Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
235.00 ft (71.63 m)
Trail type
1.90 mi (3.06 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Petroglyph Trail is a mile long trail located at the Three Rivers Petroglyph Site in New Mexico. The trail takes visitors past thousands of petroglyphs located on a basaltic ridge which rises above the Three Rivers Valley. There are, in fact, over 21,000 petroglyphs located at the site. The petroglyphs show images of humans, insects, plants, birds, fish and other animals as well as geometric and abstract patterns. These petroglyphs were created by prehistoric Native Americans known as the Jornada Mogollon. The petroglyphs were made from about 200 AD to 1450 AD. The Jornada Mogollon used stone tools to remove the dark patina on the exterior of the rocks.

The Three Rivers Petroglyph Site is open year-round with the entrance being open from 8:00 AM until 7:00 PM from April to October and from 8:00 AM until 5:00 PM from October to April. There is a $5 day use fee per vehicle to enter the site. Three Rivers has a visitor center where a trail guide can be obtained. Restrooms and drinking water also are available. Please be aware that dogs are not allowed on the Petroglyph Trail. It is recommended that hikers wear sturdy shoes or boots, use sun protection, and carry plenty of water. Also take note that rattlesnakes are common at the site.

The Petroglyph Trail begins as a paved path near the visitor center heading west. After about a tenth of the mile the pavement ends and the remainder of the trail uses a natural surface. The trail heads north along the top of the ridge where there are thousands of petroglyphs to admire. Be sure to explore the numerous side trails. At around the halfway point there is a sun shelter with benches. Beyond the shelter the trail continues to follow the ridge. The trail gains about 250 feet of elevation in total. After a total of a mile the trail ends; retrace your steps back to the visitor center.


Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)


Parking Pass

Day use fee

Open Year-round



Thousands of interesting petroglyphs.


Can be extremely hot.

Trailhead Elevation

5,001.00 ft (1,524.30 m)

Highest point

5,215.00 ft (1,589.53 m)


Family friendly
Potable water
Historically significant
Native artifacts
Flushing toilets

Typically multi-day


Permit required




Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.