Welcome to SP!  -
The Palisades
Mountain/Rock

The Palisades

 
The Palisades

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: New Mexico, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 33.36800°N / 105.9746°W

Object Title: The Palisades

County: Otero

Activities: Hiking, Mixed

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Elevation: 6135 ft / 1870 m

 

Page By: hgrapid

Created/Edited: May 20, 2006 / Dec 2, 2006

Object ID: 194960

Hits: 3121 

Page Score: 81.54%  - 14 Votes 

Vote: Log in to vote

 

Overview

The Palisades are a series of cliff tops in the Godfrey Hills of Otero County, New Mexico. The Palisades lie in between two notable destinations - the Three Rivers Petroglyphs and Sierra Blanca and the Sacramento Mountains, just 10 miles away.

The Palisades would probably go unnoticed if it weren't for two things:

1) The Petroglyphs; and
2) The Santo NiƱo De Atocha Catholic Chapel, a small church that draws up to 100 worshipers from far away towns for weekend services.

If you step inside this church, you will see the beautiful setup they have. If you walk down the road you will find something else that is special: Several of the cliffs of the Palisades are adorned with crosses. Along the pathway, the Stations of the Cross are symbolized with numerous stone structures that follow a trail up to one of the higher clifftops. From there, you can hike to the higher cliffs in the area.

While the hike up to the top is short, the views are tremendous. This is a wonderful place to hike when the forests are ablaze during fire season.

The highest cliff
Point 6135

Getting There

From Carrizozo to the North take route 54 South for about 27 miles and turn at the the sign for Three Rivers to the left.

From Alamogordo to the South take route 54 North for about 30 miles and turn at the the sign for Three Rivers to the right.

Once on the road follow it past the petroglyphs site. You will drive about 7 miles until the road becomes private. Right before you hit the private road, you take a right at a sign noting the Chapel. I would advise going to the Chapel and asking if you can hike. There shouldn't be a problem, but you want to respect the land, and let them know you are parking there. The people there are very nice and happy to welcome hikers.

Along the road is a sign for the Stations of the Cross Trail. This trail follows stone pillars down a dirt road, and then a thin trail. The trail heads up towards the cliffs. At the end of the trail you hit a ridge. Go left and you reach the top of the Stations of the Cross Trail and a big cross with other information and great views of Sierra Blanca. The highest point (Point 6135) requires you head back down to the ridge to the obvious higher summit.

Overall this trail climbs about ~1,000 feet in just over 1 mile. However, there are other places to hike in the area, and you could just as easily follow these ridges and hills for several hours.

Red Tape

No red tape or permits required. Bring LOTS of water as the climate is very arid.

Views from the summit

 
Looking down
View Southeast

 
Sierra Blanca
View East

 
View down the trail
View North

 
To the West
View West







Information on the Petroglyphs

The Petroglyphs are ancient rocks painted by Jornada Mogollon people from 600 to 1100 years ago.

For more info on the Petroglyphs see these sites:
#1
#2
#3

Images