Lincoln County, once the largest county in the United States and a fourth the size of New Mexico, was founded in 1869. Dominated by the Sacred Mountain of the Apache, Sierra Blanca, Lincoln County is a colorful mosaic of ranchlands, forest, historical sites, and exquisite natural beauty.
Lincoln County, once the largest county in the United States and a fourth the size of New Mexico, was named after the martyred President. Dominated by the Sacred Mountain of the Apache, Sierra Blanca, the colorful mosaic of ranch lands, exquisite natural beauty of its valleys and orchards as well as the excitement of horse racing, skiing, casinos and outdoor life style make this a world class tourist destination. Having Billy the Kid, and the 1870’s Lincoln County War as a back drop to its earlier history, Lincoln’s famous folk Pageant depicting Billy the Kid’s escape from the Court House continues after more than 60 years. The County also includes two major NM State Monuments, Historic Lincoln, a National Historic Landmark, and Fort Stanton State Monument. Once the heart of the county and founded in 1855 the Fort lands provide a rich cultural heritage including the Mogollon peoples, the valiant Apache, and early day Anglo and Hispanic pioneers who created a vibrant and growing economy in the Bonito and Hondo valleys. The incredible Snowy River Cave Passage, discovered in 2001, led to the formation of the Bureau of Land Management Fort Stanton-Snowy River Cave National Conservation Area offering recreational opportunities such as hiking, horseback endurance rides, mountain biking, fishing, and camping and by special permit, exploration and significant scientific research of this longest underground river of white calcite in the world. Intriguing White Oaks includes ghostly reminders of gold miners and opera houses and the first Governor of New Mexico (Gov. McDonald) is buried here. Topped off with the Valley of Fires Recreational Area, the Smokey Bear State Park, a new Junior College (ENMU-Ruidoso) and the elegant Spencer Theater for the Performing Arts, Lincoln County welcomes you to an incredible vista of natural and sporting events housed within the beautiful Sacramento Mountains. Bienvenidos!