This is a great way to make nearby Rio Cebolla #68 (Fish Hatchery Trail)
into a loop - drive past the Fish Hatchery to the trailhead for Rio Cebolla #68 (Fish Hatchery Trail)
The return trail follows the Calaveras Canyon "cattle" singletrack, the quality of which can depend on how recently it's been trodden/ridden. There is a main trail that is fairly established. The trail does fork in places - follow the logical trail and the valley floor. Watch trails that suck you into the trees - the tree branches can be low-lying, beware.
From the Rio Cebolla #68 (Fish Hatchery Trail)
trailhead, ride up the trail at a sustained moderate grade. Next, take a left on FR 257, which involves some hike-a-bike as it is a steep hill to Calaveras. From here, head left into Calaveras on Calaveras Canyon Trail
. This trail follows the valley floor and some cattle-made singletrack. Follow the path of least resistance. Coming from the north, this trail can be fun, flowy and fast. Great views of the valley's cliffs.
Next, make a left on NM 126 and then a left back to the Fish Hatchery trailhead (well-signed).
Overall, a great loop and there is water along the way for a good intro to bikepacking or the start of a longer adventure.
Note that at the south end of the canyon, there is a dirt road that heads left up to a fence - this is the only road of this nature you'll find, and this is the best way to get back to the main road. There is parking and campsites where Calaveras Canyon meets the main road (NM 126). One can also ride this an an out-and-back.
Calaveras Canyon is on your right before 126 starts to ascend. Best to have the GPX to pinpoint location or use the MTB Project mobile app
. There are some large rocks at the base of the canyon, and if you don't find the two-track, follow the canyon bottom until the trail emerges. A fun day in the Jemez!
This area is frequented by cows and sometimes by cowboys and girls - respect the multi-use nature of this area and don't mess with cattle or wells. Leave gates as you find them.