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Climbing several switchbacks and through five life zones to the 10,678-foot Sandia Crest you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Albuquerque, the Rio Grande, Mount Taylor, and the Jemez and Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Explore the Cibola National Forest along one of the many trails, including the popular half-mile loop Peak Nature Trail. The area is replete with a full array of outdoor activities.
About half way up the Sandia Crest National Scenic Byway, consider a side trip on the gravel Country Road 165, heading through Las Hurtas Canyon to the Sandia Cave trailhead where excavations have found evidence of humans in this area some 12,000 years ago. A short trail leads to the trail to the cave and a metal spiral staircase leads to the entrance. Visitors should bring the usual caving equipment, head protection, flashlights and appropriate clothes and shoes. If you continue further, it will lead you back to I-25, or you could turn around and continue on the Turquoise Trail.
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