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

334 foot elevation gain doesn't make any sense? Please find the correct elevation change.

Nice trail for three of us (including 6 year old). Plenty of tree cover and views. Occasional fallen tree to climb over or around.

Park in Sulphur Canyon picnic area ($3 user fee). Stay right at Faulty Trail.

on Osha Loop Trail

1 month ago

Whole area closed due to high fire hazard.

Nothing spectacular but this novice hiker enjoyed it thoroughly.

Very pretty hike, but a few things to note: I would say this is more of a moderate hike. The first 0.6 miles from the trailhead near the bathrooms was nothing but uphill. Also, definitely take some kind of map, it's very easy to get lost at the intersections. Lots of shade, I do recommend taking time to bird watch and just enjoy the location.

Just a nice easy walk through the woods. There was nothing spectacular about this hike, but we enjoyed it. We went on a Saturday afternoon and only ran into two other people, so it's a great place to get some quiet.

Great hike ended up with 5 Miles by the time we were done. Start early got super hot. There is plenty of parking and bathrooms with picnic areas. Should have done the loop clockwise to get more vert. Overall really enjoyable.

beautiful hike this afternoon!

Really an enjoyable hike with plenty of shade and wonderful views. Lots of parking and places to picnic after your hike.. trailhead kind of hard to find...it’s on the east side of the parking lot in the Sulpher Canyon picnic ground and spits you back out in the same lot,

I enjoyed this hike today with friends. Perfect loop. Not to long or too short. Enjoyed watching the butterflies and looking at the different wildflowers.

this trail was fairly easy. the trail was along the road a majority of the time which took away from the view.

hiking
3 months ago

I did a loop trail to South Peak going up the CCC Route and back on the South Crest Trail, which is about 11.5 miles. There’s now a small cairn marking the CCC Route off the South Crest Trail just past the sign for the Upper Faulty Trail, but it’s simpler to just take the Upper Faulty Trail and turn left at the big pile of rocks immediately in front of you.

See my recording for the trail to South Peak off of the South Crest Trail. It is marked by a sign. What is now marked by a small cairn is a great back way off this trail (also on the recording). You head across a field with the trail only sometimes visible and then into the forest (quite steep at first). The wind is blocked as you go through the aspens and past some nice rock formations to come out right at the top of South Peak! The return loop can be the usual trail to Embudito and then left to join the Crest Trail.

The CCC Route is 1.7 miles and gains 1720 ft in the process, from 7600 to 9320 ft elevation. There are only a few “steps” and no real switchbacks, so
mostly you are just hiking the grade, which never gets super-steep like Oso Ridge or Hawk Watch (two other great trails that can be made into loops and include South Peak). The CCC Route opens up to a rocky expanse in a few places and I turned on the recorder to find the trail.

Be sure to check out Travertine Falls and the rock cave off the South Crest Trail before the Faulty Trail turnoff on the way up (there’s a sign for both these trails). The trail to Travertine Falls rejoins the South Crest Trail and actually cuts a little off of it. It’s the loop on the recording.

hiking
3 months ago

I’m happy I did this trail but won’t be doing it again. It’s the least charming of the longer Sandia trails. The middle portion of the trail is poorly maintained, filled with overgrown scrub and dead trees blocking the trail and the creepy shack in the least hiked section of the trail was eerie. I wasn’t really paying attention to the topo map so each descent that was followed by another grueling climb became a little demoralizing after the third or forth time. The last few miles to the tram were a steady incline and the map in AllTrails was wrong at one point so I ended up doubling back to find the actual trail. (& This is totally my fault but I didn’t check to make sure the tram was running and when I got there it was closed for maintenance so I hiked another two miles in the dark (with headlamp thankfully) through pitch black snowy forest to the north crest and got a ride back down the mountain. All told it was closer to a 17 or 18 mile hike. The Forest Service map says the South Crest Trail is 15.97 miles but AllTrails says 13.9 - not sure which is correct but the AllTrails map errors on this trail make me thing the park services map is the more accurate. Happy to say I’ve now section hiked the full crest but will skip the south portion in the future.

Great trail loop. Snow is still melting so it was muddy Nd sometimes icy in early March. I was glad I had my spikes with me.

Nice trail even in late December. No snow unusual for this time of year. Some of the trails that were off shoots of the main trail were no longer open and there were some trails that were available that were not on this map at all. Got concerned they were not going to reconnect so had to bush whack back toward the main trail. Thank goodness for GPS.

8 months ago

Did this in deep snow with my brother - we only went about 2 miles in but it was gorgeous in the winter. Would definitely suggest some grippy shoes.

10 months ago

This trail is stunning if you only hike the west side of the Sandias. Shaded by tall pines and towering aspens which makes for a nice refreshing hike. This trail is a strenuous for new hikers since the elevation and the at times Steep trail can really take it out of you. Plenty of moss covered trees and logs and beautiful patches of wild flowers. This trail is a great change to the high desert trails of the Sandia foothills. It's a little bit of a drive but by far worth it.

Closed due to bear activity.

11 months ago

very good view

Closed today due to bear activity.

This is a nice trail. Loved the loop. Really nice people passing by infrequently. We had a nice cloud cover most of the time. I imagine parts are really hot in summer sun. Could have done without the hailstorm but it was at the end so... whatever. Would do again.

We saw bears, wild turkeys, humming birds, and woodpeckers. I also got an $80 ticket for not paying the parking fee. Oh well.

Nice trail with a good amount of shade. Lots of wildflowers now.

this was a perfect trail for a hot summer day. it had a good amount of shade and wasnt too buggy. however, if you are looking to do the 3 mile loop dont follow the all trails directions to the trail, it will take you to the middle of nowhere. to do the loop, park at the sulphur canyon picnic area. take the sulphur trail to faulty trail and then that takes you to the bill springs trail and back around to the parking lot.

hiking
Sunday, July 02, 2017

Absolutely love this trail! The Faulty Loop portion is a little more difficult/narrow but not too bad. I think the Faulty Trail is actually very long (if you took it the whole way), but this loop just does part of it. I was dazzled by the butterflies and all the beautiful plants! One of my favorites in the Cibola National Forest, for sure. We saw a rattlesnake too- so watch your step!

hiking
Monday, June 19, 2017

Nice hike with some great views once you get to the top.

trail running
Wednesday, May 24, 2017

This review is for trail runners.
First, the parking lot to armijo trial is still closed. Another reviewer covered this and where else to park.

This trail is one of my favorites for several reasons.
It's not too long and the elevation is steady. If you want a rather leisure 5 mile run, this is a good trail. It has a good amount of shade and the views atop the ridge are pretty.
You will see people on this trail, especially on weekends, but it isn't too busy. I think seeing a few people on trails is good because you can check in on whether there are wild animal issues. (This area has seen bear activity lately, especially at the picnic area).
Cons: You'll be following a horse trail at parts, so watch out for manure. Not a big issue, but just something to know.
Biggest con: People and their fucking dogs. For some reason, people think THEIR dog is the ONE dog that deserves to be off leash. Even though the entire forest is ON leash. You can tell a lot of the people that let their dogs off leash are locals that live really close by...they have that entitled air to them.
As a runner, off leash dogs are the worst. If you run this trail on the weekend, you'll most likely encounter an off leash dog and their irresponsible owner.

Only other con is that some of the forest has been cut (I'm assuming either due to drought or to fire?), and that takes away from some of the scenery.

I love this trail, I just wish dog owners were more responsible and less defensive about being called out on their b.s.

The road is closed down to the parking/picnic area and trail head. At the road closure turn left and go 700ft to another parking area. There is a trail at the far end of the parking area that will connect with the Armijo and Faulty Trail Loop. It adds about a mile to the hike, which my app said was 5.1 miles when I made it back to the parking area. Really nice trail, probably my favorite so far since I started hiking in the ABQ. Well marked and maintained trail with lots of shade. Stop by the coffee shop in Cedar Crest on your way back out and have coffee.

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