Sea of Sand

White Sands National Monument

Anchors

The waving dunes of white stretch out before your feet is an experience that can barely be captured into words. The stark beauty and sharp relief of the dunes will take your breath away. Breathe deep. Step into their world. Come back a changed person.
About

White Sands Information

White Sands National Monument rises from the heart of the Tularosa Basin and created the world's largest gypsum dune field.

White Sands National Monument rises from the heart of the Tularosa Basin and created the world's largest gypsum dune field.

Resilient flowers make their home in White Sands National Park
Intrepid hikers make their way across the dunes in White Sands

“The desert could not be claimed or owned–it was a piece of cloth carried by winds, never held down by stones, and given a hundred shifting names.”
Michael Ondaatje

Here, great wave-like dunes of gypsum sand have engulfed 275 square miles of desert and preserves a piece of New Mexico's unique geology. Typically, gypsum is rarely found as sand because it dissolves in contact with water. But, the isolation and weather patterns of the Tularosa Basin creates a truly unique experience for intrepid park explorers. Visitors can hike (trails range from easy to extremely difficult, perfect for every-level of experience), partake in education ranger-led programs and even sled down the dunes in a few designation places.

White Sands National Monument preserves not only major portion of this unique dune field, but also the plants and animals that have successfully adapted to this constantly changing environment.

White Sands was established as a national monument in 1933. Today, its location between several military bases means the monument is sometimes closed due to missile tests. Visitors are always encouraged to check before making the trek.

Making an Impact
Visiting

Visiting White Sands

White sands against blue sky

Map of the Park

Holloman AF , NM
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