Dark Canyon Loop Trail is a 6.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Timberon, New Mexico that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and mountain biking and is best used from March until December. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

6.7 miles
810 feet

dog friendly

kid friendly


mountain biking



wild flowers


Dark Canyon Loop Trail is a beautiful trail in the middle of the forest near Cloudcroft. Start at the trailhead (32.85288, -105.69886). The first 3 miles you will walk down, and then the trail is steep but not too much for the next 3.5 miles. Stop for a moment take pictures and enjoy the beautiful vistas, you will love the wonderful landscape. One mile before from the trailhead that you started, you will arrive to the intersection with the road; you will see a sign here. Then turn to your left and walk by this road, you also drove this last part when you were going to the trailhead. And keep a look out because you could see elk near the trail or in the distance, they say that wild turkeys also live in this area.

5 months ago

Trail is in good condition and well marked. There are lots of views down into side canyons and several old lumber roads that make nice side treks. Just don't get lost! We saw lots of Elk and Mule Deer.
We also hiked down Dark Canyon itself, which runs west to east, lying north of the marked trail loop. It is marked on the All Trails map as Dark Canyon Road, which in reality does not exist and only parts of it remain to be seen. The canyon is very pretty with may extremely large trees. There was an unusual amount of animal skeletons to see, along with a stock tank and spring at about 2.5 miles from the top of the canyon.
Benson Ridge Road, which leads to the Dark Canyon trail head is rough in places, but can be driven by all but the lowest suspension of cars, as long as it is driven slowly.

11 months ago

I visited this beautiful trail the first week of December, there were some snow but I could easily drive my SUV to the trailhead, it was also not difficult to walk because not too much snow on the trail. On the way to the trailhead near the road, I saw several herds of elks, and then I could see them running in the distance. The trail is very well marked and although it is rocky, it is easy to walk, even with the snow. The pine and aspen trees forest is beautiful; definitely I will come back again during summer time.

recorded Dark Canyon Loop Trail

2 months ago

8 months ago

8 months ago

Saturday, November 11, 2017