2014 Wasatch Cruisers Dunes Run

I was fortunate enough to tag along with the Wasatch Cruisers for their annual Little Sahara Dunes run today. The Wasatch Cruisers always put on a top notch event, and this was no exception. A group of us met up at the Highland/Alpine offramp on I-15 before hitting the freeway again and caravanning south to Santaquin where we hopped on US 6 and headed west to Eureka. If you’ve never done this drive before, make the time for it. It’s beautiful country and there is something particularly stunning about it in the winter.

In Eureka we stopped at the gas station/supermarket/pawnshop to top off our tanks before continuing on towards Little Sahara. In the past, WC dunes runs have usually had poor weather to Eureka, then it clears up west of there. As we continued west, that appeared to not be the case (which is why there are no pictures thus far). Once we got to the base of Sand Mountain to meet up with the rest of our group, we were greater with ominous sky and a biting wind.


But as everyone was airing down and signing release forms, something miraculous happened…


Sun! Could it be?!?! The wind still chilled us to the bone, but there was hope that the sun would warm us up through the day. With that hope in mind, we struck out into the dunes.


We played around in the dunes for a while. Flying over crests, ripping around banks, and sliding through snow. One person (Micah) opined that with our flags made us look like bumper cars, which coming from him is terrifying.
During all the playing, I found time to take an obligatory poseur shot.


Looking back towards Sand Mountain from expanse that we’d covered, I was again struck by the beauty of the state that we live in. I don’t care what anyone says, Utah is amazing.


Among the dunes that we were playing in, we found on that proved to be of particular difficulty. Brian in his sturdy FJ80 failed to ascend it, and my trusty Troopy also struggle to find the top. The first to conquer this challenging obstacle was Chance in his awesome Hummer H3 (and it is awesome. It’s the Adventure package, which is about the most epic out of the box SUV you can buy).


After Chance showed us how it’s done with a little American muscle, Micah… well, even with the awesome graphics, the 80’s failed him.


Next up, Adam in his truly impressive Taco reclaimed a little honor for Japan after Micah’s sad showing.


Finally, Roy in his clean little FJC gave it a go, but decided with all the rutting to play it safe and wait for another day (or dune) before romping to hard on the skinny pedal.


After watching the challengers from the top for awhile, we set out again for more shenanigans amongst the dunes.


As we made out way back towards Sand Mountain, the sun that we had been enjoying so much gave way to clouds once more.


Not to be deterred, we continued racing about until eventually, the group slowly split up. Several left us at the base of Sand Mountain as we headed to the other side. Then, Steve, Kyle, Chance, Cody and I left to explore some roads less traveled away from the dunes.

After much wheel spinning, sliding, gate opening an closing and CB chattering we ended up at what Cody called “The Bottomless Pit”


Which, if you have no fear of heights, falling, or the Hellmouth below, you can stand above it!


After tempting fate at The Bottomless Pit, Steve guided us on what was promised to be a challenging adventure back to the highway. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a pretty bland plowed, graded dirt road. No matter, a day on a dirt road anywhere is better than a day at work.

And with that, we hit pavement and the end to another great day on the trail with the Wasatch Cruisers.

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Posted in Central Utah, Photography, Trip Reports