|Schroeder and dog cruise the aspen meadow|
Chamisa is the most convenient summer trail in these parts. It's the nearest trail to town that's forested, so it's cool and shady when the summer temps peg above 85. The trailhead is only two miles up the road from Dale Ball and Little Tesuque, but that's enough to jump bio-zones from high desert to alpine forest. Importantly this includes tree cover, flowing water (Big Tesuque creek), and birds chirping in the canopy above. Lovely stuff.
The running and biking up there is rewarding but not without a challenge. Climbs and descents the whole way with very few flats. It's an easier go than the steeps of Little Tesuque and La Piedra a mile down the road but you've got to bring your climbing legs. 600+ ft climb from the trailhead to the saddle with Sidewinder. A marvelous descent down to the Winsor meadows, then another 650+ft of climbing up to the Bear Wallow/Borrego triangle. Only one creek crossing compared with the
dozen fifteen or so below Chamisa, and there's generally very few folks out in this mid-section of Winsor, sometimes only a bicyclist or backpacker. The run back is pleasant until the climb back up to Sidewinder ridge, but it's relatively short and sweet after the long rest.
Min Elev: ~7,700ft
Max Elev: ~8,480ft
Net climbing: ~1,700ft- Chamisa Trail Loop (mtb)
|Daybreak on Sidewinder ridge (courtesy Google images)|
|Climbing Winsor into the day's first sun|
- Little Tesuque Trail
- Lower Winsor
View Chamisa to Winsor Trail - Santa Fe, NM in a larger map
|Elevation profile - roundtrip Chamisa to Borrego|