Box Canyon And Mesa Montosa Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"Mesa Montosa is part of the northern boundary of the basin of Mesozoic rocks surrounding the Rio Chama. On the way to the mesa top, a short side trip leads to Box Canyon. The spur dead-ends at a pour-off—a normally dry waterfall—about 200 feet high and with a noticeable overhang. In the Box, hikers are surrounded on all sides by yellow rock cliffs.
Throughout late fall to early spring, seeps in the cliff face are frozen, decorating the alcove with pillars of ice. Beyond Box Canyon, the trail climbs through time as well as altitude, beginning with Jurassic Entrada Sandstone, which is the cliff-forming rock of the canyon walls. The yellow, green, and purple muds of the Morrison Formation form a broad bench above the cliffs. Finally, the trail climbs the next cliff, the Cretaceous Dakota Sandstone."