Great Sand Dunes National Park

Driving across the Colorado Plateau, scrub brush, cattle, farming surrounds you in the San Luis Valley. But is the wind that you feel. Persistently blowing west to east, across the ground carrying with it fine grains of sand. There is a point in the Sangre De Cristo Mountains that creates a crescent which the winds can no longer carry their sediment load. Over time the sand is left behind as the flowing air climbs over and continues its journey. Grain after grain is left until it towers 600 feet in an impressive display of sand. Shaped by Aeolian forces these dunes move across until they reach the foothills. These same winds bring turbulent thunderstorms which punctuate the air with their lighting strikes, producing the rainbow even as the red glow of sunset settles on the mountains. In the morning, getting up is easy as the air is renewed and the sunrise colors the freshly landscaped dunes washed clear of human footsteps.

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