Lava Falls Loop – El Malpais Narrows Short

Lava Falls Loop – El Malpais Narrows Short Hike
In El Malpais Region

Map File Source: Garmin BaseCamp

map Hike Key: H10621
Last Updated: 03/26/2021 12:00am
Last Updated By: Dawn McIntyre
Hike Class: B (Moderate)
Hike Distance: 5 mi
Minimum Elevation: 7109 ft
Elevation Change: 200 ft
Total Uphill: 290 ft
Total Downhill: 290 ft
Avg. Grade: 8 %
Route Type: Multiple Hikes
On Trail: No
Paved or Gravel Roads: Yes
GPS Advised: Yes
Drive Distance Round Trip: 190 mi
Drive Time One-Way: 1:30
Hiking Seasons: Spring and Fall
New Mexico Game Unit: 13
Hike Status: Waiting Editor


An opportunity to view the El Malpais lava fields from above, then get a taste of actually walking in one.


Bring hiking poles for stability and wear sturdy hiking boots. You might also wear gloves just in case.

Trailhead Directions

From Albuquerque, take I-40 west for about 70 miles to Exit 89 at Grants. Go south for 22 miles on SR 117 into Malpais, past Acoma-Zuni Trail and Ventana arch. At 0.9 miles past milepost 36, turn left onto South Narrows Rd and PARK (0.0 mi) at small iron gate.

Actual Hike

Hike the short Lava Falls Loop hike and about half of the El Malpais Narrows hike.

At the Lava Falls Loop, do not leave one cairn until the next is in sight! There are pamphlets available at the trailhead for the interpretive trail or view the pamphlet online.


THE NARROWS: N34 50.379, W107 54.669
HWY117/LAVA FALLS RD: N34 44.596, W107 57.755
LAVA FALLS: N34 43.976, W 10758.633

Map Filename: NARROWS-LAVA FALLS.jpg

Text Author: Dawn McIntyre
Map Author: Dawn McIntyre
Waypoints Author: Dawn McIntyre
Track Author: Dawn McIntyre
Maintainer: Dawn McIntyre
Editor: Marilyn Warrant

Photos of This Hike
Click for caption and larger image