New Mexico, the “Land of Enchantment”, possesses relatively limited trout habitat. However, wherever the elevation climbs above 6,000 feet, there’s the possibility of cold water that can support wild trout, and the locations of these high mountain streams can be among the most beautiful in the country. Most of the habitat is in the northern part of the state (north of Santa Fe), although there are additional pockets of cold water in mountains south of Albuquerque.
“Exotics” – rainbows, browns, and even Eastern brook trout, inhabit most coldwater streams. The native fish, Rio Grande Cutts and Gila Trout, inhabit isolated, headwaters reaches. RGCT are concentrated in northern NM in the Sangre de Cristo and Jemez Mountains, while Gila Trout are found within a very few streams of the Gila Wilderness in the southwestern part of the state.
The image shows the webmaster fishing on a favorite RGCT stream about an hour north of Santa Fe.