Big Bear Canyon - White Mountain Wilderness - Member Hike

Hike Name: Big Bear Canyon - White Mountain Wilderness
Country: United States
State: New Mexico
Nearby Town: Ruidoso
Rating: 4 stars
Directions: Follow NM 48, 9 miles north from Ruidoso; turn west (left) and follow NM 37 for 1-1/2 miles, turn southwest (left) on Forest Road 107 (County Road C-009), continue for 5 miles. Pass Bonito Lake, continue ahead for 1 1/2 miles. Park.
Total Hike Distance: 15.00 miles
Hike Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Permit Required: No
Hike Type: Roundtrip, Loop Hike
Hike Starts/Ends: Bonito Lake Parking Area
Trails Used: Trails 18, 19 and 25.
Backcountry Campsites: Yes
Backcountry Water Sources: Streams, Lakes, Springs
Management: U.S. Forest Service
Contact Information: Lincoln National Forest
1101 New York Ave.
Alamogordo, New Mexico
(505) 434-7200
Best Season: Spring, Summer, Fall
Users: Hikers, Bikers, Dogs, Horses
Road Conditions: Primary Paved Roads, Secondary Paved Roads, Maintained Gravel or Dirt Roads
Hike Summary: This is a fun hike, covering both flat and wet valleys, and high mountian ridgelines. The bottom area has a small creek leading to a decent size pond, where there are remains of a large mining camp, including several standing buildings and a classic Airstream camping trailer abandoned in the woods. There is a little fishing to be done in the pond, mostly bluegill and crappie. The trails are actually mostly old mining and logging roads, and are easy to folow. Mine shafts and relics are everywhere. Be careful about entering the mines unless you are experienced. Several contain dangerous gasses or low oxygen levels, and can actually be fatal trips. The road leads all the way the the cres at about 10,500 feet. When you reach the crest, start looking for the trail heading down. The trail will take you to the upper part of the canyon you came in through. This is a beautiful hike, and there is almost never any trail pressure.



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