White Sands formed when crystals break down into white grains of sand. The crystals form when gypsum-saturated rains pour over the Tularosa Basin. There is no river outlet and as the rain evaporates the crystals are formed.
Mom and I watched an interesting film at the visitor's center situated at the entrance of the monument. (See more information here.)
The dunes are constantly moving sometimes up to 30 feet per year. One of the regional plants that I found most interesting was the soaptree yucca. It is a fast growing plant (but sometimes it can't even outgrow the dunes). It's roots are on the basin floor and grows up through the dunes. As the dune moves on the stem collapses on itself until the yucca dies.
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