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Image Caption: STS066-124-034 Southern End of San Luis Valley, New Mexico, U.S.A. November 1994
Nestled between the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, including the Taos Mountains, to the east and the Tusas and Brazos Mountains to the west, the southern end of the dry San Luis Valley in north-central New Mexico shows a segment of the south-flowing Rio Grande and its rift valley, the most rapidly subsiding part of the entire rift system. Snow appears on some higher elevations on both sides of the valley. Circular volcanic cinder cones, with most of the peaks exceeding 9000 feet (2743 meters), are visible on the relatively flat, elevated Taos Plateau.