New Mexico is one of the 50 states of the United States of America. The state belongs to the Western region of the US and has 2,082,224 inhabitants (2011). The capital is Santa Fe and the standard abbreviation for the state is NM.
In Dutch, the state is also called New Mexico. The Spanish name is Nuevo México.
New Mexico borders Utah, Colorado and Oklahoma to the north, Texas to the east and Arizona to the west. In the southwest, New Mexico borders the country of Mexico.
The point where Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico meet is called Four Corners.
The eastern part of the state is a plateau that is part of the Great Plains. The southern part of these are the Llano Estacado, the Staked Plains).
In the central northern part of New Mexico are the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
The center and southwest of the state is formed by the Basin and Range area. This is a series of mountain ranges that alternate with valleys and desert basins.
West of the Rio Grande are mountain ranges such as the Mogolon Mountains, Black Range and Mimbres Mountains.
Northwestern New Mexico is part of the Colorado Plateau. This consists of broad plains dotted with table mountains and intersected by deep canyons.
There are many extinct volcanoes in the state.
The highest mountain in New Mexico is Wheeler Peak with a height of 4,011 meters. This peak is part of the Rocky Mountains, which cross New Mexico from north to south.
The most important river in the state is the Rio Grande. It separates the state from north to south into two parts. Another important river is the Pecos, tributary of the Rio Grande.
Climate and tourism
New Mexico has a dry climate with lots of sunshine. There are quite large differences in temperature between day and night.
Tourist attractions in the state include the white sands of White Sands and the stalactite caves at Carlsbad.
New Mexico has many Indian reservations.
Cities New Mexico
Besides the capital Santa Fe are a number of large cities in New Mexico: Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, Roswell, Farmington, Clovis, Hobbs, Alamogordo, Carlsbad.
Counties New Mexico
According to countryaah.com, New Mexico is divided into 33 counties.
El Morro National Monument
In western New Mexico is a small park called El Morro, which is special because it contains a large sandstone monolith covered with petroglyphs. Ancient ancestors scratched all kinds of pictures into the soft rock wall. The monolith towers over the surrounding landscape and in its shadow is a drinking water reservoir. Perhaps because there was a sufficient supply of water here throughout the year, it became a place of meeting and rest. Immigrants, soldiers, and later Mormon settlers enjoyed the shade and plenty of water providing the basics for a moment’s rest on the long trek through the unknown wilderness.
It served as a natural stop for all the people who passed through it from east to west and vice versa. On the sandstone wall you will find evidence of the life of the original Native American inhabitants of the area. The Anasazi lived here during the 14th century and even built their settlement here. However, the Indians left this area in the 15th century for unknown reasons, so their former presence is now only evidenced by drawings.
After some time, the conquering Spaniards also reached these places. They first appeared here in 1583 during their discovery expedition. However, it was not until April 16, 1605 that Governor Don Juan de Onate left the first inscription recording the discovery of the South Sea and the Gulf of California. Everyone who came here after him was inspired by his inscription, and hundreds of other inscriptions, information, names and signatures began to fill the sandstone wall. Thanks to this stone chronicle, historians have an overview of the importance of the place and the numerous frequency of individual visits.
In 1906, the area was declared a park, and since then the sandstone wall has been protected from further description. It is a rare monument that maps the last 400 years of significant changes that have affected the local area. It connects the times of the first discovery and settlement of the landscape by white settlers with the present. If you would still like to experience what it’s like to write in stone today, you have the opportunity to do so on the large sandstone block standing in front of the visitor center. Of course, you can look at the signs, but the park has relatively short opening hours. If you want to get to the very top of the monolith, count on a two-hour journey. The main gate at the Hwy 53 turnoff is also closed after closing time.