La Luz Trail 137

Cibola National Forest, New Mexico

Elevation Gain8,461ft
Trailhead Elevation7,055ft
Elevation Min/Max7055/10294ft
Elevation Start/End7055/7055ft

La Luz Trail 137

La Luz Trail (137) is a hiking and horse trail in Bernalillo County and Sandoval County, New Mexico. It is within Cibola National Forest and Sandia Mountain Wilderness Area. It is 7.2 miles long and begins at 7,055 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 15.1 miles with a total elevation gain of 8,461 feet. The La Luz Trailhead parking is near the trailhead. The trail ends near the Four Seasons Visitors Center information. This trail connects with the following: South Crest Trail (130) and Tramway Trail.
Nearby Trails

La Luz Trail (137) Professional Reviews and Guides

"A long day hike or an overnight trip from the edge of Albuquerque through the rugged Sandia Wilderness to the crest of the Sandia Mountains.

Because of the large elevation gain on the trail, you will pass through several of the West’s major life zones as you go. The increased moisture and lower temperatures found at higher elevations create different habitats. The trail starts in the Upper Sonoran Zone, characterized by semi-arid grasslands and scrubby forests of piñon and juniper."

"The combination of the La Luz Trail and the Sandia Peak Tramway offers hikers a unique opportunity for a challenging one-way hike. The Sandia Mountains are a round-shouldered hump of granite and limestone that dominates the eastern skyline of Albuquerque. The La Luz Trail climbs 3,700 feet from the base of the Sandias to the crest at 10,300 feet.

From the summit, hikers can return via the same trail or opt to enjoy a relaxing fifteen-minute descent back to the base by riding the tram. As an alternative trip, hikers can take the tram to the top of the mountain and walk back down to the base, a trip that is still quite demanding. One-way tram tickets for hikers can be purchased at either terminal."

La Luz Trail (137) Reviews

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I’ve been hiking this trail quite abit lately … just about every Sunday. Today the trail was in good condition as in didn’t really hit snow till around the 4.6 mile area … there a some areas with snow/ice pack but as long as your careful you would be all right … but once you get to the 5 mile mark some type of spikes is highly recommended … Today only went to the 5 mile point and turned around.
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This is an excellent trail with great maintenance and plenty of switchbacks to maintain a uniform grade. I ran this the last week of Aril and was very surprised by the amount of snow on the last 2.2 miles of the trail befor reaching the crest. I had to kick steps in the snow and be cautious to not lose footing due to the steep North facing slope that the snow was on. It should be dry by the 2nd week of May but still had about 2 feet of hard packed snow in all the tree covered portions. I ran the the tram trail from the tram parking lot over to this trail and was surprised it was not as well maintained as this trail. There are several places that are hard to judge where the tail goes and you have to be carefull of the cactus sticking out onto the trail (if you are a runner).
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My first hike in NM! It entails quite a bit of elevation gain, but displays a great cross section of the Sandia Mountains. Unfortunately you will be viewing the scenery with tons of other people early in the hike, as it is a popular place to go for a stroll in the Mtns. You'll also be forced to pay to park your car... (I bet if they didn't hire someone to enforce this ridiculous policy then they wouldn't need to charge... Catch 22!) Anyways, back to the hike. The trail is heavily switchbacked so none of it is too steep. You'll also find a rock slide area with Basketball sized rocks and larger. The trail meanders through this, and makes it interesting if you are running the trail. This is the most popular trail in the Sandias, so don't expect any solitude... also be ready to hear tourists at the top complaining how thin the air is after driving all the way up! I enjoyed the hike, despite the crowds, but would do it again only during the week!

La Luz Trail (137) Photos

Trail Information

Cibola National Forest
Nearby City
Cibola National Forest
Skill Level
Additional Use
Cibola National Forest, 11776 Hwy. 337, Tijeras, NM 87059; (505) 281-3304;
Local Contacts
Sandia Mountain Wilderness; Cibola National Forest–Sandia Ranger District; Sandia Crest 7.5-minute USGS quad
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Nov 2018