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Just say the magical two words and a whole host of people will light up like a Christmas tree: dune season. Now that the weather has cooled down to reasonable temperatures, dozens of ATV enthusiasts are hitting the sand and making the most of one of their favorite hobbies. This year would appear to be off to a slow start, however, as some riders noticed it wasn't as busy in some places as they imagined. It came as quite a surprise to a few motorists considering we've entered the Veteran's Day holiday.

Some don't mind, however, because fewer people means they have more space to work with. Regulars are warning in advance, however, that it probably won't be that way for long. In spite of the troubled economy, they're expecting huge crowds to show up by the end of November.

The driving force behind their prediction is lower gas prices. The average cost for fuel topped off at nearly $4 a gallon this past summer, but the storm has weathered in recent weeks and now Triple A has pegged the nationwide average at about $2.30 a gallon. According to one off-roader, he shelled out $120 to fill up his tank just six months ago, but now he's paying less than 60. Another reason for their prediction is Thanksgiving. The federal holiday is fast-approaching and some believe it will attract many more people to the Desert Southwest.

If you're planning on heading out to the dunes any time soon, be careful and have fun.
 
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