Penasco Springs

Total Miles


1,865.02 ft


1 Hours

Technical Rating



Best Time

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Trail Overview

Penasco Springs is a wonderful desert experience that takes you down into the canyons at the base of the mountains and through some fun terrain that most 4x4 vehicles will handle. Starting out, the road is overall well maintained and gradually becomes more rocky before cutting through a dry river bed. The riverbed does have some areas of softer sand and shale but also features some sections of larger rocks and rock gardens before turning back onto a dirt track. The trail is just over single-vehicle-width at the beginning and becomes a very narrow single-vehicle track for the remainder with little to no room to pass in some areas. There are some short steeper grades with loose rocky surfaces, off-camber sections, and some deeper rutting. The washes in the area have soft sand bottoms or a combination of rutted dirt with larger, loose rocks. Obstacles along the trail are between 10 and 12 inches with some of the rocks being sharp. Foliage overgrowth is present in several areas and makes the trail extremely narrow. Towards the end of the trail, drivers will come across the old San Jose cabin before coming to the end of the trail which is in a densely overgrown area with just enough room for one or two vehicles to turn around. Cell service is strong at the beginning of the trail and later drops to no service once in the canyon. Wildlife is very active in this area with several species of quail, coyotes, foxes, and an abundance of rock squirrels.


Expect slightly steeper grades with loose, rocky surfaces. Washes with soft sand, a dry river bed with sections of soft sand and shale, larger rock gardens, and loose rocks up to 12 inches. Foliage overgrowth makes the trail very narrow in some sections. There is some minor rutting and deeper washes with some minor erosion.

Technical Rating


Status Reports

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