OverviewNO PUBLIC ACCESS – see Red Tape section below.
Salinas Peak is located in southern New Mexico about 43 miles east of the city of Truth or Consequences. At 8,965 feet in elevation, it is the highest point in the San Andres Mountains, a rugged range that runs north to south for about 75 miles. Salinas Peak’s prominence of 3,625 feet places it ninth of the list of New Mexico’s 100 most prominent peaks. Salinas rises impressively more that 4,600 feet from the floor of the Tularosa Basin to the east. Running along the west side of the northern range and the Oscura Mountains to the northeast is the Jornada del Muerto (Spanish for “Journey of the Dead Man”), a 100-mile dry and desolate stretch of no-man's-land and a route of ill-repute since the first journey across its barren expanse in 1598.
Although not densely wooded, there are woodlands in the Salinas Peak area that range from piñon and juniper to oak and pine at the upper elevations. Area wildlife includes the mountain lion, mule deer, and coyote. Oryx, an African antelope introduced to White Sands Missile Range in 1969, are plentiful in the area and can be seen at the lower elevations.
An access road was constructed in 1958 up the west slope to the summit, which is laden with buildings and antenna towers. The views from the top are absolutely breathtaking. The nearest higher summit is Sierra Blanca (11,973 ft.), 41 miles to the east. This isolation, coupled with Salinas’ prominence, gives you a top-of-the-world feeling and the seemingly endless views to go along with it. Numerous mountain ranges can be seen rising out of the vast desert landscape below. The gypsum dunes of White Sands National Monument are in view to the south. Deeply carved canyons and imposing limestone cliffs and formations in the surrounding San Andres Mountains only add to the tremendous summit views.
Red TapeSalinas Peak, along with the rest of the San Andres Mountains, is located on U.S. Government property within the borders of the White Sands Missile Range. Consequently, there is no public access to this magnificent peak nor is photography permitted, which accounts for the lack of photographic images on this page. Due to the aforementioned, the information presented on this page will be very limited in scope and outside of the norm for SP.
External Links- Salinas Peak on John Kirk's listsofjohn.com
- Salinas Peak on Wikipedia