Know Before You Go
Coming from the North (I-25): At the Dona Ana Exit: From NM320 (Thorpe Road) in Doña Ana, go west to US 85, then go north about a half a mile to Shalem Colony Road. Turn west on Shalem Colony Trail, which curves to the south. Go about 1.5 miles until you cross over the Rio Grande then take a right onto county road, Rocky Acres Trail. After turning on Rocky Acres Trail go approximately ¼ mile and then turn left onto the only dirt road leading to the west. Cross over a cattleguard and continue to the west. This road, past about a mile, is for high-clearance, 4WD vehicles only.Coming from the South (Las Cruces): Travel on Picacho Ave./ Hwy. 70, at the stop light with Shalam Colony Trail, go north on Shalam Colony Trail for approximately 5.5 miles. Prior to reaching the Rio Grande River, you will reach a county road, Rocky Acres Trail. Turn west on Rocky Acres Trail. Go west approximately ¼ mile to a dirt road entrance on the left-hand side. Cross over a cattleguard and continue to the west. This road, past about a mile, is for high-clearance, 4WD vehicles only.No signs will lead you there from the main roads. You'll have to travel down a dead end road to actually see the national monument sign. There are no obvious tracks, so you'll need to hike the trails to see anything. The nearest fossils are on a 1.5 mile trail just to the right of the second parking area. Be sure to wear hiking shoes and a hat, bring plenty of water and snacks, and get there early if you go during the summer months. It gets extremely hot by late morning in Las Cruces!