Wednesday, February 3, 2010

White Sands National Monument

Imagine walking on mounds of pure white gypsum sand. All you can see are miles and miles of sand dunes and above you are the panoramic New Mexico skies.

We're staying in an RV resort for a few days waiting out a rain storm so we're playing tourist while we're here. I thought you might enjoy a few photos from our visit to White Sands National Monument.

Before your path are 275 miles of sparkling white sand and above you are spectacular clouds in every shape you can think of set against crystal clear blue sky.

Far off in the distance you can see the outline of mountain ranges looking almost black in comparison to the white sea of sand you're walking on.

You can feel the wind blowing on your face but you can't hear a sound, except perhaps the occasional rustling of native grasses clinging to the edge of the dunes.

Comments are welcome.


  1. You know, when i was a kid we went on a trip to NM and i remember walking in these huge sand dunes. the memory never made much sense to me until reading this LOL. very pretty i remember. I've been wondering where you were, i thought you were further east. you should take a detour north and come to Montana. the Archie Bray Foundation is here and it's a wonderful place to see. maybe one day huh? take care. :)

  2. hi linda, when i decided to be a potter and quit my last job, i took my nephew (then 17) on a 3 week cross country adventure and we went to white sands. it blew me away, i had no idea how big it was. we started climbing mounds and then we got to the top of one and it was just white in every direction and i realized that there was no landmark to remember where we parked the car. it was very strange but wonderful... after that we drove up to canyon de chelly, i've been there twice and it's definitely worth it if you head in that direction.

  3. Look at all of the warm LIGHT!!! I'm a bit light starved at this time of year...

  4. beautiful..the sand shapes (waves and lines)are very inspirational...I see lots of carving into clay :)..
    And I'm with should come north :)..and then further into Alberta..we have the Medalta Potteries at Medicine Hat and dinosaurs and sand 'hoo doos' at Drumheller..:)..and an hour north of there, me with a warm cup of tea for weary travellers.! ;)
    Happy trails. T.

  5. What a great adventure! I thought you were farther east, also.

  6. Gorgeous photos Linda. Isn't that an amazing place? I had heard/read about it for years, and never gave it much thought as being a place I wanted to go. We finally went there just last year when we went to visit friends in Las Cruces. I'm so glad we went as it is just breathtaking. No, No, you can't go north yet...keep coming east on I-10, then go north when you hit I-35 and you'll come right by my place. We are having hellacious rains here right now too. Geez I will be in Dallas next week, so hope I don't miss you.

  7. Beautiful pictures, what an adventure you're having. I'm enjoying traveling with you vicariously.

  8. Although the 2 siblings born before me were born in Alamagordo, NM, I have never been to NM. It is absolutely on my list of places I MUST visit.

    Thanks for sharing the gorgeous photos.

  9. Thanks for keeping us up to date on your travels.
    i have never been here- wonderful spot.
    Where to next?

  10. gorgeous pics, Linda. I wonder if there is seaweed nearby-- are you near water? If so, seaweed is great for barrel firings--- I can't remember if you know this. happy travels!

  11. What beauty! Thanks for sharing Linda.

  12. Hi Kim, thanks, I would love to come to Montana, but only in summer, I don't want to drive in that snow and ice.

    Hi Jim, thanks, actually I have a typo and the post should say 275 square miles, but still that is a lot of sand; it can be seen by satallite photo. I have always wanted to go to Canyon de Chelly, but we won't be on this trip, due to weather conditions and time elements, etc.

    Hi Cindy, thanks, I wish I could send you some of the warm light in a bottle, maybe just seeing the light in the photos will help a bit.

    Hi Trish, thanks, I would love to come to Alberta, but again weather would have to be summer, the pottery, dinasaurs, and hoodoos sound wonderful, and the tea too.

    Hi Donna, thanks, I'm having trouble with my back driving for so many hours and all the rest stops in Arizona were closed, so we couldn't stop as often as we should have, so I have had to rest up for a couple of days here. It isn't easy with the RV pulling the trailer because it is so long and hard to get in and out of places.

    Hi Barbara, thanks, we plan on coming by in the next day or so depending upon the weather, we had a lot of rain here too and more expected for today but not as much hopefully. I'll email when we know more.

    Hi Lori, thanks, I am glad you are enjoying the trip along with us that makes it even more fun.

    Hi Julia, thanks, visit in winter, spring or fall, not in summer and be sure to go to Santa Fe and visit all the art galleries and take a side trip to Sedona Arizona too.

    Hi Meredith, thanks, there is so much to see in the United States, I am always amazed even though I have traveled a lot. We are headed to Texas next.

    Hi Amy, thanks, this sea of sand is in the middle of the state with no water nearby, it developed from an inland sea eons ago, so no seaweed nearby, I did use seaweed in my barrel firings and got it at the coast in California when we were there, I'll try to get some as we go along the coast of southern states.

    Hi Patricia, thanks, glad you enjoyed the photos.

  13. Hello
    What a fascinating post, Linda!!
    I envy you because you were(are?) in such a magical spot where white sand and native grasses form various types of beautiful art!!
    PS I love your White Feather piece in the previous post!!

  14. Linda, just think of how much inspiration you are going to have for your clay after this trip! I felt like I was standing there with you by your descriptions, so fun! armchair travels with Linda haha!

  15. Enjoyed looking at the photos of the gypsum sand, and reading your descriptions. What an extraordinary place, the sand looks like a summer snowfall. The link to the wiki about Gypsum was also interesting, you probably read the section there about gypsum crystals of up to 11 meters long in the Naica Mine of Chihuahua in Mexico. Amazing!

  16. These sands are so beautiful I thought I'd seen enough "white stuff" here in the UK this winter but these are something else! Great photos!

  17. Hi Sapphire, thanks, so much, I have so many more pieces I want to make with the black clay and other clays as well. Curiosly we are broke down near some more real sand dunes and we may check them out tomorrow.

    Hi Tracey, thanks, I am hoping others like yourself can experience all there is to see and experience in the world around us.

    Hi Peter, thanks, yes I was intrigued at the information about gypsom and all the crystal formations. Working with clay has gotten me back in touch with so much I learned so long ago and so much about geology and mineraology.

    Hi Cassi, thanks, so nice to see your here. These sands are so calming and much warmer unlike what you are experiencing. really wonderful.


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