STEP INTO THE PAGES OF HISTORY
From mastadons to ghost towns,
forts & cliff dwellings, you’ll find
amazing things to see &
fascinating places to explore.
Historical
GERONIMO SPRINGS MUSEUM
GERONIMO SPRINGS MUSEUM
Located in nearby Truth or Consequences, the museum is home to one of the largest ancient southwestern pottery collections in existence, mammoth and mastodon skulls found nearby, artifacts from early ranch life, extensive Apache and Hispanic historical displays, a minor's cabin and much more.
Geronimo Springs Museum | 575.894.6600 | geronimospringsmuseum.com
GERONIMO TRAIL SCENIC BYWAY
GERONIMO TRAIL SCENIC BYWAY
Named after Geronimo, a famous Apache Warrior, this national byway offers three main routes and interesting side trips. Go north through several ghost towns to the beautiful Gila Mountain backcountry. The central route takes you along the Rio Grande River and lake areas, including Elephant Butte. Head south to see more ghost towns and breathtaking views from Emory Pass in the Black Mountain Range.
Geronimo Trail Scenic Byway | 800.831.9487 | geronimotrail.com | map >
GILA CLIFF DWELLINGS
GILA CLIFF DWELLINGS
A memorable day trip from Elephant Butte, your journey will take you through the picturesque Gila Wilderness to the visitors’ center, open year round. Tour a series of interlinked ruins of ancient cliff dwellings settled by the Mogollon peoples between 1275 and 1300 AD and enjoy several hiking trails, hot springs, bird watching and nature walks.
Gila Cliff Dwellings | 575.536.9461 | Gila Cliff Dwellings details >
GHOST TOWNS
GHOST TOWNS
The greater Elephant Butte area is rich with history, including seven ghost towns dating back to the mid to late 1800’s. You’ll find everything from ruins to complete buildings, some of which have been restored and even converted into museums, shops and restaurants. You’ll have plenty of great photo opportunities as you explore days gone by in these historic towns, now void of residents or only sparsely populated.
ghost town locations & details >
VETERANS MEMORIAL PARK
VETERANS MEMORIAL PARK
Located in neighboring Truth or Consequences, the memorial features a half-scale replica of the world-famous Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall as well as a star-shaped path with informational markers commemorating every U.S. conflict since 1775, including Afghanistan and Iraq. Plus, the Hamilton Memorial Museum will take you on an unforgettable historical military journey.
Veterans Memorials Park | 575.894.7640 | torcveteransmemorial.com
FORT CRAIG
FORT CRAIG
An easy drive north from Elephant Butte, Fort Craig was established in 1854 and served as one of the largest and most important frontier forts in the southwest, playing a crucial role in Indian campaigns and the Civil Wars. Interpretive signs & brochures guide you on your tour. Open year round.
Fort Craig | 575.835.0412 | Fort Craig details >
EL CAMINO REAL MUSEUM
EL CAMINO REAL HISTORICAL TRAILSITE
Located north of Elephant Butte, El Camino Real Historical Trailsite gives you a first-hand look at the rich history of colonists who made the long journey along El Camino Real, the “Royal Road,” beginning in 1598, 22 years before the Mayflower! Enjoy dramatic exhibits and displays as you travel back in time through an era of Pueblo Indians, Spanish & Mexican colonists & conquistadors. 
El Camino Real | 505.854.3600 | caminorealheritage.org
FARM & RANCH MUSEUM
NEW MEXICO FARM & RANCH MUSEUM
A fun day trip from Elephant Butte, the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces brings the 3,000 year-old history of New Mexico’s farming and ranching to life. You can grind corn, learn how to rope, see how cows are milked, visit the livestock, and much more. The museum and 47-acre grounds are open daily year round.
New Mexico Farm & Ranch Museum | 575.522.4100 | nmfarmandranchmuseum.org
OLD MESILLA
OLD MESILLA
If you’re headed south for a day trip to Las Cruces, be sure to take in Old Mesilla, rich in history that includes the Gadsen Purchase, Civil War, Butterfield Stage Coach Trail, Billy the Kid, ghost stories and other legends. Enjoy the old adobe architecture as you shop and dine on the old plaza and visit the museum, Basilica of San Albino and visitors’ center.
Old Mesilla | 575.524.3262 x117 | oldmesilla.org
TRINITY SITE
TRINITY SITE
See where the first atomic bomb was exploded on July 16, 1945, including base camp, ground zero, the ranch house where the plutonium core was assembled and part of the original crater left by the explosion. Trinity Site is open the first Saturday in April and October only. Enter north of Elephant Butte at the I-25 San Antonio exit and head 12 miles east to the Stallion Gate entrance.
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