Wheeler Peak Trail (#90)

Area Status: Open
Photo of Horse Riders

The Wheeler Peak trail is 7.3 miles long. The trail is open for the following uses:  Hiking, Horseback Riding, Cross Country Skiing and Snoeshoeing.

Travel approximately four miles north on U.S. Hwy. 64 from Taos to the junction of State Highway 150, then east on 150 to Taos Ski Valley. Continue through the ski area parking lot to the Twining Campground. Parking is available adjacent to the campground. There is no parking permitted beyond this point. At this trailhead, there is a sign showing the wilderness including trails.

Attractions and Considerations:
The trail starts in a northeastward direction toward the Bull-of-the-Woods Pasture. The first section follows the forest boundary until you reach Bull-of-the-Woods Pasture, a distance of two and a quarter (2.25) miles. Near the pasture the trail intersects with Gold Hill Trail. Stay on the road that ascends southeast toward Bull-of-the-Wood Mountain. Please be courteous - You are on private land! From Bull-of-the-Woods Mountain you will be traveling at or above timberline. The trail is very well defined. You will come across the La Cal Basin which offers some camping areas and an opportunity to rest before you start your final ascent up Wheeler Peak, the highest point in New Mexico, elevation 13,161 feet. No technical climbing gear is needed. On the Wheeler Peak summit, you are "at the top of the world;" on a clear day the view in all directions is spectacular. Your descent from Wheeler Peak may follow the same route or you may choose an alternate route such as Trail 91 to Horseshoe Lake or follow the ridge line to Simpson Peak, Taos Cone and into Sawmill Park and take Trail 55 to exit on the East Fork of the Red River. You can also come down the steep slope to Williams Lake although there is no maintained trail and this slope is very rocky.

Map of  Wheeler Peak Trail 90

Photos of Wheeler Peak Trail

At a Glance

Current Conditions:
  • Know before you go! Check the spring 2024 snow conditions┬ábefore going to higher elevations.
  • Work in progress.┬áPiles from thinning are visible along the trail. Learn more about the project and the Wildfire Crisis Strategy's Enchanted Circle Landscape.
Information Center: For more information contact: Questa Ranger District.


Day Hiking



Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult


Horse Riding

Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult

XC Skiing/Snowshoeing

Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities

Featured Events


  Area/Length : 
7.3 miles

  Elevation : 
9,400 feet - 13,161 feet