After leaving Monument Valley, we made our way to Coral Pink Sand Dunes Sate Park in Utah. Our first visit here in the early 80’s was kind of magical. It was a completely unknown place to us at the time. Just a little green square on the map. A place to hang out after the long dash across Nevada. Are the dunes really pink? Well it kind of depends on the time of day you are viewing them. The sand consists of eroded Navajo sandstone blown to this location through a notch between the Moquith and Moccasin Mountains. The actual color of the sand tends to be orange reddish color, but depending on how the light is hitting it, it can vary quite a bit.
The campground is pleasantly tree covered and to our utter amazement offered free hot showers. This was very welcome news to us as tent only campers at the time. I believe it was early fall and the place was virtually deserted. I don’t remember it being so at the time, but the dunes are now a recreation area for OHV’s (off road vehicles). The are separate areas for OHV’s and people, so we felt safe trekking around. Just as then, it was deserted this time as well. In fact, I don’t think it has ever been busy when we were here. We do tend to hit it during early spring and fall though.
Our first visits here, the weather was very warm. During mid day, we would just sit on a dune and watch puffy clouds marching through the valley. The clouds would actually reflect the red of the dunes. Mornings and evenings we would walk the dunes photographing. On this visit, it was VERY cold. Highs were 20’s, lows were teens. We didn’t even venture out one day since there was no sun and high winds. We did get out a couple of times when the winds died down and though it was still cold, had a good experience photographing. I’m sure we will visit here again. Preferably when it is a bit warmer. I never get tired of dune photographing and I think I can add a few more to my dune series which will soon be up on my website.