I never thought I wanted to ride sand, then I watched this.
“When I ride, it just feels like everything else washes away. Nothing is important other that what I’m doing, right there. That’s just the best feeling ever, that feeling of freedom from everything.”
The hero of this story is Dana Miskulnig, born and raised in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. She is 25 years old and has been riding dirt bikes for the last ten, since she was fifteen years old. She has raced in the Emirates Desert Championship, which is a two-hour race comprised of a 15-mile loop. She’s also raced motocross, encouraged because there were not enough women participating. She has ridden the Dubai International Rally, also called a “Baja,” a three-day timed rally through the desert, and says that was her “favorite race ever.”
Miskulnig takes host, cyclist, and adventurer Mark Beaumont (and when we say “cyclist” we mean “bicyclist”; he’s not a motorcyclist) out into the dunes on a pair of KTM SX-F dirtbikes, one with the 350 motor and the other with the 450. The gorgeous wide-angle shots of these dirtbikes flying over dunes, or “surfing the dunes” as Dana says, are gorgeous and inspiring.
Here story is as well: unlike the usual tales of hurdles, and of women having to break walls, Miskulnig explains that growing up, she was allowed to try everything she was interested in trying. She didn't feel like there were limits because she is a girl—not even when it came to enduro racing. You don't hear that very often.
The word “freedom” is tossed about so often when it comes to motorcycles, but I’ve always found it incomplete and trite. In this case, though, “freedom from everything” captures exactly how I feel when I ride. The rest of her sentiments are pretty spot-on too; and I believe everyone can relate. This beautifully shot video is a really lovely tour of Dubai and its sand dunes. If you’ve ever wanted to ride dirt bikes in sand dunes this film won’t do anything to quash those desires. I have personally always disliked riding in loose, deep sand, but watching this made me want to grab a dirt bike and find some dunes to ride.