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Almost a Ghost Town

Newkirk a small village that is almost a Ghost Town, with several abandoned derelict service stations and buildings of a once bustling Main Street along historic Route 66.

Newkirk NM

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About Newkirk, New Mexico

Facts, Trivia and useful information

Elevation: Elevation 4,560 ft (1,390 m). Population: 7 (2010).
Time zone: Mountain (MST): UTC minus 7 hours. Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6).

Newkirk is a very tiny village in Guadalupe County, N. Mexico (an unincorporated community).

Eastern New Mexico has been inhabited for over 11,000 years and stone tools found at the Clovis Site, close to Newkirk NM are among the oldest in the New World.

This area was explored by the Spanish and incoprorated into their American colonies as "Nueva México", which they governed from Santa Fe. The local natives were the Querecho Apaches.

The Mexican - American War (1846 - 48) resulted in the defeat of Mexico and the land north of the Rio Grande became part of the U.S. as New Mexico. The U.S. Army pacified the Kiowa, Kiowa Apache and Comanche natives allowing settlement in the mid-1870s.

It was not until the early 1900s that the CRI&G Railroad (Chicago, Rock Island and Gulf Railroad) extended its tracks westwards into the area.

An abandoned Route 66 Service Station. Newkirk, New Mexico

Abandoned Route 66 Service Station in Newkirk, NM
Abandoned Service Station in Newkirk NM.; see its Map and Street View
Public Domain

The Name: Newkirk

The work "Kirk" that in Scottish English and some English dialects means "Church", it derives from Greek "kyriakon"). Of course Newkirk means just that: "New Church". Probably a surname or a place name in England.

The railroad set up a siding there in 1901 and gave it its original name: Conant, after the first settler, a rancher James P. Conant. However it soon switched its name to Newkirk when a settler formerly from Newkirk, Oklahoma set up his residence in the town. The post office opened in 1910.

It was a small town catering to the local ranches and when US Route 66 was aligned through it following the "Ozark Trail" in 1926, it got some additional business from the motorists.

Newkirk was an unloading station in the 1950s when the Conchas Dam was built to contain flooding along Canadian River.

Nowadays I-40 bypasses the few houses that make up the village, which is almost a Ghost town.

Where to Stay

Newkirk does not have any accommodation but there are several hotels in other towns that are close to it:

>> Book your Hotels in nearby Tucumcari or Santa Rosa.

Lodging Near Newkirk along Route 66

Heading West...

Heading East....

Further east, in Texas:

The Santa Fe Route 66 segment
Book your Route 66 hotel now
Book your Hotel along Route 66

>> There are RV campgrounds close to Newkirk.

Weather in Newkirk

Weather widget for the town nearest Newkirk:

Newkirk is in a semiarid area and the rainfall is about 16 inches (406 mm) per year. Summers are hot but with lower temperature during the night due to the altitude, and winters are cool.

There are around 266 sunny days every year and about 40 days with precipitation yearly mostly during the summer with intense downpours. Between May and the end of August an average of 9.4 inches of rain falls (239 mm).

Snowfall is quite light and averages about 8.2 inches of snow (21 cm), snow can fall at any time between Sept. & May

Average high temperature in summer (July) is 93°F (34°C). In winter (Jan) the high is 53°F (12°C). The average summer low is 64°F (18°C) and the winter low is 23°F (-5°C).

Tornado risk

Newkirk is located in an area with an extremely low tornado risk: it only has two (2) Tornado watches per year.

Tornado Risk: read more about Tornado Risk along Route66.

Route 66 and Newkirk, NM
Location of Newkirk, Route 66

Getting to Newkirk

Heading west from Newkirk down Route 66 are is the small village of Cuervo (9 mi.) followed by Santa Rosa (27 mi.). Further ahead are Albuquerque (144 mi.) and Gallup (282 mi). To the northwest is Santa Fe.

To the east, lies Montoya (11 mi.), Tucumcari (33 mi), San Jon (57 mi.) , and on the New Mexico - Texas state line is Glenrio (75 mi.), and further east is Amarillo (148 mi.)

Map of Newkirk and Route66

in New Mexico.

Pale Blue: Historic Route 66 alignment; Red line: I-40 & I-25 where they overlap the old alignment.

See Route 66's alignment in Texas

  Click to See the "Santa Fe" alignment of Route 66

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Google Maps. Terms. Icons.

Route 66 itinerary to Newkirk

Route 66 logo

Route 66 in New Mexico

Click to read the Full description of Route 66 across New Mexico.

Below we give information on Route 66's 1926 alignment near Newkirk which is Listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Santa Fe Loop (1926 - 1937)

Our Santa Fe Loop page details the full 1926 to 1937 alignment of Route 66 from Santa Rosa to Albuquerque through Pecos, Santa Fe and Algodones.

Newkirk, New Mexico: Attractions & Sights

Things to Do and See

Newkirk, its Attractions

Almost a Ghost Town

Newkirk is a very small village with a few houses and some abandoned buildings along Historic Route 66, you will see the remains of a Service Station.

Tours & Itineraries

Nearby Route 66 Towns

Visit, to the east, the nearby towns of Montoya (A ghost town), Tucumcari, San Jon and Glenrio (on the Texas state line).

To the west is Cuervo followed by Santa Rosa.

The Old alignment of Route 66 near Newkirk

route 66 shield New Mexico

Montoya to Newkirk Historic Route 66

Route 66, Newkirk, NM.

Listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

This is the historic segment of Route 66 from Montoya to Newkirk.

See the 1920s-1930s alignment map and directions.

When Route 66 was created it was originally aligned along the "Ozark Trail". This "Trail" was actually a privately sponsored highway system set up in the 1915s. Initially US 66 was a dirt road but it was completely paved by 1933.

From Montoya (0 miles) at reach Exit 311 of I-40 and Route 66, it is 13.1 miles to Newkirk.

The later alignment (Alignment after 1933) is 11.8 miles long.

> > See the previous segment Tucumcari to Montoya (to the east) and the next one Newkirk to Santa Rosa (to the west).

National and State Parks

See full details of nearby parks Parks close to Tucumcari and Parks close to Santa Rosa, all of them close to Newkirk.


Robert Julyan. 1996, The Place Names of New Mexico. UNM Press

Image by Ammodramus, in the Public domain

Image by Vítězslav Válka adapted under its CC BY-SA 3.0 CZ License

Map Icons by Nicolas Mollet under its CC BY SA 3.0 License