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Badlands With No Name Exploratory, Off Trail

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--> This is not an easy hike.

Image From Earlier Hike

• Physical Level: Moderate/Strenuous
• Technical Level: Off trail hiking skills
• Distance: 6-8 miles
• Elevation Gain: 1000 feet approximate
Return: By 3 PM

Prerequisites: Off trail hiking experience, comfortable with very steep slopes & unstable sandy terrain.  There may be some struggle or effort climbing up.

Not a beginners hike.

I can only take two people with me. If someone else will drive a second car, I will increase the number. The approach road is dirt and traversed best with a high clearance vehicle.

The area we will be going to is known to some as the Rio Rancho Badlands. I call it the “Badlands With No Name” because I didn't know it was called anything the first time I was there. I like my name better so I use it.

Anyway …

Professional Photos of Badlands on Flickr:

Hike In A Nutshell:

• Assemble at 8AM in the parking lot at the end of the row in front of Starbucks. Look for my blue Ford Escape Hybrid with the eight ball on the antenna.  If you want coffee come early so we can leave before 8:10.

• We will drive down north on Golf Course then west on Southern Blvd in Rio Rancho. At Rainbow we will head north on the tar road, continue on the dirt road until we can't go much further.

• We will walk the rim above the Badlands observing the terrian.

• At some point we will make an entry into the Badlands

• We will explore the arroyos and ridges until 2PM, eventually finding a way out

• Goal is to find the area the professional photos were taken.


We can go light, but keep in mind it is still winter so be prepared for inclement weather. You will need food and water for the day. We may have to backtrack a lot. If conditions in the field make it necessary we will retreat.

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  • Victoria

    Thanks everyone for a wonderful hike.
    Special thanks to Aaron for leading a 5 star adventure.
    I love my rocks!!!

    February 15, 2014

  • Aaron G.

    Good to meet Anna, Catherine and Larry. Of course happy to hike with Victoria and Scott agian, with whom I've have various adventures.

    We had perfect weather for hiking the dry badlands. Descending via a fairly easy line, we began the hike walking along arroyos for a while. We used line of sight navigation. We explored an area in and about a box canyon. Latter on we attempted to summit a ridge line, but the available routes were questionable. After some discussion we did not come to a unanimous decision on making an attempt, so we retreated. We had reached our turnaround time by then. The badlands are a good size but not quite on the scale of Bisti. They are interesting enough to go back multiple times. Thanks everyone for coming on this hike and making it good.

    February 12, 2014

  • Larry

    Had a good time for my first hike with this group. Thanks Aaron!

    February 11, 2014

  • Anna B.

    Stunning lanscape! Thank you for a wonderful adventure!

    February 11, 2014

  • Anna B.

    I have a Ford F-150 I can drive which fits 5 (3 in the back jump seat).

    1 · February 4, 2014

    • Aaron G.

      Thank you very much for offering. I opened up the hike for 4 more.

      1 · February 4, 2014

    • Anna B.

      You're welcome!

      February 4, 2014

  • Aaron G.

    8 AM Scott. Glad you are coming. Thanks, I'll change it now.

    February 4, 2014

6 went

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