Lincoln National Forest
|Lincoln National Forest|
IUCN category VI (protected area with sustainable use of natural resources)
Lincoln National Forest - view from Crest Trail
|Location||New Mexico, USA|
|Nearest city||Alamogordo, NM|
|Area||1,103,897 acres (4,467.31 km2)|
|Established||July 26, 1902|
|Governing body||U.S. Forest Service|
The Lincoln National Forest is a protected national forest in the State of New Mexico in the southwestern United States. It was established in 1902 and covers 1,103,897 acres (446,731 ha).  It was named in honor of Abraham Lincoln, who was 16th president of the United States and is the birthplace of Smokey Bear, the living symbol of the campaign to prevent forest fires. Forest headquarters are in Alamogordo, New Mexico. There are local ranger district offices in Carlsbad, Cloudcroft, and Ruidoso.
- Chaves County 40,332 acres (163.22 km2)
- Eddy County 135,013 acres (546.38 km2)
- Lincoln County 364,731 acres (1,476.01 km2)
- Otero County 563,752 acres (2,281.42 km2)
The Lincoln Forest Reserve was established by the General Land Office on July 26, 1902 with 500,000 acres (2,000 km2). On July 1, 1908 Gallinas National Forest was absorbed, and on July 1, 1917, Alamo National Forest as well. Alamo had previously consisted of Sacramento National Forest and Guadalupe National Forest, which still exist as the Sacramento and Guadalupe Districts of Lincoln.
The Lincoln National Forest comprises portions of four mountain ranges:
Elevations range between 4,000 to 11,500 feet (1,219 to 3,505 meters) and pass through five different life zones from Chihuahuan Desert to subalpine forest. Vegetation ranges from rare cacti in the lower elevations to Engelmann Spruce in the higher.
Temperatures vary with elevation. At higher elevations (7,000 feet/2,134 meters and up), summer temperatures range between 40°F/4°C (night) to 78°F/26°C (day), while winter temperatures can drop to a -15°F/-26°C at night and rise to 50°F/10°C during the day. At lower elevations (6,000 to 7,000 feet/1,829 to 2,134 meters), summer temperatures range between 50°F/10°C to 85°F/29°C, while during the winter, temperatures rarely fall below 0°F/-18°C and usually run from teens to 50s (-10°C to 10°C). At the lowest elevations (below 6,000 feet/1,829 meters), temperatures are generally 10°F/5°C higher throughout the year.
Spring is the windy season. High winds dry the forest to the point of extreme fire danger. Fire season usually starts in March or April and continues through mid-July. If the fire danger becomes too high, open fires may be prohibited. The rainy season begins in July and continues through September. The first snows fall in late October or early November.
Towns and cities
The following towns and cities lie within the bounds of the Lincoln National Forest:
- Cloudcroft, New Mexico
- Glencoe, New Mexico
- High Rolls, New Mexico
- Mayhill, New Mexico
- Mountain Park, New Mexico
- Nogal, New Mexico
- Pine Lodge, New Mexico
- Ruidoso, New Mexico
- Ruidoso Downs, New Mexico
- Sacramento, New Mexico
- Sunspot, New Mexico
- Timberon, New Mexico
- Queen, New Mexico
The following major highways traverse the Lincoln National Forest:
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lincoln National Forest.|
- "Land Areas of the National Forest System". U.S. Forest Service. January 2012. Retrieved June 26, 2012.
- "The National Forests of the United States". ForestHistory.org. Retrieved July 26, 2012.
- Table 6 - NFS Acreage by State, Congressional District and County - United States Forest Service - September 30, 2007
- Lincoln National Forest, a New Mexico State Park near Alamogordo
- USFS Ranger Districts by State
- Davis, Richard C. (September 29, 2005). PDF (341 KB). The Forest History Society.
- "About Us". Lincoln National Forest. U.S. Forest Service. 2008-08-25.
- Lincoln National Forest
- Forest Conditions in the Lincoln Forest Reserve, New Mexico USGS Professional Paper No. 33 (1904)
- Village of Ruidoso Tourism Office