Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hiking up to High Dune

On Monday we decided it was time to hike to the top of High Dune. Lee and Edie joined our quest and we started hiking at the Dunes parking lot. Armed with lots of water, snacks and sunscreen we started plodding up the 650 foot sand pile. High Dune is about a mile from the parking area but a winding path following the firmer sand on the top of the sand ridges took us probably twice that far. The picture to the left was taken about half way up looking toward our campground.

Sometimes the sand was fairly firm but most of the time, as you can see from Edie's and my footprints it was pretty soft and took quite a bit of effort!

Lee was in the lead and here he is going up the final ridge to the summit of High Dune. We did find some 'wild life' on our way up; a lady bug and a sand beetle who was digging down into the sand to find a cool place. During the summer the sand temperature can get up to 140 degrees.
WE MADE IT! After about 2 hours of climbing, rest stops and water breaks here we are at the top of High Dune. Luckily the weather was sunny and we had very little wind. There are 5-14,ooo ft. elevation mountain peaks behind us in the distance. To our right is a deep hole that fell off steeply from the crest of the hill.
Time for a granola break at the top. The view was spectacular in all directions. While we were at the top several other hikers joined us. One was a college gal who had jogged part of the way up and made the summit in 45 minutes. Oh, to be 19 again!

Going down was much easier! Our return trip took about 40 minutes. We were still plodding through the loose sand but we could run, skip or jump....isn't gravity great!

With High Dune directly behind us, here Edie and I are back down on the fairly flat stretch of sand where we began. Yeah! Notice the two hikers behind us who are beginning their trek up.


Nancy said...

Great sites! You guys are looking so healthy and happy. These are good times and great photos.

Anonymous said...

Great photos, guys! I migt steal a few for my collection. Bobbie and Jim

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