Taos Valley Overlook

3.29 out of 5
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↑ 900 ft
↓ 800 ft
elevation (ft)

Trail Description
About this trail
The Rift Valley Trail provides a 10 mile loop through the area. From the
gate at the end of the parking lot, look for a ST immediately forking off to
the right from the DT in front of you. This will zigzag downhill through the
scrub for a couple miles and bear left following the rim of the Rio Grande
gorge. To do an all ST loop, the best thing is to bear right at all ST forks,
ignoring the DT, and the trail will eventually work its way back to toward
the parking area. There many additional miles available if you count the DT.
Don't worry about getting lost as you'll always be on a strip between the
gorge and the highway. There are a few sharp, but short climbs and
nothing very tech. This trail is suitable for novices but can still be fun for
more advanced riders. The trail is all exposed and on the low side of town,
so the season is longer than other Taos trails.
added by John FischEpic
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Directions to Trailhead
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Trail Q&A
Rider Questions
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Recommended Trails
Recommended Trails
Binder Lake
White River Valley
Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
Trail Check-ins
what's this?
Recent Trail Check-ins     (21 total check-ins)
  tuffanel   on Mar 25, 2019
  tuffanel   on Dec 18, 2018
  Fatbike1   on Oct 6, 2018
  Gary Schomberger   on Sep 28, 2018
  tuffanel   on Sep 23, 2018
Photo & Video Gallery (61)
Trail Photos & Videos (61)
Reviews (7)


August 23, 2016
CFM Epic  
Review: Non technical loop that forms an interesting route to the edge of the Rio Grande Gorge and back. It twists and turns through desert vegetation and several drainages. Occasional views of resident bighorn sheep are possible.


February 10, 2016
MTBCrash29 Doubletrack  
Review: Really great trail. Either direction will offer you a great ride. Ride takes you to an overlook at the gorge. It is a good trail that offers the opportunity to take the pass over to the other side of the gorge if you are adventurous enough to take that task on. For the most part, this trail wanders over the terrain and ends up back on itself at the trail head. Nothing crazy and nothing that really sticks out.

Bunny Hop

April 13, 2015
Review: It's a good solid beginner trail with a few rough sections. It's mostly nice single track through sagebrush and the views are pretty good. It's a bit confusing until you learn that the real name of the trail is "Rift Valley Trial". It is well marked as such. We rode counterclockwise from the C110/570 parking lot. In mid April we found it to be perfect shirt sleeve and shorts weather with only a little wind. Nice.


August 31, 2014
AlienTrees Gramcounter  
Review: Rift Valley is a fun and fast trail. Lots of curvy sections with nice flow that anyone can have fun riding. The climbs are easy and gradual, riding the trail either direction has nice cruisy downhill sections between the climbs. There's lots of spur trails and washes to check out. During Summer this trail is open and exposed to lightning and heavy rain during the monsoon season. When it's not raining it can be real hot with little shade, bring lots of water. The views of the river and mesas are incredible.

Similar Trail: Horsethief Mesa


March 17, 2014
stumpyfsr Singletrack  
Review: Rode part of this trail. It's fun singletrack that could be connected with West Rim. When there's still snow everywhere, this trail is dry and rideable. Bring water because it can be hot and windy.

October 13, 2013
Review: Meandering single track with multiple spurs, loops, trails. No large climbs or descents, but not flat and dull either. Ride hard and fast; or slow and easy. Can be connected to West Rim trail for a long ride. Or just explore the Overlook trails for a pleasant hour or two. Good views: Rio Grande Gorge, Sangre de Cristo Mountains.


October 19, 2012
John Fisch Epic  
Review: Although this is a novice friendly trail, it's still worth a stop. The singletrack is narrow and twisty and the views into the gorge are fantastic. This would be a good early or late season ride when the surrounding high country is snowed in. This is also one of those rare trails where novices and more experienced riders can ride together and have a great time.

Taos Valley Overlook MTB Trail 3.29 out of 5 based on 7 ratings. 7 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed
Feature Article
Before the South Boundary: Turning Cranks in Taos