Vista Trail #1

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

View from the Vista trail over some private land

The aptly named Vista Trail is a high elevation trail that leads through ponderosa pines to a scenic vista.

The trail leads through stands of ponderosa pines. There are many places to view Quemado Lake and surrounding country from the trail. From the scenic vista, panoramic views of El Caso Peak, Castle Rock, Largo Canyon, and Quemado Lake provide excellent photographic opportunities. The trail provides a connection from the Lake Overlook Trail to Largo Trail #14 for extended hiking. Additional activities at Quemado Lake include bird watching, fishing, and boating. Boats are restricted to oars and electric motors.

At a Glance

Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Quemado, NM
Water: No Potable Water. Potable water can be obtained in the Cove Campground from May - September
Information Center: Quemado Ranger District
Phone: (505)773-4678

General Information


From Quemado, travel west on Hwy 60 for 0.5 mile. Turn south on Hwy 32 and travel 16 miles. Turn east on Hwy 103. Follow Hwy 103 for 4 miles until it turns into Forest Road 13 at the lake dam. Start hiking west on Lakeshore Trail and cross dam. Follow Lakeshore Trail for 0.5 mile to trailhead of Overlook Trail. Follow Overlook Trail for 1 mile to trailhead of Vista Trail.

General Notes:

General Notes
The first 0.5 mile of Vista Trail from the Overlook Trail junction is very steep. Once on top of the mesa, a short side trail leads to a scenic vista. Vault toilets are available in lake parking area and at various campgrounds on the north side of the lake.

What's Nearby?

Closest Stores:
Quemado (20 miles) provides gas stations, food, and motels. Snuffy's Store and Restaurant near Quemado Lake provides gas station, food, bait, and showers on a seasonal basis.

Campgrounds at Quemado Lake are available. Juniper Campground offers 18 RV spaces with water and electrical hookups for $15/day and 18 single-family sites for $10/day. Pinon Campground offers 23 single-family sites for $6/day and 2 group sites at $35/day for a 30-person site and $55/day for a 75-person site. Juniper and Pinon are open from May 1 to September 30. Cove and El Caso Campgrounds offer free, primitive camping with vault toilets.

Connecting Trails: 0  14

3D Terrain Map



Hide detail HIDE


Elevation desc8200

Day Hiking

High elevation trail through ponderosa pines to scenic vista.

Status: Open
Difficulty Level: Moderate

Related Information

Areas & Activities


  Area/Length : 
1 Mile

  Elevation : 
8200 - 8600