DENVER — On Dec. 19, 2014, Congress designated the Valles Caldera National Preserve a unit of the national park system. Another six new national park units were also authorized recently by Congress. When fully implemented, these will bring the total number of National Park Service (NPS) units to 408.
Located in the Jemez Mountains of north central New Mexico, the 89,000-acre Valles Caldera National Preserve is one of three super volcanoes in the United States and is known for its rich geologic and cultural history, scenic beauty and abundant wildlife. The Valles Caldera National Preserve will be managed until mid-summer by the Valles Caldera Trust, a wholly owned government corporation overseen by a nine-member, presidentially appointed board of trustees. Planning for the site’s operation by the National Park Service is under way in cooperation with the Valles Caldera Trust and will include significant public involvement.
“The recent addition of the Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico to the inventory of National Park Service units brings with it an opportunity to preserve and share a landscape of unique cultural and natural resources. The process for creating new national park units is comprehensive and collaborative. Our aim is to make the transition of this site to the National Park Service as seamless as possible. We are currently working with the Valles Caldera Trust, the United States Forest Service, our affiliated tribal partners, the State of New Mexico and others to develop transition strategies that address the immediate needs of this unique resource and the expectations of visitors and users,” said Sue Masica, NPS Intermountain Region director.
“We will soon be announcing a series of opportunities for our partners and other members of the public to help us develop interim and long-term management plans for the Valles Caldera. We look forward to a high level of collaboration and involvement with tribal, state and local governments as well as the public as we move forward in this process,” Masica said.
About the National Park Service:
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 405 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.