Las Cruces District Office
1800 Marquess Street
Las Cruces, NM 88005-3370
The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail, which begins in Mexico and ends in Canada, offers spectacular backcountry experiences along the nation's continental divide. At the U.S.-Mexico border the trail heads north through the arid New Mexico desert before it reaches the rugged, forested mountains of the Gila National Forest, and one of our country's most spectacular wilderness areas, the Aldo Leopold. The trail then crosses the El Malpais, one of the best examples of recent volcanic landscapes in the U.S. Here the trail coincides with the 1,000-year-old Zuni-Acoma trade route, crossing rugged lava flows.In New Mexico, the trail is not complete and trail markers exist only intermittently. It's best to check with the local BLM or Forest Service offices to determine the trail location and which sections are marked or constructed.
Map + Directions
Although some maps show a completed trail, contact the office that manages the area for the latest updates. Albuquerque Field Office AreaThere is access to the trail from El Malpais' Chain of Craters Back Country Byway on County Road 42. From Ignacio Chavez Special Management Area and the upper Rio Puerco Valley, access the trail from BLM Road 1103, County Road 25 and County Road 279.Socorro Field Office Area A 34-mile portion of the trail is located on BLM land in the Pelona Mountain Area. This portion of the trail can be reached via NM 163 or Forest Road 28 which joins Highway 12.