22 Best Overlanding Trails And Routes In The United States


22 Best Overlanding Trails and Routes in  the United States


What Is Overlanding? 

If camping and off-roading had a baby, it would be overlanding. 

The term "overlanding" was first used when farmers traveled long distances by land to  move cattle during season changes. 

Overlanding is now a form of recreation. It's an independent journey across the land, on road or off-road. 

Overlanding is usually done with trucks and other off-road vehicles that can handle dirt  roads and rugged terrain.

The expedition typically lasts long, where travelers camp and basically live in vehicles.

Overlanders either set up a tent on the ground or have a rooftop tent attached to the roof  rack. 

Just like in life, the goal of overlanding is the journey itself, not the destination.  

According to outdoor enthusiasts, the top five states for overlanding are Utah, California,  Arizona, Colorado, and Oregon. 



Here Are The Best Overlanding Trails And Routes In The United States That You Need To Add To Your Bucket List: 


Overlanding Trails And Routes In Utah

With its stunning rock formations and breathtaking scenery, Utah offers the best  overlanding trails and routes in the United States. 

  1. Gemini Bridges Moab 
  2. Valley of the Gods Road 
  3. White Rim Road 
  4. The Smoky Mountain Road, Escalante (extremely remote, so have your essentials ready in your car roof rack) 

Best Overlanding trails in United States


Overlanding Trails And Routes In California

From spectacular desert landscape to lush mountains and flowing rivers, California has  something to offer to every kind of off-road traveler. 

  1. The Mojave Road 
  2. Rubicon Trail, Sierra Nevada 
  3. California Backcountry Discovery Trail 
  4. Mendocino National Forest 
  5. Lassen National Forest 
  6. Six Rivers National Forest 

Best Overlanding Trails and Routes in  the United States


Overlanding Trails And Routes In Colorado

Watch in awe the enchanting landscapes and mesas of Colorado from the highest summit  and enjoy driving surrounded by the snow-capped mountains and vivid colored trees. 

  1. Black Bear Pass 
  2. Rocky Mountain National Park 
  3. Alpine Loop Trail begins near Silverton 
  4. The Enchanted Rockies Trail Queen 
Best Overlanding trails and routes in the United States


Overlanding Trails And Routes In Arizona

Arizona is famous for its subtropical desert and the saguaro cactus that can grow up to 40  feet. The high and low desert and diverse terrains make Arizona's beauty unforgettable. 

  1. El Camino Del Diablo Overland Trail 
  2. North Rim 
  3. Lake Havasu City 
  4. Grand Arizona traverse 

Best Overlanding Trails and Routes in  the United States


Overlanding Trails And Routes In Oregon 

Visit enchanting Oregon to see the deepest lake in the United States (Crater Lake) and the  vast ethereal open space perfect for driving in the morning and stargazing at night. 

  1. Crater Lake National Park 
  2. Alvord Desert 
  3. Owyhee Canyonlands 
  4. McGrew Trail 

Best Overlanding trails and routes in the United States


Other Trails And Routes In The United States Worth Visiting:

  • The Dalton Highway, Alaska 
  • The Pan-American Highway Deadhorse 
  • Trans-American Trail  
  • The Georgia Traverse 
  • Trans-Wisconsin Adventure Trail


Overlanding Reminders

Before setting out to any of the trails and routes on this list, research the terrain's difficulty.  Be conscious of what to expect and what to bring. Know when is the best time to visit.

Valley of the Gods is an easy trail and best for beginners, while Alpine Loop Trail is  moderately complex. 

The Black Bear Pass is famous for its scenic view from the state's highest peaks, but it's  tough and challenging terrain.  

For this reason, they are closed most of the year, but you can visit from the last week of July  through around the early weeks of September. 

Some places like Crater Lake National Park are closed during the late fall and winter due to  heavy rainfall. North Rim is also closed from mid-October to mid-May. White Rim in Utah is  impassable when rainy. 

Join overlanding communities to learn from their experiences.


Final Words

Plan ahead if you want to cover as many routes as possible. Plot the trails and start with the  one nearest you. If it's your first time, start small. Go for one weekend at a nearby course. 

Be prepared for the journey because overlanding lasts for days. List down and pack all of  the essential items for your trip. Make sure your vehicle is in the best condition, the roof  rack stable, and the engine ready for anything on and off the road.

Life is short. Go out there and visit the best overlanding routes and trails in the United  States. Bon, voyage!



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