Truth or Consequences and Elephant Butte — each an oasis in the desert

Truth or Consequences Photo courtesy TorC/Sierra County Chamber of Commerce
Truth or Consequences

The “Jewel of the Rio Grande,” or Truth or Consequences, is bordered by the San Andres and Black Range Mountains on I-25 between Las Cruces and Albuquerque. It claims its fair share of snowbirds who flock there to enjoy mild winters, lakes and mountains, hot mineral springs, golfing, the El Camino Real Historic Trail, Geronimo Springs Museum and the Auto Museum.

T or C was chartered in 1916 as Hot Springs. In 1950, it became Truth or Consequences in response to Ralph Edwards’ request that a town in America take on the television game show’s namesake. Edwards still makes an appearance every May to celebrate the change.

At 4,260 feet above sea level, with a population of 7,500, T or C is the seat of Sierra County. It serves an agricultural and ranching community whose population is spread over 2,771,200 acres of land on 420 farms and ranches.

T or C and its nearyby neighbor, Elephant Butte, can be a destinations in themselves for those seeking a hot springs getaway or lake recreation, or they can serve as a base for area explorations. Many historic communities, including Williamsburg, Arrey, Derry, Winton/Chloride, Caballo, Cuchillo, Engle, Monticello/Placita, Las Palomas and Winston, add character to the varied Sierra County landscape. Hillsboro and Kingston are popular destinations about 32 miles west in the Black Range Mountains of the Gila National Forest. Fourteen miles south sits Caballo Lake State Park, and Percha Dam State Park is located on the Rio Grande river 20 miles south of T or C.

Other nearby area attractions include Cuchillo Museum and Saloon, Emory Pass Vista, Lake Valley Scenic By-Way, Engle Vineyards and the Mimbres Valley.