Dayhiking Great Sand Dunes NP

Wanderlust073

Member
.
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
776
Day-hiking with a heavy ass backpack... lol.

I had planned on heading out towards Grand Junction this weekend, but forecasts for 40+ mph winds (with 100+ in the mountains between here and there) had me search out somewhere a little less gusty. Sand Dunes fit the bill.

Very challenging hiking. Some spots on the dunes had a bit of snow on them and held together under footsteps, but mainly it was like hiking on the stairmaster from hell. You have to get up and over the first ridge in order to camp. They don't want to see any tents facing the visitor center/road. It's a 700-800 ft hump and a lot of back and forth while trying to find a line of approach that will carry you.

Unfortunately the forecast was off. Winds were very high (though temps were a pleasant twenty degrees higher as well), and it clouded up. Look forward to going back to actually put my backcountry permit to use, and hopefully get some serious eye-candy sunsrise/sunset/milky-way shots. It was still nice to be out carrying a pack, and I got to glimpse a couple places I plan on visiting when things melt out (Spanish Peaks and the Sangre de Cristo range)

Anyway here is a dump out of lightroom:

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Wanderlust073

Member
.
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
776
Teasing me!

Melt! Melt I say!
 

Absarokanaut

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Joined
Sep 17, 2014
Messages
602
I've dayhiked West Sprnish Peak a couple dozen or so times, much fun. East is wicked rugged, hard, miserable. Cuatro Peak is awesome. Get your Okie/Tejan Translation book.
 
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