Dune Life Nature Trail
ElevationAscent: 69' 21 m
Descent: -52' -16 m
High: 4,016' 1,224 m
Low: 3,986' 1,215 m
GradeAvg Grade: 2% (1°)
Max Grade: 5% (3°)
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“Your introduction to the fascinating landscape of White Sands National Monument.”— Brian Smith
The trail crosses the flat vegetated desert plain for the first 300 yards or so before beginning to ascend into the dunes. Along the way, trailside exhibits offer lots of information about the wildlife that you might see in the White Sands. Each display board in broken into two sections of information--one for adults and one for kids.
That said, this is not a play area - the trail is intended for nature study. Kids (and adults!) are welcome play out in the "Heart of the Sands," beside the picnic areas, away from plants and the road.
Plants play a crucial function in the ecosystems of White Sands National Monument, stabilizing the windward sides of the dunes and providing both shelter and food for fauna.
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Land Manager: National Park Service - White Sands National Monument