Unbelievable Views While Camping in Santa Fe National Forest

I’m convinced this place is the BEST campsite in this entire area.

Getting There

Driving west on 126 a little past the San Antonio Campground, I turned left onto Forest Road 376. The road was a little washboarded and had some bumps here and there but was generally fine.

I’ve never seen so many campsites in an area, ever. There had to be HUNDREDS of spots. Tons of open spaces with multiple rigs posted up as well as little paths that led off to more secluded spots.


This HAD to be the best spot on 376. Well, I guess it depends on what you’re looking for, but it was beautifully secluded. You could barely see the road, which I liked, since the area was pretty popular.

I had no cell signal (Verizon) here.

My First Bushwhacked Hike

So I was flying my drone around some time after I arrived and noticed a mountain peak basically right behind where I had parked my van.

Drone image looking northwest at mountain peak

I scoped the area and thought, wouldn’t it be cool to hike up there? I saw some rocks and a flat area at the top. It was basically straight up, but it looked doable. So, the next evening I suited up my hiking pack and set out on a journey. No trail, no markers, just my intuition of where “up” was.

I started out with pep in my step, but it quickly diminished as I had to stop to catch my breath. About 700ft over 0.6mi. It was essentially like going up steps… When I got to the top, it turned into rocks and boulders, something I had somewhat expected from the drone. This was the tough part…

I managed to finagle my way in between a crevasse and up a little 10ft rock face section. It was a little sweaty…

But I reached the summit and the views were simply spectacular.

I sat up there taking it in until sunset.

… then started my descent.

It was a bit sketchy, definitely steep, but we made it! What an incredible night.

Visiting Spence Hot Springs

On my last day I got up early and visited Spence Hot Springs.

With only 7 parking spaces for cars, I was lucky to be the second there. Talk about a beautiful morning!

There are 2 main pools. I sat in the lower pool for a while. To be quite honest with you, it was not warm 😅… The water that fed this pool dripped through the cool air from the upper pool. But, I sat it out until the guy in the upper pool left, then I swiftly moved up to check that pool out. It was warmer, but about body temperature. The REAL hot springs was hidden in a little cave that fed the upper pool.

Hot spring cave located at the far left of the image

And boy was THAT warm. Not only was the water warm, but the rock was radiating heat. SO cool.

That was it! After the hot springs, I stopped in Los Alamos on my way back to Santa Fe. You can read about my mind-blowing time there in this post.


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