North Carolina based cowboy/rockcrawler, Matt Deas on Episode 198.


Cowboy Matt Deas, one of the OG rockcrawlers hails from North Carolina where he raises kids and horses. Matt shares with us some great stories about rockcrawling in the early days.. Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app.


5:16 – Man, I love my childhood going to school and stuff, there were 89 of us in my graduating

10:43 – Once I got healed, I started ordering parts and got me a trail rig

17:11 – from 02-03 the sport evolved more, more participants and stuff

22:07 – Jellico was always my favorite because that’s where it all started for me

29:44 – Probably the WE Rock in ’07 we ended up third, but I remember the level of competition was huge

38:56 – I want to say it was ’10 a lot of people were coming back, they caught their breath and was like, hey, we survived the storm

47:01 – I’m going to treat myself for a while, I’m going to treat myself for a while, I made it three weeks

57:44 – We ought to put a show on, get some sponsorship and really pump it up – you woulda been proud of me.

Special thanks to 4low Magazine and Maxxis Tires for support and sponsorship of this podcast.


[00:01:39.610] – Big Rich Klein

On today’s episode of Conversations, I get to interview Matt Deas, from Rock Crawler to Family Man to North Carolina Cowboy. Matt Deas, how are you doing today?

[00:01:51.380] – Matt Deas

I’m doing good, Rich. How are you doing?

[00:01:53.160] – Big Rich Klein

Doing excellent. Glad to get you on here.

[00:01:56.180] – Matt Deas

I’m glad you got… Glad to be on here. Yeah.

[00:01:59.250] – Big Rich Klein

Thanks for having It’s going to be fun. Remind us about those old days because you’re one of the O’G’s, you know?

[00:02:04.590] – Matt Deas


[00:02:05.140] – Big Rich Klein

Even though you’re in your 40s now?

[00:02:09.350] – Matt Deas

42, yeah. Be similar. I turned 42.

[00:02:11.750] – Big Rich Klein

You’re still a kid. You know, that’s when I started doing the Cal Rock events.

[00:02:16.810] – Matt Deas

Is that right? You’re 42, huh?

[00:02:17.900] – Big Rich Klein

I was 42. Yeah.

[00:02:19.300] – Matt Deas


[00:02:20.930] – Big Rich Klein

It’s amazing.

[00:02:22.150] – Matt Deas

It’s crazy how fast time goes. That’s for sure.

[00:02:24.740] – Big Rich Klein

Absolutely. So let’s find out more about you. And where were you born How did you get raised?

[00:02:31.280] – Matt Deas

I was born, actually, in Bradenton, Florida. We moved to Western North Carolina. I think I just turned two years old. So been here, I tell everybody I’m from here. I’ve been here 40 years anyway, or a little over 40. I don’t even really remember. Besides going back and seeing family in Florida and stuff, I don’t even really remember anything about it. Just this is home to me.

[00:02:55.480] – Big Rich Klein

Right. And what created the move? Did your parents move because of work or family? Yeah.

[00:03:02.790] – Matt Deas

Or was it- Work and family. I’ve got an older brother. Even back then, like crime and drugs and all that. In that part of Florida, we’re starting to escalate and stuff. My mom and dad, they just elected. They didn’t want to raise two kids in that environment or whatever. They moved here. Let’s see, it’d be my dad’s parents. They had a summer home up here. We come here on vacation a lot, and it’s always just been a small, quiet town or whatever. Anyhow, that’s what brought us here in North Carolina.

[00:03:40.960] – Big Rich Klein

How many people are in the town you’re at now?

[00:03:44.480] – Matt Deas

Man, so now it’s a pretty big town. As far as overpopulated, it turned into one of the most visited. Brightson City is actually one of the most visited destinations in the world right now. Tourism just absolutely took this place over. Numbers-wise, now, I have no idea. I mean, really back in the ’80s and even early ’90s and stuff, there was really not a lot of jobs. It was a poor area. And there’s so many multimillionaires that’s moved in here, especially after COVID. When COVID hit, everybody wanted out the cities and they wanted to move here or towns like this. And, man, it’s just it’s crazy the amount of people just to get through our little town. The town hasn’t really changed the infrastructure of it. You can imagine it’s like a… It’s a Zoom, just trying to get through to the bank or the grocery store. It’s not the little quiet town I grew up in, that’s for sure.

[00:04:46.750] – Big Rich Klein

So is it artsy now? Is that what it is that’s attracting the business?

[00:04:51.220] – Matt Deas

Outdoor. So people that are big into fishing, like fly fishing or whatever, we have some of the best fly fishing there he is. Trout fishing. Mountain biking is huge. Whitewater rafting. Of course, we have the casino now. It’s just, yeah, a lot of it’s outdoorsy type stuff. Okay.

[00:05:13.610] – Big Rich Klein

So what was it like going to school there?

[00:05:16.980] – Matt Deas

Man, I love my childhood going to school and stuff. I don’t know, man. It was never really any issues growing up. I think I graduated. There was, I think there was 89 of us. Everybody knew everybody. To an extent, it’s that way now. You go to a restaurant or something like that, you look around, you’re like, Wow, I don’t know really anybody in here. 15, 20 years ago, you knew everybody in the restaurant. But no, my childhood was great, man. School was great. What I’d give to go back.

Follow Big Rich

SHare this article

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. By browsing this website, you agree to our use of cookies.