Tales From The Camping House

Tales From The Camping House

Monday, June 11, 2012

Travel Day And Great Sand Dunes National Park

After the train ride, we decided to stay another two days in Abiquiqu.  We were able to kayak down the Rio Chama one more time.  

Monday, was travel day.  We were going to travel to the Great Sand Dunes Oasis RV Park outside of Mosca, CO.  We weren't able to put the address into our GPS, so I had put it in Google Maps to get the directions.  We were on our way.  We made it to Alamosa and then things began to go downhill.  Jim made the turn according to our directions.  We were driving in the middle of nowhere.  Things didn't look right.  We drove a little further until we found a place to pull over.  Jim called the rv park and we were about 20 miles off the course.  We finally ended up going the right direction and arrived at the rv park.  Travel days can be really stressful sometimes.

The rv park is basically a parking lot, but it is just down the street from the Great Sand Dunes National Park and that was our destination.

We do have a nice view of the dunes from our rv.

We drove out to the visitor's center that was about 2 miles down the road.

We watched the film at the visitor's center.  It was kind of cool when the movie was over, the curtains came up on the window showing the sand dunes in the distance.

So, today we hiked the dunes.  Pictures just can't show the massiveness of these dunes.  The tallest one is 750 feet high.  

We started off having to cross the creek that runs in front of them.  The water is still running, we were told during the spring, it can be waist deep.  We walked through the water and then began the walk.  This sand was not packed down like on the beach, your feet just sank a little bit every time you took a step.  It was not easy walking through it.

As you begin walking up, 

you realize the little dots you see in the distance are other people.

We had taken our hiking poles with us and did help getting up the dunes.

We made the slow and steady climb up.  There were kids running by us going up the dunes.  We were definitely the oldest people climbing towards the top.

As we got closer to the top, the people down below became dots.  

The view was really nice, and two snow capped mountains popped out from behind the larger mountain.

We didn't make it to the 750 ft. peak, but we probably climbed about 500 feet to one of the smaller peaks.  It was tough, but we did get a great cardio workout today.  

We sat at the top for awhile admiring the views and catching our breath.  It took us about an hour to reach the top with many stops along the way.  

Then, we came down.  That was like sand skiing with our poles.

We came down quickly from the dunes, but then had to walk back along the long stretch from the base of the dunes to the parking lot.  We poured the sand out of our hiking shoes and socks before we got into the car.  Our legs were sore and we were ready to go back to rest.  It was a good feeling of accomplishment, something else to cross off our bucket list. :)

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