Heartland Off-Road Association

Jeep Cartoon Logo

Next Event

No events at this time.

Future Events


Southwest Four Wheel Drive Association

United Four Wheel Drive Association

Kansas Krunch

You've found it! Here you can download the Registration form for the 2005 Kansas Krunch. Just click on the button below. If you have never had the chance to visit this event please take a few minutes to read the article from the Southwest Four Wheel Drive Assn. in 2004.

This years Kansas Krunch is June 3rd, 4th, and 5th. To register for this event, please click the link below to download the form, fill it in, and mail it into:

Heartland Off-Road Association
PO Box 2056,
Garden City, KS 6846

Cathouse Recreation Area

Map to Shields, KS

From Shields you take Hwy 4 east 5 miles to Pawnee road, then turn left and head north for 3 miles, the recreation area will be on the left side of the road. This area is around 1,500 acres of canyons in the Smokey Hill river area.

Kansas Krunch Registration Form

Kansas Krunch Release Acknowledgement Form


Thursday Night through Friday
Friday Night
Free Chili Feed
Saturday Night
Meal and Auction
Saturday Night after Auction
Night Run
Pack up and go home

Amenities at Cathouse are gasoline, general store, showers, lake, restrooms, all 4 Wheel vehicles welcome.

Kansas Krunch! Shields, Kansas
SWFWDA Spring Quarterly Meeting

Toto...You Can Wheel in Kansas

Article By: Joe Johnson, Vice President, SWFWDA; President, FWD-FWD

When the Heartland Off Road Association volunteered to host the Southwest Four Wheel Drive spring quarterly meeting, I had some doubts. As a new officer, I knew that I would be attending the event but as most of you probably feel, I thought, "What in the heck are we going to wheel on in Kansas, a cornfield?" But, I steeled myself and made the plans to attend the event and quarterly meeting and decided that no matter what we were presented with, I would have a good time. Well, let me just say that not only is there some really fun and challenging wheeling available, but the Heartland Off Road guys and gals sure put on a heck of an event. One that I will definitely be attending again!

The trip started out a little rough since first of all, I decided not to take my own jeep. Something about worn out control arm bushings and control arm mounts that had been bent, torn, welded and wallowed out so many time that they were just waiting for the right moment to rip themselves from the frame of my jeep. That and the fact that a little four-letter word called "WORK" kept me from having time to fix the issues. So my friend Les who was going up with me quickly finished up the PSC steering upgrade on his YJ and volunteered his jeep for us to drag to Kansas. The lack of time also kept us from being able to properly fix the wiring on Les' trailer, which is stored in my back yard, with a dog that has a special affinity to trailer wires. So after some quick rigging and a set of magnetic tow lights, we were finally on our way Thursday night around 10:30 to drive all night to the middle of nowhere. Actually, I am told that we were not in the middle of nowhere, but I am sure you can see it from there.

After about an 11hour drive through rain most of the way, we arrived at the Cathouse Recreation Area and much to our surprise were greeted by some great looking hills and washouts that have been carved in the otherwise pancake flat surroundings. Well, that and a temperature just above freezing and wind from the north at about a thousand miles an hour. It didn't take us long to change from the shorts we were wearing when we left Fort Worth into something a little warmer...every article of clothing that I brought with me!

Even though it was cold and windy and Les' jeep has no doors or top or windshield, we headed on out to the trails. We kind of made our own way around since we arrived a little late, but finally hooked up with Mike McClure, Cecil Derrick, and Buddy from Heartland and followed them around awhile until we came across the saddest of scenes - a Jeep TJ with the steering components all kind of lying on the ground. It belonged to Shawn Pagan, who had driven even farther than us to attend the event (all the way from Houston). After some failed attempts at welding it back together on the trail with a portable welder then an on board welder, we witnessed the first of many very generous acts by the hosts of the event. Mike McClure and a couple of others took the pieces of Shawn's tie rod and draglink, drove to Mike's shop over 60 miles away and welded it back together. So well in fact that Shawn wheeled the rest of the weekend.

After we stopped for lunch, Les and I were just too cold and tired to continue on for the afternoon so we headed back to the closest town to find someplace to stay the night. We had intended on camping, but decided to find a bit warmer place to sleep. We found that although Dighton, Kansas does not have a motel, they do have a Hotel. We got a room, unloaded our stuff and promptly fell asleep around 3:30 that afternoon. Needless to say, we did not venture back to the event site that evening, but I understand that Buddy cooked chili for everyone and a big time was had at the marina despite the cold temperatures.

Saturday began a lot better than Friday. The SWFWDA quarterly meeting was held with a large group in attendance. We made a quorum and did some actual business. Also, the weather was looking up as it was sunny and the weatherman promised highs in the mid 70s. The hosts had planned two competitions for the morning, one for vehicles with tires 35 inches and under and one with 36 inches and over. Both courses were challenging and I believe that the winner of the 35 and under class did their course in around 75 seconds. The big boy course was up one washout, down another and back up a third that had just been climbed for the first time the week before. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 14 vehicles entered the competition and all put on a great show. For some reason foolishness took over and I volunteered to ride with one of the FWD-FWD members, Donnie Hargrove, who had by far the smallest vehicle in the class with 36 inch swampers and a 4-cylinder YJ. It was better than any ride at Six Flags, I'll tell you that. We bounced and lurched and tilted so many times that I was bouncing around like a pinball. At one point, we bounced the wrong way and Donnie was forced to back up, costing up about 20 seconds by our estimation. And seeing Donnie finishe 3rd only 13 seconds or so behind Mike McClure, we will point to that as the one moment that cost us 2nd place. Buddy in the "No Pissy Attitudes" jeep won first place and put on quite a show.

After the competitions were over all the vehicles around crowded into one canyon for a group photo, everyone went their own ways to explore the area. Since it was warming up, I broke out my 4-wheeler that I had loaded in my truck and followed Les, Donnie and Patty, and John Nagy and his wife and son around to be the photographer. We wheeled several washouts and hills, got many a tire several feet into the air and just had a blast. During a break back at camp, we saw Shawn Pagan towing James Clark's CJ5 back to camp. Apparently something had gone wrong with the starter in James' jeep and burned up all the wiring back to the battery. I hear that a fire extinguisher was involved...but I didn't ask any more questions.

Shawn led us all back out to another area that we had not explored and Kenny and Tabitha from Lone Star Jeep Club joined us for the afternoon. The twisty washout proved to be a formidable foe for the steering components of Kenny and Tabitha's Cherokee as the draglink decided it had taken enough abuse. It took three winches, a lot of sweat and muscle and about an hour to get the Cherokee up to flat ground so that we could bring the trailer back to retrieve it. That was pretty much the end of the day of wheeling although I tooled around on my 4-wheeler for a little while longer.

Dinner and the raffle followed and a bunch of good prizes were given away. I won a recovery strap (you can never have too many of them) and Les won a winch accessory kit so we felt like we did all right with the $40.00 in raffle tickets we bought. They also handed out the cash prizes for the competitions earlier in the day. Mike McClure donated his second place prize winnings to the person who had driven the farthest to get to the event which happened to be Shawn Pagan. Shawn graciously donated the money to the SWFWDA Land Action Fund, though he later joked that had he known how much it was, he might have kept it!

Following the raffle, another timed competition was taking place with the possibility to win a brand new winch for a $20 buy in that was being donated to the SWFWDA Land Action Fund. I know that they had quite a few people pony up for their shot at glory and a new winch, but we were tired and had a long drive ahead of us on Sunday so we took off back to the hotel for a good night's rest.

My hat is off to Mike McClure and the rest of the Heartland Off Road members for hosting such a great event and for being such fantastic hosts. They went out of their way numerous times to make sure that everyone was having a good time and put on a great event. And guess what...there is stuff to wheel in Kansas. I will be back!!!

— Joe Johnson, Vice President, SWFWDA; President, FWD-FWD

Also see article published in 4WDrive Lines May 2000-July 2000 also about Kansas Krunch