Trampas Lakes Trail

HARD 33 reviews
#5 of 30 trails in

Trampas Lakes Trail is a 11.3 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Chimayo, New Mexico that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
11.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2772 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

backpacking
2 months ago

Awesome hidden away place for some awesome views

backpacking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike! We planned to stay overnight and got a late start. We are very fit and fast hikers in our mid 30s and 40s and we got to Hidden Lake in less than 3 hours with 30lb packs on (booking it a bit more than usual to beat total darkness and cold hands!). We intended to go stay at Trampas Lakes, but got confused by the sign pointing in multiple directions and wound up taking the clear, but unmarked, trail to Hidden Lake. We weren't sorry-- we had the camp area there completely to ourselves on a Friday night and hiked back out the next day. Taking our time more to stop and take photos, we made it back down from Hidden Lake in 2.5 hours.

This is a beautiful trail with a kind of rainforesty feel-- moss, ferns, mushrooms, gently rushing river, wild berries, etc. There are several creek/river crossings, but most of them have several options of getting across on logs. As we're in monsoon season, there are many muddy/soggy patches along the trail, most of which can be avoided somewhat. The lake areas themselves are scenic and peaceful. Didn't see much wildlife aside from a few squirrels, chipmunks, woodpeckers, and other birds.

Driving tip: we took the "long route" in our Prius. The last 4-5 miles of FSR 207 are just do-able in dry conditions with cautious and attentive driving, but I wouldn't want to put the car through that too often. There are a few camping areas along that stretch of road should you decide to pull off and hike in from there.

backpacking
3 months ago

Requires a good effort. 60,fairly fit, with 35lb pack: 4 hour hike up- 2.75 down. Several rest stops, especially higher up. Carry ample drinking water for the hike up. Best advice- unless you have a serious 4wd vehicle, don't take the shortcut. It will save you maybe 20 minutes- but only if you make it through. Just turn left in Truchas, following 76. Go thru Trampas, then right turn onto 207. Go past El Valle, then to the trailhead another 5-6 miles down the road. This time of year, take rain gear. We got hail and rain most of the way down. Have fun. Pack it in, pack it out- Please keep our trails beautiful.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful hike. It's uphill the entire way, but doesn't become tiring until maybe the last 1/3. It took us about 3.5 hours to get to the lakes, but we stopped for photos a lot. On the way down, it took around 2 hours, which included stopping to photograph the stunning moss covered trees illuminated by the setting sun. I DO NOT recommend attempting to get to the trailhead by driving east of Truchas on Forest Road 639. Even with 4WD, there are rocks and lots of water (at least during monsoon season) that made it harrowing. Instead, try 207 down from El Valle. We took that on the way back to Taos, and it was much better. There's no snow at the top by mid August.

4 months ago

Started the trail yesterday at 12:20pm and got to the top in about 3 hours. The hike up is fairly strenuous and is pretty much up hill he entire way (6 miles). There are beautiful streams, a group of Aspen trees, and many wild flowers along the way. When you make it to the sign at he top, go left. There you will find the first lake on the right and the left lake is just a short walk away. There are plenty of nearby streams to get fresh water at the summit and many places to set up camp with some previously made fire pits. We camped at the end of the right lake, which came with a great view and was pretty secluded from other campers. Today when we hiked down it took us about 2.15 hours, stopping a few times to talk with other hikers coming up the mountain.
I definitely recommend this hike! You can do it in one day, however I feel like you'd miss out on some of the beauty this mountain has to offer if you don't stay at least one night.
Oh and one more thing, if you don't have a truck or similar vehicle, take the longer way to drive to the trail. We started up the shorter driving route and had to turn around because the road was so rough. Enjoy!

backpacking
4 months ago

The trail is a steady elevation gain all the way so it doesn't seem as bad as the elevation gain implies. The trail isn't very scenic until you get to the lakes but the lakes more than make up for it. There's a very large area to camp between the lakes with plenty of spots so it doesn't feel crowded like Lake Katherine can. I'd also say the lakes are more scenic than Lake Katherine. This is my favorite place in NM so far.

backpacking
4 months ago

Went last fall, was a beautiful site when you got to the lake. Had amazing views and looked like something from a magazine. I do suggest this hike! Stayed the night alone and camped out at the very start of the hike, was very peaceful. I plan to go again soon!

4 months ago

This is so far my favorite place I've hiked and camped at in New Mexico. So beautiful and peaceful. Hike up was not as bad as I thought it would be, took just over 3 hours; the switchbacks make the elevation gain not seem so bad. Even if there are a handful of people there it's easy to find a spot all to yourself.

hiking
5 months ago

Wasn't able to make it to the trail driving a Toyota Corolla. When 76 turns into 75 it becomes a dirt road that after about a mile becomes rocky and very easy for a low profile car to bottom out.

A truck would be a better choice for driving to the trail head.

backpacking
5 months ago

amazing destination. more crowded than I would have thought but still peaceful. Decent hike going up if you have gear, quick and easy going down. I would definitely recommend.

backpacking
5 months ago

Busier than expected but absolutely lovely. Took about 4.5 hours up and 2.5 down. We camped between the two lakes at the top. Not much snow left as of June 24.

backpacking
6 months ago

Great Trail! The last mile or so is packed with snow which makes the trail a bit more challenging. Be prepared with extra socks. The view is incredible.

6 months ago

really gorgeous pair of lakes at the end. I wish it elevated out of the treeline a little more, still a great trail.

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

rickiwr than expected.
gorgeous trail. when you finally reach the trampas lakes sign turn left.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Beautiful hike. According to my tracking it turned out to be around 13 miles. The hike is pretty difficult and is pretty much uphill the entire way. The sign at the top that is supposed to lead you to the lake has vandalized arrows pointing both ways to Trampas lake. My intuition told me to go left and I was right. We even saw a baby bear on the hike down.

hiking
Friday, September 02, 2016

Nice hike. Tree-lined all the way, so views are limited. On the trail at 7 a.m. and finished at 2:30. Felt longer than 11.3 mi. (8/25/16)

fishing
Sunday, August 16, 2015

Decent hike up but very well worth it

hiking
Thursday, July 18, 2013

Just got back from this hike. It was absolutely gorgeous and definitely should be done by all! Make sure to check out Hidden Lake as well. It's only a mile to the right from the Trampas Lakes sign. I stopped by the rocky slope and watched the Pika play around :) If done early enough, it can for sure be a day hike! Enjoy!!

camping
Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I have backpacked this trail many times. It is a nice hike and a wonderful lake. I highly recommend this trail. Also there are huge fish in the lake, so any one up to carying fly fishing gear is in for a treat.

hiking
2 months ago

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