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Sangre de Cristo Range and Sand Dunes, Colorado USA – January 3rd, 2010

37.7N 105.6W

January 3rd, 2010 Category: Image of the day

USA - December 14th, 2009

USA - December 14th, 2009

The Sangre de Cristo Range cuts diagonally across the upper part of this orthorectified image. It is a narrow mountain range of the Rocky Mountains running north and south along the east side of the Rio Grande Rift in southern Colorado in the United States.

The mountains extend southeast from Poncha Pass for about 75 miles (120 km) through south-central Colorado to La Veta Pass, approximately 20 miles (32 km) west of Walsenburg, and form a high ridge separating the San Luis Valley on the west, in which many circular fields are visible, from the watershed of the Arkansas River on the east.

At the foot of the range in the lower right quadrant is the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, located in the easternmost parts of Alamosa County and Saguache County, Colorado. The park has approximately 85,000 acres (340 km², 130 mi²) and contains the tallest sand dunes in North America, rising about 750 feet (230 m) from the floor of the San Luis Valley on the western base of the Sangre de Cristo Range, covering about 19,000 acres (77 km²).

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