Philmont Scout Ranch is located on what once was part of the Maxwell Land Grant. The land was later purchased by Oklahoma oilman Waite Phillips. Phillips named his ranch Philmont, combination of his name and the Spanish word monte, or mountain. In 1938, Phillips made the first of two gifts of his New Mexico ranch to the Boy Scouts of America to establish a national wilderness camping area.
Today, Philmont Scout Ranch is more than just a wilderness camp. It also houses the National Volunteer Training Center for the Boy Scouts and three distinct museums.
Villa Philmonte, is a large Spanish Mediterranean style house built by the Phillipses in 1927 and decorated with purchases made on European trips. Villa Philmonte is one of New Mexico’s most extravagant house museums, and well worth a visit. Website: http://philmontscoutranch.org/Museums/Villa.aspx
The Philmont Museum and Seton Memorial Library feature artwork by Ernest Thompson Seton and exhibits about Philmont history, the Waite Phillips legacy and the Santa Fe Trail. The library is available to researchers and to Philmont campers.
Address: Philmont Scout Ranch, 17 Deer Run Road, Cimarron, NM 87714
Hours: Summer: Daily, 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Winter: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed Sunday. Phone ahead during the winter to check on hours and conditions.
Admission: No charge
Located seven miles south of the Philmont Training Center, The Kit Carson Living History Museum in Rayado, New Mexico is the third museum associated with Philmont Scout Ranch. Rayado was the hacienda and settlement established by Lucien Maxwell and Kit Carson as a stop on the Santa Fe Trail. During the summer, scouts in period costume lead tours through the hacienda and grounds, demonstrating skills such as shooting black powder rifles and using topographic instruments. This museum is only open June through August.
If you visit during the summer, you will accompany groups of scouts as they tour the museums as part of their activities.
Address: Rayado, New Mexico
Hours: From June 1 through August 22, daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; from August 23 through October 31, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Phone: 575-376-1136 (the main phone line for Philmont Scout Ranch)
Admission: No charge