Explore the most popular camping trails in Santa Fe 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.

mountain biking
17 hours ago

This is, hands down, some of the best downhill biking I've done! (Maybe I should get out more?) We did make the mistake of starting at the Ski Basin only to walk our bikes uphill to the Norski TH. (Hint: Just start there!) The trail is well maintained and was such a fun ride! My 11 & 13 year old loved it, too!

backpacking
11 days ago

trail condition is good in early April.

17 days ago

Beautiful and challenging hike. There wasn't any snow when we went this weekend. Last 1.5 mile climb is tough but the views are worth it.

22 days ago

Great canyon, walk in creek bottom, sandy. Ends at Rio Grand R. Easy hike

Beautiful scenery walked to the river, but went on a day when it was in the 90s. Very hot barely any shade, it’s an easy trail but not in warm temps. Bring lots of water. Brought my dogs and kept them on a leash to be courteous to other hikers and their dogs. Bring a hat! I was sorry I forgot mine.

Amazing view, a bit rocky but worth it.

hiking
2 months ago

Canyon was neat, the rest of the trail was unnecessary.

Not a bad hike, lots of sand..was like 4 miles of beach walk. Beginning was cool in the canyon

hiking
2 months ago

Spectacular walk through canyon viewing rock walls and climbers. Then into broad open arroyo till reaching thr Rio Grande. Beautiful the entire way.

Didn't feel like a moderate difficulty but more like an easy difficulty.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful!

hiking
4 months ago

Wonderful scenery throughout the entire hike. We spent some time at the top, where you can see for miles! Be sure to bring good shoes, as it is quite rocky for quite a distance. Bring a camera to take pictures. It will make for a fantastic desktop picture.

hiking
5 months ago

The trail was rocky as others have noted. Other than that it was a nice walk of several hours. The view from the top was amazing. The crucifixes along the end of the trail are reminiscent of the Blair Witch.

My beagles and I visit the canyon at least twice a month, all seasons. Exiting the canyon, crossing the boulder fields opens to a sandy arroyo which ends at the river. Dogs run free. Take a break in the junipers. Stop, look, and explore. Four easy hours in and out.

hiking
5 months ago

Perfect hike for my dog and I! Super easy and flat, great to run sprints or meander along - my dog loves to swim so getting to the river was big fun! This would be a great hike to take visiting friends who aren’t big hikers or used to the elevation - I don’t mind the drive in at all, drive fast and it’s a lot of fun!

hiking
6 months ago

This is such a beautiful trail! We did this hike, and many others, during our time in NM. If you have the time be sure to turn off on some of the trails along the way, as there are some beautiful surprises. We followed a tip by another hiker and went down a trail (I believe it was called "Trail #160) to the left shortly the wooden walk-way over a creek and ended up going through a bunch of aspen trees and out into a huge open valley, which our dogs LOVED! Awesome area, enjoy!

hiking
6 months ago

The first 2.0 miles is rocky but you make pretty good time. The last 2 miles is pretty rough. My wife and I made the trek. Took us 7.5 hours to make the round trip. This trail is definitely not for a beginner. And make sure you have very good shoes. The rocks will kill your feet. Good luck to all of you! This has been on my bucket list for a long time. Glad my wife and I could make it and complete the hike.

The first section of this hike is the best. I wouldn't bother going to the end unless you actually have to see the water. the rest of it is really only good for rock hunting because there isn't anywhere to sit and relax at the water unless you get in it.

The view at the summit is well worth it. The worst part of the trail are the amount on rocks. There is only a very small part at the top that does not have any rocks and it is a smooth trail. Also, there are several fallen trees that you either have to climb over or crawl under. When you get to the "top" there is still more trail. But it is a nice spot to take some pics. A little farther up is Hermits well where you can fill up on cold water if you have a filter. Enjoy your hike!

hiking
8 months ago

This hike provides decent scenery at times of the year when you can't see as much in the mountains. The actual canyon in not very long, but you can lengthen the hike by going to the river. It's also fairly close to town and not as heavily used as trails in the mountains. However, there is no maintained trail, and that can make it a little more difficult at times. Watch out for flash flooding in the summer.

backpacking
8 months ago

One of the few trails that open early in the Pecos Wilderness due to the southern exposure on Winsor Ridge. Beautiful aspen stands and some Gambel's oak for fall colors, and I've seen coyotes, deer, elk, and grouse, so it's a great trail for wildlife viewing. I've also heard turkey's in the trees. Stewart lake is beautiful, but not many places to camp because of the F.S. regulation of not being able to camp in the lake basin.

As good as it gets!

backpacking
8 months ago

Not for beginners. Lots of loose rocks, downed trees, and a steady incline the entire way up and down. We found it helpful to have a map or use the map in this app as it was sometimes confusing if we were on the real trail or not.
As someone who typically lives around 200ft above sea-level, the altitude definitely made the hike more of a challenge as well.
We brought our packs and slept overnight on the plateau. The views from the top made the hard hike well worth it. Amazing views! Pack a jacket though as the wind gets intense through the night.
Well worth the adventure.

hiking
8 months ago

Great trail year round. Beautiful scenery and outlooks. I live the sound of the falls along the river.

hiking
9 months ago

Not a bad hike, don't see how it's rated moderate. This trail is very easy. The last seven miles of road are horribly washboards. Start filming for a movie 7-18-17 so check availability before you go.

hiking
9 months ago

Great views. Easy hike in most places.

mountain biking
9 months ago

First time mountain biking and I chose to bomb down this beauty of a trail. I've done it a few different times now and every time is breath taking. Greats views and shoots out near TVM

backpacking
9 months ago

Difficult climb due to the fallen rocks. If you are not committed to reaching the top, you will get discouraged because of the difficult and long path. Once on top, however, the challenge is soon forgotten. It is beautiful.

hiking
9 months ago

First time on this trail. We have lived in Santa Fe and do hikes there. We wanted to branch out a little. On Sat June 24 th, we were actually headed to another hiking area, but the small parking lot was full. So we headed here. I have the Santa Fe Day Hike book and I had briefly read up on this hike. I wanted to go to the cave.
We started out later than we really wanted to (about 1 pm) and by 4-5 pm the news was forecasting some storms. So. We knew it was not going to be the most optimal hike.
The trail is easy to follow, we had our book, but it does have lots of large loose rock. And , it is a bit strenuous.
We met a couple early on, they were headed out, and they had seen a bear. They said it was spotted "a ways off the trail". I should have been more scared.
The hike up took us longer than I wanted it to. We stopped and rested often. We saw a lone hiker headed down and a group of younger adults with two dogs.
We marched on until you get to the first good plateau, which is where most of my photos were taken. We were going to keep going, but we could see some clouds coming our way, we weren't well equipped and we had spent almost 4 hours hiking up. So, we left that breathtaking view saying we would be back and I started back down first. Just as I rounded the first corner to the switchback, I saw a movement right down the trail. I froze. It was a bear. My husband came up behind, and told me, Don't move. To late. I started to freak out.
The bear was a honey blonde color, shining right there in the sun! My heart stopped. Rex
Kept his cool somehow. The bear took a few more steps towards us and Rex made some really loud noises and the bear ran on up the mountain.
This was our very first encounter. I was terrified.
I liked to know how often bear sighting happen on this hike.

hiking
9 months ago

If you hike New Mexico you will know that there is a lot of deferred maintenance on the trails. Winsor trail was adopted by the local mountain biking club and is amazingly smooth and beautiful. You will see many more tire tracks on this trail than boot . If you start at the main ski areas parking you will hike for about 3/4 of a mile only to connect with another access point for the trail from the road. This access appears to be a cross country ski track and it's about a half mile from the main entrance of the ski area. So you can start here or in the main parking lot. Finally the AllTrails app is way off on the elevation you lose about 3000 feet rather than some 300. Also an out and back on this trail would be about 19 miles.

backpacking
10 months ago

Yooooooo why did none of you reviewers warn me about how there's not actual signage for Stewart's? You have to follow the sign for Johnson, apparently. I'm not sure, because we never made it to Stewart's. Us passing the sign and heading several miles in the wrong direction turned this into more of a failed suicide attempt than a one-nighter, and since Stewart's is apparantley a bit beyond Johnson we just collapsed at the first lake we got to.

That being said, my review should reflect the actual trail. Which is lovely. Very gradual incline the entire way, several beautiful aspen stands, and multiple water sources along the way. The information calls this "heavily trafficked," and I would agree if you're going on a weekend. We hiked in on a Sunday and passed many groups on their way , but had the whole lake to ourselves that night. Don't trust the distance estimates of people hiking out - they've been hiking downhill the whole time!!

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