The Valles Caldera National Preserve was a private ranch until 2000, when Congress created it from a well-known ranch known as “the Baca Ranch” in New Mexico’s volcanic Jemez Mountain Range. This 89,000 acre property is situated inside a collapsed crater. Studded with eruptive domes and featuring Redondo Peak (11,254 feet), this old ranch property is now being developed to explore a new way of managing public lands.
The preserve is open to the public but we guarantee you’ll find the visit unlike any other you’ve had in a park or national forest. We keep the numbers of visitors small for any activity so you’ll feel like you have the place to yourself. Don’t expect big crowds, a shortage of parking, or a shop full of trinkets. Instead, we offer a chance to get out and really experience a sense of solitude that we hope will leave you refreshed and relaxed. You’ll see wildlife, beautiful vistas and learn about the preserve’s rich history and geology.