Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve – Where Nature Meets Adventure
The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is a unique combination of landform and ecology, with towering sand dunes, alpine lakes, and ancient forests all in one breathtaking location. Located in the San Luis Valley, in south-central Colorado, the park is home to the tallest sand dunes in North America, making it a popular destination for outdoor adventurers. Whether you’re looking for a place to hike, camp, explore, or just relax, Great Sand Dunes is the perfect place to do it.
Exploring the Great Sand Dunes
The towering sand dunes of the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve are the park’s main attraction and the source of its name. The dunes reach up to 750 feet in height and cover over 30 square miles, making them the tallest dunes in North America. Visitors to the park can explore the dunes on foot, taking in the breathtaking views from the top of the tallest dunes. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can try sandboarding or sledding down the dunes, or take a guided horseback ride across the sand.
The Great Sand Dunes is also home to a variety of other natural wonders. The park is home to alpine lakes, including Medano Lake, where visitors can take a dip or go fishing. The park is also home to several hiking trails, including the popular Mosca Pass Trail, which leads to the summit of Mosca Pass and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
Camping and Lodging at the Great Sand Dunes
The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is a popular destination for campers and outdoor enthusiasts. The park offers several camping options, including backcountry camping, group camping, and developed campgrounds. Backcountry camping requires a permit and is available in several locations throughout the park. Group camping is also available in designated areas, and several developed campgrounds are located in the park, offering amenities such as running water, toilets, and showers.
For those looking for a more comfortable stay, the park also offers several lodging options. The Great Sand Dunes Oasis is a popular destination, located just outside the park. The Oasis offers cabins, RV sites, and a restaurant. The nearby town of Alamosa also offers a variety of lodging options, including hotels, motels, and bed and breakfasts.
Things to Do in the Area
In addition to exploring the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, visitors to the area have plenty of other activities to choose from. The nearby San Luis Valley is home to a variety of outdoor activities, such as hiking, fishing, and biking. Visitors can also explore the nearby towns of Alamosa and Salida, which offer a variety of shopping, dining, and cultural attractions. The area is also home to the historic Great Sand Dunes Hot Springs, where visitors can soak in the warm waters of the natural hot springs.
The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is an incredible destination for outdoor adventurers and nature lovers alike. With towering sand dunes, alpine lakes, and ancient forests, the park is home to a variety of activities and attractions. Whether you’re looking for a place to hike, camp, explore, or just relax, Great Sand Dunes is the perfect place to do it.