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“Oooo! Aaawwh! Oohh!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Jemez Mountain Trail

Jemez Mountain Trail
Jemez Springs, NM
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Type: Scenic Drives, Cultural
Activities: Driving
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Attraction details
Owner description: A National Scenic Byway.
Plano, Texas
Top Contributor
131 reviews 131 reviews
31 attraction reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
106 helpful votes 106 helpful votes
“Oooo! Aaawwh! Oohh!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2012

I practically had to drag my guys along this drive, but it turned out to be one of the best parts of our trip.

This beautiful drive way up in the Jemez Mountains is a sensory treat with gorgeous scenery and changing geological formations. Take your time along the way and stop wherever possible to soak in magical sites and the wonderful hikes. The viewpoint is very different from each direction highlighting new treasures to discover. If you tie it in with a side trip to Bandelier National Monument, plan on a very full day, or an overnight stay in Los Alamos.

The highlights include the sheer beauty of the climbing road highlighting the incredible rise from the canyon floor. Valles Caldera is breathtaking in size- what a fantastic insight into the almost unimaginable size of the super volcano that created the 1,000 foot thick volcanic formations far, far below. Jemez Falls is small but pretty, although the hike is steeper than proclaimed. There are several hot springs along the route, although McCauley Warm Springs is the only one marked on the highway. Battleship Rock is imposing, but best viewed from the south facing north. Soda Dam is just cool - a dam naturally formed by the minerals in the water that is still growing and can be easily explored. The well-preserved 1600s pueblo at Jemez Sate monument was closed on the day of our drive but is visible from the road.

I'm sure that there are many other great spots along the way, but the fading light turned us back towards the lights of the city. One last chance to marvel at the wonders of our beautiful planet.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
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11 reviews from our community

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Tomball, Texas
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Jemez Mountain Trail National Scenic Byway”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2012

The Jemez Mountain Trail was designated as a National Scenic Byway in 1998 for its amazing geologic formations, ancient Indian ruins, Indian pueblos, and evidence of the area's logging, mining, and ranching heritage.

The Sante Fe National Forest is a result of a combination of several national forests created in the early 1900's. The area of the Jemez Mountain Trail was originally part of the Jemez National Forest established in 1906.

See photo attached of the trail highlights.

We drove one hour beyond Jemez Springs. Kept stopping for pictures along the way as the sun was setting over the majestic ridge. A beautiful drive.

Visited April 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kutztown, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
1,616 reviews 1,616 reviews
895 attraction reviews
Reviews in 454 cities Reviews in 454 cities
1,522 helpful votes 1,522 helpful votes
“Beautiful, interesting scenic byway”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2012

This trail along NM 4 northwest of Albuquerque is one of the most beautiful, interesting areas of the state and seems to be relatively unknown. We have been on it many times and recently took a ride from San Yisidro, an old Spanish village, north about 30 miles. You can do the trail in a loop or go from one point to another--we could have continued to Los Alamos or Bandelier National Monument if we continuted heading northeast.
There are many trails to hike, waterfalls to see, natural formations (Battleship Rock, etc.), Native American pueblos and art work (Jemez Pueblo has a nice visitor's center, museum and gift shop), beautiful scenery in the valley and canyons, ruins of a 1600s pueblo at Jemez State Monument, beautiful red rocks, hot springs to soak in and some places with good food (Los Ojos in a great place in Jemez Springs).
This is a great day trip is a beautiful, peaceful area of New Mexico.

Visited January 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Just Go!!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2011

Fabulous hike up to McCauley Springs by Battleship Rock. About 2 miles on a rough but beautiful trail (not too much for this 50 & 51 year old couple in decent shape.) Around every bend was another gorgeous view of the Jemez mountains. Why do New Mexicans keep this area such a secret? Our reward at the end of the hike: Gorgeous warm spring pools of mountain clear water, in a glen shaded by enormous oaks and pines. Dappled sunlight played off the water as the small waterfall burbled. A magical experience.

Visited September 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mountainair, New Mexico
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“One of the most scenic roads you can drive in New Mexico”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2011

A friend of mine and I drove NM Hwy 4 from Bandelier National Monument to Jemez Pueblo in late October 2010 on a photo tour of northern New Mexico. The fall color was extraordinary. It seems like we had to pull over every mile or so to take photographs of the geological formations, trees, and various scenic vistas along the way. Not only is this road part of a NM scenic byway, it is ranked as a national one as well. The road takes you by the Valles Caldera National Preserve thru the quaint village of Jemez Springs. Hike thru forests, along stream, soak in hot springs, visit ancient native cultural sites. Its a easy day trip out of Albuquerque, but once there you will want to spend much more time. Visit any time of the year.

Visited October 2010
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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