Oh hey I guess I forgot I had a blog over the summer. I tend to do that every summer. Life is always busy, but having all three kiddos home all day adds to the madness! But the best kind of madness. Mostly. More on summer later.
We started our summer with a trip to the Great Sand Dunes National Park. Its been on my bucket list for years, but theres such a short window of time to go when the creek is flowing (May-mid june) that we always miss it. Theres only a few cabins right there outside the park and they fill up Fast. But when I called in May I asked if they had ANY openings, and we lucked out with an early June opening during the week so we jumped on it. And SO glad we did!
There aren't words to describe the beauty of the sand dunes. Its so unexpected, to be driving through the mountains, and then all of a sudden you are in this valley surrounded by mountains on all sides except for these massive sand dunes in front of you. Just unreal! If the sand dunes aren't on your bucket list they should be! And definitely make sure you go when Medano creek is flowing!
Stay at the Oasis cabins. They are Right outside the park, you can't get closer unless you are tent camping inside the park. They are small and 'rustic' but it was perfect for us with enough room for all 5 of us.
Bring the food you are going to want to eat. Theres only a tiny store that carried some basic items and a small cafe right there, otherwise you need to drive like 30 minutes or so to the nearest town. We brought a huge cooler and cooked all of our meals except lunch on the first day we arrived, we had that at the cafe.
SUN SCREEN. I mean thats a given with the altitude and elevation and SUN, but put on more than you think you need and more often than you think you need. Between the sand and the water, you will get fried if you don't wear like a million SPF. No but seriously, we had on 100 SPF and still needed to reapply every 60-90 minutes and we still got some sun. Tindra who never burns was peeling like crazy the next couple of days.
Other information; you can rent sleds with wax at the little shop at the Oasis cabins, definitely do that. And bring sand toys. Plan on lots of time at the creek. Our kids could have spent all day every day there and done nothing else and would have been happy. Its more like a beach with waves than a creek and its So fun! Also, bring tubes to float in! And water shoes!