We look forward to the second weekend in September like no other. Each year, we pack up, invite friends and strangers, and make our way to the Oceano Sand Dunes for a full dose of sand, surf, sun, and...ahem, '80s thrash metal. This annual camping trip has ballooned from a few buddies getting together to a full-on spectacle, where everyone's invited, some wild rigs show up, and entertainment in the form of raw carnage inevitably occurs. It's OFF-ROAD Magazine's Heavy Metal Weekend!
To some, the happiest place in the world is Disneyland, but for us, there's no better place to celebrate the end of the summer than Oceano (we still like to call the place "Pismo Dunes," its former name). For broke guys like us, it's paradise. It's a bring-your-own-anything fest, and we don't charge a cent; the only cost is the state park's $10-per-night fee ($5 if you're just out for the day). We'll admit, however, that the weekend often has a hidden cost: broken parts that result from gleeful, maniacal thrashing of vehicles as we tear across the open sand. At least we know how to make people point and laugh.
This year, our camp held a full quiver of magazine project vehicles, UTVs, abused-up beaters, high-dollar sand runners, and even a couple of Hummers. At night, many of us gathered around a few bonfires, eating charred hot dogs, enjoying beverages of all types, and listening to old Metallica and Slayer tunes. It was great.
This is the second year we've featured photos of the weekend in the pages of OFF-ROAD, and there's no reason why you (and your rig) shouldn't be featured in next year's coverage. Just show up-no need to rsvp. We'll welcome you, your family, even your dog. Just be prepared to have fun, watch some carnage, and suffer through some loud music! We'll remind you as the date approaches.