The Caballo Lake / Palomas Gap Trail is located about 4 miles East of Caballo Lake, south of Truth or Consequences.  The trailhead is located on the East side of the Caballo Dam, at the South end of the lake.  The Caballo Lake “Riverside” Campground is an excellent place to spend the night.  It is located on the West side of the dam.  Unfortunately, the dam is closed to vehicular traffic, so to get to the trailhead, you have to go the long way around.  From the campground, go west to US 187 and turn left (South).  Go 3 miles and turn left onto CR B38.  Go 1.25 miles and turn left at the “T” (don’t know the name of the road).  Go .75 miles and turn right.  Go about 500 yards and turn left at the “T”.  Follow this road for approximately 2.75 miles, cross I-25, along the West side of the river, and up to the dam.  Ranging in elevation from just over 4,000 feet to nearly 7,500 feet, the Caballo Lake / Palomas Gap Trail takes you through Apache Gap, and then around and up the east side of the Caballo Mountains.  Just past Waypoint CP01-05 is an excellent overlook of Caballo Lake.  The trail continues down and then up the east side of Timber Mountain to the peak at nearly 7,500 feet (Waypoint CP01-07).  Next is the switchback descent down the north side of the mountain and into Rincon Basin.  From here the trail travels along Lead Mine Canyon, through the Palomas Gap, down to Red Canyon, across the Rio Grande, and dumps you out onto Hwy 187 south of Truth or Consequences.  The Caballo Lake / Palomas Gap Trail is about 25 miles long and takes about 6 to 7 hours.  And then you have another 15 miles of pavement back to the campground.  After you exit the trail at Hwy 187, head south back down to the campground.

Difficulty Rating:  Two (2) Moderate
(based on my personal rating scale on the Trails Page)

Click HERE for a FULL-SIZE printable map

Here are a couple pictures from the Caballo Lake / Palomas Gap Trail, 
On the left, NM4W member Chuck Peeples tackles a ledge climb on an "optional" portion of the trail.
On the right, a view of the north end of Caballo Lake, as seen from the top of Timber Mountain.

Click on picture for larger view, then "back" on your browser to return here.




Cumm. Dist.









N32° 53.934’

W107° 17.437’



4.31 mi

4.31 mi

94° (E)

N32° 53.651’

W107° 12.993’



1.48 mi

5.79 mi

44° (NE)

N32° 54.578’

W107° 11.938’



0.69 mi

6.48 mi

93° (E)

N32° 54.547’

W107° 11.226’



2.94 mi

9.42 mi

326° (NW)

N32° 56.659’

W107° 12.932’



0.93 mi

10.35 mi

7° (N)

N32° 57.462’

W107° 12.822’



1.00 mi

11.34 mi

322° (NW)

N32° 58.142’

W107° 13.460’



0.72 mi

12.06 mi

27° (NNE)

N32° 58.698’

W107° 13.128’



0.48 mi

12.54 mi

81° (E)

N32° 58.760’

W107° 12.637’



0.53 mi

13.07 mi

321° (NW)

N32° 59.120’

W107° 12.981’



1.54 mi

14.61 mi

46° (NE)

N33° 0.058’

W107° 11.839’



0.94 mi

15.55 mi

316° (NW)

N33° 0.645’

W107° 12.514’



1.01 mi

16.56 mi

4° (N)

N33° 1.520’

W107° 12.440’



0.50 mi

17.06 mi

314° (NW)

N33° 1.819’

W107° 12.809’



0.68 mi

17.74 mi

14° (NNE)

N33° 2.396’

W107° 12.637’



0.84 mi

18.58 mi

317° (NW)

N33° 2.931’

W107° 13.227’



0.63 mi

19.22 mi

276° (W)

N33° 2.993’

W107° 13.878’



0.61 mi

19.82 mi

231° (SW)

N33° 2.664’

W107° 14.369’



0.42 mi

20.24 mi

323° (NW)

N33° 2.952’

W107° 14.627’



1.90 mi

22.14 mi

247° (WSW)

N33° 2.303’

W107° 16.433’



0.85 mi

22.99 mi

353° (N)

N33° 3.034’

W107° 16.544’



0.55 mi

23.54 mi

299° (WNW)

N33° 3.271’

W107° 17.045’



0.36 mi

23.90 mi

352° (N)

N33° 3.580’

W107° 17.094’



0.77 mi

24.67 mi

285° (WNW)

N33° 3.750’

W107° 17.867’



0.29 mi

24.97 mi

199° (SSW)

N33° 3.508’

W107° 17.967’

Notice: Off-highway travel is by its very nature potentially dangerous and could result in property damage, injury, or even death.  If you drive any of the trails on this web site, you acknowledge these risks and assume full responsibility.  You are the final judge as to whether a trail is safe to drive, whether your vehicle is capable of the journey, and whether your skills are up to the challenge.  The publisher of this web site disclaims any and all liability for property damage, bodily injury, or death that could occur to you or any of your passengers.  To the best of my knowledge, the information contained on this page was accurate as of the time I road this trail during the Fall of 2005.   However, things change over time.  And portions of this trail may no longer be legally accessible to motorized vehicles.  Therefore, please be good stewards of our sport--always stay on designated trails . . . and always, always remember to Tread Lightly!

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