Three Rivers Trail 44

Lincoln National Forest, New Mexico
Elevation Gain3,687ft
Trailhead Elevation6,437ft
Elevation Min/Max6436/9855ft
Elevation Start/End6437/6437ft

Three Rivers Trail 44

Three Rivers Trail (44) is a hiking trail in Lincoln County, New Mexico. It is within White Mountain Wilderness Area and Lincoln National Forest. It is 4.9 miles long and begins at 6,437 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 10.0 miles with a total elevation gain of 3,687 feet. Near the trailhead there is parking. This trail connects with the following: Trail 31, Dry Canyon Trail (46) and Barber Ridge Trail (49).

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Three Rivers Trail (44) Trail Trip Reports

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Lincoln, NE
Pathfinder | 70 pts
3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars
Nice easy trail, lots of good petroglyphs to get pictures of, bring water and make sure you hit the side trails to see some really good petroglyphs.
Langley, WA
Pathfinder | 150 pts
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This was a stunning trail particularly after all the rains. It was soooo green. Lots of different mircroclimates so a varied hike. The wildflowers were everywhere up on the saddle. Looking out from the saddle was splendid too. The hike gave us a wonderful break from our stresses in El Paso. It is a definite if we're ever back in the area.
Explorer | 20 pts
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This 'trail' is a neat side trip to those who are doing some other hiking in the area. ( I personally recommend the Three Rivers Trail to the top of the saddle and then connect with the Crest Trail and go, go, go.) There are some very detailed petroglyphs along this self-guided tour. Unfortuantely, idiots have also vandalized this site. If you can look past the damage, you can see some 20,000 petroglyphs that are thousands of years old. They are not roped off so you can get quite close to these artifacts and come out with some great pictures. it would rate higher than three stars, but they are vandalized and the hike is not that challenging, it is wheel chair accessible.

Three Rivers Trail (44) Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

100 Hikes in New Mexico (The Mountaineers Books)
Craig Martin
"Jornada-style petroglyphs are located at hundreds of sites across the desert regions of southern New Mexico. Related to the famous black-and-white Mimbres pottery style, these drawings are characterized by animal motifs, flat-headed human or godlike portraits, and complex geometric designs. A short hike along a lava cliff at the Three Rivers Petroglyph Site leads past an astounding array of hundreds of examples of this rock art. Bighorn sheep, horned lizards, fish, birds, spirals, and intertwining lines are pecked into the basalt. In a state where ancient rock art is a common feature, this is by far one of the most spectacular collections. The site and a nearby campground are carefully managed by the Bureau of Land Management, and a small fee is collected for visiting the area."
Laurence Parent
"A day hike along a rocky ridge decorated with thousands of prehistoric petroglyphs, plus a second trip to an ancient Indian village site. The Three Rivers Petroglyph Site is one of the premier rock art sites in the Southwest, with more than 21,000 rock carvings. These two short easy trails lead to many of the petroglyphs and to a partly excavated village. In summer, the desert here is hot. Hike early or late in the day then, watching out for rattlesnakes. The petroglyph trail starts behind the shade shelter at the trailhead. It crosses a dry desert wash and then climbs up onto a rocky basalt ridge."

Trail Information

Lincoln National Forest
Nearby City
White Mountain Wilderness Area
Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly
Skill Level
Additional Use
Bureau of Land Management, 1800 Marquess St., Las Cruces, NM 88005; (575) 525-4300
Local Contacts
Three Rivers Petroglyph Site brochure; Three Rivers 7.5-minute USGS quad
Local Maps

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