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Hiking & Mountain Biking - Great Trails in Placitas

Updated: Aug 8, 2021

If you’re interested in outdoor recreation, you won’t need to go far from Diamond Tail. In addition to the community’s private trail systems, Placitas offers a plethora of trails used for hiking, biking, running, walking, and even some equestrian use.

6 Great Hiking Trails near Diamond Tail:

Montezuma Crest, Agua Sacra Trailhead, Tunnel Springs Loop, Piedra Lisa Trail and Del Agua Trail Loop, Strip Mine Trail, 10k Crest Loop Trail

Montezuma Crest Trailhead – out and back

· 2 - 3 hours depending on when you turn back

· 1.100 elevation gain

· Steep in places, strenuous

The Montezuma Crest Trailhead is next to Diamond Tail’s entryway roundabout. There is only parking for a couple cars so you may want to walk from your home at Diamond Tail. The beginning winds though a flatter area with gorgeous layered red rock and cool rock formations. You then start the climb which is quite strenuous in places but eventually winds around the west side of the Crest, opening up to the most stunning views of Placitas, Bernalillo and beyond. It feels like you can see forever.

Agua Sacra Trailhead

· 5.4 miles

· 4 hours

· 2,690 elevation gain

· Steep in places, strenuous

With gorgeous views of the Jemez along with parts of Albuquerque and Bernalillo, this trailhead is for the more serious trekker. The first mile is moderate but then becomes a very strenuous hike. The elevation gain is very intense – it’s steep and rocky in some areas and nicely forested others. The creek may be running if you’re hiking in the springtime.

Tunnel Springs Loop

· 4.1 miles

· 2.5 hours

· 1,171 elevation gain

Many suggest hiking this trail counter-clockwise to tackle the steep incline first. Sure, it’s a steep climb to begin but after that it is a very pleasant descent for the remaining miles. With some forested areas, steep in places, beautiful views, and a lesser elevation gain, this loop is sure to please. The road to get to the trailhead is heavily rutted, so low clearance vehicles should use caution.

Piedra Lisa Trail and Del Agua Trail Loop

· 5.5 miles

· 1,279 elevation gain

· Categorized as Intermediate / Difficult

One of the prettiest trails in the Placitas Area, the Piedra Lisa and Del Agua Trail Loop is moderately trafficked, featuring beautiful wildflowers, and is rated as moderate. It is primarily used for hiking, walking, running, and bird watching and is best traversed from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. This trek is rather steep and a bit loose at the beginning, becoming easier as you go.

Strip Mine Trail

· 5.0 miles

· 525 elevation gain

· Categorized as Intermediate. You can also make this a loop trail.

The Strip Mine Trail itself is about 2 miles giving you a 4 mile out and back trek. It is a is a rough and exposed trail with scrub brush and cactus. The land slopes gradually toward the Placitas Foothills and then leads into an old strip mine area. This trail is not very long and is probably one of the easiest and most flowing singletrack trails in the area. The exposed earth below the topsoil is red along here, and quite beautiful.

10k Crest Loop Trail

· 12.3 miles

· 2,267 elevation gain

· Steep in places, strenuous

Categorized as Difficult / black diamond trail says it all. And, like many hikes on the eastern slope of the Sandia, this one is mostly wooded with several big views. Placed largely in the more remote and much less used northeast quadrant of the mountain, it’s a tough trek, but well worth it.

8 Great Mountain Biking Trails in Lower Placitas

Placitas Trailhead – with 8 trail systems for mountain biking, running, and walking, these trails connect to each other at multiple points so it’s easy to take several trails during your outing to make up a 10 to 20 mile adventure. With beautiful views, juniper, pinion trees, and multiple types of cacti too... tailor a trek that matches your fitness level or mood… and bring plenty of water!


Juniper Berry Run – 2 miles

Fenceline – 2 miles

Bobsled – 2 miles


Electric Avenue – 2 miles

Pinon Nuts – 1 mile

Rhythm (AKA Bootleg) – 1 mile


Up & Up – 1 mile

Buggy – 1 mile

For information on more trails in the Placitas area, please visit the All Trails website at


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