The Ultimate Great Sand Dunes National Park Quiz

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

The highest sand dunes in North America are found in the Great Sand Dunes National Park of Colorado. Take this quiz for a virtual tour of one of America's newest and most majestic national parks.

Which mountain range casts its shadow over the Great Sand Dunes National Park?

The park lies beneath the Sangre de Cristo ("Blood of Christ") mountains.


Where is the park located?

It is in Southern Colorado.


When was the park established?

It was established in 2000.


What is the area of the park?

It covers an area of 84,670 acres (28,318 hectares).


What is the terrain of the area?

It is a combination of sand dunes, desert valley, alpine tundra, and forest.


How large an area do the dunes cover?

They extend over more than 30 square miles (78 square kilometers).


According to archeological findings, when did man first inhabit this area?

Humans walked the area about 9,000 years ago.


Where do you find the biggest dunes?

They are in the inner dunefield.


How much sand do the dunes contain?

They contain five billion cubic meters of sand.


How were the dunes created?

Winds from the southwest and northeast blow loose sand into the valley.


How high are the tallest peaks?

They are over 13,000 feet (3,962 meters) high.


What insects are unique to the dunes?

The Great Sand Dunes tiger beetle and the giant sand treader camel cricket are found nowhere else.


What trees thrive here?

The forests are populated by spruce, pine, aspen, and cottonwood.


What dune is the tallest one visible from the visitors' center?

High Dune is the tallest visible from the visitors' center, although it's not the tallest in the park.


What is the elevation of this dune?

Its elevation is 650 feet (198 meters).


What waterfall exists in the park?

The Zapata Falls gush out of a rock crevasse into a pool of cold water.


From which vantage point can you see the Tijeras and Cleveland peaks, Music Mountain, Wet Mountain Valley and upper Sand Creek Valley?

You will need to climb the steep trail up to Music Pass.


What are reversing dunes?

They are the largest dunes and were formed by winds blowing in opposite directions.


How were the Barchan dunes formed?

These half-moon shaped dunes resulted from ideal conditions of flat land, unidirectional wind and no vegetation.


What is special about the Medano and Sand Creeks?

They have rhythmic waves caused by a pulsating flow.


Explore More Quizzes

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!