14 of the Best 4x4 Trips in America
If you're looking to escape in your off-road vehicle, here you can find, in no particular order, the best dirt, mud, sand, and rocks you can find in the USA.
Hart’s Pass. Located in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. It is the highest point in the State of Washington that one can drive. The road was built in 1893 into gold and silver mines. Pic: http://www.omtm.cc
Mokee (or Moki) Dugway. Located in Utah is a staggering, graded dirt switchback road carved into the face of the cliff edge of Cedar Mesa. Switchbacks (11% grade).
Shafer Trail Road-Shafer Canyon Road. Located in eastern Utah it requires extreme caution in inclement weather and at night. It is slippery and often impassible when wet or icy. It was originally built by uranium miners. Pic: Ron Nguyen
Mosquito Pass. Located in the Mosquito Range of Colorado, at 4.026m (13,208ft). Even with a 4WD vehicle, the pass is typically passable only during the summer months. You'll spend a lot of time in low gears. Pic: Travis Taylor
Dalton highway. It’s said to be the loneliest road on the planet. This two lane gravel road stretches for 414 miles-666km between the city of Fairbanks and Deadhorse.
Alpine Loop. With a length of 63 miles it’s located in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. The road climbs up two 12,000-foot passes (Engineer Pass and Cinnamon Pass) and is recommended for high clearance four wheel drive with short wheel base.
Burr Trail. Located in Utah, with a length of 68-mile (109 km), Although in dry weather it's easily accessible to passenger cars, wet weather may make the road impassable even for 4WD vehicles. Pic: Kevin Matejovsky
Imogene Pass. Elevation of 3.997m (13,114ft) in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. Stock SUVs should have low-range gearing, 4-wheel drive, high clearance and skid plates. Experienced drivers only. It would be pretty easy to accidentally drive off the side, and it would be a fatal mistake. Pic: Clint Mitchell
Lippincott Mine Road. Located in Death Valley, Eastern California, the trail is 8,2 miles long. It’s not for the casual driver or the casual car. There are no guardrails, and there is the constant threat of a steep fall if you’re not careful — at times, there’s just a foot or two of gravelly space to navigate.
Hurricane Pass. Elevation of 4.034m (13,238ft) in Colorado. Be sure to pay close attention to your driving. The trail is steep and falling off some edges would be fatal. The trail is a 5,34 miles one-lane. Pic: Matt Inden/Miles
Argentine Pass. Elevation of 4.025m (13,207ft) in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Rocky at the start and very narrow at the top. Snow can block trail well into summer. Vehicle travel is only possible on the Georgetown side, the Horseshoe Basin side may only be traversed by foot or by bicycle. Pic: Alan Atkins
Taylor Pass. Elevation of 3.642m (11,948ft) in Colorado. It’s 8,5 miles long. Go slow when the trail enters the creek, there can be some deep holes in there. Open from July (may still be snowed in) to October (early snows may close the pass). Pic: Shannon Drew
Smoky Mountain Scenic Backway (BLM330). Located in Utah, it’s 78 miles long. Just don't try it when it's wet - there are two sections of the road that puddle and become impassable with quicksand. Driving this high clearance track is no simple undertaking, it is rough and wild. Pic: PROladigue_99
White Mountain Peak. Elevation of 4.344m (14,252ft) in the White Mountains of Mono County. The peak is arguably California's easiest fourteener via jeep road. It is not for the faint hearted – it is steep, and there are spots where a slip or fall could cause serious injury. Usually cleared of snow between late June and November.