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  • Notes from Lee

Highest Point in New Mexico

Wheeler Peak near Taos is the highest point in New Mexico with an altitude of 13,161’/4011 m. It shares a long ridge, that rises above the Taos Ski Valley, with Mount Walter, 13,133’/4003 m, Old Mike Peak, 13,113’/3387 m, Frazier Mountain, 12,163’/3707 m, and Simpson Peak, 12,976’/3955 m.

The Wheeler Survey Expedition party first recorded summiting this peak in the 1870s. A plaque on the summit reads, “Wheeler Peak 13,161 feet above sea level, highest point in New Mexico. Named in honor of Major George Montague Wheeler (1832-1909) who for ten years led a party of surveyors and naturalists collecting geologic, biologic, planimetric, and topographic data in New Mexico and six other southwestern states. Wheeler Peak Wilderness, Carson National Forest.”

These photographs were taken in 1958 and show the summit of Wheeler Peak and Bull of the Woods Mountain. Bull of the Woods, as can be seen above, is flattened because the top of the mountain was removed during copper mining activities.

Views from these high mountain alpine summits are spectacular.

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