Monday, September 24, 2012

Durango: Day 3

My birthday!

We left Durango today to head to the Great Sand Dunes.

As mentioned in a previous post, the Great Sand Dunes has been on my bucket list since flying over it in 1998.  Considering that we live mere hours from it now, I was very excited to go there for my birthday.  It was really amazing and each of us enjoyed seeing such a work of God nestled in the Sangre de Cristo mountains.

Here we are miles – and I mean MILES – away from the Sand Dunes, and yet you can see them.  When I first saw them, I though, is that the Sand Dunes or is that a mirage? But, it really was the Dunes.
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It was pretty neat to suddenly have our eyes assaulted by the desert in the middle of the mountains.  It was a little hard to comprehend at times.
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Proof that there are mountains nearby.
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Normally there is a river/stream that runs in front of the Sand Dunes and you’re able to walk through it / play in it, but it was late in the summer and we’ve had a dry summer at that, so the entire river/stream was dried up.

In this next picture, you can see the paths that people take/make to climb the highest dunes.  I’ll say this much – I don’t think I’ll ever make that trek.  Walking across hot sand with a cloudless sky at high altitude…? Difficult for me to envision making it all that way.  You can see people congregated on the first dune in the front – that is where we walked to and took a load of pictures.
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Here Adam is standing on the side of that “small” dune.  We could understand quickly why we saw families were dragging sleds out – the sides of the dunes were very slippery to stand / be on and we had to keep the girls off of them as you would find yourself quickly sinking in the sand and sliding down the side of the dune.

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The girls really burned some energy on the dunes – the would run way ahead of us and watching them tired me out – simply because walking across the sand was hard at times – and here they were, running like wild!

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When we went to Canada five years ago, we saw large versions of these – cairns – and it was neat to see small cairns throughout the riverbed.

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The Sangre de Cristo mountains.

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All in all this was probably one of the neatest things I’ve done for my birthday in the last few years… so glad we were able to do this!

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