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Wood Haul Wagon Ruts Trail No. 15

Contact Info
Gila National Forest
3005 E. Camino del Bosque
Silver City, NM 88061

Phone:
575-388-8201
Basics
Length:
6 miles
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Time:
2.5 - 3.5 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
6475 feet
Elevation Range:
6475 feet to 6900 feet
Elevation Change:
425 feet
Usage:
Moderate
Season:
Year Round

Description

e Wood Haul Wagon Ruts are a result of the tireless passing of supply wagons hauling construction and fuel wood from the high pine forests of the Pinos Altos mountain range to the Fort Bayard Military Reservation. Mule and oxen drawn wagons were used to haul the heavy loads. Over time the hard wagon wheels cut into the volcanic cap rock leaving a testament to the endurance of these early settlers. The route to the Wagon Wheel Ruts follows primitive roads that pass over land that was once part of the reservation.

Historic trail system close to Silver City

Details

Length:
6 miles
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Time:
2.5 - 3.5 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
6475
Elevation Range:
6475 feet to 6900
Elevation Change:
425
Usage:
Moderate
Season:
Year Round
Useful Map(s):
USGS: Fort Bayard
Additional Details:

Trailhead and parking is located by the Fort Bayard Adminstrative Site. A toilet and hitching posts are located at the trailhead. Motorized use is prohibited beyond this point.

Bayard, closest town with gas and stores, is about 8 miles .

No water is available. It is advisable to carry your own.

Elk herds can be seen in this area.

During the 1860''s Ft. Bayard was an active military outpost housing soldiers who provided protection to the local mining settlements of Pinos Altos and Santa Clara. As you travel toward the Wood Haul Wagon Ruts you will be on one of a network of wagon roads that led soldiers high into the Ponderosa Pine forests of the Pinos Altos Mountains. Animal drawn wagons traversed these rough mountain roads returning with fuelwood and roughcut lumber to construct the first permanent structures at Ft. Bayard Military Reservation.

Map + Directions

Basic Directions

Follow U.S. Highway 180 to St. Clara and turn onto the Fort Bayard Medical Center access road. Pass the hospital complex by taking the right fork till you get to the sign with Forest Road 536. This will take you to the Fort Bayard Administrative Site Trailhead and parking is 1/10 mile west of the junction of forest Roads 536 and 929.


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