Newbie’s Guide to Axialfest


Newbie’s Guide to Axialfest

Your Epic Adventure Starts Here

Axial Racing has always been more than just a radio control car brand. From its inception, Axial was meant to be a way of life. Beyond the most capable and easy-to-use models made for off-road adventures, Axial is about the people behind the wheel. People who are interested in hanging out with others that share similar passions. People who have a real passion for the outdoors, seeking new places to go, their clothes, the foods they eat, and the real cars they drive. Axial is the one brand that has brought masses of people together to enjoy the RC way of life. To celebrate it all, Axial Racing created an event, Axialfest, and it’s known as one of the most epic hobby events you could ever attend.


Axialfest is truly an experience you’ll never forget. The event is loaded with things to do, amazing people to meet, and at locations that will lead to incredible memories. When Axialfest started, it was initially held in Cisco Grove, California, then moved to Donner Ski Ranch in California. An additional event was added, which enthusiasts have been begging for; that event is Axialfest Badlands in Attica, Indiana. At either event, the long weekend is packed with things to do. The first being numerous Adventurist trails to tackle with your Axial Rigs. Axial staff members flood the hills of these locations’ weeks in advance to scout, mark, and set up the most fun and challenging trails you’ll ever drive on. Attendees can drive these trails at any time. Just grab your rig, maybe some friends, and go! In fact, some drivers hit the same trails several times a day. Some hop from course to course to see new sights that typically relate to the Axialfest theme of the year, which can be creative, so be prepared to have fun.

Other events to attend at Axialfest include the Altra Ultra 5K, where drivers and their rigs compete in a race against the clock over a grueling off-road course, typically with rock racer machines, but all types of trucks have hit the trail. There is also the concours event where builders show off their fantastic build creations on Axial model platforms; there are all types of classes for these builds too. If you prefer the competitive route, there is a rock racing event and a UTAC team challenge held by the one and only RC event wizard, Brian Parker. Then there’s the parade and dinner, which are always attendee favorites. New in 2021, awards ceremonies will be held at the end of each special event day, along with giveaways.


With some basic knowledge of what happens at Axialfest events, it’s time to move on to our guide to help you have the most fun when you attend. The first tip to prep for an event is to follow the Axial Racing Social Media pages. The Axial staff often posts updates about the events, from how to sign up to helpful messages. The crew also hosts live streams where they talk about the progress of the events and other details you may need to know. Once you’re following Axial, be on the lookout for registration updates so you can sign up for whichever event you’re interested in attending.


Getting your rigs prepared is a given, and we’ll talk about that in a bit, but first up, you’re going to want to plan your stay since Axialfest is a multiple-day event. In a “normal world,” you would be able to register for lodging accommodations for each event. If you’re reading this during the ongoing pandemic, those accommodations may be altered, which is why it’s vital to follow Axial’s updates on social media. In a perfect world, there are camping options from parking in the campsites with campers to primitive camping spots with on-site facilities for showers and such. Depending on the situation, you may need to find lodging off-site and travel to the event each day. Don’t be worried if this is the route you take. Many attendees lodge off-site and still find it easy to attend each day’s activities.

If you’re camping, make sure to have all the essentials on hand. If you’re in an RV, obviously you have shelter, but a canopy and tables are great for outside pitting and lounging as well. If you plan on roughing it, make sure you have a tent, table, lighting, a clock, supplies for showering, and even sunscreen and a hat for when you’re out in the elements all day, every day.

Beyond lodging, you’ll also need to think about food and hydration. Some food vendors are brought in, but if you’re the self-sufficient type, you’ll want to plan your meals and have plenty of water on hand for those long trail drives.

You must be prepared for all situations, from intense heat to possible cool evenings. Have proper footwear, jackets, sweatshirts, pants, hats, glasses, and even gloves.


With the essentials in place, it’s time to think about the fun stuff: preparing your rigs. Remember, Axialfest is a celebration of Axial models, so only Axial-based rigs will be allowed at the event. You’ll have to pass a tech inspection with your rig when you attend. Beyond making sure your equipment is Axial based, you’ll want to make sure your gear is in top running order. There will be vendors on-site if you need some last-minute parts, but it’s always best to show up prepared. Make sure your drivetrain is smooth, your tires are correctly mounted, screws are tight, electronics are in perfect running order, new radio batteries, plenty of packs to run, and spares on hand. You’ll also want to make sure your rigs are waterproof as the crew sometimes incorporates water features into the trails and challenges.


You’re registered, you have your accommodations set, and your rigs are prepared. Now, what happens when you get to Axialfest? Upon your arrival, you’ll instantly see several signs for the event and registration. The registration signs will lead you to an area where you’ll check-in. There you’ll get your badge or wristband to let everyone know you’re a participant. You’ll also get an information packet, and you’ll be asked to go to tech to have your rigs checked. Make sure you grab your swag bag; there’s always a bunch of cool goodies in there. From the registration desk, you can go to the campground office if applicable and check-in for your camping spot.


Once you’re settled in, you’re free to explore! Look for signs placed throughout the campsite that indicate where the Adventurist trails are and head off to challenge your rigs and driving skills on these epic trail runs. There are no limits to the trails; go on as many as you want, as many times as you want. If you’re interested in one of the more specialized events, keep an eye on the day and times those events run. Typically, they are a show up and run type of event—no pre-registration is necessary. However, you may be asked at registration if you plan on running any special events so the crew can better prepare for the crowds and make sure you have the best experience.

Although the special events take place at scheduled times, hitting the trail courses has no set time. It’s open twenty-four hours a day, and yes, drivers will drive at any hour of the night, so make sure you and your rig are equipped with lights for night adventures.


Axialfest is non-stop action and adventure. It’s a place to meet new people, see fresh and creative builds, and enjoy your rig. Before you know it, Axialfest will come to an end and the only question on your mind will be when can you sign up for the next event.

Before the pandemic postponed the events in 2020, Axialfest was on track to be one of the largest growing events in RC, only capped by the capacity of the event grounds. However, Axial is aware of the demand and is always looking for new ways to make Axialfest bigger and better. Axialfest is simply a place where everyone shares the same interests, a community event that you will tell stories about and never forget.

This quick guide gives you all the basics you need to have the best time there. Your mission is set. Start preparing for your Axialfest adventure today!

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