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Mountains, Circular Crops and Sand Dunes in Colorado, USA – August 28th, 2009

37.7N 105.5W

August 28th, 2009 Category: Image of the day

USA - July 27th, 2009

USA - July 27th, 2009

The terrain of this orthorectified image of southern Colorado, USA, contains an interesting ensemble of features, including areas of mountains, sand dunes and agriculture.

Reaching across the upper part of the image is the Sangre de Cristo Range, a narrow mountain range of the Rocky Mountains that runs north and south along the east side of the Rio Grande Rift in southern Colorado in the United States.

The mountains form a high ridge separating the San Luis Valley on the west from the watershed of the Arkansas River to the east.

Upon following the range to the right edge, the dunes of the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve can be seen at its western base.  The park has an area of 340 km² (130 mi²) and contains sand dunes that rise about 230 m (750 feet) from the floor of the San Luis Valley.

Moving westward through the valley, a large number of circular fields dot the landscape. This irrigated farming is not as common in other parts of the state, as much of the land is used for dryland farming or ranching.

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