GREAT SAND DUNES NATIONAL PARK

In southern Colorado, you can find the Great Sand Dunes National Park est. 1932. There are no reservations required for this park. The wind from the San Luis Valley is what made these wonders possible. The Great Sand Dunes have been forming for eons! You will find some dunes as tall as 750 feet.

Places to Visit

Sand Dune and Mountain

Tallest Sand Dune in North America

The Star Dune is the tallest in North America. The distance from the base to the summit is 750 feet! You can hike to the top from the summit of the High Dune. This hike takes around 6 hours and is 8 miles long round trip. Do not forget water and food on this adventure.

Great Sand Dunes

Sand Sledding or Boarding

You are permitted to sandboard or sled anywhere in the park as long as vegetation is not present. It is recommended to use a sandboard and not snowboards, skis, or snow sleds as they are not made for sand. There are plenty of rental shops near the dunes to rent the appropriate gear for the day.

Stars at the Great Sand Dunes

Stargaze

If you want to stargaze at the dunes, it is best to go on a night when the moon is small and dim. You are not out of luck if there is a full moon. A popular attraction is to walk the dunes at night with no need for a flashlight. Be mindful of local nocturnal wildlife. Their eyes are extremely sensitive to light so it is best to use a red light if needed.

Medano Pass

Medano Pass Primitive Road

4 wheel drive vehicles are required on this road. The road is closed during the winter season. It is always a good idea to check road closures beforehand. There are creek crossings on this drive and high clearance vehicles are necessary. We do not recommend taking a Mile Marker Campervan on this road.

Sand Dunes

Attend a Ranger Program

To truly grasp the Great Sand Dunes you should go to a free Ranger Program. The programs start in late spring and run into fall. You can find the schedule here. Attending a Ranger Program will inform you of the area and make your experience more fulfilling. The best part is they are FREE!

Zapata Falls Colorado

Zapata Falls

Zapata Falls is a 30-foot waterfall located on BLM (Bureau of Land Management) land in the San Luis Valley. There is a short hike to the falls which is .9 miles out and back. This hike is mellow and is great for all ages.

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