Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Cloudcroft - Rim Trail Hike

Returning to the Cloudcroft area today since the temperatures are about ten (10) degrees cooler here than in Ruidoso - it is summer (I know). We chose a simple out and back hike along the Rim Trail in the Lincoln National Forest. Above Heather is about three miles into our hike with a view of the Tularosa Valley and White Sands behind her.

We parked at the northern end of the Rim Trail, just south of Cloudcroft. The Rim Trail runs just over 15 miles one-way - we decided to hike out 5 miles and then return 5 miles - we ended up at a round trip of 11 miles.

Heather reading the trail-head sign - the rim Trail is a National Recreation Trail. Also it is a multi-use trail including hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and trail motorcycles. We encountered two other hikers, two mountain bikers, and one motorcycle rider today.

Although the temperatures were not too hot, you do get pretty dry in the sun when the humidity is at under 15% and you are at elevations of 8,000 to 9,000 feet. Heather finished off three (3) liters of water by the end of the hike.

The Rim Trail is very well maintained and easy to follow. There was a bit of climbing - the grades were very long and not too steep.

Mountain flowers along the way add some nice color to a fairly lush under-story.

Trail signage was excellent at the intersections - no chance of making a wrong turn today.

The Rim Trail's signature is all the vistas looking west towards White Sands. Heather was hiking very strong on the return leg back.

Selfie time with White Sands just over the top of Heather's hat.

Parting shot - last look at the Tularosa Valley and White Sands. After the hike was over we headed into Cloudcroft for a late lunch at Dave's Cafe and Tap Room - very good food and 12 different craft beer taps!