White Sands National Monument in the state of New Mexico, United States of America is a massive field of sand dunes made of gypsum crystals. Trying to remember when you last heard about gypsum? Yeah right! Chalks, those blackboard chalk material and this is a huge field making it look like a paradise. Don’t try to eat all of it though 😀
Here are few fun facts about the largest gypsum dune in the world :
1) Gypsum grains make it look like snow-land, thus creating one of a kind views.
Planning a visit? Extreme caution is advised on I-10 while traveling from Texas at night as roads are too narrow and is a playground for rabbits and deer all the way.
2) Dunes are cold at any time of the day/year as gypsum don’t absorb heat but reflects sun rays making them look white. Lets just call it snow.
Spring is the time for heavy winds and you don’t want to be in winds here.
3) You will be standing yards away from atomic bomb detonation.
Watch out for periodic closings due to military installations before visiting.
4) Craving to watch UFOs? This is the place. Just kidding but there are people who claim there have been sightings. Only those know 😀
Carry proper ID/passport. Multiple checkpoints in New Mexico check resident status.
5. Rent snow-saucers at park gift shop to sled down the dunes at designated locations for hours of fun.
6. Lovely place to catch sunrise or preferably sunset. There are even tours on full moon day. Watch out for lizards.
Visitor center is a beauty itself, an old historical Spanish architecture with several exhibits.
7. Fan of Transformers? You will recognize this place instantly. Transformers 1 and 2 war scenes are shot right here.