Plants 20-40(-50) cm. Stems whitish, leafy, loosely tomentose. Leaves grayish green; blades 1-nerved, linear, 10-35 × 1(-1.5) mm, faces loosely tomentulose. Involucres 8-11.5 mm. Phyllaries 16-23 (outer margins ciliate), apices erect, acute to obtuse (outer) to acuminate (inner), outer abaxial faces tomentose, glabrescent. Corollas 8.4-10.9 mm, tubes glabrous or sparsely puberulent, lobes 0.6-1.3 mm, glabrous; style appendages shorter than stigmatic portions. Cypselae glabrous; pappi 5.2-7.4 mm. 2n = 18. Flowering fall. Limestone cliffs and among boulders, less common on gravel alluvium of streambeds, associated with bigtooth maple, hornbeam, madrone, and yellow pine woodlands; of conservation concern; 1500-2100 m; N.Mex., Tex. Variety texensis is known from the Guadalupe Mountains.