Sangre de Cristo Wilderness

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Sangre de Cristo Wilderness
IUCN category Ib (wilderness area)
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Location Colorado, United States
Coordinates 37°59′18″N105°36′20″W / 37.98833°N 105.60556°W / 37.98833; -105.60556 Coordinates: 37°59′18″N105°36′20″W / 37.98833°N 105.60556°W / 37.98833; -105.60556 [1]
Area220,803 acres (893.56 km2) [2]
Established1993
Governing body U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service

The Sangre de Cristo Wilderness is a long and narrow wilderness area covering 220,803 acres (893.56 km2) of the Sangre de Cristo Range centered about Saguache and Custer counties, Colorado. Smaller areas are located in Fremont, Alamosa, and Huerfano counties. All of the wilderness area is located on U.S. Forest Service land within the San Isabel and Rio Grande National Forests and Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. The wilderness area is home to several fourteeners and quite a few thirteeners. Crestone Needle is considered the most difficult.

Contents

Flora & Fauna

This wilderness is home to black bears, cougars, elk, and bighorn sheep. Forested areas consist predominantly of spruce and aspen.

History

The Peaks had traditional and religious significance to the region's early Spanish settlers, hence the name, which means "Blood of Christ".

Geology

The faulted and uplifted mountains of the Sangre de Cristo are geologically distinct from the Spanish Peaks range to the east.

Related Research Articles

Sangre de Cristo Range American mountain range

The Sangre de Cristo Range is a high, rugged and narrow mountain range of the Rocky Mountains in southern Colorado in the United States, running north and south along the east side of the Rio Grande Rift. The mountains extend southeast from Poncha Pass for about 75 mi (121 km) through south-central Colorado to La Veta Pass, approximately 20 mi (32 km) west of Walsenburg, and form a high ridge separating the San Luis Valley on the west from the watershed of the Arkansas River on the east. The Sangre de Cristo Range rises over 7,000 ft (2,100 m) above the valleys and plains to the west and northeast.

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve American national park, large sand dunes on eastern edge of the San Luis Valley, Sangre de Cristo Range, Colorado, United States

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is an American national park that conserves an area of large sand dunes up to 750 feet (229 m) tall on the eastern edge of the San Luis Valley, and an adjacent national preserve in the Sangre de Cristo Range, in south-central Colorado, United States. The park was originally designated Great Sand Dunes National Monument on March 17, 1932, by President Herbert Hoover. The original boundaries protected an area of 35,528 acres. A boundary change and redesignation as a national park and preserve was authorized on November 22, 2000, and then established by an act of Congress on September 24, 2004. The park encompasses 107,342 acres while the preserve protects an additional 41,686 acres for a total of 149,028 acres. The recreational visitor total was 527,546 in 2019.

Sangre de Cristo can refer to:

Sangre de Cristo Mountains

The Sangre de Cristo Mountains are the southernmost subrange of the Rocky Mountains. They are located in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico in the United States. The mountains run from Poncha Pass in South-Central Colorado, trending southeast and south, ending at Glorieta Pass, southeast of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The mountains contain a number of fourteen thousand foot peaks in the Colorado portion, as well as all the peaks in New Mexico which are over thirteen thousand feet.

Blanca Peak

Blanca Peak is the fourth highest summit of the Rocky Mountains of North America and the U.S. state of Colorado. The ultra-prominent 14,351-foot (4,374 m) peak is the highest summit of the Sierra Blanca Massif, the Sangre de Cristo Range, and the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. The fourteener is located 9.6 miles (15.5 km) north by east of the Town of Blanca, on the drainage divide separating Rio Grande National Forest and Alamosa County from the Sangre de Cristo Land Grant and Costilla County. The summit is the highest point of both counties and the entire drainage basin of the Rio Grande. Below the steep North Face of Blanca Peak two live Glaciers once developed, until extinction sometime after 1903. North & South Blanca Glaciers were located at 37° 35N.,longitude 105° 28W. Blanca Peak is higher than any point in the United States east of its longitude.

Crestone Peak

Crestone Peak is the seventh-highest summit of the Rocky Mountains of North America and the U.S. state of Colorado. The prominent 14,300-foot (4,359 m) fourteener is the highest summit of the Crestones and the second-highest summit in the Sangre de Cristo Range after Blanca Peak. The summit is located in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness of Rio Grande National Forest, 5.0 miles (8.1 km) east by south of the Town of Crestone in Saguache County, Colorado, United States.

Sierra Nacimiento

The Sierra Nacimiento, or Nacimiento Mountains, are a mountain range in the northwestern part of the U.S. state of New Mexico. They are just west of the more prominent Jemez Mountains near the town of Cuba, and are separated from them by the Río Guadalupe and the Río de Las Vacas. This article will consider them as a unit together with the San Pedro Mountains, which are a smaller range contiguous with the Sierra Nacimiento on the north, and which are also part of the Nacimiento Uplift and lie at the edge of the greater San Juan Basin, which sits atop the Colorado Plateau. The combined range runs almost due north-south with a length of about 40 mi (65 km). The highest point in the combined range is the high point of the San Pedro Peaks, known unofficially as San Pedro Peak, 10,605 ft.

Spanish Peaks Wilderness

The Spanish Peaks Wilderness is a 19,226 acres (77.80 km2) wilderness area in Huerfano County and Las Animas County, Colorado, United States, located 20 miles (32 km) southwest of Walsenburg. All of the wilderness area is located within San Isabel National Forest, which is managed by the U.S. Forest Service.

Kit Carson Peak

Kit Carson Peak is a high mountain summit of the Crestones in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. Officially designated Kit Carson Mountain, the 14,171-foot (4,319 m) fourteener is located 5.2 miles (8.4 km) east by south of the Town of Crestone in Saguache County, Colorado, United States. The name Kit Carson Mountain is used for both the massif with three summits, or to describe the main summit only. The mountain is named in honor of frontiersman Christopher Houston "Kit" Carson. The Crestones are a cluster of high summits in the Sangre de Cristo Range, comprising Crestone Peak, Crestone Needle, Kit Carson Peak, Challenger Point, Humboldt Peak, and Columbia Point. They are usually accessed from common trailheads.

Humboldt Peak (Colorado)

Humboldt Peak is a high mountain summit of the Crestones in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 14,070-foot (4,289 m) fourteener is located in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness of San Isabel National Forest, 11.9 miles (19.2 km) south-southwest of the Town of Westcliffe in Custer County, Colorado, United States. The Crestones are a cluster of high summits in the Sangre de Cristo Range, comprising Crestone Peak, Crestone Needle, Kit Carson Peak, Challenger Point, Humboldt Peak, and Columbia Point.

San Isabel National Forest Forest in Colorado, US

San Isabel National Forest is located in central Colorado. The forest contains 19 of the state's 53 fourteeners, peaks over 14,000 feet (4,267 m) high, including Mount Elbert, the highest point in Colorado.

Spanish Peaks

The Spanish Peaks are a pair of prominent mountains located in southwestern Huerfano County, Colorado. The Comanche people call them Huajatolla meaning "double mountain".

East Spanish Peak

East Spanish Peak is a prominent mountain summit that is the lower of the two Spanish Peaks in the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 12,688-foot (3,867 m) peak is located in the Spanish Peaks Wilderness of San Isabel National Forest, 9.3 miles (14.9 km) southeast by south of the Town of La Veta, Colorado, United States, on the drainage divide between Huerfano and Las Animas counties. The Spanish Peaks are two large igneous stocks which form an eastern outlier of the Culebra Range, a subrange of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. East Spanish Peak is higher than any point in the United States east of its longitude; it is also the easternmost point in the United States over 12,000 feet (3,700 m), 11,000 feet (3,400 m), and 10,000 feet (3,000 m) feet above sea level.

Pecos Wilderness

The Pecos Wilderness is a protected wilderness area within the Santa Fe National Forest and Carson National Forest. The Pecos Wilderness lies within the Camino Real Ranger District of the Carson National Forest, and the Pecos Ranger District and Espanola Ranger District of the Santa Fe National Forest. The Pecos Wilderness includes the southernmost extension of the Rocky Mountains in the sub-range of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of north central New Mexico. One trail head for the wilderness is only 15 miles by road from Santa Fe, the state capital. Covering an area of 223,667 acres (90,515 ha)(350 sq mi) it is the second largest wilderness in the state after the Gila Wilderness. An area of less than 200,000 acres (81,000 ha) was given wilderness protection by Congress in 1964. Congress protected an additional 55,000 acres (22,000 ha) in 1980. The Wilderness boasts one of the highest concentrations of peaks exceeding 12,000 feet (3,700 m) in elevation in New Mexico, including Santa Fe Baldy, 12,622 feet (3,847 m), the highest point in Santa Fe County, and South Truchas Peak, 13,102 feet (3,993 m), the second highest peak in the state.

Mount Adams (Colorado) Mountain in Colorado, United States of America

Mount Adams is a high mountain summit of the Crestones in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 13,937-foot (4,248 m) thirteener is located in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness, 5.1 miles (8.2 km) east by north of the Town of Crestone, Colorado, United States, on the drainage divide separating San Isabel National Forest and Custer County from Rio Grande National Forest and Saguache County.

Tijeras Peak

Tijeras Peak is a high mountain summit in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 13,610-foot (4,148 m) thirteener is located 9.8 miles (15.8 km) southeast by east of the Town of Crestone in Saguache County, Colorado, United States, in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness on the boundary between Great Sand Dunes National Preserve and Rio Grande National Forest. Tijeras Peak is the highest summit in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. Tijeras is Spanish for scissors, and refers to the double-pronged rocky tip of the mountain.

Cordova Pass (Colorado)

Cordova Pass in southern Colorado lies on the western shoulder of the West Spanish Peak, east of the Culebra Range of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of the Western United States. Cordova Pass lies just outside the Spanish Peaks Wilderness, a designated National Wilderness Area in the San Isabel National Forest. Cordova Pass is reached via the Apishapa Road, a leg of the Scenic Highway of Legends. As the National Forest Service does not usually plow the snow, Cordova Pass is normally not accessible from mid-November to late May. Most of the time, the pass may be traversed by passenger vehicles.

Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area south central Colorado, USA

Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area is a federally designated National Heritage Area in the south central portion of the U.S. state of Colorado. The heritage area includes the San Luis Valley and portions of the Sangre de Cristo Range. The region combines influences of Anglo-American, Hispano-American and Native American influences. It also includes portions of the upper Rio Grande valley.

Williams Lake (New Mexico)

Williams Lake is an alpine lake in Taos County, New Mexico, United States, located high in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains below Wheeler Peak in the Wheeler Peak Wilderness of Carson National Forest. The lake is accessible via the Williams Lake Trail from the trailhead in Taos Ski Valley. The name is in reference to William Frazer, a gold miner who staked claims in the area and co-founded the mining camp of Twining during the late 1800s.

Mount Zwischen

Mount Zwischen is a prominent mountain summit in the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 12,011-foot (3,661 m) peak is located 32.1 miles (51.6 km) northeast of the City of Alamosa, Colorado, United States, on the drainage divide separating the Great Sand Dunes Wilderness in Great Sand Dunes National Preserve and Huerfano County from the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness in San Isabel National Forest and Saguache County.

References

  1. "Sangre de Cristo Wilderness". Geographic Names Information System . United States Geological Survey . Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  2. "Sangre de Cristo Wilderness". Wilderness.net. Retrieved August 7, 2012.