“A nice ride from Garcia Park to the high point along the South Boundary Trail.”
— J. Bella
If you've ridden the South Boundary Trail #164
, you may have noticed that despite the awesome riding, there aren't a lot of wide open views along the trail. A short side trip on this loop leads to the summit of Sierra de Don Fernando at the top of an open north-facing meadow barely below treeline. The expansive view is spectacular; you can see the Taos Range including Pueblo Peak, Lake Fork, the Sin Nombre mountains, and New Mexico's high point, Wheeler Peak. Touch-Me-Not and Baldy Mountains can be seen to the northeast.
Garcia Park has several dispersed campsites. This route allows a nice 4+ mile ride to the summit of Sierra de Don Fernando and a fun descent along a segment of the SBT.
From Garcia Park, head northwest on Forest Road 437 for about three-quarters of a mile. Just past the cattle guard, look for a couple old trails to the left.
Take the branch to the right onto Forest Service Road #445
. Follow 445 for 1.25 miles as it meanders across and up through the forest. When you reach an open, sloped meadow, look for a faded doubletrack to the left, climb this Sierra de Don Fernando Summit Spur
to the 10,368 feet summit.
Enjoy the views then continue on the doubletrack as it loops around to the southeast before dropping into the forest and back to the South Boundary Trail #164
back to the start.