Side trip to the waterless dunes

During our marathon Wild West trip a few weeks ago, we saw a lot of different sights.  We visited Steamboat Springs, where we ate at the Truffle Pig.  We went to Vail and stopped in at the Blue Moose.  We went to Albuquerque through Santa Fe and watched the Balloon Fiesta, which many say is the most photographed event in the world.  And we headed to Arizona to see the Petrified Forest and the Grand Canyon

While we were on the road between Vail and Santa Fe we saw the now very familiar brown national park sign letting us know that we were near the Sand Dunes.
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Even though it wasn’t on our schedule we were too tempted by the over 600 foot high dunes to miss the opportunity.
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I have to say these dunes were nothing like the ones on the Jersey Shore (maybe 3-4 feet high?) or the ones I had to climb over the summer that I lifeguarded at a summer camp on lake michigan (20-30 feet high) 600 feet is REALLY high!

Sand Dunes-092Not only is it high, the sand totally plays tricks on you to think that you are almost there when really you aren’t.Sand Dunes-076

These pictures don’t do the dunes any justice.  It was amazing to see how steep they get and how narrow some passages really are
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Dan and I made it to what we thought the top was, but were disappointed to see that it kept going up!
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It was at this point that I told Dan to go on without me.  That’s him at the top.
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He was really excited to see what was on the other side and this is what he discovered.
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More Sand!
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After the detour we were behind schedule but still wanted to see Taos.  On our way there we saw a sign for the Rio Grande Gorge and had to stop.
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We were impressed by how deep it was.  Of course we knew that this sight would pale in comparison to the Grand Canyon.
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Not grand, but still great!