While hunting is not permitted anywhere in Great Sand Dunes National Park, licensed hunters may hunt in Great Sand Dunes National Preserve during designated legal seasons. Click "View Park Map" from any page on this website to view a map showing park and preserve boundaries.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Hunting
1) Can I hunt in Great Sand Dunes National Park? Hunting is prohibited within the national park, but is allowed within Great Sand Dunes National Preserve.
2) Can I drive through the national park to access legal hunting areas? Yes.
3) Can I cross the national park on foot to access legal hunting areas? Yes.
4) Can I ride a horse to access hunting areas?Yes. Horses may be off-loaded at the horse trailer parking lot, ridden up the Medano Road to Point of No Return, and then continue on either the road or the Sand Ramp Trail to hunt drainages in the preserve from Medano Creek northward. Manure that falls onto the parking lot must be shoveled back into the trailer before riding away and again upon returning. Horses may also enter the park from the Baca-Grande subdivision to access the Rio Grande National Forest or the same drainages as mentioned above. There are limits to the numbers of livestock that may be in the Cold Creek drainage at one time. Please contact the Visitor Center for more information.
5) Do I need a Great Sand Dunes permit? Yes, you must first obtain a free game transport permit (and a tag for your dashboard if you intend to park overnight) at the Visitor Center or from a ranger. Game transport permits are valid two days before through one day after the current hunting season. Camping permits are also required for the Cold Creek drainage. You can call the Visitor Center at 719-378-6399 between 9-4.
6) Can I set up camp in the national park and hunt in the national preserve or nearby Forest Service or BLM lands? Yes, you may camp in the park at Pinyon Flats Campground and drive to the National Preserve via the Medano Road or to other Forest Service or BLM lands to hunt (see above). Hunters may not hang game or game parts anywhere within the national park. Hunting camps are not allowed at any other location within the National Park. A hunting camp is defined as a base from which hunting activities begin and end each day.
7) Can I transport game across the park?Yes, you may transport your legally tagged and covered game in your vehicle. Game may also be transported by foot or horseback if you have in possession a current game transport permit only within the following designated corridors: The Sand Ramp Trail to either the Liberty Road or to the Medano Road; the Medano Road to the horse trailer parking lot. (See 5)
8) How do I know if I'm in the national park or not? Maps are available at the Visitor Center. It is your responsibility to know your location at all times. The national park boundary is well marked in some locations, but not so well marked in others.
9) What if I wound an animal and it enters the park. Can I pursue it? No. Contact a park ranger or call (719) 378-6399 or (719) 589-5807, to report the incident and location so that a ranger can destroy the wounded animal.
10) Are hunter's required to keep their dogs on a leash at all times within the national preserve? Hunters who are lawfully using dogs during actual hunting activities, such as in pursuit of a mountain lion or retrieving game birds, may loose their dogs. Otherwise, dogs are required to be leashed.
11) I have other hunting questions. Where can I get more information? For other hunting questions contact the Colorado Parks and Wildlife (303) 297-1192 or the National Park Service Visitor Center at (719) 378-6399.
Did You Know?
Great Sand Dunes is home to at least six endemic insect species - found nowhere else on earth. The Great Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle is the best known of these endemics. More...