We love sand dunes. There’s just something about being on them. It’s a different sensation than any other outdoor experience. And it’s a super workout trudging uphill with the reward of running down them.
We were here in 2000 for just a few hours with our friend Dianni. That was before it became a national park; back then it was a national monument. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t as crowded in 2000. If you want to attract large crowds all you have to do is attach national park at the end of a name!
The unusual thing about this national park was we didn’t see a single Euro or Asian. How strange. I’m guessing 75% of the visitors were Coloradoans.
There’s a main dune access area where all the families go to pretend they are at the beach and to climb the lower dunes and sled. What an awesome thing for families to do. There’s also a primitive area 4 miles north, of which 1.5 miles is a 4×4 recommended dirt road. There are no crowds, but if you do happen to see someone the dunes are so expansive you never have to cross paths.
The most amazing thing is this time of the year Medano Creek pulses with rhythmic waves called surge flow. I was calling them mini tsunamis. The creek would be calm, then out of nowhere you could hear, then see a surge coming. The surge occurs when the antidunes in the creek bed break.
And now a little humor. It’s so entertaining observing the going ons of a campground. I have no doubt our fellow campers get a kick out of us. My favorite observation this stop was when a wife stuck her head out of their fifth-wheel and yelled, “Honey fire up the generator I need to use the microwave.”