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El Morro National Monument Loop Trail

MODERATE 61 reviews

El Morro National Monument Loop Trail is a 1.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Ramah, New Mexico that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, camping, and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 1.8 miles Elevation Gain: 324 feet Route Type: Loop

kid friendly



nature trips


partially paved


no dogs

This was an important stop off for pioneers and travelers in the area due to WATER that is always there. A small pretty pond and 2000 carved signatures, dates and petroglyphs line much of the way and a hike to the top will lead to a Woodpecker looking arch, great views and pueblo ruins. The trail is well maintained but the hike to the top does take a little effort.

15 days ago

Beautiful place, and no admission charges. The Rangers at the welcome center were super nice

1 month ago

Did the reverse with the steps first, you get the hard part first and then finish with inscription trail...

no shade
2 months ago

Great trail with open views. Turn left and do the steps first as everyone recommends. about 1/2 way in as you're looking over Rt 53, look to your right for the large rock formation that resembles a woodpecker on a tree.

Like old times hiking with the best friend! And the fiancé and the pups. Had a little rain shower on us but still a great hike!

3 months ago

great easy hike

4 months ago

Fairly easy trail... everything marked very well

4 months ago

good trail

8 months ago

Snow covered the one trail to see the ruins but the inscription wall is really amazing.

8 months ago

It'ss got it all in a very compact space

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Took another reviewers advise and went left up the stairs first. It was amazing. Nice to go downhill over the switchbacks and enjoy the carvings at Inscription Rock at the end as a cool down time. Walking sticks are helpful on the downhill and at the top over the rocky terrain. We will comeback again many times. Different seasons to enjoy the changing scenery and weather. Especially nice that it’s free to get into. Rangers were very helpful.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Beautiful day and scenery!!! The hike up is an incline, just be prepared and have water!!! :)

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Amazing hike. Very beautiful

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Absolutely great! completed it with our 5 year old son and he just loved the stairs and slick rock areas. We found it better to go to the left as you leave the visitors center. It has you climbing the stairs first and puts you at the top of the trail, letting you come down the long switchbacks to inscription rock. For us, that was easier, but both routes are good. Hope everyone enjoys this trail!

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Beautiful trail. Beautiful area.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Great trail with some great views and moderate climbing. Some very cool inscriptions which provide historical perspectives. Would recommend a lunch on top and possibly stopping at el Calderon as well.

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Nice easy walk/hike. Beautiful views of the surrounding areas. Wish I would've packed a lunch so I could've had lunch at the very top. The weather was a little hot but still perfect. I highly recommend this stop. Great visitor center and mini gift shop. Everyone working was very helpful.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Easy and instructional trail. Highly recommend the stop.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Nice trail with some very good views of the National Monument.

Monday, November 20, 2017

This place is wonderful because of its beauty for sure, but the history of it makes it even better. At the top of the bluff, there are ruins dating back to 1200CE. Below, there is a small lake that later provided water for travelling Spaniards and pioneers settling the West. There are ancient petroglyphs and beautiful inscriptions carved in Spanish and English. Its a very cool place.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Petroglyphs are visible and they give you a booklet to go along with it. Very interesting! You can also hike to the top to see the ruins. If you're camping, they have a free campsite across the street with water and restrooms.

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Great little camping spot. It has roughly 7-8 shaded pads. There is enough room to park a car or small trailer at each site. We have camped here twice and both times it was quiet. Great view of El Morro rock. There is a paved path to see the historical inscriptions in the rock. There is also an unpaved trail now open to take to the top to see ruins of a small village. Great views all the way up. It is short and doable for my 5 year old. The sites have fire pits and grill tops. Bring your own wood, charcoal, and water. Restrooms are on site.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

This was our boys' first real nature walk for a NPS Junior Ranger badge. They have a good self-guided tour, with varying levels of difficulty. We give major kudos to the excellent ranger who encouraged our children to support NPS and learn as much as they can about their natural environment.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

This hike was so rad. There's the guide book you are given that you follow on a beautifully paved to the historical etchings and the pool of water, then drop off the laminated guide book and prepare for the adventure. There's some nice incline and once you arrive to the top, the path you follow is parallel lines etched into the sandstone. The views are beautiful from above and then you continue to on to the ruins and back down to the visitor center. While doing this hike you feel like you are a contestant on Legends of the Hidden Temple.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Great hike for history, scenic beauty. I consider it a destination hike.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

The whole trail (inscriptions and Headland Trail) is 2.5 miles long (loop) and offers both remarkable insights into the travelling routes through New Mexico during the last several hundred years as well as breathtaking vistas of the surrounding area. The little "oasis" is the reason for this site, but not the most interesting aspect of it. Take the inscriptions trail (free guidebooks in the visitor center available) and afterwards, continue on onto the rocks of El Morro where at the very top, the ruins of an old pueblo await. The trail is easy - paths are well maintained. The views on top are amazing, revealing the many colors of the rocks (white, orange, red, brown, ...) and offering views into the sacred canyon beyond.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Nice primitive campground. Limited on space. Arrive early in busy season.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

How I wish I could write on paper the way these people wrote on the rock. Such a great piece of history. Be sure to watch the video before you hit the trail. The trail itself is beautifully paved and very easy. It was late so we didn't go to the top but from talking to others that did it was only a small structure so we didn't feel like we missed too much.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Easy hike with nice views. The history is the draw. Amazing writing on the walls and an old abandoned rock dwelling on top. Definitely worth a visit.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Great hike. Beautiful vistas. A very historic and unique walk along inscriptions dating back to 1605. Ruins, canyons, El Morro has it all!

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