South Baldy Peak is the highpoint of the Magdalena Mountains. It is located in the Cibola National Forest. This tall and dominating mountain towers nearly 6,500' above the nearby city of Socorro. It can be seen for miles around, and is a major landmark in the area. The Magdalena Mountains are heavily forested, and have many fine trails and roads.
The Langmuir Laboratory for Atmospheric Research is located near the summit of South Baldy. The laboratory studies lightning, hail, rain, and other atmospheric phenomenon. A dirt road leads up to the laboratory, and comes to within 350' of the summit of South Baldy. With a prominence of 3,803', South Baldy Peak makes an impressice appearance on the New Mexico Prominence Map.
From Socorro, drive west on US 60 for about 16 miles. Turn left at the signed road junction to Water Canyon. This is Forest Road 235. Drive four miles up the road to the Water Canyon Campground. This is the trailhead. You can also continue driving nearly all the way to the top.
Contact the Cibola National Forest, Magdalena Ranger District, for the latest information. Their number is 505-854-2381.
Forest Service Map: Cibola National Forest (Magdalena Ranger District).
Topo Maps: Magdalena; South Baldy; Water Canyon.
The Water Canyon Forest Service Campground is located at the trailhead.