The landscape in the Sombrillo Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC), and the greater Nambé Badlands, is highly erodible. Fragile biological soil crusts protect the fine powdery soils from blowing away.
All it takes is one footprint or bike track to kill the protective crust. It takes decades or longer for these crusts to reestablish.
Bike tracks across cryptobiotic soil crusts channel water flow resulting in deep erosion troughs, which continue to direct more water. An ongoing erosion process occurs, damaging the landscape in irreversible ways.
Please stay on existing trails to minimize erosion.
Damage to the natural resources in the Sombrillo ACEC and Nambé Badlands is being monitored and documented here so that remedial and preventive actions can be taken. These resource damage reports notify the Bureau of Land Management, Taos Field Office — the office responsible for managing the resources and implementing the protections required in the Sombrillo ACEC.
If you notice any resource damage, please take a photo of it, record the location (a smartphone camera typically geotags the photo), and submit it to us, along with any additional information, so we can include it here and share it with the BLM Taos Office. Or if you prefer, please let the BLM Taos Field Office know about the resource damage directly.