March 1st, 2010: Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park was the last stop on my quick national park extravaganza, and it was a great stop to make. I had discovered it in my handy road atlas (which everyone should own, even if they have a fancy little GPS) and thought it sounded like a good time. Little did I know how much fun I would have.

You better believe I skied them! At a height of 650', High Dune is taller than a handful of Midwest ski resorts. I got a number of good laps and came to the following conclusions about skiing on sand:
          - A thin layer of snow usually means the sand beneath is frozen/icy.
          - Dry sand is skiable, but a pitch of at least 30-35 degrees.
          - Wet sand, but not frozen, can be a grand ol' time.
          - Sand gets everywhere.

The sand dunes are located at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which provide a pretty remarkable contrast. In case you were wondering where all the sand came from; it mostly got blown across the Colorado plains from the San Juan Mountains.

Did I mention I put together a little "les stroud/survivorman style" video? We aim to please here at SnowyPhotos so ask and you shall (probably) receive:


k2smith said...

yesss! great video. you and jb should probably start up a tgr-style rival production company. serious.

JB said...

Really great video Bnard! Have fun pulling grains of sand out of your ski boots for the next few years.

sara said...

bnard- comment worthy stuff here. your videos and pics are awesome.

Unknown said...

Very nicely done - the video and the sand skiing. Too bad you're so out of shape!

Catherine said...


Josh said...

you left your video camera behind. better go back and get that

Bernard Rocca said...

Glad you all liked the video, hopefully I'll be able to make some more. But first I gotta go back to the Dunes to get my camera. Thanks for the reminder Josh!

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