Explore the most popular forest trails in Gila National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Excellent trail but thank the gods for AllTrails for showing me which fork to take! As others have said, the first part is poorly marked. Interesting to see the cactus and pine together.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail was severely burned in 93 which actually means that it receives almost no traffic and has incomprable views for quite a lot of it because the panoramic vista is unobscured. The trail was a little tough to follow at times but not too bad and I didn’t see another soul while I was on it, which was quite a treat considering how trafficked a lot of that area is.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this route to Black Peak with my husband and dog on Saturday 3/31. From NM 15, turn at the sign for the Arrastra Site. Up the narrow, rocky road, there is space for a few vehicles to park. You can catch the CDT right from that parking area. There are a few ups and downs. It is not technical at all; most of the challenge comes from the length. The trail is easy to follow overall. The only confusing spot was at the turnoff from the access road at about 2.5 miles. It was not marked, but we used the Alltrails app to check. We clocked the mileage at 7.6 to the peak, for a total of 15.2. This trail recording ends short of the peak. Follow the sign for Signal Peak and turn left at a rock cairn for an easy trail to the summit. It took us 3:30 to go up and 2:40 to come back down. There weren't really views most of the way or at the top, except where you can see through areas of the forest that have been burned. We only saw one trail runner and one mountain biker the entire hike.

1 month ago

Awesome

All of the different trails in this area make it hard to decide which way to go. I had fun doubling back and doing loops. The area is ripe with ecology and geology. I could hit these trails 1000 times and still come away feeling enlightened.

The trail is great up to where it’s washed out. The road to the trail was also flooded with about a foot of water in two locations. We drove about 4 hours out of the way to do this hike so slightly disappointed that only half of it was possible to see. It is incredibly scenic. The government needs to upgrade the road to the trail and the portions of the trail that wash out.

This is a beautiful loop through many ecosystems. But towards the river it’s impossible to stay on / find the trail. Some ranger yelled at us for “trespassing” on the monument, as if we wanted to be bushwhacking!

This is a beautiful pocket of nature that you should take the time to check out, definitely worth the drive I made from El Paso.

did this recently although turned around at 3m in cuz baby wasn't gonna tolerate. took the dog and he really enjoyed the snow! we were just in boots and got to the base of the twin sisters area

When they say "hike a portion" they really mean "a portion."
The view from signal peak lookout is breathtaking, however to get there you're actually hiking an access road, which is really challenging because of the incline through a giant section of burned forest.
I'm a junkie for mileage so I enjoyed it, very challenging from the bottom up, even if it is only an access road. 1.5 liters of water was perfect.

Gorgeous hiking but terrible markers! Come on, put up a couple trail signs or at least arrows indicating which trail is which.

We hiked from Emory Pass to Sawyers Peak with no problems. There are a few dead falls over the trail, but nothing to stop us. Only one we had to go under, the rest we stepped over. The trail is still very usable and is marked with blazes and white diamond reflectors on the switchbacks. The grass and thorny brush have grown up and one must pay attention to follow the trail, but I have been on far worse and harder to follow.
Sad about the fire and blackened trees. However, as with most things in life there are upsides. The views are spectacular. The view from Sawyers Peak is 270 degrees of panorama. Only the western view is somewhat blocked by trees. I was last up there in 2012 before the fire and it has changed, but the views are to die for.

I hiked this trail several times before the floods destroyed it. I haven’t been back since they rebuilt it but it is my understanding that it has been completed. The canyon and views were beautiful. Well worth the time.

Cat Walk was an amazing hike! Although the railing is broken off from time to time, there was always another path to take, keeping our eyes on the railing above. We would have made it almost all the way (only 0.5 mile left), if it hadn't been for time restraints. We took our dogs, but there was only so far that they could join us. Overall an amazing family time adventure!

Do some research about the history of this trail and area Needs a little more rebuilding but worth the effort.

1:45 RT this morning with 15 minutes stop at picnic table at tree. Met 1 woman w/3 dogs off leash on return. Trail is partly shaded by trees so great for hotter weather. 71 yr old female. Beginner.

First time going to this trail, it was confusing at first on the way to the big tree but got easier on the way back. The directions wasn't very accurate. On the other hand, this is also my first time using this app. Thank god there was signal. The gps was on and I got to find my way when I got little confuse with the direction. Overall, it was a great hike, great weather today and the trail was peacefully fun to hike

We had a great hike! It was an overcast day in mid August. There has been plenty of rain so it was quite green almost lush in areas.

backpacking
10 months ago

Beautiful trail! Past the lookout tower, the trail is nearly impossible to follow. Attempted to hike about a half mile past it, due to down trees, and overgrown trails, had to turn back and decided to make it a day trip (11 RT). Also I'm not sure this trail to the junction is 18.7 but more around 22 miles. After talking with the ranger, he was very skeptical that it was 4 more miles past the lookout to the McKnight Road junction, and judging by the map we reviewed, I'd agree.

Great scenery, we were with small kids and was good, but we still didn't go the whole way.

It's a great hike!! Beware, if you take cat walk up, lots of bikers are headed downwards and you'll only have a few seconds to step out of the way…it's all uphill too lol
Toothpick breaks into multiple other trails and overall is a wonderful hike!

Perfect for kids and families. Bring water hiking sandals and have the kids wear swimsuits.

hiking
11 months ago

We only went a few miles in, so I can't review the entire trail, but the section we were on was very well maintained and clearly marked. It follows a small stream that was lovely. The only thing I missed was wildlife - in a review of another Gila trail I saw someone mention that the undergrowth has not grown back enough since the fire to see much wildlife - we definitely missed seeing deer, rabbits, etc but hopefully they will return in time.

We couldn't get more than a 1/4 mile down this trail. It was not cleared at all and we quickly lost the path. Additionally, it starts out very steep which would be fine except there's still a heavy layer of ash on the ground which made it very slippery. Pity because the surroundings are beautiful, but the trail itself needs maintenance.

hiking
Thursday, May 11, 2017

My Wife and I hiked this trail about 7 days ago and really enjoyed the views. Great inclines and plenty of locations to stop and see the vastness of this part of New Mexico. It was about 2 hours to the peak and what a clear day to see all around the area with more than 10 miles visibility.

hiking
Thursday, May 04, 2017

If Gila Cliff trail is a 5, I made this a 3 because the creek isn't as lush. We only went in 1.5 miles but since no one has posted any comments I thought I would. Well maintained and we didn't get our feet wet at any of the crossings which we appreciated because parts of it are flash flood areas. Thank you volunteers and Parks Service! Saw many flowers and about 1/4-1/2 of the trees were burned which made a different kind of beauty. Didn't see anyone on the trail but we hiked mid week the first week in May.

on Tadpole Ridge Trail

hiking
Friday, April 28, 2017

This one is tough. Climbing and descents. Also some trail obstructions in the middle segment that requires scrambling. Wear long pants, be fit and have plenty of water. I did it in two days since I just had one vehicle. I hiked from Sheep Corral up about 5.5 miles and then back, and the following day I hiked from NM15 up to the point I left off. Did I say have plenty of water! Views are stunning along the ridge. I clocked the highest elevation at about 8600 ft. According to my fitbit tracker the total distance from point to point is about 9.5 miles, for a total round trip of about 19 miles. This does not match the distance shown on the trail signs. I'd be curious to know what mileage others come up with.

hiking
Friday, April 28, 2017

Awesome trail. High elevation - up to almost 9000' - and a number of ups and downs, but nothing too strenuous provided you are physically fit. There are some burn areas but otherwise it's a lovely wooded area with stunning views.

Easy hike through a beautiful canyon. Series of catwalks add to the interest.

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