I’ve been intrigued by the Sand Dunes since last month when my friends and I visited them. The photo above KIND of captures the mysterious quality I noticed but didn’t understand. The dunes are never quite in focus. They are always soft and somehow lit from the inside.

In every photo, the phenomenon emerged. Everything around the dunes was clear, sharp, focused. The dunes were always “fuzzy.”


You can see how different the dunes look from everything around them, almost as if they’d been airbrushed into the photo.

I have actually thought about it off and on since my visit and I think I now understand the phenomenon. The wind is almost always blowing in the San Luis Valley. The sand is always moving. Each grain is going somewhere, down, across, depending on gravity or wind, the motion of other grains.

There is also space between the grains and light will go where it can. On top of that, a grain of sand is faceted so each one will reflect light and cast shadows according to its own unique properties.

They are magical and I can’t wait to go back. This video is sand dunes in Death Valley, not “my” dunes here in Colorado, but you can still kind of see what I mean.

6 thoughts on “Sand

  1. I’ve never experienced sand dunes before, but your theory sounds good to me. I think that’s why it’s so easy to get lost … the landscape is constantly changing. Even your footprints disappear quickly.

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