74th Annual Pilgrimage
The 74th Annual Pilgrimage will take place on Sunday October 27th. Gates open at 6am and will be closed at 4pm. Bishop Cantu and Bishop Sietz will lead the pilgraimge at 10am and will celebrate mass at Noon at the summit. No one will be allowed to hike after 2pm.
No pets are allowed!
The 5-mile hike is easy to moderate, and is suitable for all ages.
Meet at the large parking lot at the trailhead to Mt. Cristo Rey off McNutt Road (NM 273). Take the Racetrack exit off Paisano and cross the Rio Grande.
The annual pilgrimage is held on the last Sunday of October each year. This pilgrimage celebrates the anniversary of the completion of the monument and the date was chosen to coincide with the Christian feast of Christ the King. In previous years, estimates have shown attendance at as many as 40,000 faithful. Many people make it an annual event for themselves, while for others, it is their first time. Some have said they lived in the area for many years and yet it is their first time. Many who are returning pilgrims still report that after as many times as they visited they still marvel at the beauty of the monument and the view offered from the summit.
The pilgrimage begins at 9:00 AM with a procession led by the Bishops of the Diocese of Las Cruces and El Paso .Some of the faithful make the 5 mile journey barefooted, while fewer make the ascent on their knees. A mass is conducted at the top of the mountain as the monument looms over the gathering. Throughout the day starting before the main ascension begins, even before sunrise, people are already making their journey. Due to security concerns, it is not recommended to do so. Some of the Mt. Cristo Rey Committee members stay overnight on the eve of the Pilgrimage to light the cross. The monument is lit using portable lights and a generator.
Due to the limited parking at the base of the mountain, it is suggested that you arrive early. Parking fills up quickly and many have to resort to parking in the Sunland Park area. Hiking attire for fall weather in the southwest climate is encouraged.
By Appointment Only unless prior arrangements are made with the Restoration Committee.
Church groups wishing to visit and /or conduct services at the summit must submit a request to the parish priest at San Martin de Porres Catholic Church in Sunland Park, NM.
OPTIONAL OPEN HOURS
Volunteers are onsite Sunday mornings throughout the year while working on different projects along the trail.
Arrive early if you intend to visit on Sundays.
9:00 AM to 2:00 PM
No visitors will be permitted to start after 12:00 PM
October 27th, 2013 gates open at 6am.
Celebration of our Mountains events See Calendar below or visit:
Cristo Rey: A Hike Through Time
What: Hike and special presentations on Mount Cristo Rey
When: Check back for new dates
Where: Mount Cristo Rey, Sunland Park, N.M.
Leader: RANDY LIMBIRD 542-1422
No reservations are required.
Bring: Hat, sunscreen, hiking shoes
Length: 5 miles round trip (2-3 hours).
Cost: $5 donation requested (all proceeds go to the Mt. Cristo Rey Restoration Committee). $3for children 12 and under.
Summary: Participants will join a guided hike to the top of Mt. Cristo Rey. Go on a guided hike leaving at Noon.; Hike leaders and others stationed along the way will discuss natural and man-made points of interest on the mountain and the surrounding region. At the top of the mountain will be a presentation on the statue and its sculptor, Urbici Soler; ongoing restoration and preservation efforts; and the geology of the entire panoramic vista, including the volcanic history of Mt Cristo Rey itself. Presenters along the trail will discuss Keystone Heritage Park, native plants and other topics. Geological presentation by UTEP Geological Sciences.
Meet at the large parking lot at the trailhead to Mt. Cristo Rey. This is located off of McNutt Road (NM 273). Take Sunland Park Drive to Doniphan, turn south then west on Racetrack Dr., continuing across the Rio Grande, then take a left on McNutt Road at the light in Sunland Park, NM. Stay on McNutt for about 1 mile and watch for a sign to Mt. Cristo Rey on the right. Drive up the good dirt road, crossing two railroads.
Physical endurance required: small to moderate. The road to the top zigzags back and forth while slowly gaining elevation.
Security is provided by the Mt. Cristo Rey Restoration Committee.