Brawley Inn Hotel & Conference Center

Sand Dunes

The Imperial Sand Dunes, also known as the Algodones Dunes, are California’s largest mass of sand dunes. This dune system extends for more than 40 miles along the eastern edge of the Imperial Valley agricultural region in a band averaging five miles in width. Rising to heights of over 300 feet above the surrounding desert floor, the dunes are a familiar landmark to locals and the thousands of highway travelers. Summer is a treacherous time to visit as temperatures often rise above 110° F. The optimum time to come is between October and May when the climate is more cooperative. For more information, visit www.desertusa.com/sandhills/sandhinfo.html.

The Imperial Sand Dunes provide outstanding opportunities for recreation. Off-highway vehicle activity is permitted on more than two-thirds of the sand dunes-or 118,000 acres. The three most popular areas are Mammoth Wash at the north end of the dunes, Glamis/Gecko just south of State Highway 78, and Buttercup Valley just south of Interstate Highway 8 near the Mexican Border. For more information, visit www.desertusa.com/sandhills/sandhinfo.html.

With 343 acres of sand dunes, Heber Sand Dunes State Park is mainly the domain of off-road vehicle enthusiasts. However, camping, picnicking and baseball are also popular activities in this scenic setting that is marked by tamarisk trees. Much of the outer border of the park is native vegetation. For more information, visit www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=408.

Heber Sand Dunes State Park is located eight miles east of the community of Heber on Heber Road. Access is via Interstate 8 to State Highway 111 or 86. Highway 86 becomes Heber Road where it intersects Highway 111. The new International border crossing into Baja, California, Mexico is located three miles south of the park. For more information, visit www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=408.