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Best trails in Sandia Mountain Wilderness

4318 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Sandia Mountain Wilderness, New Mexico? AllTrails has 51 great hiking trails, trail running trails, views trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Gearing up for a challenge? There are 29 hard trails in Sandia Mountain Wilderness ranging from 2.7 to 27 miles and from 6,102 to 10,666 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
Description

Just east of Albuquerque are the most visited mountains in New Mexico. Millions of people journey into the Sandia Mountains each year. More than half these visitors ride the Sandia Peak Tram or drive the Sandia Crest National Scenic Byway to take in spectacular panoramic views of Central New Mexico and to enjoy many other recreational opportunities. The Four Seasons Visitor Center offers year round interpretive exhibits and seasonal programs at the upper Tram Building. The Scenic Byway has several newly remodeled picnic grounds with shelters and group areas for reservation. The National Fee Project is currently in operation for all developed sites on the Scenic Byway and along the west and north sides of the district in the Juan Tabo, Basin, and Las Huertas Canyon Areas. A daily amenity fee of $3.00 is required for all vehicles parking in designated, developed recreation sites around the District. An annual pass is favorable, with particular support given to the concept of fees staying available to the unit where they are collected. The Sandias are part of the signature of Albuquerque's unique sense of place. They serve as a premier open space refuge to a population of over 700,000 people in the extended metropolitan area. Over one-third of the State's school-age population lives within an hour's drive of the Sandias, and there is a great demand for fire prevention, fire ecology, and other environmental education programs. Sandia Mountain is a landmark in the spiritual universe of many active traditional Indian beliefs. It is regularly visited for ceremonial purposes by the Sandia Pueblo and at least annually by many other pueblos. It also has direct ties to Spanish land grant communities established by the King of Spain in the 1700's and Mexican land grants from the 1820's. Some Spanish land grants adjoining the Sandias are still active. Water sources are not only sacred to Indian beliefs, but also played a key role in sustaining the agricultural bases of the land grant communities. Several ditch systems still function today, including one actively maintained in Las Huertas Canyon as an "acequia madre" for a community's agricultural water. These traditional communities are encountering greater conflicts with the growing recreational uses of the Sandias. The lesser-known southern part of the District includes the Manzanita Mountains, which form a low ridge between the Manzano Mountains to the south and the Sandias to the north. A portion of this area is in the Military Withdrawal, where public use has been restricted since 1943. The Military Withdrawal and adjacent Forest Service land has been the subject of intensive ecosystem planning to reduce fuel loads and the risk of wildfire, to enhance wildlife habitat and ecosystem health, and to improve recreational opportunities.

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Map of trails in Sandia Mountain Wilderness
Park information
Contact
505.281.3304
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Top trails (51)
#1 - La Luz Trail #137
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(739)
Length: 13.3 mi • Est. 7 h 46 m
This trail at the north end of the Sandias goes from the base of the mountain to the peak at 10,678'. Beautiful views of the Albuquerque valley to the west. There is a $3 fee to park. Hikers have the Show more
#2 - South Piedra Lisa Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(534)
Length: 4.4 mi • Est. 2 h 39 m
South Piedra Lisa Trail is a 4.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Albuquerque, New Mexico that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a numbeShow more
#3 - Travertine Falls
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(387)
Length: 1.1 mi • Est. 37 m
Short forest hike to a seasonal waterfall. Great for kids. Beginning of S Crest Trail 130 from Canyon Estates. Easy .5 mile hike to waterfalls. Easy for kids - can also go to the top of the falls tShow more
#4 - Three Guns Spring Trail Loop
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(270)
Length: 4.7 mi • Est. 2 h 54 m
Three Guns Spring Trail Loop is a 4.7 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Tijeras, New Mexico that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of acShow more
#5 - Tramway Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(195)
Length: 5 mi • Est. 2 h 43 m
As of June 2020, there is no parking at the trailhead. The Tramway Trail offers great views of the lower Sandia Mountains on the eastern Slope. The trail connects with La Luz trail to continue to theShow more
#6 - La Luz Trail #137 to Tramway Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(114)
Length: 4.2 mi • Est. 2 h 20 m
La Luz Trail #137 to Tramway Trail is a 4.2 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Albuquerque, New Mexico that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily usShow more
#7 - Sandia Cave Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(129)
Length: 1.1 mi • Est. 34 m
The trail is fun, there's a cool spiral staircase to get up to the cave. The road to get to the trailhead is VERY rough - you can make it in a car but it will be slow going. Show more
#8 - Faulty Loop via South Crest Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(178)
Length: 5.3 mi • Est. 2 h 54 m
Faulty Loop via South Crest Trail is a 5.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Tijeras, New Mexico that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily uShow more
#9 - North Sandia Peak Trail
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(98)
Length: 3.7 mi • Est. 1 h 58 m
This trail along the ridgeline takes you out to the North Peak, a significant landmark of the Sandia Mountains. Along the way there are overlooks and side paths that provide impressive views of the ShShow more
#10 - Hondo Canyon and Travertine Falls
Sandia Mountain Wilderness
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(150)
Length: 4.1 mi • Est. 2 h 18 m
Hondo Canyon and Travertine Falls is a 4.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Tijeras, New Mexico that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily useShow more
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