At 4am Friday morning I’m headed to Glamis, CA. It’s billed as a “Duner’s Paradise“. I’ve never been there but I have been to the dunes south of there called Buttercup. They are both part of the Algodones range of dunes in eastern CA.

I used to go to Buttercup with my dad in the dune buggy we built together. I remember him coming home from work and telling me his boss, Larry Long, had a dune buggy and he thought we should go look at it. When we saw it he and I both got the “bug” to make a buggy. I found an old Corvair that had an automatic transmission for about $50. We wanted a manual but my dad said the automatic would be ok to start with.

We spent the next few months in the shop building this buggy with galvenized pipe. Most people used steel tubing but the galvenized was a lot cheaper(and heavier). After we got it all together we took a trip to Buttercup. It did pretty well but the automatic was a definate disadvantage. We also had oversize truck tires instead of the grooved slicks everyone else was using. We later put a 4 speed and grooved slicks on it and it would keep up with most of the other buggys.

That was a really fun time in my life. Sometimes I wish I had had one boy to share stuff like that with. I wouldn’t trade any of my 5 girls but it would have been nice to have a boy too.

So now I’m going back to the dunes of my youth. Instead of a patched together dune buggy I’ve got a state of the art quad. Instead of the old “Tramper” I’ll be staying in my trailer. Instead of my family I’ll be with my good friend Scott and his son Jeremy.

And that’s part of the fun. Jeremy is one of those kids you hated when he was 8 but now he’s 14 and actually listens most of the time. When I see the 2 of them it always reminds me of my dad and I with the dune buggy. Of course I ALWAYS did what my dad told me to do. I was a model child. At least that’s the way I remember it. The rest of my family may have different realities.

I’ll take pictures.

5 Comments on Glamis bound

  1. Mom says:

    Isn’t it odd how other people remember the same situations differently? But you are younger, so probably have a sharper recollection of the past!
    If any of your older siblings agree with your memories, I’ll apologize for any negative thoughts I may have had about the last couple of sentences.

  2. Daryl says:

    I think we will need a crowbar to get his tongue out of his cheek.

  3. jocelyn says:

    ya know dad you do have one grandson and another on the way the I’m sure they would love to play w/ grandpa and his dune buggy.

  4. Richard says:

    I remember going out there as a family when you had your buggy. It was lots of fun.

    I seem to remember that the area was called Yuma Dunes and that there was a certain dune that was called Buttercup, but I may be wrong. You were there many more times than I was. I think George Lucas filmed some of one of the star wars movies there. Perhaps the first one where there is a sand pit they are fighting above on something like pirate ships?

  5. Don says:

    Richard: We called it Yuma dunes but it’s actually known as the Buttercup area. The big hill is called Buttercup also as is the valley next to it. You are right about Star Wars filming there. I can’t remember which one in the series it was but there was a plank Luke was supposed to walk above a sand monster. Kind of pirateish