High point of desert thrills

The Moreeb Dune in the United Arab Emirates is so imposing that it dwarfs man and beast alike.

But this has not stopped the more adventurous from trying to conquer what is one of the largest sand hills in the world, located some 250km west of Abu Dhabi.

Races to the top of the dune on cars, four-wheel drives and motorcycles are a highlight of the annual Liwa Sports Festival.

The daredevils who attempt this require a lot of skill, considering that the Moreeb Dune, which means "terrifying mountain", is more than 300m high and has a slope of 50 degrees.

The nine-day sports festival is a celebration of the traditional and the modern. Thus, along with events such as freestyle drifting and motocross challenges, are also races for falcons, camels and horses in a salute to UAE's heritage.

This year's edition, which has attracted crowds from all over the Gulf region, will end tomorrow.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 04, 2018, with the headline 'High point of desert thrills'. Print Edition | Subscribe