Johnson Valley, California one of the most desolate and brutal places the Mojave desert has to offer. It is also home of one of the biggest off-road races this side of the border, King of the Hammers.
Pre-4th of July weekend sounded like a good time to have a desert meet for the small truck club known as Local Yota Truck Club. Toyota Enthusiasts, club president Danny Ruiz and vice president Rod Ceres, have been on the grind trying to build their club day by day.
Danny one day, along with Rod and a few others, decided to try and get this truck club off the ground. They used the power of social media and had their first meet in a parking lot which only drew out a handful of other off-road fanatics.
With a determined mindset, they collaborated to find any means necessary to grow. They held backyard barbeque fundraisers to help them fund their own merch. The club which now is rooted with members in all branches of the military, Local Yotas has held multiple fundraisers to donate and help serve the Veterans.
As they grew they found themselves gaining respect and recognition of local off-road social media pages.
Meet Day And Time In The Dirt
They met at a local parking lot, which turned into a staging area before heading off to Bear Valley Road. They caravanned down Bessemer Mine Road into Soggy Dry Lake Bed to meet the pre-camped members and vendors.
One by one they entered the lake bed, a Toyota train that seemed endless with all models of trucks and SUVs. Without any instruction, they parked and formed a horseshoe which spanned two rows of about 50 or more in front of vendor row.
The vendors included GGLighting, VTX Wheels, DMZ Fab, MBRP exhaust, and Baja Kits to name a few. By this time it was 110 degrees on the lakebed, but the heat didn’t put a damper on the crowd that had now just seemingly invaded the open desert.
The friendly atmosphere got everyone talking, sharing tips, and tricks about their vehicles. After about an hour or so of the meet and greet, club member Xaiver Cabrera gathered everyone and set up some trail rides lead by club members.
Group One raced off to find sand, while Group Two sought out the trails in the rolling foothills. Everyone made it back in once piece, minus a few broken parts and after a short break of the raffle was held which included LED lights, King shocks, wheels, exhaust, and more!
As the sun set, the day trippers left and the campers settled in as the orange sky was the sign of relief from the heat. The sound of laughter over the music and crackling of the fires could be heard throughout the lake bed.
Catching up with Danny and Rod later in the night, they were blown away at the turnout of the meet. Humbled and focused they now have their sights another desert meet-up in August. You can find them on Facebook and Instagram Local Yota Truck Club.