Pecos Wilderness

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Pecos Wilderness (Forest Service)
Protected area
Country United States
State New Mexico
City Santa Fe
Coordinates 35°53′38″N 105°38′42″W / 35.89389°N 105.64500°W / 35.89389; -105.64500Coordinates: 35°53′38″N 105°38′42″W / 35.89389°N 105.64500°W / 35.89389; -105.64500
Area 223,667 acres (90,515 ha)
Founded 1980
IUCN category Ib - Wilderness Area

The Pecos Wilderness is a protected wilderness area within the Santa Fe National Forest and Carson National Forest. The Pecos Wilderness lies within the Camino Real Ranger District of the Carson National Forest, and the Pecos Ranger District and Espanola Ranger District of the Santa Fe National Forest.

Nambe Lake at an elevation of 11.402 feet.

The Pecos Wilderness includes the southernmost extension of the Rocky Mountains in the sub-range of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of north central New Mexico. One trail head for the wilderness is only 15 miles by road from Santa Fe, the state capital. Covering an area of 223,667 acres (90,515 ha)(350 sq mi) it is the second largest wilderness in the state after the Gila Wilderness. An area of less than 200,000 acres (81,000 ha) was given wilderness protection by Congress in 1964. Congress protected an additional 55,000 acres (22,000 ha) in 1980. The Wilderness boasts one of the highest concentrations of peaks exceeding 12,000 feet (3,700 m) in elevation in New Mexico, including Santa Fe Baldy, 12,622 feet (3,847 m), the highest point in Santa Fe County, and South Truchas Peak, 13,102 feet (3,993 m), the second highest peak in the state.

Truchas Peaks from Espanola in winter. The Truchas peaks are the highest mountains in the Pecos Wilderness.
A map of the Pecos Wilderness area and its vicinity.

U.S. Wilderness Areas do not allow motorized or mechanized vehicles, including bicycles. Camping and fishing are allowed with proper permit, but no roads, buildings, logging, or mining are permitted. Wilderness areas within National Forests and Bureau of Land Management areas allow hunting in season.

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