Cave permits now available for selected park caves
FREE mandatory cave permits are now available to visit specific caves in El Malpais. Permits can be obtained at the Northwest New Mexico Visitor Center at I-40/Exit 85 or at the El Malpais Information Center on NM Highway 53. More »
Crews manage wildfire near Lost Woman Crater
A small wildfire near Lost Woman Crater is being managed by crews from the National Park Service and the Bureau of Land Managment. Recent heavy rains will minimize fire growth, but travelers may experience smoke on NM 53 near the continental divide.
Dale Dombrowski, NPS
Squirrels, mule deer, and elk are the most commonly encountered mammals in the monument. However, there are many other species often found during the course of a visit. They have all adapted to living in this unique environment, and many take advantage of the shelter provided by the numerous lava tube caves.
Bats, flying mammals common at night and in the caves, are discussed on their own page.
Did You Know?
La Vieja seems to have the visage of an elderly woman carved into it. From certain vantage points in El Malpais, La Vieja appears to stand in the lava flows, and may be responsible for the legends of a mission church out on the malpais. More...