Cabezon Road

Total Miles
12.4

Elevation

1,823.96 ft

Duration

1 Hours

Technical Rating

2

Easy

Best Time

Spring, Summer, Fall

Trail Overview

This gem of a route has many facets and is close to Albuquerque and Rio Rancho. The facets include geologic formations, bike trails, and hiking trails. The route is easy and there are nice parking areas to access the trails. Most of the route borders the Ojito Wilderness to the north and BLM land to the south. On the BLM land to the south of the road, target shooting is popular. It is not legal north of the road.

Photos of Cabezon Road

Cabezon Road
Cabezon Road
Cabezon Road

Difficulty

The road is more difficult in wet weather and becomes slick. There are some places with ruts.

History

The Seismosauras hiking trail is 10 miles from Highway 550. The parking area is on the south side of the road. One of the longest dinosaurs ever discovered was found on the edge of a ridge 1 mile north. This giant grew to be over 120 feet long--almost half the length of a football field. In 1979, four hikers initially discovered some fossilized bones. They reported their discovery to the BLM. The bones remained untouched until 1991, when paleontologist David Gillette announced that upon excavation, it was one of the largest of the enormous sauropod dinosaurs. He called it Seismosaurus. Seismosauras lived during the Jurassic Period 150 million years ago. The bones are now on display in the Jurassic Hall at the New Mexico Natural History Museum. There is not much to see at the site but there are large petrified logs along the way. The Hoodoo hiking trail is 2 miles round trip. There are amazing, massive hoodoos about 0.7 miles in and the Ojito Wilderness overlook at the end of the trail. To find the trail from the parking area, walk about 400 feet to the east where it leads north into the Wilderness. A hoodoo is a tall, thin spire of rock formed by erosion.

Technical Rating

2

Status Reports

There are no status reports yet for this trail.

Access Description

Turn east off Highway 550. Stay left on Cabezon Road. The right fork leads to the active White Mesa gypsum mine. In 2001, an American space Western action horror film written, directed, and scored by John Carpenter, was filmed in New Mexico. Much of the film was shot in the gypsum mine up the right fork. The film is set in 2176, when a Martian police unit is sent to pick up a highly dangerous criminal at a remote mining post. The pure white gypsum had to be dyed with gallons of food coloring to recreate the red Martian landscape. The film's name is Ghosts of Mars and is titled onscreen as John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars.

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