Off The Grid: Sandboarding in Peru
Published on 07/05/2012
By Erin Ching
(video: Dito Sanchez of Sandboarding Peru)
Located just off of the main “gringo trail” in Peru, the small town of Huacachina sits on a natural oasis next to miles of sand dunes as far as the eye can see. This seemingly sleepy town boasts some of the best sandboarding in the world. For first timers and experienced pros alike, sandboarding isn’t for the faint of heart.
While most skiers and snowboarders dream of that perfect bluebird powder day, sandboarders are spoiled with consistent conditions, bluebird skies seven days a week, and did I mention they can ride year-round? If you are looking to do some cross-training during the off season, or just to try a new adventure sport, sandboarding has lots to offer. Similar to snowboarding in many regards, sandboarding offers riders an exhilarating experience that in many ways is superior to fresh powder.
In the small town of Huacachina, massive sand dunes surround an idyllic oasis, and sandboarders can be seen speeding their way down the dunes from sunrise to sunset. For those interested in trying sandboarding, there are several options. One relatively inexpensive option is to simply rent a board setup and boots for the day and get after it yourself. Another option is to do a group or private lesson (which I would recommend, if only for the insider tips and tricks!) which could even include an ATV rental or dunebuggy ride, if you so desire. Walking up the dunes is by far the most difficult part, but the views and the ride down are well worth the grueling hike up!
Face Buff to keep the sand out of your mouth and the sun off of your face.
Try this one: Buff Printed Wool Buff
Sunglasses to protect your yes.
Try these: Smith Backdrop Sunglasses
Super durable, breathable shorts because my flimsy pair tore from the amount of movement.
Try this pair: RVCA Extinguisher Board Short
Camelbak to stay hydrated in the extreme desert heat!
Try this one out: Salomon XT Skin Pro 3 Set Hydration Pack
If Peru is too far out of your way, you can always check out Sand Master Park in Florence, Oregon - America’s only commercial sandboarding park. Colorado locals can hit up the Great Sand Dunes with an old board from last season. If you do make your way down to Peru and find yourself in Huacachina, definitely stop in to Sandboarding Peru and they will take care of you, from rentals to lessons and more!