[Event Report] Mid-Atlantic Overland Festival, August 13th-16th, Central PA

Last week I have the privilege of attending the 2015 Mid-Atlantic Overland Festival as a presenter.  This is the second year for the event and is put on by Main Line Overland which is an offroad shop based in West Chester, PA.  Aside from the perfect weather the event was an all-around good time.

Shameless poser shot.


I first heard of the MAOF last year right around the time of the event.  Sadly I had plans, as usual, to do my annual “August Birthday Ride” at Rausch Creek and couldn’t attend.  I promised myself that come hell or high water I’d attend the next on.


Like all of my adventures, my weekend started off at Sheetz.  I gassed up the LJ and threw a few extra gallons in one of the spare tanks (you know, “just in case”).  From here it was only an hour and a half up over the mountain to the farm hosting the MAOF.

Every good overlanding trip starts with a full gas tank, a full cooler, and a full belly.

Day two was the start of the official workshops.  Unlike other events I’ve been to where the presenters are all focused on themselves, the MAOF workshops were small groups and casually run.  There was lots of time to ask questions and get them answered.

Workshops were casual small groups with lots of Q&A time.

Although a ‘field show’ the MAOF was well attended with long rows of campers linking up to form some pretty elaborate campsites.

The MAOF campsites… aka “overlander’s shanty town”

It wasn’t all grass fields though.  On Day #3 I connected with some members of the Mid-Atlantic Overland Society and tagged along on their short-trip through the local state forest.  Being unfamiliar with the territory I just dropped in at the tail of the line and ran sweeper.

About to hit some trails with some Mid-Atlantic Overland Society members 
Not used to being a sweeper.  Forgot how dusty it gets at the tail.

Stopped at a scenic overlook.

It’s rare to go a week in central PA during the summer without a thunderstorm.  Maybe Mother Nature just wanted to give me an early birthday present, or maybe we were just lucky.  Either way the temps hovered around the high 80’s during the day and the low 60’s over night.  Couldn’t have asked for better weather.

Did I mention the weather was perfect?  Look at that sky.

Within the overlanding community there are certain personalities that emerge and express themselves in unique ways.  I think shining a 50″ Rigid Industries LED light-bar into the sky signaling that funnel cakes are ready is a pretty unique form of expression.

Highlight of the weekend: Tailgate funnel cakes!

After four days in the mountains it was tough to head home.  I’m upset I missed the event last year, pleased I was able to attend this year, and excited to attend next year.  I’m not sure I’d want to spend every weekend out camping in a field, but from time to time it’s not a bad way to meet new people, brush up on skills through a few workshops, and check out everyone else’s toys.

My humble campsite for the weekend.

Hope you enjoyed the photos.  If you were at this years Mid-Atlantic Overland Festival please post up a link to your photos and any stories you have about your trip.  I’m just as anxious to read other people’s stories as I am to write about my own.

0 thoughts on “[Event Report] Mid-Atlantic Overland Festival, August 13th-16th, Central PA

  1. It was a good time. Put it down for next year. Great way to meet local overlanders.

    As for what's going on for me, I might go exploring at AOAA sometime soon and I also want to explore some of Tuscarora State Forest. Could always try and connect some weekend and you can tag along. Just day-trips for me but next year I'll probably do some more weekend trips.

  2. Never actually been in tuscarora but I'm in Lewistown about every other weekend. My local grounds is bald eagle, nothing really hard but fun to get out and quite a few trails