Located steps away from the property are thousands
of public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Unless
specifically prohibited, these lands are open to hunting in New Mexico and
feature three main types of hunting available -- upland game bird, small game,
and big game (for example, deer, antelope, and elk). Varmint (non-game) hunting
also is allowed. Learn more at http://www.wildlife.state.nm.us/
El Malpais National Monument and Park
This area of wild and
wonderful land encompasses over 350,000 acres, and offers experiences that
range from scenic drives and self-guided trails to remote wilderness
exploration. This area was established in 1987 to protect nationally
significant geological, archaeological, ecological, cultural, scenic,
scientific, and wilderness resources surrounding the Zuni-Bandera volcanic
field. Here you can hike the El Calderon Trail and back country camp to see the
long sloping hills of a quiet volcano and winding trenches that were once
glowing rivers of lava. Go caving and explore the Bat and Xenolith Caves.
This conservation area also
includes dramatic sandstone cliffs, canyons, La Ventana Natural Arch, Chain of
Craters Back Country Byway, Joe Skeen Campground, the Narrows Picnic Area, and
the Cebolla and West Malpais Wilderness Areas. There are many opportunities for
photography, hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing as well as opportunities to
see abundant wildlife: deer, elk, mountain lions, bobcats, coyote, bears,
turkeys, snakes, and lizards.
Learn more at https://www.nps.gov/elma/index.htm
Ventana Natural Arch
La Ventana, meaning “the window,” is the
second largest arch in New Mexico and has a span of 120 feet. It’s five miles
east of Grants, New Mexico and features beautiful wildflowers and a walking
trail. This trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird
watching and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
of Craters Wilderness Study Area
Located within the El Malpais National
Conservation Area, Chain of Craters is a line of more than 25 cinder cones that
was the result of magma finding a weak spot in the Earth's crust. The lower
elevations are dominated by piсon and juniper woodland giving way to forests of
ponderosa pine at higher elevations.
The Ice Cave and Bandera Volcano
Located only 23
miles from the property is an area known as "The Land of Fire and
Ice," the Ice Cave and Bandera Volcano.
Here you can walk through the twisted old-growth Juniper, Fir, and
Ponderosa Pine trees; over the ancient lava trails; down into the cave; and
into a dormant volcano.
The Ice Cave
Located in part of a collapsed lava tube, the inside of the ice cave glistens
blue-green in the reflected rays of sunlight. Here, the Ice Cave's
temperature never rises above 31º F. The natural layers of the perpetual ice
create such an atmosphere that even subspecies of algae can grow fruitful in
near freezing conditions.
The trail to the Ice Cave is nearly a quarter
mile long, and takes 20 minutes to complete. The viewing platform is located 70
steps from the initial landing near the surface of the lava tube. The final
landing is located within the cave, with a spectacular view of the perpetual
ice, and natural cave formation. The cave is subtly lit with the
outside ambience, no lighting implements are required.
The volcano is 800 ft. deep and exploded in
volcanic fury some 10,000 years ago - very young in geologic time. It is
one of the finest examples of an erupted volcano in the country, and one of the
The trail to the Bandera Volcano is nearly
half a mile long and takes 40 minutes to complete. The trail rises gradually
from its base to its lookout, a total 150 feet. The lookout gives clear
vantage to observe the shattering effects that shook the earth nearly 10,000
years ago, spewing magma from within, and bursting out the southern side.
Grants is on the north end of the large lava
field known as El Malpais, meaning "the badlands", part of which is
preserved as El Malpais National Monument. To the northeast of town are the San
Mateo Mountains and Mount Taylor, at 11,301 feet (3,445 m) the highest peak in
the region. West of the city is the Continental Divide and the Zuni Mountains,
an eroded anticline with 2-billion-year-old Precambrian granites and
metamorphic rocks at its core. The region is primarily high desert country,
dominated by sandstones and lava flows.
Created in 1981 from Valencia County, Cibola
County encompasses an area of approximately 4,540 square miles and has a
population of 27,213 (2010). The City of Grants is the County seat.
Cibola County sits entirely within the
Colorado Plateau region with elevations from 5,460 feet to 11,300 feet (Mount
Taylor). The County encompasses open rangeland, broken terrain, escarpments,
plateaus, mesas, and mountainous areas with the Malpais lava beds in the
central region. The Continental Divide runs roughly north to south through the
western half of the County. Precipitation varies from as little as seven (7)
inches to twenty-five (25) inches in the mountainous areas east of Mount
Economic activity derives from tourism
(national forest areas, wilderness areas), entertainment and lodging (casinos,
various events such as the Seven Trails of Gold, Octoberfest, etc.), mining
activity, agriculture, and the service sector (retail and healthcare are major
employers). Interstate 40 runs through the county along with U.S. Route 66,
BNSF provides rail transport, and the Grants Milan Airport offers regional
Land Ownership is characterized by the amount
of land owned or controlled by the Pueblos (Acoma, Laguna, and Zuni), the Ramah
and To’hajiilee Navajo Chapters, the federal government, State of New Mexico,
and private land (less than one-third of the land area of Cibola County).
Most of the County is rural in nature with
only two major urban centers, Grants and Milan, together with a number of
smaller designated places such as San Rafael, Bluewater Village, Fence Lake,
Cubero, and San Mateo.