Fall Hiking in Taos: Flechado Canyon Trail

A sense of anticipation can be felt in the forest now. The leaves are changing from green to yellow and the air feels fresh and cool. Soon the aspen will be gloriously golden. Fall is the perfect time to get out and explore some of the hikes south of Taos, NM in the Carson National Forest.

Flechado Canyon Trail is a lightly-traveled hike that follows a stream through meadows and aspen groves. It climbs to Gallegos Peak with its views of Jicarita and Truchas Peaks. The hike is located just past Sipapu Ski Resort on State Road 518. Head out of town and climb up U.S. Hill for views back into Taos and ahead to the forests. The road descends and follows the Rio Pueblo, accessing a variety of trails, including Flechado Canyon. Look for the Flechado Day Use area to the right and park there. The trailhead is located across the road, at the vertical sign with “7” on the top.

The hike begins at 8,000 feet, with a steep climb up beside a trickling stream. Towering rock cliffs surround the trail. After the first half mile, the trail becomes less steep and enters the aspen and mixed evergreen forest. The trail is moderate and rolling, and reaches a series of meadows that are still full of wildflowers, including the purple mountain bellflower. Flickers and dusky grouse can be seen, along with many chipmunks and squirrels gathering food for the winter.

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