sand dune riding

I am going out to idaho for some sand duning and i was wandering how to set my bike up for sand riding from suspension to motor tweaking. I am 6'1" 195lbs and about a c rider. I have a 01 wr 426 with the white brothers e series pipe. everything else is stock. Plus name some stuff i should bring out there that i might not think of.


Stay off the front brake. Lean back, and use the back brake. Buy a paddle tire... Cheng Shin tires work, but buy the smaller of the two 18" paddles. One is wider than the other... If you use a paddle it will chew the mud flap to pieces, so take it off, and tape over you shock so you don't sandblast it. Suspension wise, it depends on the sand. Wet, compact sand is hard hard hard, and like riding in a parking lot. And dry fluffy sand is like riding in wet concrete, and REALLY works you engine hard. Cover all your extremities as if you fall off going fast on wet sand it is akin to hopping onto a belt sander. Bring extra lenses for your goggles, as if the wind is blowing they will get sandblasted. Clean your air filter often. When you are done, check out your wheel bearings. Consider NOT lubing your chain while you are there. The sand will stick to any kind of tacky lube, and grinds to hell your chain and sprockets. The Excels might get a nice brushed finish too :D You going to St. Anthony's? Devils Dune? EVIL SCARY BIG :) Good luck. Stay safe.

[This message has been edited by ButtonFly (edited 03-05-2001).]

Originally posted by ButtonFly:

Clean your air filter often. When you are done, check out your wheel bearings.

All very good, excellent advice. I highly suggest using filterskins made by PC Racing. If you dont know what they are, they are basically just nylon stretch type material (pantyhose) that covers your entire filter. Have them all pre-oiled. When you get done riding one day peel it off and slide another on.

I dont like taking my filter off and re-oiling it while I am there.

Paranoia sets in and I start thinking, what if just one granula of sand slipped past.......?


Darin from Missouri - 1999 WR 400F

Enduro Heaven

While you are on it, panty hose themselves work well... Doubled up, and oiled... in your choice of colors, at grocery stores everywhere... Of course the actual skins fit better, but whose complaining?

Thanks alot for the advice this site is great for all the uninformed like my self.

I have a twin stage uni filter can i still use the skins?


have you been to st anthony?

if so will it be worth a 18 hour drive?


I have not been there, only heard the dirty rumors. Most of my dune riding is coastal... I've seen some unbelievable pictures though. Not sure how big it is, but it has the tallest dune in the US, no?


here are some pics from the web site of the place were staying at.


I have not been to the dunes in St. Anthony myself but I know lots of people that go there. From what I hear it is great fun. Lots of sand a friend said all he could see was sand when he got out there. There is a small lake that some people ride their bikes across. Not sure when you are going to come this way but depending on the weather you might want to bring some warm clothes, it has been in the mid to high 40's here lately. Not sure if how much snow they got over there but I imagine most of it has melted off by now. I suppose I should go over and check the dunes out myself since I live only about 2.5 - 3 hours from them.

Originally posted by higgy426:

I have a twin stage uni filter can i still use the skins?

I think they make filterskins to fit virtually every bike that has a foam type filter.

Just tell your dealer you have a yz426 and he will hook you up. It shouldnt even matter what kind of filter you have.


Darin from Missouri - 1999 WR 400F

Enduro Heaven

I forget which shop I was employed at at the time but I remember the service manager saying sand riding was akin to destroying your bike.

Coating every bearing surface with abrasive...

I have always thought that if I am going to ride in sand I have to be prepared to completely disassemble my bike to rid it of the corrosive nature of sand.

I haven't yet been willing to make that comittement...


that made me laugh out loud!!

I am sure its not the best but niether is smoking and i don't do that so i can have another bad habit.


we are coming down in may it should be warmer then.

whoa! settle down. sand is just really clean mud that's easier to get off with a garden hose.

everyone pretty much covered technique, but you should remember to carry some kind of tow strap in case of a breakdown. pushing a bike in the sand is the worst thing you'll ever have to do. last summer i was riding in the dunes with my buddy when the kick start lever broke off his 98 kx (love those kawis). STRANDED!!

also, watch out for drunks in buggies and monster trucks. they'll try to flatten you like a pancake.

have fun!

Silt is powdered, dehydrated mud. Dune-sand is finely ground rock. IMO both are much easier on a dirt bike than anything wet like snow, mud, or powerwashers.

I also ripped off my mud flap with a paddle, I use a Cheng Shen w/ 8 paddles, I think 10 would be too hard on the bike. Some areas require flags, and if they don’t you may consider them anyway, getting run over by a sand car, like Michigan said, will ruin your trip. If you’re gonna jump (and why go if you ain’t?), definitely use a spotter.

A paddle tire is a must, and you may want to richen your main jet depending on the elevation/temp. change you will be seeing. Have fun.

Most whips that attach to the swing arm are pretty much useless as far as function and visability go. I get around Glamis by duct (sp?) taping a 1' whip on the back of my helmet. cut the flag lengthwise into about 1" strips or you'll feel major drag on your head from it when hauling ass. The rangers never bother me and I've had many people comment on how much better they can see my flag then anyone else with them attached to the Rear axle bolt. You also don't have to worry about the whip hitting your helemt.


When in doubt, GAS IT!

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