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Gila National Forest
Gila National Forest
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The Gila National Forest Region is located in New Mexico and goes along the state line between New Mexico and Arizona, along with the boundary between New Mexico and Mexico. The weather in the region has an average low of around 58 degrees Fahrenheit, with an average high of about 97 degrees. The most popular time to visit the region is in June.[6] Cities within the area include Silver City, Lordsburg, Animas, and Deming. Located nearby is Gila National Forest, which is the namesake of the region. Within the national forest, people can go hiking, picnicking, nature viewing, horseback riding, camping, hunting, fishing, and bicycling.[1] Other activities to do in the surrounding area include Silver City Museum, the Dragonfly Trail, Penny Park, the Western New Mexico University Museum, and Big Ditch Park.[3] People often visit the region to go to Gila National Forest, but some come to see the cities within the proximity. There are also things like sand dunes in the area, which give people the opportunity to participate in various activities. Other items in the area include forests, deserts, and parks.

What Gila National Forest is known for

The Gila National Forest Region is home to the Gila National Forest, along with various cities. The most popular time to visit the area is in June, and the least popular time to visit is in December.[6] People often come to the region to go to Gila National Forest, though some people come to see the cities in the area. 

While visiting Gila National Forest, things like camping and hiking are available. There are also multiple catwalk trails in the area, along with regular trails. Examples of these trails are the Gold Dust Trail, the Dragonfly Loop Trail, and the Catwalk Number 207 Trailhead. Other activities available at the Gila National Forest are fishing, bicycling, horseback riding, hunting, nature viewing, picnicking, and other various water activities such as canoeing and kayaking.[1] 

One of the cities within the region is called Silver City. In Silver City, there are multiple attractions for the visitors and locals of the town. Some of these activities are the Western New Mexico University Museum, Silver City Museum, Big Ditch Park, the Dragonfly Trail, and Penny Park. The Western New Mexico University Museum holds many exhibits. Many of these exhibits have pottery, while others have plates. The pottery in the museum dates back hundreds of years. Silver City Museum gives information on the town's history, along with different facts about the ancient culture of the area. The museum also has exhibits on different styles of living and what it would have been like to live in older times. Big Ditch Park has multiple trails that people can go on, most of which go through a small forest and alongside a large ditch. One feature of the park is a bridge that goes over the ditch. The Dragonfly Trail is a hiking trail. Along the route are ancient carvings that look like dragonflies, hence the name the Dragonfly Trail. Penny Park is a large playground that has a rock wall and various activities for kids to participate in, such as swings and a rope feature.[3]


The Gila National Forest Region is located in New Mexico. It goes along the border between New Mexico, Arizona, and Mexico. The north end of the boundary stretches up above Quemado, Pie Town, Magdalena, and Datil. The east side of the border curves before multiple cities, including Socorro, Caballo, and Las Cruces. The region is mainly a desert with many hills and sand dunes. Within the region is the Gila National Forest, which is one of the only forests in the area. 

The weather in the region is hot, with an average high of approximately 97 degrees Fahrenheit. The average low of the area is around 58 degrees Fahrenheit. Rain is more likely to fall from July to August. It never snows in the region because of how hot it is year-round. The humidity of the Gila National Forest Region is higher from July to September and low from April to June. Based on weather conditions, the best time to visit the region is either from April to June or from the end of August to the beginning of November.[6] 

The region is inhabited by many animals, most of them being mammals such as mule deer, collared peccary, ringtails, white-nosed coati, American beavers, squirrels, and Mexican gray wolves.[7] Animals living in the Gila National Forest include black bears, mountain lions, elk, deer, antelope, bighorn sheep, and wild turkeys. Birds in the area are often larger. Examples of these birds are bald eagles, peregrine falcons, and red-tailed hawks.[4] Some plants within the region include ocotillo and cactuses, along with juniper, pine, aspen, and spruce-fir forests.[5]


The first inhabitants of the Gila National Forest area are unknown, but there is evidence of people living in the zone from 9500-6000 BC. As time passed, different people lived in the area. These people built houses, mainly consisting of pit houses, cliff dwellings, and pueblos. As the population grew, pottery was established. The Mongolian people lived in the area for years before disappearing in the 13th century. The Apache moved into the territory in the 15th and 16th centuries. They mostly lived in portable tent dwellings and hunted the animals in the area. Because of the rough terrain, not many intruders came into their domain, and the Apache were able to live there peaceably for years. 

Spanish explorers made their presence known in the area by about 1800 because of the copper mines they were building. In 1821, the Gila became a part of Mexico during the revolution against Spain. The Gila later became a part of the United States after the war in Mexico in 1848. The Apache managed to keep the area relatively untouched during the 1800s but couldn't keep it that way for long. Indians living in the area were being put on reservations. Because of the mines, a lot of trees in the area were chopped down and used as firewood. This made a conservation movement rise up. Because of the campaign, Yellowstone National Park was established in 1872. Hunting was minimized over the years to prevent the extinction and endangerment of animals. 

Aldo Leopold introduced the idea of leaving a section of Gila roadless and uninhabited by people. Instead, it would become a place where wildlife could live freely. Gila Wilderness became the first designated wilderness in the world in 1924. The wilderness was given 755,000 acres of land. Henry Woodrow was the first person to supervise the area. At first, there were no trails, and there were many bears roaming the area. However, as time passed, trails were built along with campsites.[2]

4.7 (97 Reviews)

Rusty’s RV Ranch is located in the town of Rodeo, New Mexico, specifically in a valley between two mountains. The property is notably located near the Chiricahua National Monument. Other draws to the area include hiking, astronomy, and “birding,” which the property describes to be bird watching. The current owner says that she set up the property to be primarily geared towards astronomers and those going bird-watching. There are 40 RV sites available for reservation, as well as 15 dry camping sites and two rentals. On the 50-acre property, there are various features, such as a duck pond, koi pond, aviary garden, an orchard, and a goat pen. All the animals on the land are provided for guests to interact with, especially if they are unable to go bird-watching in the mountains. Rusty’s RV Ranch is open year-round, with the best season of operation falling between the months of September to May.

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The Apache RV Park, located near the Gila National Forest, features 32 units for reservation year-round. Each of the RV sites feature full hookups with water, electricity, and sewage. Also on the grounds of the park is a shower building, coin-operated laundry room, and a community firepit. At the office, guests can purchase propane, sodas, snacks, t-shirts, and hats. The owners of the property note that the "big draw" of the area is hunting, specifically elk, mountain lion, turkey, and deer. Susan, one of the owners, remarks that the busiest time of year for the establishment is generally from September through December, due to hunting season. Besides hunting, there are petroglyph hiking trails located relatively near the property that guests can enjoy. Susan reports that there are a variety of trails within walking distance of the park that can be utilized by tourists. 

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