A Sand Junkie Addicted To Community
Nick Farmer Lives For The Dunes And Those That Ride Them
Story By: Staff of UTV Sports Magazine
Photos Provided by: Nick Farmer
Often times, we encounter individuals who are so selfless, their niche in life is to simply take care of or help the people around them. Nick Farmer and his brand, Desert Whips, which started as a community-driven social media group, strive to make sure the community is connected and feel like they are part of a positive, collective group of like-minded people. From early in life, he was given the tools necessary to cultivate his own sense of direction. We caught up with Nick to find out how his introduction to the off-road industry in his youth would later lead him to his current successes as an entrepreneur.
Farmer’s story begins about thirty-four years ago. He remembers growing up as a kid going out with his family where he would ride on a Honda ATC 70 in the desert. Back then, it was Rasor Road and the Dumont Dunes in California. As he got older, the family would take him to Pismo and from there would go to Glamis occasionally, all the while upgrading a few times to different quads.
Nick: “Growing up, being able to go off-roading in the community with my family and friends, I feel I had the power to be independent at an early age. I had to learn to make the decisions to get my family and friends from place to place. With my cousins, family, and friends we used to off-road with, I stayed away from video games. I never had a PlayStation console or anything. I became mechanically inclined and was able to fix or repair essentially anything that I was capable of breaking at that time, even in my early teens. If I broke it, my parents made me fix it. So I learned how to be self-sufficient and very independent.”
When Yamaha released the Rhino and the craze for side by sides came out, Nick made the transition from quads to his very first UTV. Since then, he’s continued to upgrade about every year to eighteen months and plans to continue doing so, so long as the industry continues to improve. With the industry developing, Nick saw an opportunity to help steer the community in the right direction.
Nick: “I was part of social media when a lot of small private groups started to appear when Facebook began really promoting communities. I felt like everybody was either a sole RZR page, a sole Southern California page, or a sole Arizona page. Everything was specific to one genre, one machine, or one location. I was like, ‘Hey, I need something that’s not secluded to one brand or one area.’ So in 2017, I started Desert Whips.”
Now a legit business, Desert Whips sells parts and accessories along with their own brand and apparel. As part of Nick’s original goal, the Desert Whip crew makes sure to help the community when needed as if when somebody breaks down, needs a tow, or needs a part. They have a loaner program where they will loan parts out to people so they’re able to get back onto the trails until they can get a replacement part later.
Nick: “In Glamis, we do the same thing. We save and drive people’s vehicles out of the dunes when they break down. We recover and rescue many people throughout a season, not just me but my whole crew. Some of the guys that break down in the desert are a little hesitant to ask for help because they’re embarrassed, but we encourage everybody to be involved. When my crew and I go and assist riders, we have a trailer that’s filled with donated parts. I gather a list of parts they think they broke according to their scenario and we take the parts out to them. If we can fix it on site, we’ll fix it on site. If not, we do whatever we have to do in order to get them back safely. We try to do our best to make sure that the reputation of where we ride is not drug through the mud and are starting to push to keep all of our riding areas clean, not just Glamis.”
Farmer has been in off-road for nearly his whole life and is primarily in the sand dunes. He rarely visits the actual hard-packed desert. He prefers it that way. Typically when he’s riding, his whole group is always 10-20 cars at a time. They race side by side through the sand dunes, sometimes three-wide, constantly passing each other and that’s just not the case out in the desert.
On President’s Day of this year, Nick broke his L-1 on his T-12 vertebrae jumping in Glamis. The jump was 151 ft. long and when he came down he was about 18 ft. in the air and flat landed. Nick is in great condition, still healing, and still continues to do what he can in keeping everybody united and together, and keeping everybody out on the trails. Nick is a man that’s really just about community and making sure everyone is safe. He looks toward the future in making that a reality and being back out on the trails. Follow him along his sand-filled journey at @desert_whips.