Sand can tell you a lot about the region in which it is found. The sand at the Dunes Center represents regions on nearly every continent and a plethora of geographic features.

The size of the grain of sand tells you how old it is. Smaller grains have been pounded by natural forces such as wind, water, and waves. Larger sands and gravels are younger and haven’t been subjected to these natural forces for long periods of time.

The color of sand tells you about the region that it’s from. Black sand is volcanic. Red sand comes from regions with high amounts of iron. Local sand comes from the Santa Lucia Mountains and consists of minerals such as quartz, feldspar, and hematite.

The next time you are travelling, collect some sand and add to our collection. Don’t forget to leave flotsam, jetsam, and anything else found in the sand. Label with location and date of collection. How do these sands differ from place to place?

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