Plenty of women off road vehicles, and plenty more are into owning Broncos. Even so, the recreational driving space has a reputation for being a male-dominated hobby. But at Bronco Nation, we believe the more people who off-road their SUVs, the better: For one, it challenges the manufacturer to stay true to producing powerful and capable vehicles.
We’re happy that Ford feels the same way about the 6th generation beast they created. Since Bronco was brought back, Ford has focused on helping people understand their vehicles and learn how to use them off road through Bronco Off-Roadeo.
And recently, they organized the first women-only day at the Texas location to put full priority on the female side of the sport –– and what an awesome event it was.
Ladies’ Day at Texas
London and I, along with about 40 others –– owners, ambassadors, Ford employees, and trail guides, gathered in Texas last week. The structure of the Off-Roadeo event was similar to the typical experience many of you have experienced already, with a few extras.
We kicked things off on Wednesday night for a happy hour at Horseshoe Bay Resort. There, we started to get to know each other and hear about our experiences with Bronco thus far. If you want to know what happiness sounds like, it’s 40+ ladies in the Whitewater 360 Sports Club talking about Bronco!
It was great to put faces to names and meet women in the community we’ve only engaged with online, adding them to our group of friends. Kelsey Gerken, Shelby Max, Alison Davis, and Jolanta Coffey joined us from the Bronco program, and we caught up with Shelby Hall, who trail guided along with Off-Roadeo experts Amy, Jess, and Mandy. If we ended the event after just that first night, I would have felt it was worth it, simply based off of how awesome it was to meet so many in this crowd.
The next morning, we started out with breakfast, then split off. Two of the four groups met with Amy and Mandy to talk about off-roading and Bronco basics, and Jess and Shelby’s groups heard from the Ford team. Then, we swapped.
One thing I’ve liked about the Bronco launch is how accessible the Bronco brand team is at events. I know communication has been a point of contention for the community, but at Ford-attended events, you can always catch the ear of someone who will listen and does care. Notes were taken, and feedback received.
Next, all four groups headed off to the ORX course, where some ladies got their first bit of seat time in a Bronco, and others got to show off their knowledge they’ve picked up on their own in their Broncos. We spent about 90 minutes going through Trail Turn Assist and other features in the trail toolbox, G.O.A.T. Modes, and skills like picking a line and driving positions.
Despite the 100+ temps, the women were having a great time and the smiles didn’t leave faces. Lots of questions were asked, and plenty of jokes were cracked!
After lunch, it was time to pick a Bronco. Having gotten to attend several Off-Roadeos, this is one of my favorite moments: Everyone is always polite and considerate of each other’s desires, but there is a definite quick clip toward the vehicles as people grab a trim and color close to their own, or one they want to try out. I love watching that excitement.
I hopped in with BN member Aly Dubois, who, like me, has been to Texas OR a couple of times. She’s a dealer and the admin of @MidMichiganBroncos, and since her first experience with Bronco, she has been sold on the vehicle and lifestyle. She’s already got in some good time off road, and it showed: She led our group and did an excellent job showing some of the newer-to-off-roading ladies how it’s done, executing each obstacle with precision.
We spent about four hours out on the trails, and even that was not near long enough. The whole time, you heard people commenting how they couldn’t wait to get their Bronco to try this at home or to get home simply to go off-roading. The trail guides were amazing, like always –– explaining, educating, and encouraging. The amount of energy they put into making sure Off-Roadeo participants have an excellent time is truly unbelievable.
Dinner was after our trail time, and awards were handed out for the efforts made throughout the day. Based on conversations, there wasn’t a single person who didn’t have fun and come away more confident in their own abilities and the capability of the Bronco. And one exciting thing talked about? There will be more of these ladies’ days to come!