo Visket

Sure, many off-road Jeep clubs have a reputation for being tight-knit families of friends with a shared passion for off-roading, but Summit 4×4 Club and Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe embody the whole culture of inclusiveness, fun, and giving back to the communities they come from.

If you’re looking to become a part of a 4×4 club, learn about off-roading in a safe and supportive environment, and go on off-roading adventures with one of the best 4×4 clubs in the Southwest, this off-road club in Prescott, AZ, will welcome you with doors wide open!

How The Club Started

There was never a shortage of off-road lovers and 4×4  owners in the area, but there wasn’t anything that brought all of them together. 2018 saw the owner of Summit 4×4 Company, Jesse Wasil partnering up with George McClenahan, longtime friends and off-roaders, to create the Summit 4×4 Club. A year later, the Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe was created and Laurie Cwikla leads the Tribe.

Of course, these weren’t going to be any average off-road clubs that just meet for monthly runs. The founders created the Summit 4×4 Clubs with the vision of a more inclusive and community-oriented organization that welcomed new people with open arms and worked together to give back to the community.

Summit 4×4 welcomes all people who live full-time or even part-time in Arizona, provided they have a vehicle fit to go along on the trails. Many off-road clubs offer training to new members, but Summit 4×4 has a very impressive range of “How-to Clinics” that really takes things up a notch.

 

Summit 4x4 Club holds How-to Clinics every quarter. This is one of several training stations. They are showing a basic winching situation and how to do it correctly and safely use a vehicles winch.
Summit 4×4 Club holds How-to Clinics every quarter. This is one of several training stations. They are showing a basic winching situation and how to do it correctly and safely use a vehicles winch.

Training and Safety with “How To Clinics”

Everyone from the clubs presidents to experienced members are there for the new members. They take the time to teach newbies everything they need to know when they get started, understand how things work, making sure that everyone has fun and stays safe.

Their quarterly “How-to Clinics” are very helpful for people who recently joined the club and are new to off-road driving. You get to learn everything from how to use a winch safely to how to properly change a tire when on the trail, use the GPS, and even off-road etiquette. Safety and training are a major priority for the club, as well as making sure that everybody feels welcome and has fun.

 

My Arizona Jeep Dog! Rick's Arizona Jeep Dog doesn’t leave his Jeep even while testing the suspension travel on the RTI Ramp. Photo by Rick Bilan
My Arizona Jeep Dog! Rick’s Arizona Jeep Dog doesn’t leave his Jeep even while testing the suspension travel on the RTI Ramp. Photo by Rick Bilan

Jason Shaver said,

“The group is wide in ability from beginners to experienced trail enthusiasts to rock crawlers.

The admins from the president down always meet and talk with you. They put on events from getting to know your ride, how to use recovery equipment and when to do what on trails. They volunteer their time to build a group of knowledge, respect, and etiquette for rigs, wildlife, community. They have found wonderful sponsors to feed us at events and runs. Good causes to donate to with runs and raffles. My summit 4×4 club is family….”

Giving Back To The Community

Summit 4×4 Club and Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe are big on giving back to the community. The club organizes fundraisers throughout the year to help those in need.

Trails 4 Tata’s Live Auction. Here, Prescott Mayor, Greg Mengarelli, the auctioneer; Angi Bryan, Philanthropy Coordinator for the YRMC Foundation, the announcer and club president, George McClenahan are auctioning off a set of pink Maxtrax donated by Adventure Imports. The Trails 4 Tatas fundraiser raised close to $50,000 for the Dignity Health Yavapai Regional Medical Center Breast Care Center. In addition to the live auction, there was a silent auction.
Trails 4 Tata’s Live Auction. Here, Prescott Mayor, Greg Mengarelli, the auctioneer; Angi Bryan, Philanthropy Coordinator for the YRMC Foundation, the announcer and club president, George McClenahan are auctioning off a set of pink Maxtrax donated by Adventure Imports. The Trails 4 Tatas fundraiser raised close to $50,000 for the Dignity Health Yavapai Regional Medical Center Breast Care Center. In addition to the live auction, there was a silent auction.

2021 will be Trail 4 Tatas third year raising money for the YRMC Foundation who allocates the money to the BreastCare Center for patients undergoing treatment for breast cancer for items and services that they might not be able to afford so they can concentrate on their recovery.

The city of Prescott does not pay for the food and health care of the K-9’s in their department.  The handlers rely on grants and donations to offset the cost of food and vet care for their dogs.  The Summit 4×4 Club, The Girls Tribe and Summit 4×4 Company hold fundraisers to raise money for Cooper and Benny, Prescott’s K-9’s

 

The morning of the Trails 4 Tatas fundraiser. Participants picked up their event packages, had breakfast and attended the pre-run driver’s meeting.
Trails 4 Tatas Fundraiser - One of three groups that ran the Squaw Peak trail. The trail is very scenic and ends up on the top of a mountain that provides views of the Verde Valley and beyond.
Trails 4 Tatas Fundraiser – One of three groups that ran the Squaw Peak trail. The trail is very scenic and ends up on the top of a mountain that provides views of the Verde Valley and beyond.

Organizations they also help:

Summit 4x4 Girl Tribe - Glenna J Blackman was tail gunner to the town of Crown King and took this picture. We ran from Prescott down Senator Highway to Crown King. It was a fun run and a beautiful day! This was a Girls Tribe run on one of the easier trails. Photo by Glenna J Blackman
Summit 4×4 Girl Tribe – Glenna J Blackman was tail gunner to the town of Crown King and took this picture. We ran from Prescott down Senator Highway to Crown King. It was a fun run and a beautiful day! This was a Girls Tribe run on one of the easier trails. Photo by Glenna J Blackman

Pristine and Beautiful Trails

Both Summit 4×4 Clubs go on runs on a variety of trails from easy and scenic to difficult and challenging trails around Prescott, Sedona, Williams, Table Mesa near Phoenix, Flagstaff, Tonto Basin, Colorado, California, and Utah.

They not only have annual rides and fundraisers they also play their part in minimizing their impact on the environment and organize cleanup and maintenance rides, picking up trash they find on the trails. The clubs also participated in the Save Our Public Lands Coalition, working with PTR Prescott Trail Riders to keep trails accessible and open.

PTR Prescott Trail Riders  is a non-profit group, working closely with the Prescott National Forest Department, to advocate the appropriate use of approved trails, maintain existing trails and to build new ones.

Both club presidents are certified by Tread Lightly and follow Tread Lightly environmental guidelines because it is important to train new off-roaders how to respect and protect the trails.

 

Two Clubs Working Together As One

The Girls Tribe and Summit 4×4 Club are the perfect examples of two clubs working as one. Summit 4×4 Club welcomes everyone and the Girls Tribe “allows boys to come, but girls have to drive”. Unlike most other clubs that have a women’s trail ride as part of the men’s main event, the Girls Tribe is a separate 4×4 club and hold their own runs and events.

The two Summit 4×4 Clubs meet twice a month, go on runs once a month, and organize several Meet & Greet events throughout the year. Check out their Facebook Events Page to find events to attend.

You are Welcome to Check Us Out

Message from the Club – “Off-roading brings everyone together – young and old, rich and poor, experienced wheelers and newbies. Our club is no different, we have gone from being just two clubs to being a family.  As a “family”, we not only help out each other but help out the community as well.”

Feel free to join them and check out the Facebook pages for Summit 4×4 Club and Summit 4×4 Girls Tribe.

Don’t forget to checkout their Facebook events page for upcoming events.

Summit 4x4 Club - Photo of my 2017 Tacoma TRD 4x4 Off road going through Imogene pass Colorado Arch. Taken on the trip to Colorado September 2021. Photo by Jason Lewis
Summit 4×4 Club – Photo of my 2017 Tacoma TRD 4×4 Off road going through Imogene pass Colorado Arch. Taken on the trip to Colorado September 2021. Photo by Jason Lewis
Summit 4x4 Club - Imogene pass Colorado. Taken on the trip to Colorado September 2021. Photo by Jason Lewis
Summit 4×4 Club – Imogene pass Colorado. Taken on the trip to Colorado September 2021. Photo by Jason Lewis

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