Taos Alpine Hiking Adventure
Every Monday, Tuesday & Friday 8AM to 1PM | Offered May – October
$199 per person + tax for a party of 2 | $155 per person + tax for a party of 3 or more
Difficulty Rating ●●●●○ (1● = easy, 3● = moderate, 5● = difficult)
We meet at the parking lot of KTAOS Solar Center (9NM-150, Taos NM 87571) in Taos at 8AM and will return to the same location at 1PM
After we meet you at KTAOS Solar Center Parking Lot, we will drive for about 25 minutes deep into the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, above the Taos Ski Valley. We start the hike at the Northside Recreation Area situated at 10,000 feet elevation, a quiet hidden gem with a 1,200 acre trail system. The hike is about 6 miles round trip with a top elevation of over 11,000 feet. This trail system is set in the high mountain forests of the Taos Mountains where you will be surrounded by tall evergreen trees, opening to breathtaking views, meadows sprinkled with unique wildflowers and the chance to see wildlife such as bighorn sheep, marmots, and blue grouse.
While the hike takes place in the Alpine forest at a high elevation, the grade of the trail is forgiving and we will set a comfortable pace making it appropriate for different levels of hikers. You will witness the sun unfold over the mountains, as you hike through the forest of tall Aspen, Fir, Pine, and Spruce trees. Along the way, we will stroll through Jean’s Meadow, taking a moment to enjoy the beautiful wildflowers such as the blue columbine, blue bells, and shooting stars. This hike provides spectacular views looking west towards Taos Ski Valley and out over the Taos Plateau towards the Rio Grande Gorge. As you climb higher into the alpine forest, the views expand and one becomes more and more drawn in by the mountains. The mind is soothed and the soul is nourished by the fresh clean mountain air, leaving you with a feeling of release and renewed vitality.
As you approach the top of the summit, the feeling of accomplishment is overwhelming and the views are even more breathtaking. From the top, at 11,000 feet one can see remaining patches of snow high on the majestic Sangre de Cristo Mountains and views north toward Gold Hill at 12,711 feet. We will stop at the top of the summit to enjoy a gourmet picnic lunch as we soak in the views of the expansive overlook. From here, to the east you can see the ridge leading to the highest point in New Mexico, Wheeler Peak at 13,159 feet and to the north, the valley that leads to Red River. We will relax on top, giving you time to thoroughly enjoy and explore the alpine surroundings before we start our descent, savoring the mountain’s warm and enriching embrace.
Trip includes entry to Northside Recreation Area and Gourmet Picnic Lunch.
Hiking Terrain Elevation 10,000 feet to 11,000 feet.
We hike on a well marked open rocky and dirt trails. Northside takes great pride in maintaining this area for hiking,
backpacking, snowshoeing and mountain biking with the adventurer in mind.
Suggestions for preparing for your tour:
Bring a backpack to carry your personal belongings
Bring two water bottles (your guide will also have extra water)
Wear sunscreen and a hat
Layered breathable clothing (do not wear cotton)
Rain Layer – at high elevation you are more likely to have inclement weather.
Wear good hiking boots or hiking shoes.