Check out our video below so you can see for yourself what backcountry camping is like here.
If you’ve never been to White Sands New Mexico definitely put it on your list. This is one of the most spectacular desert parks in the U.S. and a fantastic road trip. The park is open from about 8am to 9pm, with the exception of those who secure backcountry camping permits. There are only 10 spots available, and you will literally be out in the middle of the glorious white sand dunes with no hook ups, no water and no cell phone reception. It’s fantastic.
The tent sites are only available to reserve in person the day you want to camp so get to the visitor center early! Once in the park, you’lol find the area for backcountry camping parking. Then it’s time to head out to find your campsite. Make sure you spot the first marker before heading out. We didn’t immediately spot it and got a bit lost but we found it eventually. You’ll hike anywhere from 3/4 of a mile to over a mile depending on which site you reserve. You’re not really in visual sight of other tents, though you could hike out to meet some of them if you choose to be neighborly. Somehow we ended up hosting 3 fellow campers who were each out wandering the dunes on their own after setting up camp. So we brought out some waters and snacks and star gazed with our fellow travelers for a bit. The night sky is extraordinary and Mars was fully visible (and red) the night we were there. The temperature cools down substantially at night and the sand is super soft and cool even when the temperatures reached 104 during the day. We made a few videos to better illustrate the wonder of this epic location. We sincerely hope you get to experience this one day!