Saturday, December 2, 2023


Landsailing – fun RV boondocking destination

RVers boondock on the Ivanpah Dry Lake. (David Farmer)

“It’s surreal,” says landsailing aficionado David Farmer of Eastern Washington, “camped on the edge of the playa in a wilderness environment, (within a short distance of) the headlights of an amazing stream of humanity heading to-from LA and Las Vegas, and the garish lights of Primm, the first gambling establishment” in Nevada off Interstate 15.

A veteran of windsurfing and sail boat racing, Farmer participates each year in the America’s Landsailing Cup, America’s premier landsailing event held during March on the Ivanpah Dry Lake on Bureau of Land Management land in southern Nevada, about 45 miles southwest of Las Vegas.

Ivanpah Dry Lake, near Primm, NV. (David Farmer)

RVs* are the preferred accommodations on the playa,” reports Farmer.

“Tents are horrible when it blows 30-knots all night. Ask how I know?  I sleep in the back of my Ford van, surrounded by all the piles of equipment it takes to pursue this passion,” he says.  “Anyone with any interest is most welcome to come and hang with us for any duration. It is indeed an amazing group of intensely interesting folk.”

David Farmer’s two landsailing crafts. 

Farmer competed in two events at Ivanpah–the IC2 Class, racing his Johnny’s Rocket under sail number US 246 (pictured at right partially hidden); and in the Fisly 5 Class, sailing his smaller yellow-and-red-hull yacht.

“Landsailing goes on all year round for the locals in California and Nevada, but it is the annual America’s Landsailing Cup and the Alvord Desert (in southeast Oregon) for a week in the fall, for those of us with more miles to travel,” says Farmer, an Eastern Washington resident.

2014 North American Land Sailing Association (NALSA) Events:

– May 25-27 Memorial Day weekend: Cow to Cow at Smith Creek Playa, near Austin, Nevada.
– July 12-19: World Championship of Land and Sand Yachting
 at Smith Creek Playa.

Sept. 14-21: The BBC–Big Boat Coalition at Alvord Desert, Ore.
This week-long event is a great time to watch some of the best.  “Since there is no official racing (or any other program for that matter) feel free to come and go as best fits your schedule.” 

For more information on landsailing and a full list of events, go to North American Land Sailing Association (

* Remember that these are boondocking (dry camping) destinations where campers bring in (and take home) all the food, water and fuel they will need for as long as they plan to camp in the desert.

Click on photos to enlarge. All photos by David Farmer, Tum Tum, Wash.

For more articles on the RV lifestyle by Julianne G. Crane, go to

Julianne G. Crane
Julianne G. Crane
Julianne G. Crane writes about the RVing and camping lifestyles for print and online sites. She was been hooked on RVing from her first rig in the mid-1980s. Between 2000-2008, she was a writer for The Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, Wash. One of her popular columns was Wheel Life about RVing in the Pacific Northwest. In 2008, Crane started publishing RV Wheel She and her husband, Jimmy Smith, keep a homebase in southern Oregon, while they continue to explore North America in their 21-foot 2021 Escape travel trailer. Over the years they have owned every type of RV except a big class A. “Our needs change and thankfully, there’s an RV out there that fits every lifestyle.”



0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe to comments
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Sign up for the

RVtravel Newsletter

Sign up and receive 3 FREE RV Checklists: Set-Up, Take-Down and Packing List.