Why Petaca Pinta

Petaca Pinta.
Credit: Nathan Newcomer.
A little-known New Mexico wilderness just 60 miles from Albuquerque, Petaca Pinta is a diamond in the rough.

Petaca Pinta is a beautiful wildland in New Mexico's red-rock country, with prairie grasses waving through the remnants of ancient civilization. It is a home for wildlife and a retreat for outdoor recreation.


Lava-foraged cliffs make Petaca Pinta attractive to raptors, including: golden eagles, red-tailed hawks and great horned owls. Prairie dogs, coyotes and badgers also live in this wildland. At Wilderness, we are working to protect this important wildlife habitat by reducing risks of over-use from off-road vehicles and oil and gas development.


Petaca Pinta is a backcountry lover’s dream with many opportunities for hiking, camping, wildlife watching and hunting. Only 60 miles from urban Albuquerque, it provides local residents an escape from the bustle of urban life. But this unique piece of New Mexico’s red rock country lacks permanent protection. At Wilderness, we're working to protect Petaca Pinta from these threats so it is a healthy, thriving wilderness for generations to come.

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