White Sands National Park truly a dreamland, covering over 145,762 acres. The White Sands are the largest gypsum sand dune in the world. Gypsum is rarely found as sand because it dissolves in contact with water the park is isolated and its weather patterns make the park unique. Even though the park is covered with white sand some plants and animals get adapted to the environment.
President Herbert Hoover announced the White Sands to be a National Monument in 1933. During World War II, weapons were tested by the US military in the dump field in the park. The area is still an active missile testing site. Before you visit check testing dates to make sure the roads to White Sands are not closed.
Best Time To Visit White Sands National Park:
The best time to visit is late October through November. When the park has the most comfortable temperature which is perfect for hiking and to explore the park. It is also the time when the Cottonwoods are changing color. By mid-November, most of the Cottonwoods have changed color giving you an amazing view.
Expense to Visit White Sands National Park:
- A 7-day pass for a private vehicle costs $25.
- A 7-day pass for an individual above the age of 16 or more costs $ 15.
- Entry fee for 7-days for motorcycle cost $20
- The annual vehicle pass costs $45 the pass admits the pass holder and three persons above the age of 16 years and older in a private non-commercial vehicle.
- The Backcountry camping fee is $3 per person above the age of 16 and older.
- Camping fees for children under 15 cost $1.50 for anyone age 15 and under.
- There is a 50% discount on camping fees for holders of the Federal Access and Senior passes.
- You need to pay monument entrance fees as well as camping fees.
Things To Do in White Sands National Park:
Climb the dunes:
You can climb the wall of the white sand before you start put on your sunglass. The white sands are wet beneath the surface, so you can walk on the surface easily.
Go sand sledding
You can even go for sand sledding some of the dunes are steep enough to slide through. You can even bring plastic sleds to slide through dunes which is absolutely allowed in White Sands
Watch The Sunset:
Sunset at White Sands National Park is a splendid opportunity that you should not miss. The dunes turn shades of blue and pink under the setting sun giving a breathtaking view
Drive to Dunes Drive:
Dunes Drive is an 8-mile drive from the Visitor Center to the dune field. 4 miles of the drive turns road into gypsum, so you can drive on the white sand. The Dunes drive also gives you some amazing view where you get some perfect picture for your instagram.
Go For Hiking :
White Sands has five different trails to choose from a 0.4-mile trail to a 5-mile trail. Interdune Boardwalk is a short trail. It is a 0.4-mile boardwalk that takes through the dunes. Alkali Flat Trail is the hardest of the trails in the park, with 5 miles roundtrip and leads to Lake Otero.
Visit Lake Lucero
To visit Lake Lucero you need to pay $8 per person above the age of 16 and $4 per person below the age of 15 you need to make reservations before 30 days. Lake Lucero which said to be the birthplace of the dunes.