Got Sand?

Each year a bunch of friends get together for “guys weekend” at the dunes! This particular year we chose to rally at Winchester Bay for fellowship and good times. The weather turned out great and the dunes were calling our name. For those who have ventured to the Florence area and south, you know the Oregon dunes provide a great variety of trails and challenges for rider levels. We decided to go to Winchester for its huge “razor backs” and variety of hill climbs. The guys like to ride both bikes with paddle tires and modified ATV’s. Since we are all a group of “weekend warriors” we showed up with everything minus the kitchen sink.

Setting up Camp

Our good friend Jeff had been activated to serve active duty in the Army so it was nice to have him home on leave with us for some “quality time” to hang out with the gang! (Thanks Karen & family) That afternoon we suited up for a ride to see how the dunes would treat our aging muscles and bones.

After riding the dunes for many years weve learned it’s always good to service and check your equipment before heading out. Wearing the appropriate safety gear will also help shield the weather and protect if an accident should occur. The “mistake” we always love is…. forgetting to top off the fuel tank and turn the fuel valve on! When riding at the dunes we find it critical to have a tall pole with a bright orange flag for visual reference and to avoid collision. Permits and helmets are required by law for good reason to help keep the dunes safe and offer nice facilities. Once we head out we usually go slow and stop on high dunes to observe the conditions while identifying where other riders are located. On this day we all gathered at the top of a large drop into the trees where a couple of the guys wanted to show us “tree shots” or steep climbs out of the trees where there are no trails. Might want to consider a “recovery vehicle” with a winch for these situations???

"Tree Shots" - should we?

Ok, so Jeff & Tony with their performance quads go for it! Jeff stops to take a close look before dropping in.

Evaluating the Drop

Recovery Please.....

Once the guys make their way down the hill to a small turnaround out of site in the trees, were all thinking… “will they get out”? Right then we hear….. “Braaap” as they accelerate up the slope and “dig in” while spinning sand and loosing traction… guess what?

Tony in this case thinking, “maybe I should back up and try again”?

Recover Please.....

Thank goodness a Jeep had just arrived to see what was going on. We asked the guy if we could use his winch and get the guys out. He placed the Jeep and extended about 500 feet of cable down the hill to their recovery! After that whole ordeal we saddled up and rode off to another promising challenge.

Muster on the Hilltop

Ok, now here’s where the story gets interesting…. as we all ride down through the bowls headed towards the ocean where flooded areas exist with hidden sink holes, the “hot rod” quads are racing off to another hill climb! Once we gathered for another challenge, we noticed Jason who had the utility 4X4 quad with paddles ended up missing. Jeff and I turned back to see if we could sweep the lower areas and find him. As Jeff raced around a corner out of sight, he found Jason with his quad sunk half way up the motor.

What the heck? Jason explained he rode lower around a knoll to find a water route he thought looked like fun till the quad sank and spooked him realizing he was in the middle of “quicksand”. Jason was able to get off the quad carefully and get to shore. By now the rest of the gang started to arrive realizing what was going on and asked, “how are we going to get the quad out”??? You guessed it, we sent a couple guys off to find the Jeep with the winch to try and pull the quad out. A few minutes go by and thank the Lord, here comes the Jeep with another Jeep to save the day!

Winching Out

Jeep Saves The Day

Jeep Saves The Day

Alright… now that we have spent half the day getting out of situations, it’s time to ride and have some fun so off to the dunes for some jumps where we attempt a little “air”.

Troy up & Away....

Once back at camp the guys all settled in for a warm campfire and little game of friendly poker.

Anybody bring any Food???

Anybody bring some Food???

$20 your In....

$20 your In....

Once the party started, we realized we hadn’t eaten all day so…. deep fried turkey to the rescue!!!

Get it while it's Hot!

Get it while it's Hot!

Where did it Go?

Where did it Go?

Good times, great friends and very thankful we all love to “Pursue The Outdoors”!

About the Author

Troy Neimann

Troy Neimann

Troy Neimann lives in Central Oregon with his wife of 19 years and their three children. You can find Troy with his family, friends and partners out most weekends enjoying the Lord's creation "Pursuing The Outdoors".