• Sweeping panoramic views of lava flows, cinder cones, and distant mountains can be enjoyed at Sandstone Bluffs.

    El Malpais

    National Monument New Mexico

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  • 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 »

Mammals

A resting coyote

A coyote rests in the winter sun.

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?

A natural arch is carved out of the cliffs of Sandstone Bluffs

There are no trails at Sandstone Bluffs in El Malpais, but plenty of hiking opportunities exist for the route finder. Wandering the rim will reveal many hoodoos, rock formations, and natural arches. More...