Although New Mexico is considered by most outsiders to be a desert, mountainous regions cover a significant portion of the state. In fact, there are 88 named mountain ranges in the state of New Mexico. The Rocky Mountains run along the northern region of the state and are known as the Sangre de Cristo (Spanish for Blood of Christ) Mountains. These mountains run along the eastern edge of the Rio Grande River and include Wheeler Peak, which reaches the highest point in New Mexico at 13,161 feet above sea level. To the west of the Rio Grande are the Nacimiento and Jemez Mountain ranges.