Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
112.00 ft (34.14 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
2.20 mi (3.54 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.

Rinconada Canyon Trail is a 2.2-mile loop trail located in Petroglyph National Monument. The trail follows the walls of Rinconada Canyon, which is filled with volcanic boulders. At a tenth of a mile the trail splits, and hikers should continue counterclockwise to view the petroglyph before returning on the trail. The trail is in the high desert, there is little shade, and the trail primarily sand. While the trail is off a busy parkway, the further people hike into the canyon the more the sounds of the passing cars will dwindle, leaving hikers to enjoy the nature around them. 

The walls of the canyon are laced with black, volcanic boulders, and the petroglyphs become more visible as the trail approaches the walls of the canyon. There are around 200 petroglyphs in the canyon, and depending on the position of the sun, some are more visible than others. The petroglyphs become more abundant the further into the canyon hikers get, and hikers should take ample time looking for as many as they can.  

Once hikers reach the end of the canyon they can return via the trail. The return trail has a wonderful view of the Sandia Mountains, and there is a shaded picnic area at the trailhead for visitors to use.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Petroglyphs.

Cons

Busy. No shade.

Trailhead Elevation

5,176.00 ft (1,577.64 m)

Highest point

5,288.00 ft (1,611.78 m)

Net Elevation Gain

135.00 ft (41.15 m)

Features

Family friendly
Historically significant
Wildlife
Native artifacts

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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