Garden of the Gods to Great Sand Dunes NP
Trip Start Aug 29, 2013
18Trip End Sep 15, 2013
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Where I stayed
Great Sand Dunes Lodge Mosca
Read my review - 5/5 stars
Read my review - 5/5 stars
It didn't take us long to drive down to I 25 and before long we were whizzing along at 75 MPH
We could see the dunes in front of the mountains from many miles away. We passed the road to Zapata Falls which we hope to visit. When we got close enough we stopped to take a picture. We stopped to take another picture at the entrance and stopped at several markers on the way to the Visitor's Center. In the Center we talked with a naturalist about what there is to do. There is much more to do here than hike up the dunes, which by the way are the tallest in North America. We watched a 20 minute movie on the park
Then we headed to Great Sand Dunes Lodge. On the way back it started to rain in earnest, the biggest drops I had ever seen. It got darker and the thunder cracked and the lightening sparked all across the sky. It was awesome! Then the pea-sized hail started coming down hitting the roof and windows with a terrible racket. We drove west out of the park and got ahead of the storm. Great Sand Dunes Lodge is about a mile outside the park. We drove up the hill to the Lodge and checked in. The manager was really helpful. We got to room 6 and unpacked the car. We decided to sit on our back porch and watch the hummingbirds as the storm approached. When it started raining we stayed on the porch and watched the storm move across the valley. As is cleared in the east we noticed that the Sand Dunes were not a dark brown and looked more like little mountains in front of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in the background
When we were sure the rain was done we went to supper at the Oasis Restaurant, the only one out here. We are miles from the nearest town. It was a very basic restaurant with a pretty good menu. Larry got Colorado Native beer only to find out that it was 3.2% and made in Golden (where Coors is made). For our meals Larry got a Navaho Taco made with Navaho bread instead of a tortilla. It was huge. I got chicken quesadillas with green chili sauce. Larry had read on Trip Advisor about the homemade pies so he got Pumpkin Chiffon and I got Sour Cream and Lemon. Wow! They were made by our waiter's grandmother. Can't wait to try another one tomorrow.
We went back to our room and sat on the porch to watch the hummingbirds and the sunset. Both were spectacular. Erin called while we were out there and we talked a while. The closer it got to sunset the more frenzied the hummingbirds became until there were 8-10 birds at some of the feeders. We saw broad-tailed and black-chinned hummers. We also saw a lot of sphinx moths on the rabbit brush by our porch. Some people call them hummingbird moths because they hover like a hummer and are just slightly smaller. As the sun went down it gave lots of color to the sky. We stayed out until it was very dark. There are no city lights here but we can see the lights of cars miles away moving down the roads. I wrote the blog and Larry studied the maps for our adventures tomorrow.
My Review Of The Place I Stayed