Needs a location
RSVP AT https://www.meetup.com... (https://www.meetup.com/Las-Cruces-El-Paso-Adventurers-Meetup/)
Go to the Adventuers group to see more and to check out the details!
NO DOGS (park rules to maintain wildlife habitat)
This hike is rated as easy to low moderate and is no more than 5 miles total with very little elevation gain.
Weather History for the date - Normal High: 72°F and normal Avg: 59°F
Hike to Boyd's Sanitarium & La Cueva
The Sanitarium was constructed in 1910 by Nathan Boyd, a medical doctor from Las Cruces. The resort was designed to isolate tuberculosis victims from the booming society in Mesilla and Las Cruces. About three decades later, it was recommissioned as a mental institute. The patients were treated atrociously and many were killed or exiled, kicked out and left to die in the mountains. After its short lived era as a luxurious mountain resort, it was condemned and left to the mercy of the elements. Numerous spirits are known to wander the canyon. Some visitors have reported having nightmares while camping overnight of the people who were involved in the report's past. Dreams of mental patient beatings, and rows of TB patients undergoing dangerous experiments.
Local urban legends claim that this site is haunted. the stories vary but they often involved the sighting of apparition and allegations of dark occult practices being performed at the site.
The man they called "El Ermitano" ("The Hermit"). He made friends with a family by the name of Barela in Mesilla; he would visit them often, and his miraculous healing powers became known far and wide. One day, he announced his plans to trek across the desert to the remote cave in the Organ Mountains now known as La Cueva ("The Cave"), with the intention of making it his home. Despite his friend's misgivings, he followed through with his plan, and this cave became home to the mysterious hermit for the last few years of his life. ... however, he did issue this strange warning to his friends in Mesilla, "I shall make a fire in front of my cave every Friday evening while I shall be alive. If the fire fails to appear, it will be because I have been killed." One Friday night in the spring of 1869, the light of the fire failed to appear at the mouth of the cave as it usually did. A posse went up the mountain to check on El Ermitano; they were shocked to discover him dead on the floor of La Cueva. His body was facedown on a large crucifix and he was wearing a penitential "girdle of spikes"; a gleaming knife protruded from his back. Nobody ever figured out who killed the mysterious old hermit, or even why anyone would want him dead. His murder remains one of New Mexico's most infamous unsolved mysteries to this very day.
The Dripping Springs Natural Area shows off desert scrub and low elevation pinon-juniper and oak woodlands. The area also boasts excellent wildlife viewing opportunities, including excellent year-round viewing of red-tailed hawk, Gambel’s quail, golden eagle and rock squirrel. It offers very good year-round viewing of desert mule deer and coyote. Also watch for black-throated sparrow, ladder-backed woodpecker, verdin, black-tailed gnatcatcher, lesser nighthawk, Scott’s oriole, cactus wren, desert cottontail, and collared and tree lizard in the spring and summer. Finally, there are occasional sightings of mountain lion.
CARPOOL: Don’t forget if you want a ride or are willing to offer a ride – be a friend to the environment, save money, and make friends by just posting a message!!
- Have a ride: Please post where you are coming from, what time, and how many spots you have.
- Need a ride: Post that you need a ride and contact any offers via e-mail for those that are offering rides.