I had no idea that a bunch of white sand could be so interesting. We very nearly skipped the White Sands National Monument in New Mexico after deducing from the name that it was essentially just a bunch of boring old sand piled into some boring old dunes.
Ha! Shows how little we know. Despite being more or less correct about the landscape, we had a ridiculous amount of fun at the dunes.
The sand is a rare form (gypsum), which means it’s extremely soft and cool to the touch. Unlike the rough scratchy kind (that’ll burn your toes if the sun makes an appearance), the gypsum sand dunes were perfect for frolicking.
Kali channeled his inner track star, leaping from the top of dunes and sliding his way to the bottom:
I, on the other hand, opted for the slightly less dignified “how much sand can I get in my pants from rolling?” approach:
Verdict: quite a lot.
We also tried sliding down on trashbags, but that turned out to be about as successful as when we tried to use them to slide down snowy hills as kids (in other words, not successful in the slightest).
We gave it our best shot nonetheless, and were busy perfecting our technique in the dark when a ranger found us, told us the park was closing, and asked us to skeedadle. He seemed bemused by our sandy trashbags, but at least he had the courtesy to not forget about us (ooooh, snap, Carlsbad Caverns!).
Luckily we had timed our visit to coincide with sundown, and it ended up being one of the most gorgeous sunsets we’ve seen. The sky blossomed with almost every color imaginable, morphing from hues of blues, purples, and pinks to vibrant shades of red and orange.
Who knew sand could be so much fun?!