Aguirre Springs Road is an approximately six-mile roadway located in Dona Ana County, New Mexico. Aguirre Springs Road connects US Route 70 near San Augustin Pass to the Aguirre Spring National Recreation Area & Campground in the Organ Mountains. The two southernmost miles of Aguirre Springs Road is narrow one-way loop. Aguirre Springs Road can be found as a primitive road on some early1940s era United States Geological Survey maps. Originally Aguirre Springs Road followed the eastern part of the now one-way loop which has grades exceeding 10%. Since 2014 the Aguirre Spring National Recreation Area has been incorporated into Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.
Part 1; the general history of Aguirre Springs Road
One of the earliest maps to display Aguirre Springs Road is the 1941 United States Geological Survey Map of Organ Peak. Said map edition depicts Aguirre Springs Road branching south from US Route 70 near San Augustin Pass to the namesake Aguirre Spring located at approximately 5,500 feet above sea level in the Organ Mountains. Aguirre Springs Road is shown ascending to Aguirre Spring along what is now part of the eastern part of the one-way loop the modern road utilizes.
Aguirre Spring is not named on the 1941 Map of Organ Peak, but Aguirre Springs Road can be seen terminating at a water source east of Baylor Pass.
Aguirre Spring appears named on the 1955 United States Geological Survey Map of Organ Peak.
The southern end of Aguirre Springs Road appears as an elongated one-way loop on the 1982 United States Geological Survey Map of Las Cruces.
Aguirre Spring is part of Bureau of Land Management held land and was eventually declared Aguirre Spring National Recreation Area. The Aguirre Spring National Recreation Area was incorporated into Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument which was declared by then President Barrack Obama on May 21, 2014.
Part 2; a drive on Aguirre Springs Road
As US Route 70 eastbound descends from San Augustin Pass it intersects Aguirre Springs Road. Traffic is advised Aguirre Springs Road can be used to access the Aguirre Spring National Recreation Area.
As southbound Aguirre Springs Road begins traffic is warned about the steep and winding road approximately three miles ahead. Hours of operation for the Recreation Area are also posted.
Aguirre Springs Road south from US Route 70 and enters the boundary of Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument.
Aguirre Springs Road continues south of the National Monument boundary and reaches a one-way fork where the loop portion begins. Modern traffic heading south is forced onto the western part of the loop. As noted in Part 1 the steeper eastern loop was the original grade of Aguirre Springs Road.
The one-way southbound lane of Aguirre Springs Road climbs towards the namesake spring within view of the formation known as the Rabbit Ears.
Aguirre Springs Road ascends to the Aguirre Spring Campground where traffic can access the Baylor Canyon Trail and Pine Tree Loop Trail.
From the Campground, Aguirre Springs Road begins a northbound descent and reconsolidates with the two-lane portion of the road at the bottom of the loop. The steep descent has excellent views of the White Sands Missile Range and Tularosa Basin.