Horsethief Mesa Loop
ElevationAscent: 943' 287 m
Descent: -939' -286 m
High: 7,216' 2,199 m
Low: 6,851' 2,088 m
GradeAvg Grade: 3% (2°)
Max Grade: 16% (9°)
Current trail conditions
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“This scenic loop is a great low (7200') elevation ride for when the snows arrive to higher ground.”— Peter Lamont
Go fast! Or simply soak in the vistas with friends.
This loop can be ridden either way. When the prevailing SW winds are present, a clockwise direction will have the wind at your back along the rim. Often it is ridden both ways. Just turn around, and go the other way at the junction of the dirt road!
About a mile along, you'll reach the loop. Go right for counter-clockwise, or left and pass the intersection of the old doubletrack. If you ride clockwise there's a couple flowing miles down to the rim of the gorge. At mile 3 you'll see a s-track hard left. Take this out and back a mile each way, if you've enough time. Great view of the John Dunn bridge from there.
If not you'll soon swing right onto the rim (N) and begin your first of many small, and sometimes challenging climbs. There will be a short section of doubletrack from which keep a sharp eye out for the singletrack going left behind a tree (small rock cairn).
There are lots of places to stop along the way. There is another left spur along the rim, but it does not go very far at all. Stay to the right and travel away from the rim to get around a large drainage (arroyo).
When in doubt stay on the singletrack as it crosses the occasional road grade. This is New Mexico... don't expect a lot of signage. :-) Have fun!