Capulin Volcano National Monument

The Capulin Volcano last erupted more than 60,000 years ago. From a vent on the earth, pressurized magma exploded into the air, raining lava rock, fire, and ash onto the local population of mammoth, bison, and short-faced bears.

The cinder cone that remained now rises 1,000 feet above the valley floor. The visitor center holds exhibits about the volcano and the geologic and human history of the region. A self-guided trail to a vent at the base provides a glimpse inside the volcano.

A short drive up a paved road (hiking to the top is permitted only when the road is closed to cars) leads to a one-mile trail along the volcano’s rim. Take a closer look inside the crater and enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding landscape, including three lava-capped mesas and the beautiful Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Capulin Volcano National Monument is one of several volcanic peaks in the area, and the only one that still has a visible crater. The rich soil supports a thriving ecosystem of plants and animals, including wild turkey, mule deer, and black bear.

If You Go

Take cover during summer thunderstorms. Lightning strikes are common and have caused fire damage and loss of wildlife.

Did You Know

On a clear day, some say you can see five states – New Mexico, Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas – from the volcano’s rim.









August 12, 2013

We loved the park! Worth the little bit our governemt spends on our national lands, parks, etc.. The views from the rim were awesome! The ladybugs too!


July 13, 2013

I love going to the park. I take everyone of my visitors, out-of-state and in-state, who haven't been there before. The ladybugs are amazing! Just a wonderful place to visit!!!


August 23, 2012

This is a good example of the sort of government expenditures that make the right wing angry. It isn't worth the money we as a nation spend to buy and maintain as a park.


November 26, 2011

This is an interesting little park and you can read more of what I think here

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