Monday, November 19, 2007

Of the Great Sand Dunes

One of the most weird/cool sights in the Colorado Rockies is the Great Sand Dunes National Park in the San Luis Valley. It really is like a little dollop of the Sahara plopped in the middle of the mountains. Your correspondent hadn't been since a family trip in elementary school, so a return trip was one of our primary goals in the Valley. Of course, since we were sleeping in a luxurious Best Western hotel room rather than out in the woods fro the first time in a few days, we slept in a bit longer than was perhaps advisable, and wound up at the Sand Dunes right around noon, in August, which accentuated certain Sahara-like characteristics.

The Lovely Katherine thought it insane, but clearly we had no option but to brave the conditions and climb the tallest dune we could see. Of course, climbing hundreds of vertical feet up sand involves a lot of one-step-up-slide-a-half-step-back slogging. And it was hot, and we weren't carrying all that much water. At several points, your correspondent thought maybe, just maybe, The Lovely Katherine was right. But then we got to the top, and it was clear that The Lovely Katherine was wrong for once. The views from the top were great, and the run down the hill was perhaps even better.

Of course, as it was a National Park, there was a lot of educational stuff about the bugs or weeds or something that live in the mini-Sahara, but we were more focused on getting back to Alamosa for a beer at the highly recommended San Luis Brewing Company.

1 comment:

Cilicious said...

Going to the Sand Dunes was our last out of town trip in Colorado before we moved.
I was amazed at how there could be so many people there (it was late May, the water was running, dogs were frolicking) without it feeling crowded. It's really a special place. I wonder if the new National Park status will help or hinder.