New Mexico's Land of Fire and Ice
For a real experience in contrast, visit the Ice Cave and Bandera Volcano, "The Land of Fire and Ice." Situated on the Continental Divide you walk through the twisted, old-growth Juniper, Fir and Ponderosa Pine trees, over the ancient lava trail to the Ice Cave. Here the natural layers of ice glisten blue-green in the reflected rays of sunlight. Another trail winds around the side of the Bandera Volcano to view one of the best examples of a volcanic eruption in the country. Located in the heart of El Malpais, the historic Ice Cave Trading Post displays ancient artifacts as well as contemporary Indian artwork.
Old Time Trading Post
In addition to many contemporary Indian arts, the historic trading post has ancient artifacts on display. Most of these were found in the lava, and some date back 1200 years. The trading post deals in jewelry, pottery, rugs and other art of local Indian tribes. The Ice Cave, as well as volcanic Bandera crater, are spectacular sights near the old-time trading post.
800 ft. in depth, rose up in volcanic fury some 10,000 years ago. It is one of the finest examples of an erupted volcano in the country, and also one of the most accessible.
The Ice Cave
Located in part of a collapsed lava tube, the ICE CAVES temperature never rises above 31 F. The natural layers of perpetual ice glisten blue-green in the reflected rays of sunlight.