• 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 Ed Brabson Balloon Park on Lavelle Rd in Alamogordo. Call Pat at (575) 430-9226 from 8-5 pm MDT.

  • 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.

Directions

Getting to the Park

The visitor center is located on Highway US-70 between the cities of Alamogordo and Las Cruces.

From Alamogordo, NM:

Drive time: About 15 minutes
Head west on Highway US-70. The visitor center is located about 15 miles (24 km) west of Alamogordo on the north side (right-hand side) of the road.

From Las Cruces, NM:

Drive time: About 1 hour
Head east on Highway US-70 towards Alamogordo. The visitor center is located about 52 miles (84 km) east of Las Cruces on the north side (left-hand side) of the road, one mile past the Border Patrol station.

From El Paso, TX:

There are two ways to arrive at White Sands from El Paso.

Through Las Cruces:
Drive time: 1.5 hours.
1) Take I-10 West towards Las Cruces. After 39 miles, take exit on to I-25 North. Follow I-25 North for about 7 miles and then exit onto US-70 East towards Alamogordo. Drive for about 52 miles to the visitor center.

Through Alamogordo:
Drive time: 1.5 hours
2) Take US-54 East towards Alamogordo and drive about 82 miles. Then turn left onto US-70 West towards Las Cruces. The visitor center will be about 15 miles down on the right-hand side.

GPS Coordinates:

32° 46' 45" North, 106° 10' 19" West

To download a copy of the map (with directions) below as well as other detailed maps of the park, click here.

 
Area Map
Area Map
NPS Photo

Did You Know?

Photo of ripples on a dune

The wind moves small sand grains by bouncing them along the surface in a process called "saltation." Saltating sand grains create a beautiful pattern of ripples on the dune surface. Larger sand grains are struck by saltating grains and slowly roll forward, a process known as "surface creep."