White Sands is one of the most stunning landscapes in the United States. Not only is it the largest collection of sand dunes in the United States, but the beautiful white, gypsum sand dunes are also some of the most unique sand dunes found anywhere in the world. While gypsum is one of the most common minerals on the planet, because it easily dissolves in water, it is very rarely found on the surface of the ground. These unique and amazing traits made White Sands worthy of becoming a National Monument back in 1933.
Consisting of 117 known caves, the biggest of which spans roughly 8 acres and is the largest accessible cave chamber in North America, Carlsbad Caverns is one of the most unique landscapes in the American National Parks system. In addition to being an amazing landscape, the national park is also home to some fantastic wildlife.
The most notable wildlife residents are the parks many species of bats. There are 17 species of bats found in the park and they all live within the caverns. In fact, the park was initially discovered by a young cowboy named Jim White when he saw a large group of bats leaving the caverns back in 1903.
In this third installment of my Epic National Parks Road Trips series, I will be talking to you about an itinerary that takes you thru some of the most remarkable desert mountains and caves in the Southern United States. As you make your way thru the states of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, you will see one of the largest cave systems in the world, one of the biggest cactus species in the world, and beautiful mountains and rivers that have shaped the American Southwest.
2017 was an incredible year of travel for us. We got to see some amazing places that we have always dreamed of seeing. We have been incredibly blessed and fortunate to have been able to travel to and see so many amazing places. For that, we are thankful.
White Sands National Monument is a stunning landscape. So much so that you will likely spend a great deal of time at first just taking in the beautiful scenery. It is breathtaking, especially at sunrise and sunset. We have outlined some great things to do at White Sands below, as well as included links to some other helpful resources for planning your trip.