for free!
This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Mineral Springs Trail and then Some, NM

Guide 12 Triplogs  0 Topics
  4 of 5 
no permit
25 12 0
clicktap icons for details
Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 3.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,596 feet
Elevation Gain 1,500 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,700 feet
Avg Time One Way 2.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 9.17
Interest Off-Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Possible & Connecting
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
47  2014-08-01
Mineral Springs Single Track
15  2013-01-24 Jim_H
7  2010-09-26
Indian Wells Trail via Indian Wells Wash
10  2010-02-12
Lost Trail Drainage North
10  2010-02-12 imike
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
Expand Map
Preferred   Mar, Oct, Nov, Apr → Early
Seasons   Autumn to Early Summer
Sun  6:15am - 5:21pm
0 Alternative

It's the then some that makes It!
by imike

Likely In-Season!
From the maze of tracks down in the lower levels, this route, once determined, provides some exceptional hiking. On the map, this trail terminates in a deadend up around 6100'... and that is sort of accurate. What the map is missing is the Lost Trail, a very clearly cut trail that runs on up to Ortega Peak, and winds all the way back down to the valley along a ridge system south of Mineral Springs trail. It is not on the map, but it is there, and Mineral Springs intersects it after 3.5 miles, just about 2.1 miles before Lost Trail reaches "A" trail 119 at 7,100'. This continuation opens up the options for various great loops.

The way to find this hike is to head off from the trailhead moving up the hill past the levee, keeping Indian Wells Road in sight. Effectively, the jeep track you want is the one that lines up right with Indian Wells where the old pipeline cut (north/south jeep road) crosses that line. It is easy to spot this cut; there is a major wash on the north side of the jeep track with huge exposed water lines. You may also access this hike by simply following the route of the other west bound jeep track up to the "party place" waterfall, dropping into that drainage and hiking up it until it intersects the jeep road up above. Additionally, instead of hiking the jeep road, feel free to drop off into the drainage on either side of the jeep road and enjoy the nice drainage hiking. You can return to the road further up.
remove free decal offer
Eventually, the jeep trail ends at an old water tank and you will be on single track narrow cuts for the remainder of the hike. The nice aspect of this hike is that it cuts across all of the valley drainages, traversing some dramatic canyons and moving closely above numerous high ledges and waterfall ledges. Combined with Lost Trail it crosses all of the drainages over to Ortega Peak at Marble Canyon. The grade is never all that steep, with some soft ups and downs throughout the trek. This route makes for the softest climb to Ortega, making the trip in over 7 miles one way instead of the 3-5 miles of the other routes from the city.

Expect to find numerous nice picnic areas, even shaded alcoves.

If you simply glance at the map, it seems a little pointless to make the effort. On the contrary, when used to create a simple loop down Lost Trail, or up Lost Trail to Ortega... then with the option of a fast drop down T119, this trail provides for a great day out from the city.

Note: there is a hike between Mineral Springs and Lost Trail, Little Mineral Springs Trail... that is often mistaken for Mineral Springs trail, very easy to do when hiking from the bottom. It is a nice hike, but it does deadend, although you could cut cross country up to Mineral Springs trail, hiding up above.

Check out the Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2010-02-12 imike

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    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 hike
    Park in the large lot on the east side of the intersection of the major city streets: Indian Wells Road and Scenic Drive. Walk to the northeast corner of that gravel lot and take off up the marked trail... then, pay attention to where you're going!
    page created by imike on Feb 12 2010 5:29 pm
    help comment issue

    end of page marker
    20% off various HAZ shirts & sale tagged merchandise