July 15, 1998
Highlights: An easy, readily accessible hike to a scenic and interesting canyon Location: Southeastern Jemez Mountains, north of Cochiti Reservoir Round-trip distance: 1.5 miles Difficulty: Easy to moderate Printable map
This short hike into Sanchez Canyon is relatively easy, but be prepared for interesting digressions that will take you farther than you intended.
You reach the trailhead by driving 2.8 miles north from the Lake Plaza shopping center in the village of Cochiti Lake to where Forest Road 289 heads north. After 3.4 miles on this rough dirt road is a parking area to the right, at the site of the abandoned Eagle Canyon pumice mines.
From this parking area, Dome Trail, No. 118, heads north into the Dome Wilderness. After 1.5 miles, this trail crosses Sanchez Canyon and a small stream that plunges over a cliff in a tiny but delightful waterfall.
From here you can continue on Trail 118 as it ascends to a mesa where it branches, one fork heading east to Turkey Springs in Bandelier National Monument and the other heading north past Cerro Picacho to St. Peters Dome.
Or you can stay in the Sanchez Canyon and follow the tiny creek upstream, certain you'll find something interesting on the way.
Sue B. Mann