Ranger Programs

Amphitheater Program at Night
Images and videos are shown during summer evening programs at Great Sand Dunes' open-air amphitheater.

NPS/Graham Oden

Free Ranger Programs


Your visit can be more enjoyable when you better understand the environment around you. Ranger programs are offered primarily in summer and fall, and occasionally during winter and spring. Ranger program schedules are posted below.

 

Free Ranger Programs November 19 - December 3, 2022

Refresh this page for the current program list. All programs are outdoors and weather-dependent.

Sunday, November 20

11 am-Noon Solar Scope Viewing. View the sun safely through a special scope. Visitor center.

1:00 pm Guided Geology Hike through Mosca Pass. Join a ranger on a guided hike through geologic time displayed along the Mosca Pass trail. Learn about the formation and foundation of this section of the Sangre De Cristo Mountain Range in a fun, family-friendly way. Hikers will be able to see exposed faults, fragments of the Ancestral Rockies, the story of how it all got here, and more! Be advised this hike is a minimum of 1.5 miles (2.4km) with an elevation gain of around 500ft. Please wear appropriate hiking attire including closed-toe shoes, bring snacks and a minimum of two liters of water. Meet at Montville/Mosca Pass Trailhead. 2 hours.

Tuesday, November 22

1:30pm Porch Talk: Ancient Paths: The Earliest Peoples at Great Sand Dunes. Rare evidence of the first cultures at Great Sand Dunes give us glimpses into their perseverance, ingenuity, relationships, and creativity. Touch ancient artifacts and throw a spear with an atlatl. Visitor center, 15 minutes.

Wednesday, November 23

1:30pm Porch Talk: The Mysterious Crestone Crater. Located near the town of Crestone, The Crestone Crater is a strange landform that we do not yet fully understand. Join us as we go over some of the different ways that it could have possibly formed. Visitor center, 15 minutes.

Friday, November 25

11 am-Noon Solar Scope Viewing. View the sun safely through a special scope. Visitor center.

1:30pm Porch Talk: The Ice Hidden in the Sand. While the dunes tell a story of heat and sand, there is another story told here, a story of the ice age. We will go through these clues to learn about what this area looked like 12,000 years ago. Visitor center, 20 minutes.

Saturday, November 26

1:30pm Porch Talk: The Mysterious Crestone Crater. Located near the town of Crestone, The Crestone Crater is a strange landform that we do not yet fully understand. Join us as we go over some of the different ways that it could have possibly formed. Visitor center, 15 minutes.

2-3pm Solar Scope Viewing. View the sun safely through a special scope. Visitor center.

Sunday, November 27

11 am-Noon Solar Scope Viewing. View the sun safely through a special scope. Visitor center.

1:30pm Nature Walk: Guided Hike on Sand Sheet Loop Trail. Explore the grasslands and learn about the plants and animals that thrive here. Bring warm clothing and sturdy footwear. This walk is 1/4 mile (1/2 km) round trip, 50 feet (15 m) elevation gain. Meet at visitor center, 45 minutes.

Friday, December 2

1:30pm Porch Talk: The Ice Hidden in the Sand. While the dunes tell a story of heat and sand, there is another story told here, a story of the ice age. We will go through these clues to learn about what this area looked like 12,000 years ago. Visitor center, 20 minutes.

Saturday, December 3

1:30pm Porch Talk: The Mysterious Crestone Crater. Located near the town of Crestone, The Crestone Crater is a strange landform that we do not yet fully understand. Join us as we go over some of the different ways that it could have possibly formed. Visitor center, 15 minutes.

2:00 pm Nature Walk: Guided Hike on Sand Sheet Loop Trail. Explore the grasslands and learn about the plants and animals that thrive here. Bring warm clothing and sturdy footwear. This walk is 1/4 mile (1/2 km) round trip, 50 feet (15 m) elevation gain. Meet at visitor center, 45 minutes.

 
Ranger with Students by Medano Creek 688
Ranger with Students Beside Medano Creek

NPS/Patrick Myers

Programs for Schools

Free educational programs at Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve provide hands-on field experiences that can support and enhance your learning objectives. Visit our Education Page to learn more and request a program!

 
Three women standing in an in alpine area with snow, trees, and tundra
Three hikers on a commercially-guided hiking tour in an alpine area

Courtesy Kaiyote Tours

Commercial Tours

For commercially-guided birding, hiking, backpacking, horseback riding, and four-wheel-drive tours, visit the Commercial Tours page.

Last updated: November 18, 2022

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Visitor Center
11999 State Highway 150

Mosca , CO 81146

Phone:

719 378-6395
Great Sand Dunes Visitor Center main number

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