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Mineral Springs Canyon North, NM

Guide 10 Triplogs  0 Topics
  4 of 5 
no permit
47 10 0
Canyons are inherently risky. Flash floods occur without notice on sunny days. Technical skills & surrounding topography knowledge required yet does not eliminate risk.
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance One Way 3.9 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,589 feet
Elevation Gain 2,600 feet
Avg Time One Way 3 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 12.56
Interest Off-Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
7  2014-07-22 imike
10  2013-12-27 imike
23  2013-12-07 imike
7  2013-12-07
Mineral Springs Trail #5579
Author imike
author avatar Guides 253
Routes 0
Photos 6,930
Trips 2,467 map ( 21,513 miles )
Age 71 Male Gender
Location Cloudcroft, NM
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Apr, Mar, Oct, Nov → Any
Seasons   ALL
Sun  5:14am - 7:06pm
0 Alternative

Do It Twice!
by imike

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Mineral Springs lie one canyon to the south, but since the Official Trail to the Springs (T5579) orients next to this drainage, the name sticks.

The better way to hike to the Springs is to access this canyon at the bottom… or where the official trail first crosses this drainage about a mile into the hike. Either approach offers a more interesting hike.

These first two miles are easy walking with only one dry waterfall obscuring the route… and even it is an easy scramble to the top. There are nice sections of bedrock to stroll… and easy walking sandy stretches.

Eventually, if the Springs are your goal, you’ll exit the canyon as the trail winds its way up and across Mineral Ridge. It is easy to spot this early exit point: the canyon suddenly gains a high cliff on the right. The trail is to your right immediately before that landmark.

In fact, the trail is just 50-100’ away from the canyon for most of the second mile. Walk out and over to the old jeep track at any time. This lower section is easy... fun for anyone.

Upper Canyon:

From this point on, it is a different canyon. The Class II Canyoneering kicks in. The cut narrows and deepens. The rock gets interesting. The scrambles become constant. It is just nice up in there… and goes and goes.

Within the first mile you will begin to encounter successive dry waterfall formations, undercut… they will force you to access side routes to skirt around. Eventually, the progress becomes so slow you’ll likely decide it is not worth it to climb higher. Don’t turn around too soon… there’s good stuff the higher you go.

Once up, you can opt to descend via the canyon… or move south around the side ridge to access Mineral Ridge. It walks nicely down, offering a touch of variety to the hike.

This is a hike worth checking out.

Do the lower... Do the upper. Twice as Nice


The Levee diverts the water draining out of The Basin... the easy way to find the bottom of this canyon: walk south along the levee... the ditch on your left is effectively the canyon bottom. When the ditch wall curves to the East, that is your mark. Turn left and follow the drainage across the flat area... across the pipeline road and on into the canyon.

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2013-12-08 imike
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To canyon trip
    From White Sands Blvd in Alamogordo, NM... follow any of the main arterial streets east over to Scenic Drive. Turn north on Scenic to Indian Wells Road. Park in the empty field on the east side of the intersection. proceed on the trail exiting the lot at its northeast corner. Walk up on to the levee... walk south to the canyon mouth.
    page created by imike on Dec 08 2013 9:30 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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