Fun in the sand

Good morning to all! Sorry it took me a little while to do an update from the weekend, but I was tired! 🙂

First things first, the level of Candy Crush Saga that I was stuck on forever in the car, I passed on the next try! Whoo-hoo!

We arrived at our campsite around 8:15 pm and it was a perfectly, beautiful night. Nate got busy setting up the tent while I took Telli for a walk. We took Telli camping last year when she was only 5 months old, so we didn’t quite know if she would remember what camping was. Well this was a different kind of camping….almost in the desert. Very hard ground, rocky and small cactus’ everywhere….no grass. Telli kept looking at me on the walk like, “mom I really need to go to the bathroom, but there is no grass to go on!”

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You can see the desert land, the sand dunes right behind that followed by the large mountains! It was a beautiful view from our campsite! On Sunday morning Telli had us up at 5:30 to go for a walk. The only good part about getting up that early after a rough night camping, was the sunrise! My photos don’t do it justice, but the way the soft light hit the mountains and the sand dunes, it was an incredible sight! After a quick egg breakfast we headed out the Great Sand Dunes National Park!

I will be honest, I didn’t know what to expect. I thought it was just a huge field of sand that you played in, ran down. sand surfed on, etc…..I didn’t know you go for quite the long hike…in sand!

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We started the hike and it was flat like a big beach and we probably walked a couple hundred yards. Then the incline started, and boy, it was an incline. For every step you took I feel like you slide back a foot in the sand. The “only 1 mile hike” quickly turned more difficult! We hiked…stopped for water breaks….hiked some more and stopped some more….

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Let me tell you though…..sand has never been so beautiful! In case you are wondering the sand dunes were formed from deposits of sand coming out of the Sangre De Christo mountains and sand that was wind blown from the San Luis Valley. If you want more information, it as a very interesting history, read the story here. I still find it so crazy that this amazing formation, the largest in North America, is just plopped in the middle of the Rocky Mountains!

We finally made it to the top of one of the sand dunes! Telli reached the top first!

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She had so much fun–but I’m sure, like her mama, was exhausted! I reached the top and it was a beautiful view. It’s like the world’s biggest beach with mountains in the backdrop!

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And now the fun part….going down! You had the option to take the trail (the ridge line where it was easier to walk) back down or just run or surf down the dune. I decided to run…and hopefully not tumble! It was so fun…but challenging too! It was pretty steep and the sand had gotten pretty hot by this point so I started doing a little dance while running down too! Since there weren’t many people around us running down the hill we let Telli off the leash and she had a blast! Zooming around us up and down enjoying this new thing…SAND!  Then when she got tired she dug into the sand so she could lay on cooler sand….she’s so smart!

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We got to the bottom where there is a small creek, Medano Creek. It’s only a couple inches deep, but the perfect depth to cool of your paws and feet! We played in the water for a bit and even walked pretty far down the creek!! Telli loved every minute of it!

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After a little relaxing on “the beach” we headed back to the campsite for a relaxing afternoon. We chatted in the sun, took a nap in the chairs, and the dogs passed out for the rest of the afternoon. Telli wanted so badly to stay awake, she was doing the whole head bobbing I want to be awake, but my eyes are so tired!

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We enjoyed a campfire, s’mores, dinner conversation and the sunset before heading to bed.

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The next morning, Telli had me up at 5:30 again to take a walk! It was chilly! You can tell a cold front came through overnight (I remember really using my mummy sack sleeping bag in the middle of the night!). I put on so many different layers and just couldn’t warm up, so I brought Nate’s sleeping bag out to enjoy my much needed morning coffee! Nate told me it looked like I was wearing a down snuggie! 🙂

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While we packed up the camping gear the dogs played and rested. The did so good considering they were tied up in a campsite! Lots of untangling leashes and leads. They were very dirty from the dusty dirt after this trip…Telli almost looked like an older lab with grey patches!

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On our way out of town, we stopped by another “thing to do.” Hike 1/2 mile to Zappata Falls. It was a nice easy walk (I can’t call it a hike after the Sand Dunes the day before). We got to the base of the falls and unfortunately you have to walk around a cave  to see the falls. As much as I wanted to see it, I think many people had our same idea because it was super crowded, and we weren’t able to take Telli. There were portions where you had to hold onto ropes attached to the walls and /or cross the river. Even at the base of the falls it was still beautiful!

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It was a great way to spend a long weekend and enjoy conversations by friends! I am so thankful to those who served our country and fought for our freedom so that I can feel safe and enjoy Gods beautiful creation!

❤ God Bless