Inside the mountain-ringed Tularosa Basin, White Sands National Monument in southern New Mexico is an otherworldly place with 275 square miles of gypsum sand dunes.

My husband and I visited in mid-December, and we were the only visitors who camped overnight among the dunes. In the mornings, we woke to frosted, glistening dunes. We spent our days there in awe, watching the light and colors shift.

bganske_website_exploration_015

bganske_website_exploration_013

bganske_website_exploration_026

white_sands_001

white_sands_002