We made the most of a long weekend with a day trip to the North Algodones Sand Dunes, a wilderness land managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). With over 26,000 acres, this land is just south of the Salton Sea and between the Anza Borrego Desert and the Chocolate Mountains. The Dunes are a very unique place because the northern half of the dunes permit hiking and horsebackriding, while the southern half permits off-highway vehicles (dune buggies), quads, and dirt bikes. Think Mad Max….but real life. It’s quite the juxtaposition.

The dunes are about 2.5 hours from our house, so we hit the road early to beat the traffic and the temperatures. After some fuel for the van and some breakfast burritos, we were on our way. We got to the ranger station just before 9AM to get the last map they had in stock. From there we went to a parking spot to load up on sunscreen, snacks, and water. Weather near our house was around 65 degrees, but the desert had clear skies and highs in the 70s, so we prepared for a warm walk.

The best part about the dunes is that there are no trails….you just hike and explore. Once we got on the dunes, the girls asked to take their shoes off and run in the soft sand. And then they ran and climbed for an hour straight.

We capped the trip off with a lunch overlooking a popular area for the dune buggies and 4-wheelers.

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