Place item was collected
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
I was born in Lewiston Utah and spent most of my childhood in Cache Valley until I moved with my family to Monticello Utah before my junior year of high school. During my teenage years I worked several farm and landscaping jobs. After graduating high school, I served a two-year LDS mission in the Philippines and then attended a single semester of school at BYU-Idaho before marrying a Logan girl and moving to Logan to continue school at USU.
I first became aware of this custom when I was in high school on a prom date with a bunch of friends. The environment was pretty relaxed and we were just out having fun and swapping stories.
When I was a junior in high school I went on a Jeep trip with some friends in Moab on a decently rough trail. After a couple hours of riding through the desert and climbing over some fun obstacles we stopped at a remote location at a lookout point that had a bunch of junk piled up. My friend Andy, who was a highly experienced Jeeper, informed the rest of the people in our group that we had to stop to make an offering to the Jeep God. He then explained that for years on that trail people had stopped to give offerings of whatever they could to the Jeep God so that they could pass safely through the rest of the gnarly trail. Although I don’t remember exactly what it was, Andy was sure to leave a little trinket of his own and say a little chant under his breath before we got back into the Jeeps and continued.
While Andy told us about the need to make an offering to the Jeep God he seemed to enjoy our interest and the prospect of filling us in on the story of the location. Although he told the custom in a light tone with a smile on his face, it was apparent that his superstitious side prevented him from leaving the location without making an offer as he didn’t want to take any chances by not leaving something.
Intro to Folklore
Semester and year
G1: Groups/Social Customs
Tanner, Jon, "The Jeep God" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 25.