GREAT SAND DUNES
FALL EQUINOX 15        





Reaching into my day pack to find out i am 2 mouthfuls of water from running dry. Being in the middle of a large dune field at the height of a hot day, a cloud of concern sets in.

Sure, i can hike 2 hours back to camp where the rest of my water is. But there won’t be enough: i seem to have vastly underestimated my hydration needs on this trip. Or i can cross the remaining of the field and hope water will be found in the folds of the bordering mountains ― a hazardous proposition at the end of summer. I haven’t got a map but from this vantage point at the summit of a tall dune, those trees in the distance hint that as the crow fly it may not be that far.

No crows are flying over the sand however, and i am wrong anyway: it is no small hike getting there. And once there, there is still no water. So i keep walking the narrow strip between dunes and mountains ― praying for good fortune. Good fortune i eventually get in a lush green gulley reaching to the very edge of the dunes. It looks like your image-perfect oasis...and sure feels like one: rarely has the sound of bubbling water been so sweet to the ears!

Drinking in as much as humanly possible, and with water pack filled, i begin the several hours hike back to camp. It is now late in the day ― good for water retention ― and some of that dune maze will have to be navigated in the dark of the new moon. Don’t just rely on your gps they say!





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