Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

March 27, 2013

Fun at High Lifter ATV Nationals is spelled M-U-D!

Ben Tinsley
Jacksonville Daily Progress

JACKSONVILLE — Aficionados tend to agree – the trails of Jacksonville's Mud Creek Off-Road Park make the High Lifter ATV Mud Nationals a bit of a treat.

Just ask the evaluation-prone who were here for the “rain or shine,” several-day event starting Thursday of last week.

An official to relay specific stats and figures of last week's event could not be immediately reached Tuesday. But many of these participants, now in the wind, shared – online – fantastic memories of their time here.

“This is a great place to go mudding,” wrote one on www.atvescape.com. “They have trails and mud for the hardcore modified machine along with trails for stock machines. Great camping facilities and lots of room to play, this is a great place to spend the weekend.”

There were those who participate in such events for the sheer visceral pleasure.

“First time I went was for mud nationals and I got arrested – YEE-HAW!!!” one hard-core fan enthused. “I've been going back every year since then 6 years ago. LOVE THIS PLACE !!”

And then there were the explorers and adventurers.

“Awesome place to ride,” wrote one such individual. “My favorite by far. Been twice and never saw the same trail either time.”

Thousands came from around the world to see the mud nationals. Tracie Engi, event coordinator, has said officials were braced and ready for a good crowd.

Engi – of Shreveport, Louisiana's High Lifter Products, Inc. – said one new attraction this year was an obstacle course on which everyone was able to participate.

Vendor Gloria Lopez-Allende, 62, of Houston said she enjoys the event because she gets to meet “mudders” from across the globe.

“It can get up to 20,000 people when all is said and done,” she said. “We've seen people from England, Germany, and even Russia. We sell a lot of  homemade lemonade.”

Engi said the event's popularity is that it is a sport for everyone.

“It's a nonspecific target age group –­­­­­with lots of vendors and displays,” she said. “There's something for everyone.”