Willow Creek Trail

Willow Creek Trail, Rio Rancho: Address, Willow Creek Trail Reviews: 4.5/5

Willow Creek Trail
4.5
What people are saying
Rick K
By Rick K
A good place for a stroll in the bosque, in Rio Rancho!
Aug 2019
Some folks in the general Albuquerque metro area relegate Rio Rancho to a certain lifestyle / demographics / activities category, based on what they've read or heard, or their personal prejudices. Bah, I say to them. Rio Rancho has many nice parks, but one of the less-known places is the Willow Creek Bosque Open Space (WC) towards the NE end of town near River's Edge III. WC offers some really nice walks / strolls / bike paths through the Rio Grande bosque, and it's not too crowded, ever. Enter off Willow Creek Road NE, itself off of Hwy 528 at the Idalia stoplight. A short gravel road leads down into the gravel parking lot. The main trails are gravel paths in a large loop of a couple miles, connected by some cross paths, also gravelled. Parts of the trail are shaded by large cottonwoods, while others are more in the open, and whether this suits you or not largely depends on the season. There are other trails, most of them ad hoc, in and through or adjacent to the gravel paths. Some provide access to the river, some to adjacent "spaces", and some to the cliffside trail that goes along all the River's Edge developments to the south, along the west side of the Rio Grande (also worth walking). There are people walking, families, joggers, bike riders (uncommonly courteous as opposed to elsewhere in the area), dog walkers (uncommonly good about picking up after their dogs and not leaving a "forgotten" plastic bag of dog waste for someone else to dispose), and birders / botanists / nature lovers. I'm a birder, and have walked and explored all over the general Albuquerque area, and am impressed by the level of pleasantness and courtesy people here possess. Plus, of course, it's not a bad place for birding, too. There are wooden benches here and there, trash cans at entry points, as well as plastic bags for dog duty (yes, I know). The understory has been cleared out mostly, and portions of the preserve are undergoing "revigitation" (ha ha, as signs say), but there is still enough to provide cover for the critters that enjoy or need it. Critters? Porcupines, owls/hawks/other birds (currently 175 different species as per eBird.org), coyotes, rabbits, squirrels, the occasional garter or gopher snake, toads, lizards, beavers and cute little muskrats. I'll mention bugs, too, but mostly from a positive perspective as a quasi-naturalist, plenty to see and learn about. But not really a problem in terms of mosquitos or flies, even in the seasons when one would expect them. Theere is an ongoing problem with the river cutting off some banks and eating in to on elf the trails (higher / faster water this year), and sometimes minor flooding with cover the gravel trails with mud deposits in a few areas. Overall, good area to go wandering, get outside, and kind of a overlooked positive aspect of life in Rio Rancho. I've been here dozens of times and never had a bad experience.

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Timothy
Placitas, NM59 contributions
Bosque Delight
Dec 2019 • Couples
Do you enjoy level walks among cottonwoods along the Rio Grande sighting owls and other critters as geese and cranes fly overhead? Easy access and wonder-filled scenery. The humans along the paths are interesting, too.
Written December 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Rick K
Rio Rancho, NM66 contributions
A good place for a stroll in the bosque, in Rio Rancho!
Aug 2019
Some folks in the general Albuquerque metro area relegate Rio Rancho to a certain lifestyle / demographics / activities category, based on what they've read or heard, or their personal prejudices. Bah, I say to them.
Rio Rancho has many nice parks, but one of the less-known places is the Willow Creek Bosque Open Space (WC) towards the NE end of town near River's Edge III. WC offers some really nice walks / strolls / bike paths through the Rio Grande bosque, and it's not too crowded, ever.
Enter off Willow Creek Road NE, itself off of Hwy 528 at the Idalia stoplight. A short gravel road leads down into the gravel parking lot.
The main trails are gravel paths in a large loop of a couple miles, connected by some cross paths, also gravelled. Parts of the trail are shaded by large cottonwoods, while others are more in the open, and whether this suits you or not largely depends on the season.
There are other trails, most of them ad hoc, in and through or adjacent to the gravel paths. Some provide access to the river, some to adjacent "spaces", and some to the cliffside trail that goes along all the River's Edge developments to the south, along the west side of the Rio Grande (also worth walking).
There are people walking, families, joggers, bike riders (uncommonly courteous as opposed to elsewhere in the area), dog walkers (uncommonly good about picking up after their dogs and not leaving a "forgotten" plastic bag of dog waste for someone else to dispose), and birders / botanists / nature lovers. I'm a birder, and have walked and explored all over the general Albuquerque area, and am impressed by the level of pleasantness and courtesy people here possess. Plus, of course, it's not a bad place for birding, too.
There are wooden benches here and there, trash cans at entry points, as well as plastic bags for dog duty (yes, I know).
The understory has been cleared out mostly, and portions of the preserve are undergoing "revigitation" (ha ha, as signs say), but there is still enough to provide cover for the critters that enjoy or need it. Critters? Porcupines, owls/hawks/other birds (currently 175 different species as per eBird.org), coyotes, rabbits, squirrels, the occasional garter or gopher snake, toads, lizards, beavers and cute little muskrats.
I'll mention bugs, too, but mostly from a positive perspective as a quasi-naturalist, plenty to see and learn about. But not really a problem in terms of mosquitos or flies, even in the seasons when one would expect them.
Theere is an ongoing problem with the river cutting off some banks and eating in to on elf the trails (higher / faster water this year), and sometimes minor flooding with cover the gravel trails with mud deposits in a few areas.
Overall, good area to go wandering, get outside, and kind of a overlooked positive aspect of life in Rio Rancho. I've been here dozens of times and never had a bad experience.
Written August 18, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

rsonee
Brooklyn, NY94 contributions
Nice
Jun 2019 • Friends
It's still a good trail even though some of it is closed off because of the river. You can still go down to the river.
Written June 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

donnarO8108FW
Rio Rancho, NM4 contributions
Walk under the trees
May 2019 • Friends
We walk here in the spring and summer , the trails are accommodating for everyone from singles to groups. It is a joy to walk under the huge cottonwoods, and down to the river . This is never a crowded area in our experience and lots of birds and even a possum once. Trails are well kept and flat as well.
Written June 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Michelle S
Rio Rancho, NM64 contributions
Nice walk
Nov 2018 • Solo
I like to take my dogs here to walk.
There is a nice large trail that goes all the way around and is under 2 miles.
There are other little trails to take, there is a small river back in there too.
People walk, run or ride bikes there. If you are walking your dog, keep on a leash. Other people are walking their dogs too and coyotes are out there.
When you are driving on Willow, drive slow, not to slow where you will annoy the person behind you lol or you will miss the turn. It is on a small dirt road that will take you to a dirt parking lot. Have a great time!
Written November 12, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Gene1977
Rio Rancho, NM9 contributions
Therapy
Sep 2017 • Family
This trail is great... if you like trees and what little natural greenery Rio Rancho has to offer. And there are no hills!
Written May 29, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

R_Sanchez_1792
Albuquerque, NM84 contributions
Nearby shady hiking, biking, dog walking area.
Jan 2018 • Couples
We have been walking this area for over 10 years. It is dog and bicycle friendly. You can take a short or long walk, there is a lot of shade which is nice in a "desert area". You can actually walk to the Rio Grande. You are just a few miles from shopping and eating areas. I believe you can access this trail all year. There is ample parking and everything is free. Please observe the rules posted at the entrance.
Written February 16, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

BRADANNE
4 contributions
Great Trail
Jan 2018 • Solo
This is a wonderful, flat, multi-use trail around and through majestic Cottonwood trees. You can walk, bike, and run. You also have areas where you can view the Rio Grande just off the trail itself. Great place to take your dog for a walk as well. You can find parking off Willow Creek Rd. N.E. in Rio Rancho, New Mexico near Bernalillo.
Written January 23, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Denny R
Corrales, NM150 contributions
Easy walking or biking trail with nice scenery
Dec 2017 • Couples
This is a multiple-option trail with compacted, wide (~5-6 feet or more) trails (except for the soft sand on the first 40 yards of the trail or so). It has a good parking lot and could be wheel-chair accessed except for the vehicle excluder at the gate and the early deep sand. Great for bikes and hikes with virtually no altitude variation. Nature guides posted along the trails and frequent availability of benches make this a good way to first exercise at altitude (if you're not from higher terrain) or for a low stress or walk with family (dogs included). A few sections are along the Rio Grande bank nice scenery and wildlife in a Bosque setting. Easy to get to.
Written December 27, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

snafu211
Albuquerque, NM44 contributions
Beautiful Trail
Dec 2017 • Couples
A beautiful trail with many legs and possibilities from short stroll to 5 mile walk with the dogs. Used to be perfect, however some people have stopped cleaning up after their dogs, so it is slowly becoming not as nice.
Written December 6, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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