Boondocking Review – Sidewinder Rd – Winterhaven, CA

Sidewinder Rd is just off of Ogilby Rd – the same road you can take to several other BLM boondocking areas, including American Girl Mine Rd. They all have 14 day stay limits.

We had moved from American Girl Mine Rd over to Sidewinder for several reasons:

1 – Our new ‘dune buggy’ friends were over there in a PRIME location 😀

2 – Our new sand tires could not drive on the road (it would ruin them oh soooo quickly).

It also had great views – dunes on one side, the Cargo Muchacho mountains on the other. Plus, less road noise. American Girl Mine is still an active mine.

Coordinates: 32.8148, -114.8378 to the beginning of Sidewinder Rd (32.8112, -114.8943 : to our particular spot you see in the photos) There are many spots to choose from, some close to the dunes and some not so close.

The closest dump station is just off of I8 at a Chevron gas station. They’re expensive and charge by the foot (for both dump and water) and are always busy… but they’re conveniently close. Click here to get more info. You can also dump at the RV parks nearby. My research tells me they’re between $10-$15 to dump and fill up you water tanks. So, if you have big tanks like we do, it makes more financial sense to hunt down an RV park.

Side Note: There is a fee area even though it is BLM land – the sand dunes require a permit for any ‘primary vehicle’ (not your buggy..) that is used to transport your buggy. There are weird rules that apply but from my understanding, if you’re going to park your RV within 1 mile of the sand dunes, it requires a permit. If you stay at least a mile away, you’re fine – no permit required. Here is the FAQ page on their strange regulations.

Below are our requirements when searching for a spot. Yours may be different. These categories are what we consider important.

SITE QUALITY: 4/5 – The site is all sand which can be good and bad. The (very) good part was that it was easy on the dogs paws. The bad part is the part where sand gets EVERYWHERE!!! The sand was also easy to drive through and park the rig. We put a mat down and it eliminated a lot of the mess that goes along with sand. Our spot was level – most area’s out there are flat.

PET FRIENDLINESS: 5/5 – Such a great area for dogs. They love the sand – they dig, run, and play in the sand – all day if you let them. Doesn’t hurt their feet since the temps aren’t high. The area was great, no one was around. They could be off leash and run!

CELL SIGNAL: 4/5 – AT&T was great. Verizon struggled a bit even with our MIMO antenna. We were able to do conference calls, use the internet and stream without any issues. Not sure how it would be if it were busy. Could have some congestion.

THE VIEW: 5/5 – The view was fantastic! The sunsets behind the dunes was magnificent. The sunrise was just as good.

LOCATION: 4/5 – The location was great as far as boondocking goes. It was quiet and secluded (again, while we were there). The only con was the dirt road that had a lot of ‘whoops’ on them. Everything got dusty. But, that just comes with the territory. Getting to the spots to pull off was easy too. The road is taken care of by the guy who owns “Camp Trump” which is also off of Sidewinder Rd. Easy in, easy out – just take it slow.

(look at this post on a computer if you want to see these ^^ photos – sorry guys)

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