After a trip to NMSU and Las Cruces, NM, my husband and I took the scenic route back to Albuquerque. We went through Deming, Bayard, and the Black Range in the Gila National Forest. It took us forever to get home, but we had a wonderful time.
I had never even heard of the City of Rocks State Park outside of Deming, NM. New Mexico is a geologist’s dream. I am constantly amazed by the mountains and volcanoes here. Taken from a pamphlet produced by the City of Rocks Visitors’ Center:
The rocks forming the City of Rocks were produced by a very large volcanic eruption that occurred 34.9 million years ago. The violent eruption of volcanic pumice, ash, and hot gas in an eruption 1000 times greater than the May 18, 1980 Mount Saint Helens eruption would have taken months to years to complete. The magma that produced the eruption was probably located between 3.7 and 9.3 miles below the earth’s surface. From vents in the earth’s surface, large amounts of volcanic material would erupt very quickly. This material would move as a large, hot, turbulent cloud, traveling as far as 125 miles from the vent and deposit volcanic material in its path.
Amazing! My husband and I had fun seeing shapes in the formations. See if you agree, or comment if you see something different!