hiking

no dogs

kid friendly

walking

views

wild flowers

birding

nature trips

Bandelier National Monument protects over 33,000 acres of rugged but beautiful canyon and mesa country as well as evidence of a human presence here going back over 11,000 years. Petroglyphs, dwellings carved into the soft rock cliffs, and standing masonry walls pay tribute to the early days of a culture that still survives in the surrounding communities. Life in Bandelier The Ancestral Pueblo people lived here from approximately 1150 CE to 1550 CE. They built homes carved from the volcanic tuff and planted crops in mesatop fields. Corn, beans, and squash were central to their diet, supplemented by native plants and meat from deer, rabbit, and squirrel. Domesticated turkeys were used for both their feathers and meat while dogs assisted in hunting and provided companionship. Moving On By 1550, the Ancestral Pueblo people had moved from this area to pueblos along the Rio Grande. After over 400 years the land here could no longer support the people and a severe drought added to what were already becoming difficult times. Oral traditions tell us where the people went and who their descendents are. The people of Cochiti Pueblo, located just south and east along the Rio Grande, are the most direct descendents of the Ancestral Pueblo people who built homes in Frijoles Canyon. Likewise, San Ildefonso is most closely linked to Tsankawi.

Breathtaking views!

this trail has it all. dramatic views , caves, ancient history and diverse floral. amazing!!

Such a nice trail. I recommend buying the map in the visitors center to follow along with the numbers on the trail.

I loved this trail! It involves several ladders and wouldn't be great for those scared of heights! The view of the canyon is beautiful from the top.

hiking
13 days ago

I was stalked by a gang of deer. Other than that, it was scrumptious. Didn’t care for the $20 entry.

Great offshoot from the main loop. I ran across it by accident and was glad I did. It’ is easy to accomplish because of the switchbacks. I wasn’t aware of the slow decent until I came back down. My loss. It was great for exercise and scenery. This is one of the best areas to take kids. I wish I had known about this park when mine were small.

walking
20 days ago

A very easy trail up to the very end.

I would take the heights warning very seriously. At the end you climb ladders pretty far up. It’s best part about the whole route though.

It’s also really cool seeing the history of the culture that used to live in the valley as well.

Great hike. You are quickly rewarded with great views early in the trek and they just keep coming. Good trail guide for stops along the way. Keep your AllTrails map active though - easy to miss the second ladder at the far end of the loop. Good for kids that are careful - steep drops mean they have to be cautious. Went in January - almost alone on the trail. Beautiful!

hiking
1 month ago

Nice and relaxing trail. It was disappointing that that we couldn’t continue down to lower falls. Great time to go not a lot of people!

hiking
1 month ago

Beginner hiker and in need of some conditioning so it was a little bit of a challenge for me. Some areas were snow covered so I took it a bit slower at points. It was fun to challenge myself and definitely worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

Loved it!

hiking
1 month ago

Easy loop hike with cool caves and unique petroglyphs and great views. Perfect if you only have a couple hours left in your day.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike with interesting historical features and beautiful views. Easy if you’re able-bodied, but lots of narrow, rocky stairs and two ladders that make this more challenging for people with joint issues, balance or coordination issues, or fear of heights. Our 70-year-old parents (not regular hikers) loved it but found it challenging.

Well the Alcove trail is just a short addition to Main loop trail, don’t short yourself just do it. It’s a relatively light hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Arrived around noon, parking lot full and used the alternate one. In to visitors center and looked at a few loops, Main Trail decided. Hmm, so did most others and plenty visitors ahead. Temperature was great in low 50s so a pullover was plenty. Fantastic area and most pictures won’t do it justice, my choice of sleeping quarters, not sure which one. Long lines along the ladders and expect some brief breaks waiting. Glad all the kids made it up and down safely. Would certainly do it again.

We did this trail with our son who was almost 2 at the time. We had a blast. He didn’t climb up the ladders to peek inside the caverns and rode on mamas back up the hard part, but on level ground through the woods he had a blast!

hiking
2 months ago

One of my favorite places. Arriving at the end of the day caused my hike to be limited. The archeological aspect is awe-inspiring. Very rocky, a little incline getting up to the pueblos. i am in moderate shape, and thought it was taxing going up to the cliff. However, take your time, as it is definitely worth it.

It was a easy hike and the views were amazing!

hiking
2 months ago

Excellent hike with so many interesting historic sited to see. The walk is fairly easy.

Really interesting trail. The worn trail into the rock was fascinating.

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