If you’re not already intricately familiar with the area, you would never expect there to be a set of tall, mini Sahara-like sand dunes just 1.5 hours east of Reno. But that’s exactly what you’ll find, along with people who like to drive fast on them in various motorized vehicles. Being into dirt bikes is what attracted me to the dunes, as I heard they were really fun to ride. My friends Keith and Dees, (Dees is his last name,) decided to buy paddle tires and go for it.
We arrived early Saturday morning and rode all day. (Be careful about the speed bumps on the entry road. They feel much more vicious than they appear and could damage your car/trailer if you don’t roll over them slowly.) There was definitely a learning curve in transitioning from the dirt, and we were a little intimidated to pin it up the dunes when we started. However, we adapted quickly and it became more fun as our comfort level increased. In addition to the constant high speeds, the freedom in choosing your lines on the wide-open sand is really unique. When you get a patch of sand that nobody has ridden through, it’s super smooth and reminds me of riding powder. If you’re less concerned about injury than I am, there are some big natural hits you could send.
We camped overnight, and I personally think few things can rival a campfire surrounded by your friends. Other people were shooting off fireworks and it made for a perfect show. The next day we rode until the sun started to set, and then came the sad part: We had to pack up and return to the real world. The video at the top of the page documented our first adventure, but it won’t be the last…
Being curious about the dunes, I did some thorough research on Wikipedia and learned the following dune facts:
-They are 2 miles long
-The sand originated from ancient Lake Lahontan, which dried up about 9000 years ago.
– (For comparison: The dunes are a much smaller area than Pismo Beach in Southern California, but I believe they are taller.)
If you want to explore it, you can find more details HERE. If you have any other questions, feel free to leave me a comment!