Thanksgiving 2016 weekend "W" storm
2017 proved to be a bit different this year. Over Thanksgiving weekend at Dumont, duners were still soaking up the sun wondering when it was going to feel like "dune season".
As of Monday, November 27th, mother nature finally woke up and did her clean sweep of the dunes and the cool temperatures arrived literally the day after Thanksgiving weekend. The big ruts were cleaned up and the cool temperatures came rushing in. Dune season weather has arrived.
If you look at the weather forecast, the December weather is coming in quick with highs dropping from 80+ degrees to mid-60's. Overnight lows will be toying with the idea of low 40's! December is usually a rather dormant month out at Dumont, so it's a great opportunity for some solitude, campfires, and empty dunes.
Dumont Weather Forecast
Hill Climbs and Drags Schedule
Friday, November 24th, 10am: Hill climbs at Comp Hill
Saturday the 26th, 10am: Drags on the back stretch of the dunes
Sorry, Club members only in competition but spectators are welcome at both events.
noun: a water cooled, V8 powered buggy, typically front engine design and with massive or multiple paddle tires
Back in the 60's and 70's, the only buggies you would see at the dunes were cars that were powered by air cooled engines, typically Volkswagens and Corvairs. When the Dune Masters formed in 1968, they were putting together V8 powered buggies originally built from cut-down car frames. Back then, water cooled engines were new to the scene. They soon took on the name, "waterpumpers".
The late Milt Clements completing at the Dune Masters’ 1970 Thanksgiving Hill Climbs at Dumont Dunes. Photo courtesy of Bill LeFever
As the waterpumper trend grew, the club would host gatherings and competitions in Pismo, Glamis and Dumont. These machines would be best known for their hill climbing capabilities. With their dual paddle setup and hand brakes that help the driver steer the buggy while it's front wheels are off the ground, they would be able to crawl up the steepest hills with their high torque V8 engines. The challenge of the hill climb competition is to be the last one to reach the top without stopping. It's a "snail race" or "slow drags" type of race...very difficult to do on a steep dune. When you see 3 or 4 of these buggies line up on the steep side of Comp Hill, it's quite a sight to see when they battle it out.
As the years passed and technology advanced. so did the buggies. Huge displacement engines were built as well as stronger rear ends and transmissions. One thing remained though, the styling of the waterpumper buggies and their dual paddle tire setup. These buggies have always been known for power and traction.
This buggy, owned by Jeff Cook, cranks out 736 horsepower from it's 434 cubic inch motor.
photo courtesy of Old School Dune Buggies and Sand Rails, Facebook
Last year's camp
Schedule of Events
There isn't one! This is Dumont. We don't look at our watches or have schedules. Sometimes we sleep in, sometimes we get up early to shred the dunes. It all depends on how much fun we had the night before. We usually hit the dunes runs whenever someone in camp yells, let's roll!
Buggy Weigh In
If Ben is able to bring his scales this year like he has in the past, you'll get a chance to weigh your car. Get a full digit readout of the weight at all four corners. Place bets and talk crap about how each others car needs to go on a diet!
Saturday night we'll be grilling up carne & pollo asada for everyone again this year. If you have something you'd like to bring as a side dish, you are more than welcome to, but it's not necessary. The tacos are on DDR so don't feel the need to kick in either.
Click GOING in the event link below if you are in.
As you come up the hill past the ranger station, stay on the road until you see bathroom 10. Camp will be just off the road on the side right. When you pull up to camp and aren't sure where to park, don't sweat it. It's first come, first served. There are no parking assignments. If you are new and don't know many people, just ask for Pete. Keep in mind the circle will have to stay fairly big to accommodate everyone and an outer circle may even be necessary, but we'll all be camping together so keep it tight.
Side x Sides and Bikes
We don't discriminate, however this is the BUGGY roundup. Everyone is welcome to come camp with the group, but we ask that all bikes and side x sides do their own dune runs or stay back behind the buggies. Big cars don't mix well with bikes and side x sides. It's for your own safety and we don't want them to take away from what this trip is about in the first place...a buggy gathering.
Last years trip report
Thanksgiving weekend is Nov 23-26, 2017. Be sure you have a season pass or weekly pass with holidays if you plan to be there anytime from Nov 21 thru Nov 27, 2017.
Dune Masters and Sand Pipers
The Dune Masters and Sandpipers Club will be hosting their 49th Annual hill climbs and drags over Thanksgiviong weekend. The club was founded back in 1968 and they have returned to Dumont every year since then with their V8 powered buggies, also known as the "waterpumpers". They make up a big part of the history of Dumont Dunes so be sure to check them out. They will be set up on the steep, left side of Comp Hill for the hill climbs on Friday and then on Saturday the drags will take place along the back stretch of sand highway, where you would drive out to the north pole.
Friday, November 24th, 10am Hill Climbs at Comp Hill
Saturday the 25th, 10am Drags on the back stretch
Sorry, Club members only in competition but spectators are welcome at both events.
Last Year's Trip reports & Pics
Planning to deep fry a turkey?
Temperatures were warm the whole weekend with highs around 90 degrees during the middle of the day. Everyone was searching for the ice cream trucks. Between the high amount of traffic and the lack of rain at Dumont, the dust level was much higher than normal. Without hardly any wind, there was a thick cloud that lingered each day, mostly noticed around sun-down.
This year a new tradition was introduced, the Trunk or Treat at the Rock Pile. As a join effort between the Friends of Dumont Dunes and the Basrtow BLM, their main focus was to create a safe and exciting trick-or-treat experience for the kids (and adults). Jason Ardenski, president of FoDD, awarded five commemorative plaques to those who went above and beyond with the best decorations, best candy, and best costumes.
The winner of the "Best Kids Costume" went to this little Frappuccino as voted by the crowd!
The winner of the "Best Decorated UTV" went to the builders/owners of the Land Speeder!
They also brought out the Hampster Kia UTV and the Flintstone- mobile!
Unfortunately not one single sandcar was decorated during the event so...the winner of the "Best Decorated Sandcar" went to this entire group! This group showed up with a 40' gooseneck trailer decorated to the max and passed out candy from about every 5 feet of it from different people!
The winner of the "Best Adult Costume" went to this alien guy as voted by the crowd!
The couple that was chosen for the winner of the "Best Candy" at the Truck or Treat disappeared before they could even announce them as the winner!
The overall turnout and reaction from the 1st Annual Trunk or Treat was awesome! Over 4800 people participated in the event and everyone loved it. There was only one or two negative comments, which is to be expected at a 1st annual event. The complaints were about parking and also it taking away from the general tradition of camp to camp trick or treating. Many duners managed to do both though. After the Truck or Treat was over, families still had a chance to go camp hopping. New traditions after many years of everyone doing the same thing can be difficult to achieve, but these guys seemed to pull it off great and it seems like it will be an annual thing from now on at Dumont on Halloween weekend.
Speaking of Halloween traditions and costumes...the Romo Motorsports crew put together another great group costume idea this year. You might remember them dressed as the dinosaurs last year. This time their entire camp was a group of lit up Dumont stick men.
Halloween is probably the most festive weekend at Dumont and also one of the biggest parties at Comp Hill. Many agreed they had never seen so many people over there. The place was packed with rows and rows LED-lit vehicles and people partying it up!
photo by Stephanie Bown Hill
With all this much excitement, accidents are unfortunately bound to happen. There were only 2 medivac calls and 16 incidents the whole weekend. Most duners were being very careful this year and there were zero fatalities. This sandcar had an accident at the top of Comp Hill and rolled 11+ times down the hill. Luckily both the driver and passenger were ok.
photo by Davis Karey
More photos and video here-> http://www.dumontduneriders.com/invision/topic/21360-sandcar-accident-on-comp-hill/
Dirtbikes seem to really be taking off these days at Dumont, figuratively and literally. The two wheeler trend is strong and they were seen wherever there was a good jump. Riders nowadays seem to be getting better and better as well as more responsible. Every group that was jumping had several spotters to play it safe.
Although the crowds were big, Vendor Row was much smaller this year. Despite the economy doing well, vendors are suffering at Dumont. Strict permit requirements and the lack of business at the dunes has forced many vendors to hang it up for good. Hopefully something changes because vendors make our lives much easier on the big weekends, not to mention more fun.
^ photo by Bill Bâby
In addition to the partying, trick-or-treating, fireworks, costumes, and more, Halloween Weekend still revolves around the main reason we go to Dumont, DUNING! The dunes were fairly smooth up until late Friday. After that they became extremely tracked out and busy. The North Pole was a popular destination and hangout as usual during the day.
photo by Steph Kemple
photo by Krystal N Anthony
Not only was there tons of action in the sand but up above these guys were having a blast as well. Pilots, Bill Bâby and Ryan Thomas, managed to get a bird's eye view of the dunes. They had the best seats in the house from up there as they buzzed the dunes and camp area! The early and late parts of the season offer warm enough weather for these guys to fly here.
photos by Bill Bâby
It was quite a fun and exciting weekend at the dunes.
Next up is Thanksgiving Weekend so get ready!
Join the Halloween Weekend discussion and post your pics & trip reports
DDR Community Submitted Halloween Weekend Photo album
#dumontduneriders via IG and Facebook
Are you going to have what it takes to walk away with one of these commemorative plaques???
Come out and join us Saturday night and make this event one for the record books!
I want to see the entire rock pile surrounded, several rows deep, with all of YOUR rides lit up and hopefully dressed to impress! Remember with The Friends of Dumont Dunes it's all about building the community with safety and education! Help us to make this event a success by participating so we can continue to host additional events all season long!
Don't forget to bring plenty of candy to pass out to all of the kids who will be trick or treating during this event!
When: Oct 28, Saturday, 6-8PM
Where: At the "rock pile" (between the visitor center and restroom 4)
Don't be shy! Get your costumes on, your OHVs decorated for display and don't forget to bring your own candy to pass out to the kiddos enjoying this event! You may end up winning one of the 5 different awards!
Please help Friends of Dumont Dunes spread the word. Hope to see you all and make this a great turnout Saturday night of Halloween Weekend!
Although Halloween is on Oct 31st (Tuesday), trick or treating has always been a Saturday night tradition at Dumont. So be prepared with a bucket of candy to hand out to the little duners and get into the Halloween spirit with your costumes and decorations. It's probably one of the most festive weekends of the season. Last year was one of the biggest turnouts in years. With all the extra excitement it's easy to get carried away out there so don't forget about the 15mph camp speed limit and general rules of Dumont. Look out for each other, keep your head on a swivel, and practice safe duning! We want everyone to have a fun weekend out there without anyone getting hurt.
Season and Weekly Halloween passes
If you plan on visiting Dumont any time between Oct 24-Oct 30th, you will need a holiday pass.
1. You can purchase a season pass with holidays ($120) or a weekly holiday pass ($40) good for the Halloween weekend dates from a participating off-site vendor. See a full list of vendors on our passes page.
2. -or- Purchase a weekly pass from the self-serve machine at the entrance
Join the Halloween Discussion
Don't Miss the 1st Annual Trunk or Treat!
Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year and as per tradition, Halloween weekend will be the last weekend in October (28-29th).
Don't Wait Until the Last Minute!
Those to-do lists always start to creep up on us and nobody likes working out in the heat, but if you start little by little and practice some preventive maintenance, the lists don't bombard you a couple weeks before the first big trip. Although it this is a post from last year, it is a good reminder of the things we should keep in mind as the sand season arrives.
Looking for others to go duning with?
Post on our Dumont Happenings forum and you might just get some takers.
Get the full, up-to-date weather report
photos courtesy of @agphd via Instagram
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