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White Sands National Monument, NM

White Sands National Monument, NM

The White Sands National Monument is another one of those adventures that you need to do with your dog! The white sand is actually crystallized gypsum created when water in the area evaporates. The area is surrounded mostly by mountain ranges. Combine that with wind and you get some really neat white dunes for a desert-like landscape.

Entrance fees to the park are $5 for adults over 15 years old. Call ahead to (575) 479-6124 ext. 236 or check online to make sure the park is open as they close periodically when there is testing done by the White Sands Missile Range nearby. Dogs must be on a 6 foot leash. You must pick up after your dog. The best time to go is on a clear, dry day outside of Monsoon season in early July through mid-October. The park does offer events and programs for visitors. Check out the calendar for more information.

Go early in the day or late in the day to avoid some of the heat as it’s better for your dog. Don’t forget to catch a magnificent sunrise and sunset view.

It is recommended to stay on the five trails that clearly marked. You may find it hard to backtrack your steps if you wander off. Most trails are very short. The one we would recommend for dogs is the 1.5 hour, 2 mile round-trip Backcountry Camping Trail because you’ll really get to the dunes. You will have to climb on some steep dunes so make sure you and your dog are fit enough to do so. Bring a sled with you to go down the dunes as your reward for grudging the uphill climb. The Playa Trail is also great if you want a short easy trail. Mind other people on the trails, which include hikers and runners.

Backcountry camping is available with a permit and available at the visitor center. Camping here probably isn’t best if you are a beginner. The park provides some tips so that campers are prepared. Remember to bring a lot of water with you.

Don’t want to get out of your air-conditioned car? Cars are allowed on the dunes on Dunes Drive which heads out from the visitor center. Take a break and get out of your car for awhile and go sledding! Biking is also allowed on Dunes Drive.

Neat Tidbits: The White Sands National Monument is the world’s largest gypsum dunefield!

Take a photo of you dog at the White Sands National Monument!


 

Help a fellow dog owner! Do you have an adventure story? Contact us and we will link it to this pawtivity or event! Where did you go? What did you do? Please include any useful tips and advice that would help others!

Location: Alamogordo, NM  | Otero County  |  Chihuahuan Desert  |  New Mexico
Activities: Hiking, Walking, Camping, Sledding, Biking, Sightseeing

Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas

Hot Springs National Park, AR

Take a relaxing trip to Hot Springs National Park and soak up in a thermal pool of water. This isn’t the typical national park that you think of. For starters, it’s more like a mini-resort where you can get pampered with modern spa services or relax indoors. Dogs are allowed, however, outdoors on trails and at the campground. They are not allowed in any buildings, including Fordyce Bathhouse (visitor center) or any of the 8 bath houses available for services on Bathhouse Row.

You can walk with your dog outside on Bathhouse Row and on the Grand Promenade. Several trails extend out in the park where you can take your dog. We don’t have a recommendation for a particular trail, but one that caught our eye was a 10 mile Sunset Trail. We think that the harder the workout, the more you will appreciate the relaxation that follows! Camp at the Gulpha Gorge Campground, where on-site reservations are on a first-come, first-serve basis only. Hotels are plentiful in the surrounding area.

What trail did you end up going on with your dog? How was it? Would you recommend it to others?


 

Help a fellow dog owner! Do you have an adventure story? Contact us and we will link it to this pawtivity or event! Where did you go? What did you do? Please include any useful tips and advice that would help others!

Location: Hot Springs, AR  |  Ouachita Mountains  |  Garland County  |  Arkansas
Activities: Spa, Bath House, Hiking, Camping

Bonneville Salt Flats

Bonneville Salt Flats, UT

Did you know that dogs can sniff 1,000 times better than we can? No wonder they are always sniffing around everywhere.

Dazzle all the senses by taking your dog to the Bonneville Salt Flats for some stark white, serene beauty that’s out of this world. You’ll be the only living beings, as nothing can grow in the area. If you look around, you may spot some sculptures or art that others have added to the area.

The Bonneville Salt Flats was once a gigantic lake that covered most of Utah. The lake dried up leaving minerals behind, including gypsum and halite (salt). Today, the salt flats now measure an area of about 12 miles by 5 miles. The Bonneville Speedway, towards Wendover, NV, is an area designated for motor sport races.

To get to the Bonneville Salt Flats, take exit 4 off the I-80 between Salt Lake City and Wendover, NV. The best place to stop is 10 miles east of Wendover where there is a rest area. From November to May, the salt flats are actually wet. Given hot summer heat, it’s probably best to go with your dog late spring, early summer or early fall. If you do go during summer, go early or late in the day and catch the sunrise or sunset. Don’t forget to bring paw protection, water, sunglasses and sunblock with you!

You can actually drive on the salt flats, but avoid areas that are wet as the salt crust may actually be muddy underneath. Please note that salt can be damaging and even corrosive to your car. At times, the area may be closed off to cars but you’ll have to look for posted signs.


 

Help a fellow dog owner! Do you have an adventure story? Contact us and we will link it to this pawtivity or event! Where did you go? What did you do? Please include any useful tips and advice that would help others!

Location: Tooele County | Utah
GPS Coordinates: 40.79527778, -113.8277778 Map
Activities: Walking, Sightseeing

Tide Pool

Cabrillo National Monument, CA

Want to go exploring some great tidepools? Head over to Cabrillo National Monument (San Diego ,CA), located at the tip of Point Loma Peninsula. The area is not very dog friendly, however, the tidepools are worth a trip.

Dogs are allowed on the Coastal Trail that goes to the tidepool area and leashed at all times. Dogs may not walk on Cabrillo Road or on any other trails in the park.


 

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Location: San Diego, CA  |  California
Activities: Beach, Walking, Tide Pool

Monument Valley - Dog Friendly

Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, UT

Monument Valley (Oljato-Monument Valley, UT) is famous for its sweeping views of desert floor. Rock pinnacles, molded by wind and water, extend towards the sky for a breathtaking experience. There is a 17 mile scenic drive that goes through the park open April – September 6:00am – 7:00pm and October – March 8:00am – 4:30pm. Allow about 2 hours for the scenic drive. Park entrance fees are $20 per car for up to 4 adults. Learn more about hours and fees.

Dogs are allowed on leash at all times in the park. Hikers and campers need a backcountry permit. Campers should be experienced. An alternative option is to go to the Gouldings campground and lodge.

Trails in this area are moderately strenuous to strenuous. Trailheads are not maintained well, so use a gps device. Visitors should be advised to find out conditions during wet weather. The area is still part of an Indian reservation, so please respect rules and regulations. The Wildcat Trail is the only self-guided trail (Trailhead GPS Coordinates: 36.985333, -110.113350) that will take you past Mitten Buttes and Merrick Butte. For guided tours of the area, call to inform about pet policies – many are small service providers and may have a case by case basis for pets.

GPS Coordinates: 36.9980285,-110.1006514 Map

What did you do at Monument Valley? If you camped or hiked, where did you go? How did you prepare and any tips for others going to Monument Valley?

 

Help a fellow dog owner! Do you have an adventure story? Contact us and we will link it to this pawtivity or event! Where did you go? What did you do? Please include any useful tips and advice that would help others!

Location: Oljato-Monument Valley, UT | San Juan County | Utah
Activities: Camping, Backpacking, Hiking, Walking

Go Desert Camping With Your Dog

Desert Camping

The desert is a beautiful place to go camping with your dog. Many go for some great hiking or to see a majestic desert sunset. Others go to see unusual wildflowers or to visit cliff formations and old cliff dwellings. If you’re feeling adventurous, rent some ATVs and dirt bikes, go rockhounding for geodes and minerals, go rock climbing, or gallop around the desert on a horse or jeep tour.

Winter is a great time to go desert camping as temperatures feel like a mild summer instead of in the triple digits. Along with the beauty of desert camping comes the extra preparation involved. You will need plenty of fresh water and some type of shade to protect against daytime heat. Chances are your dog is not used to the unusual and sometimes poisonous wildlife and plants in the desert. Make sure your dog is on leash and obedient to your commands – it’s best not to let your dog roam around freely or poke around in any dark crevices. Let him snuggle next to you at night! Don’t forget to set up camp on high ground away from water sources.

Did you see anything interesting in the desert? Take a picture of the sunset or sunrise with your dog!

 

Help a fellow dog owner! Do you have an adventure story? Contact us and we will link it to this pawtivity or event! Where did you go? What did you do? Please include any useful tips and advice that would help others!

Activities: Camping, Biking, Hiking, Walking, Sightseeing