by | The Lills, Travel

While in beautiful Colorado, we were lucky enough to make it to the Great Sand Dunes, the highest sand dunes in the country. We stayed in a historic hotel in Monte Vista, woke up early, rented sandboards from Kristi’s Sports in Alamosa and zoomed to the dunes. It was super cold when we arrived, so we took our time and cooked up some hot soup outside our VW bus to get warm.

When we were ready, we went over the hill, through the creek and into the sand. It was very flat until we hit the dunes. The climb up was a workout and very quickly we began to take off layers of clothing. By the time we made it up to the top of a dune, we were in a t-shirt and tank top. It almost felt like Spring!

Although we thought it would be tough to surf the sand, we picked it up rather quickly. By applying wax to the sandboards, they glided over the drifting sand and we flew down the slopes. The only times we experienced challenges were when we hit spots of thick sand and got stuck. Otherwise, we were in the clear and had some really great runs. It was an incredible birthday celebration to remember.

Furry friends are allowed at the Great Sand Dunes too! Our dog and cat absolutely loved getting to play in the sand and go wild. We will never forget how miraculous it was to witness the dunes backed by 14,000 foot high snow-capped mountains. It is supposedly one of the most fertile valleys in the U.S. and we read there is an aquifer under the dunes that supplies water to the surrounding ecosystem. Motorized vehicles are no longer allowed on the dunes, but everyone is encouraged to try sandboarding or sand-sledding.

Great Sand Dunes National Park Colorado | The Lills

Sandboarding is a very peaceful sport that offers a unique rush of adrenaline. There was also something very comforting about laying out in the sand during Fall in Colorado. We saw a few people who just came out to enjoy the views and recommend anyone visiting Colorado to take the trip out to the Great Sand Dunes. It’s an experience of a lifetime and it is good to know there are still incredible treasures protected and preserved in this country.