The indigenous cultures of New Mexico, however, proved to be unrelated to the Aztecs and were not wealthy.
Before statehood, the name "New Mexico" was applied to various configurations of the U. Territory, to a Mexican state, and to a province of New Spain, all in the same general area but of varying extensions.
The southwestern corner of the state is known as the Bootheel.
The 37° N latitude parallel forms the northern boundary with Colorado.
Other areas of geographical and scenic interest include Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument and the Gila Wilderness in the southwest of the state.
The climate of New Mexico is generally semiarid to arid, though areas of continental and alpine climates exist, and its territory is mostly covered by mountains, high plains, and desert.
During the summer, daytime temperatures can often exceed 100 °F (38 °C) at elevations below 5,000 feet (1,500 m), the average high temperature in July ranges from 97 °F (36 °C) at the lower elevations down to 78 °F (26 °C) at the higher elevations.
Many cities in New Mexico can have temperature lows in the teens.
The average annual temperatures can range from 64 °F (18 °C) in the southeast to below 40 °F (4 °C) in the northern mountains.
It is usually considered one of the Mountain States. The major Native American nations in the state are Navajo, Pueblo, and Apache peoples.
New Mexico is fifth largest by area, the 36th-most populous, and the sixth-least densely populated of the 50 United States. The state's demography and culture are shaped by these strong Hispanic and Native American influences and expressed in the state flag.
The states of New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Utah come together at the Four Corners in New Mexico's northwestern corner.
New Mexico, although a large state, has very little water.