desert logo

Animas Mountains


Protected canyons and higher elevations support vegetation far different from the low desert flora.

view from the west-facing slope of West Fork Canyon toward Animas Peak

View from the west-facing slope of West Fork Canyon toward Animas Peak. Pines and Douglas Fir cling to these higher slopes, and a number of species of oaks crowd the canyon bottom. Photograph by Larry K. Kamees.

C. W. Painter, NMG&F working among the oaks in the Animas Mountains   Oaks in West Fork Canyon, Animas Mts.

C. W. Painter, New Mexico Fish & Game, engaged in research among the oaks, and a second view of various oaks in West Fork Canyon. Many species of oak are characteristic of these northern Sierra Madre outliers. Photographs by Larry K. Kamees.

Indian Creek following a rain, Animas Mountains   Indian Creek, first flood after a burn

Like many drainages in sky islands, Indian Creek flows only intermittently. The first photograph, by Larry K. Kamees, shows Indian Creek after a rain. In June of 2006, a severe fire swept through West Fork and Indian Creek canyons; the second photograph of Indian Creek, taken in the Animas Valley downstream, shows the first flooding following the fire. Photograph by Sam Smith, Diamond A Ranch.