Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

After leaving El Paso I drove up to Las Cruces, New Mexico and headed towards the Organ Mountains, which bound the city on the east. The Dripping Springs Natural Area is a BLM area of hiking trails that wind around the base of the mountains on their western side, leading mostly through desert scrub, but providing glimpses of green hills, forested mountain sides, and smooth slickrock. I fell in love with these mountains: the shapes, the gradations in color, the textures… everything. Sometimes it’s difficult to describe why I feel so strongly about certain places and these mountains were one of these places; they just called to me (no John Muir pun intended). While in Las Cruces I came out here a few times to just wander along the trails in this area. I had planned on doing Baylor Pass, which leads over the range, but unfortunately I got sick so that hike will have to go on my list for when I return.

Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Crawford Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Crawford Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Me on Crawford Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Me on Crawford Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Fillmore Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Fillmore Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

View along Fillmore Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

View along Fillmore Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Moon rising over the Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Moon rising over the Organ Mountains, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Rocks along La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Rocks along La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Rocks along La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Rocks along La Cueva Trail, Dripping Springs Natural Area, Las Cruces, New Mexico