Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

STI nose, pre-mud.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Thirty minutes later, the snow was gone. Fifteen seconds later, the car was filthy.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Slightly sideways.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

More slightly sideways.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

General-brand snow tires plus small studs plus big-ass rally wheels equals damn decent traction in mud. Whodathunkit?

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

More miles, more mud.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

An STI returning from battle. (The pod sticking off the car is someone's GoPro Hero camera. Excellent camera, by the way.)

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

The name badges for the event consisted of fold-over stickers that resembled lift tickets.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Borrowed open-face rally helmet? Check. Borrowed car? Check. Borrowed bravery? Check. What could go wrong? (As a journalist in attendance said shortly after setting off a WRX's airbag and climbing onto a snowmobile, "I'm an automotive journalist. If I can't crash it, it doesn't exist.")

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

This is James Tate, formerly of Sport Compact Car and currently with Popular Mechanics. Do not taunt the Tate. Do not feed the Tate. He likes oversteer and long walks on the beach, and he would like you to move to the next picture. Move along.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

This jacket belongs to Carter Jung of Import Tuner. There were at least five separate moments during the event where I contemplated knocking him out and stealing it.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Subaru PR man and Alfa Romeo lover (why does that sound dirty?) Dominick Infante. He is scratching someone's back with a white flag. This, folks, is service.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Impromptu fix.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Utah is dirty.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

The world's daintiest tow hook.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

The cockpit of a WRX.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

An STI viewed over the nose of a mud-spattered WRX.

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

"Is that a journalist at the wheel? Shit! Run!"

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

What is it about rally wheels? Why do they look both indestructible and hopelessly fragile at the same time?

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Swapping tires on an Impreza. Yes, the car in the background has a blown side-curtain airbag. No, you don't want to know how it happened. (And no, it wasn't me.)

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

A mud-spattered STI and an open door? Who could say no to that?

Gallery: Subaru Ice Driving In Mud, UtahS

Hills, setting sun, end of day.