Thursday, June 30, 2011

Fourth of July Trail

While this hike is best undertaken in the fall, I thought I would post about it now because of the name :)
Big-tooth maple and Gambel oak dominate this area as in few other places in the state of New Mexico.
The scarlet and gold colors reach their peak in late September/early October when the trail is quite popular.
The rest of the year you just might have the trail to yourself.
The trail begins at Fourth of July Campground.
a squirrel welcomed us at the campground
If you choose to only hike Fourth of July trail (#173) the hike is about 1.3 miles.

we saw this hummingbird on the longer hike
If you are feeling more adventurous you can try the nearly 5 mile loop that encompasses Fourth of July and Cerro Blanco.
There is a stream for part of the trail and elevations span about 1000 ft.
It is quite steep and rocky in places.

this beauty was on the forest road
To get to the trail head, from Tijeras, just east of Albuquerque off I-40, take NM 337 south for about 28 miles. Turn right onto NM 55 headed west for about 3 miles to the village of Tajique. Turn right onto FR 55. Go 7 miles and the campground is on the right.
FR 55 becomes a dirt road and travel is not recommended after heavy precipitation.

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