• The dunes in soft light

    White Sands

    National Monument New Mexico

There are park alerts in effect.
show Alerts »
  • Closures and Missile Tests

    Upcoming Missile Tests: From time to time the missile range that surrounds us performs missile testing that may require the closure of the park or Highway 70. Please follow the link below for up to date information on closures More »

  • 2014 WHITE SANDS BALLOON INVITATIONAL

    The White Sands Balloon Committee and the Alamogordo Chamber of Commerce will be hosting both days of the Balloon Festival on Sept 20-21 at the Alamogordo Balloon Fiesta Park in Alamogordo, NM. For more information call 800-826-0294 or (575) 437-6120.

  • Summer Monument Hours

    The monument currently opens at 7 a.m. and closes roughly 1 hour after sunset. More »

  • Road Safety Corridor

    The first four miles of Dunes Drive is a road safety corridor. Slowing or stopping in the corridor is prohibited. Dune Life Nature and Playa trails are also temporarily closed. The staff of White Sands National Monument apologizes for the inconvenience.

Missile Closures

Due to missile testing on the adjacent White Sands Missile Range, it is occasionally necessary to close the Dunes Drive for periods of up to three hours for visitor safety.

Please note that horseback riding is prohibited during all missile tests that affect the monument. Please contact us in advance to verify whether a test has been scheduled for the date of your visit.

The park visitor center and gift shop remain open during missile range closures. Visitors on a tight schedule should contact the park the day before arriving to check on closures at (575) 479-6124.

US Highway 70 between White Sands National Monument and Las Cruces may also be closed during missile testing. For Highway 70 closure information, call the White Sands Missile Range at (575) 678-1178.

 

UPCOMING CLOSURES

There will be no Overnight Camping on Wednesday 3 September, 2014.
The Monument will remained closed untill 09:30 AM. on Thursday 4 September, 2014.
Highway 70W will be blocked at Red and Brown checkpoints.

There will be no Overnight Camping on Monday 15 September, 2014.
The Monument will remained closed until 11:30 AM on Tuesday 16 September, 2014.
Highway 70W will be blocked at Red and Yellow checkpoints.


 

Did You Know?

Photo of sand grains

The gypsum that makes up the white sands starts out as clear, translucent sand grains. As the wind bounces the sand grains along the ground, they collide and scratch each other. The scratches change the way light reflects off the grains, making the sand appear white.