Sitting Bull Falls Trail

EASY 25 reviews

Sitting Bull Falls Trail is a 0.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Carlsbad, New Mexico that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

0.4 miles
124 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly



nature trips




wild flowers


nature trips
1 day ago

It was a great little trip... only complaint was no sign at the turn off of the main road... the trail leading to the waterfall is easy for those who have a disability or in a wheelchair....

2 months ago

Been in both Summer and wintertime gorgeous both times. Easy. Kids can do it. Good for an afternoon of quick activity.

2 months ago

Such an oasis surrounded by desert. Great sport climbing as well!

7 months ago

The falls trail was good (68) but an attempt to hike the connecting trails left me frustrated. They are not well marked and overgrown. The small hiker plates that are on the trees are so far apart and hard to see. I found myself getting lost off the trail. Not recommended for someone new to that terrain. Stay to the falls trail

11 months ago

Sitting Bull Falls Recreation Area is OPEN EVERY DAY (unless storms threaten flash flooding).

WINTER HOURS: Oct - Mar, are 8:30 am - 5 pm, incoming gate locked 4 pm

SUMMER HOURS:Apr - Sept, are 8:30 am to 6 pm, incoming gate locked 5 pm

ENTRANCE FEE: $5 per vehicle up to 9 people, $10 per vehicle for 10 or more, FREE with any valid America the Beautiful access pass (

Check the official Lincoln National Forest website for updates or alerts. Or call the Guadalupe District rangers' office at 575-885-4181. (

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Good trail for beginners and families !!!

Saturday, November 05, 2016

Beautiful falls

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

There are two trails. One is short, paved, and leads to the waterfall, which is beautiful. The Sitting Bull trailhead is on the other side of the parking lot near the map. That is an uphill, rocky hike which would have been great if it weren't for the "closed for public use" sign a short way up. It was still a nice hike and the views from up on the hill were breathtaking.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

We LOVED this trail.

Monday, March 14, 2016

This was a great trail! I would definitely come back. There is beautiful (small) cave with teal water not too far from the trail entrance which was very beautiful. There are many small springs and a nice waterfall. The limestone which is all around is equally beautiful. We hiked for 3.5 hours. Our dog also loved it! It was a great adventure!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Plenty of beautiful hiking trails here. Really enjoyed the scenery.

nature trips
Sunday, October 11, 2015

The walk to the falls is pretty uneventful, but the falls themselves are really fun. There are various pools that cascade down level by level. I have only ever gone here to swim so I can't comment much on the hiking.There is a trail going up to & behind the falls, into a cave system where King Solomons Mines was filmed. Last time I went the water was too high & frigid to explore. This was over 10 yrs ago so I plan on going again soon to see how much has changed.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Beautiful waterfalls and great pools to swim in! The water is perfect during the hot summer months!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

closed as of last year due to flooding. The road is blocked off. So be sure it is reopened before making the trip!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

An oasis in the desert! The drive from Carlsbad is rather lengthy, but the hike from the parking lot is very short.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The basic trail to the waterfalls basin is very easy and breath taking. The hike to the top of the falls is steep but worth the view.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Great place to visit. The trail over the falls is open now. You can see the damage from the fires; very sad.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Great little oasis in the desert. Due to last years fires the falls are only open from 12-6 Friday-Sunday. Also, the trail to the top is closed until vegetation grows back. The bottom is well worth the trip though.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Great hike in the spring and fall, BUT to darn Hot in summer.

5 months ago

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