West Fork Trail

EASY 1 reviews
#30 of 48 trails in

West Fork Trail is a 30.9 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Gila Hot Springs, New Mexico that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
30.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4914 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

backpacking

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

views

wild flowers

backpacking
1 month ago

We set out to hike the West Fork Trail to iron creek lake, then return on the Meadows trail back to the start. When we got to the Ranger station at the park we saw on the map that the trail had only been cleared to Hell's Hole after the fire. So we shortened our expectations. When we set out the trail looked great, easy to follow, cairns and signs aplenty, water nearby. Then after about a mile the trail basically disappeared. We had topos and we knew the trail didn't leave the river for any length for a long way, so we trudged on. Finally we realized that the trail and the river were the same. If we tried to leave the river we almost always ended up back tracking to the river and wading in again. We made it to Graves Canyon, about 3 miles in before we decided to camp for the night then reverse course back to the park. It was spectacularly gorgeous, and the only signs of humanity we saw were a lost compass (score!), a hair scrunchy and some spit out gum (really?). But it was grueling. I had my fishing shoes in my pack which worked ok. I came back with several blisters. But my wife only had her boots and a pair of flip flops. She was determined to find a way back without wading, but finally had to concede and just walk in wet boots.