The title describes it all. The Great Sand Dunes is filled with sand to say the least. This park has the tallest sand dunes that covers about 20 miles. The Sand Dunes have been there for more then 440,000 years some scientist have predicted. Sand particles pick up from the lake are what partially makes the sand dunes.
These sand dunes get very windy and hot. Hikers will tell you that it is so windy that you will get sand thrown at you constantly. I had a friend who does roofing in the windy city of Chicago. He said “the Dunes were at least 5 times as windy then being on top of a tower building a roof.” You can only imagine how windy it gets. Reaching temperatures of 95 degrees in July and August are fairly common. In the winter the temperatures can reach into the negative’s. You will see a big change in temperature in the dunes.
Wildlife in the Sand Dunes is a awesome part of going to visit. Sheep, Bears, Mountain Lions, Badgers, Beavers, and Bison are common to see. Along with mammals and spectacular tress there are fish and over 200 species of birds.
Just like most places in Colorado there are places to camp. There are places to swim which is only seasonal. April through June are the time that people can swim. You can also hike in different places including the following: Montville Trail, Mosca Pass Trial, and Wellington Ditch Trial.
Among on these things there is so much back country that can be explored. My wife and I went up there for this part. Sand Ramp, Medano Lake, Music Pass, and Liberty Gate are some of the great trails you can hike on. When you get far in back country it will start getting “real.” There is know one around and you are just by yourself. I think for my wife and I we realized that it was a good way to escape everything and be present in the moment.
Tips to take with you. If you are planning to hike make sure you drink plenty of water. Make sure you are accumulated to the climate change. Make sure you tell someone where you are planning on to travel encase something were to happen. Double Check the weather before going. Stay Safe and be prepared. Check out my other articles.