Explore the most popular forest trails near Albuquerque with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Woof. First morning in town after driving from Buffalo, NY (maybe 500ft above sea level?) so no acclimatization. Got a later start than we wanted (9:50am) so it pretty warm during the least enjoyable parts of the trail. First ~2mi was tough to even find the trail. Scrawl that makes up most of the second half can be tiring if your arches aren’t used to it. I consider myself in good shape and a pretty experienced hiker but tbh it was Pretty brutal but a real challenge. Took us about 6hrs in all (with a few stops for pictures and starts down wrong trails). Took the tram down. Glad I did it once, don’t know if I feel compelled to do it again soon....

Really beautiful, challenging trail. I started at the Pino Trailhead to get to the Domingo Baca Trailhead, which adds about .5 to the 7.7 mile trail. Starts with a desert landscape, slightly scaling to overlook Albuquerque then into very rocky terrain at the base, into shady, wooded terrain. It gets more challenging after the first mile. If you’re not acclimated to the already 6000’ city of Albuquerque, then this will be very challenging (I just got here a few days ago and had to go much slower than my usual pace). You climb about 1000’ in the first 2.5 miles. I only made it 4 miles in, and will go back as I am more acclimated. Enjoy!

Beautiful and challenging trail. The last half up to the TWA site has significant altitude gain. You should be in good condition, especially if you don't live at mile high altitude. The plane wreckage is historic and creates a bit of a melancholy vibe, which adds a unique aspect to the hike.When I did this hike two years ago I tried to keep up with a group 25+ years younger than me as they raced down the trail. I wound up with a torn meniscus and knee surgery! Not likely to happen to you (I hope), but that's probably what stopped me from clicking 5 stars.

worth checking out. and if u like going off trail and really feeling some altitude its a few miles to la luz and right up to the tram. be prepared to deal with lots of foliage and some steep includes that can have loose rocks. my favorite part of this trail was the memorial for those who died in the crash very peaceful.

awesome trail! If you like a good challenge this one will do it for you towards the end. The crash site is epic and makes you think about life. It almost goes to la luz. It tough to tell where it goes at times but I ended up going off trail at the end to hit the tram awesome exercise

Boring trail, no good payoff, and mediocre views.

You hike 2.6 miles to get to the LaLuz trail. The climb is pretty moderate and there are some rocky areas in the last 3 miles of the trail. Very pretty views throughout.

hiking
13 days ago

This is a moderately challenging little hike. The 9 mike version would involve some serious slide risk, particularly on the return hike. Unless you are an experienced hiker, skip it. For good training and great views, hike to the second rock outcropping, enjoy the view, turn around, and hit a local brewery. You earned it. And, yes, you are likely to see hawks soaring in the thermals.

hiking
1 month ago

I would definitely rate it a moderate hike. I really enjoyed the hike it was beautiful. The hike is definitely 6 miles, not 4 as stated in the app. Overall recommend it!

Stellar hike on Watermelon Mountain. Do it.

Good trail. Love the incline and climbing over rocks; I was breathing hard the first half mile. I got a good workout. It’s not boring like some dirt trails. You actually are climbing a small mountain or large hill; whatever your preference.

Did most of this trail with my nine year old twins, they loved it because of all the rocks to climb on. For the most part it was easy to see the signs pointing the trail out which was very necessary. But on the way down we got a little confused. We might do it again, but I’d definitely make sure your kids are going to follow instructions before you let them do it

I love going once each season. It’s an awesome place and easy trails.

hiking
1 month ago

My intention was to do a trail running but I was climbing rocks for the most part and was not able to run until I was coming down. Came from Colorado, so this was first hike in New Mexico and enjoyed a lot. Glad there were allow signs to guided me to the right direction, otherwise I could get lost.

hiking
1 month ago

It's rated moderate but I think some people will find it closer to difficult. There are a LOT of ups and downs and I was definitely glad I was wearing my hiking boots or else I'm sure I would have twisted my ankle a couple of times. It's an absolutely beautiful trail with lots of great views of the Rio Grande Valley as well as the Sandia Mountains.

There are quite a few side trails and it's easy to get off the main trail, and by our calculations, we walked 2.5 miles from the parking lot at the Tram to the La Luz trailhead, NOT the 1.7 miles the marker said at the beginning of the trail. So bring lots of water and energy snacks, and hiking poles will definitely help. I wish I'd had a hat on by the end of our three hour out and back in early December. I don't think we will do this trail in the Summer.

I really enjoyed this hike. It has a little bit of everything; pine forest, desert scrub, nice hard packed trail, boulder scrambling and dramatic views. PL starts at the water storage tank and ascends the rim of the valley. The first 1.5 miles or so are a bit of a steep climb, but then the trails flatens a bit and the views open up. You can hike the entire PL trail as an out and back.

About midway through the loop you'll find the junction with the Del Auga trail. The name comes from the fact that the top half of the trail is actually a drainage that had running water when I hiked it. There are several sections of large boulders that require some scrambling and strong evidence of water erosion on rocks. I would not kike this trail during or right after a rain event due to the likelihood of flash flooding!

Once pass this section, the trail separates from the water course and provides dramatic views of the vast plain below.

backpacking
2 months ago

A truly challenging hike, not for the faint of heart! Great path to the 1955 Plane Wreckage memorial. Be aware that it can be a bit difficult to distinguish the trail at times.

trail running
2 months ago

My wife and I ran this trail this morning and we had a blast. Tricky if you a first time trail runner. Well marked and there were only a few fellow humans out there with us. There was a little snow as we approached the La Luz trail.

2 months ago

Great hike! The high altitude makes the last bit of it difficult but it’s worth it.

Definitely a challenging but rewarding hike! A lot of climbing and steep elevation near the crash site, but worth it!

Nice quick hike

Wonderful/ beautiful hike, very steep towards the end of the hike. Continuing past the crash site will take you to the top of the La Luz. Would highly recommend.

Very awesome hike for an afternoon in Albuquerque! Can be a little tricky with larger rocks towards the last bit of the hike, but still very doable. Our 2 1/2 month old corgi puppy did the majority of this hike with ease.

This was hands down one of my favorite hikes that I have done in the Albuquerque area. The hike is challenging, but you feel so rewarded when completed. Looking up above and seeing the Tram was really surreal! The TWA plane crash stretches up the mountain at the end of the hike for quite a ways...It is very sad, but also very interesting. Take lots of snacks and water!

I would rate parts of this as difficult, not moderate. there were a number of areas that weren't marked trail but rather scrambles up or down large Boulder fields.

Incredible hike, this was the first time my hands have swollen up, but just be sure to have water and appropriate snacks, there are several areas to pull off and rest at scenic overlooks, and when you make it to the top, just wait until sunsets to take the tram down and you will witness a marvelous transition.

hiking
4 months ago

Excellent hike with beautiful scenery but definitely challenging. There are a lot of vertical and rocky climbs where the trail is moderately technical and just plain rough. Be sure to bring plenty of water and snacks for the extra energy to finish!

Very fun to do with family! Some parts were trickier for the younger ones but a lot of fun overall!

Hammer time with a memorable finish. This trail has a great mix of open space, foothills, tight woodsy sections, great views and incredible location. It's an odd hike in that you never really summit anything but still get a solid hike. I kept a solid pace and I think it took me about 2 hours to reach the TWA crash. For reference, the memorial is just below the tram cables.

A challenging hike up to the TWA wreckage. Lots of water in the stream with some ice. Definitely cold in the shade, so bundle up if you are hiking in wintertime!

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