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Sangre de Cristo Range Cutting Diagonally Across Colorado, USA – December 12th, 2011

37.5N 105.4W

December 12th, 2011 Category: Deserts, Image of the day, Mountains

USA- December 11th, 2011

Cutting diagonally across this orthorectified image of Colorado, USA, is the Sangre de Cristo (Christ’s Blood) Range. It is a narrow mountain range of the Rocky Mountains running north and south along the east side of the Rio Grande Rift.

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.

Upon opening the full image, the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve can be seen at the western base of the mountains (lower right). The park stretches across about 85,000 acres (340 km², 130 mi²). It contains the tallest sand dunes in North America, rising about 750 feet (230 m) from the floor of the San Luis Valley. Many individual rows of dunes can be observed in the full image.

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