La Luz Trail

HARD
#1 of 3 trails in Elena Gallegos Picnic Area
true
La Luz Trail is a 8.7 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Sandia Park, NM that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is accessible from May until November.

8.7 miles 3851 feet Point to Point
hiking trail running forest views wildlife rocky
Hide Map

8.8 mile trail at the north end of the Sandias, goes from the base of the mountain to the peak at 10,678'. Beautiful views of the Albuquerque valley to the west. Trail starts at around 6500' in elevation and is fairly easy walking. Eventually getting steeper with switchbacks and altitude starts to affect you. It doesn't help to rest. Keep moving even at a slow pace. A steady pace will get you to the top in about 3-4 hours. If you dawdle it will take you longer. My druthers is to park a vehicle at the base of Sandia Tram, drive a second vehicle to the La Luz Trailhead, walk up, have lunch at the top and ride the tram down. I would rather climb than descend. I have walked it in 2.5 hours but generally runs closer to 3-3.5 hours. First time I did it I didn't know what to expect and it took about 5 hours but it is more mental than physical. Once you know what to expect and try it you set a benchmark for yourself and try improving from there. As you get a mile or so from the top you run into tourists who start at the top, wander down the trail for a mile or less then turn back to the top. Same at the bottom. Many start the trail, go up a couple of miles and then turn back. which leaves about 5 miles of trail with not much foot traffic. Make sure and take plenty of water (I like a full camelback with 1.5 liters of water)

Evelin Grajeda
3 days ago

3 Completed0 Reviews

This trail is fairly easy for the first 3-4 miles but when you reach the rock slides it gets tough! Make sure you have a hiking buddy

Monseiur Salgado
6 days ago

1 Completed0 Reviews

Awesome trail... I'm from Texas, was the first time, really good and challenging....I'll do it again :-)

Will Kauffman
6 days ago

4 Completed0 Reviews

hiked the trail several times great trail

Kristi King
8 days ago

2 Completed0 Reviews

Amazing trail with amazing views. Still a lot of snow towards the top, broke a trekking pole up there! We are visiting from Texas and it just happens to be the week the tram is shut down for yearly maintenance so we ended up hiking about 14 miles round trip. Kicked our butts but was worth it!

Kristi King
8 days ago

2 Completed0 Reviews

TR Penland
16 days ago

1 Completed0 Reviews

Great! Good workout!

David Abell
1 month ago

1 Completed0 Reviews

Awesome! La luz in March is great! Lots of snow and ice. Love it!

Robert Robert Herman
1 month ago

4 Completed0 Reviews

great scenery. fairly challenging

Sue Bucknell
1 month ago

19 Completed0 Reviews

Very slippery during snow season.

Justin Lester
1 month ago

2 Completed0 Reviews

T. N. L.
2 months ago

1 Completed0 Reviews

This is was my second time here, but this time I decided to go further and it was amazing. The views, the sound of the flowing water, even the snow. It was simply beautiful. It took me about 4 hours to the Cañon La Cueva Overlook and back.

Niklas Cole
3 months ago

2 Completed3 Reviews

Niklas Cole
3 months ago

2 Completed3 Reviews

Lan Thompson
4 months ago

2 Completed2 Reviews

I am just now getting into the outdoors and I decided to do this hike back in September 2015. 2 of my friends back out that morning but I pushed forward and it broke me down. I began at 6am and got to tram on top of Sandia roughly around 1pm. But I loved it and want to do it again! Trouble is getting my lazy friends motivated to do it.

Jay Smooth
5 months ago

13 Completed13 Reviews

Jay Swift
5 months ago

36 Completed15 Reviews

Seth Gabrielse
6 months ago

2 Completed1 Reviews

Excellent hike! We were in the middle of the clouds so it was a little chilly and visibility wasn't the best, but the fall colors around were incredible! Definitely look forward to hiking again on a clear day because I had a blast regardless.

Simone Duran
6 months ago

1 Completed1 Reviews

David B.
6 months ago

Very beautiful hike! Ran into a little rain at the top but other than that great hike.

Cynthia Rangel Carrasco
8 months ago

1 Completed1 Reviews

Beautiful hike!