• Historic inscriptions carved in the bluff at El Morro.

    El Morro

    National Monument New Mexico

Nature & Science

El Morro Nature & Science
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While small in area (1,278 acres), El Morro National Monument offers visitors a chance to encounter a variety of flora and fauna, as well as an array of geological and astronomical wonders.

A variety of plant and animal life can be found at the monument, including many rare or unexpected living treasures.. The bluff itself is primarily Zuni Sandstone, and was part of an ancient sand dune field that covered most of the Four Corners area millions of years ago. It is capped by a darker sandstone layer called Dakota Sandstone. In addition to the geologic makeup of El Morro, the soil in the monument is often composed of a living, fragile soil crust known as cryptobiotic soil.

Animals

Cliffs, woodlands, and meadows shelter a diversity of life here. More->

Plants

Nearly 400 species of plants are found at El Morro. More->

Environmental Factors

Our dynamic climate, clean air, and dark night skies can't be overlooked. More->

Natural Features & Ecosystems

Geology, soils, and natural features help define the natural setting of the monument. More->

Did You Know?

Image of Governor Onate's inscription carved in 1605

The first inscription carved at El Morro was that of Governor Don Juan de Onate in 1605, 15 years before the pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock.