[Sunset over Sangre de Cristos and Baca NWR. Photo: Nick Hall] Situated on 92,500 acres in the San Luis Valley, Baca is a massive national wildlife refuge. It’s located in Crestone at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
National Wildlife Refuge in Saguache Co.
This diverse wildlife refuge is comprised of multiple high elevation ecosystems. The high desert environment has riparian corridors, playa wetlands, wet meadows, marshes, shrublands and grasslands.
In addition to being a protected shelter, breeding and feeding grounds for native wildlife and migratory birds, it also preserves the habitat and water of the northern San Luis Valley. For more than 12,000 years humans have used the area, and refuge protects that archeology, as while as that of the famous Baca Grant Ranch.
The Baca Refuge is surrounded by three mountain ranges in a high desert basin: the Saguache to the north, the San Juan to the west, and the Sangre de Cristo to the east. The San Luis Valley resides at 7,800 feet above sea level, stretching more than 100 miles north to south and 50 miles east to west.
Season: not open to public
Map: Baca NWR (jpg)
Size: 92,500 acres