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Bandelier National Monument

About Alan's Star-Ratings15 Entrance Road
Los Alamos, NM 87544
Phone: (505) 672-0343.

Visitor Center Operating Hours
Summer: 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (Saturday of Memorial Day weekend through Monday of Labor Day weekend)
Winter: 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (When mountain Standard time is observed; approx. Nov.- Mar.)
Spring/Fall: 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (When Mountain Daylight time is observed in April & Sept.- Oct.)
Park and Visitor Center are open daily except: Closed December 25 and January 1.

Visitors traveling on I-25 - From Santa Fe: Take Interstate-25 exit 282B (St Francis/ US HWY 84/285) for Santa Fe. Travel north on HWY 285 for 19 miles; you will go straight through the city. Exit onto State HWY 502 near the Cities of Gold Casino in Pojoaque. Travel west 11.5 miles, follow the signs to Bandelier and merge onto HWY 4. Travel west on HWY 4 for 11.5 miles, through the town of White Rock. The Bandelier Monument entrance is on the left side of the road.

Scenic alternative route for those going north on I-25: Near Bernalillo, take Interstate-25 exit 232 (Rio Ranch) for US HWY 550, continue for 23.5 miles. At San Ysidro, exit onto HWY 4. Travel northeast over the mountains for 54 miles to the park entrance which will be on the right side of the road. This is a good paved road that passes by the Valles Caldera National Preserve. However, it does go above 9,000 feet in elevation and is not advisable in winter weather.

Visitors traveling from Taos: Take NM HWY 68 (Paseo del Pueblo Sur) south for 47 miles. In Espanola, turn right onto East Paseo de Onate (N HWY 285/84); travel 3/4 mile on this road across the Rio Grande. At the light, turn left onto HWY 30 (Los Alamos HWY) and travel south for 8.5 miles. Bear right onto the HWY 502 ramp and travel west for 2 miles. Then merge onto HWY 4 and travel west for 11.5 miles, through the town of White Rock. The entrance to Bandelier will be on the left side of the road.

The ancestors of modern Pueblo people built thriving communities in the area called Bandelier about 600 years ago. Several thousand ancestral Pueblo dwellings are found among the pink mesas and sheer-walled canyons. The best-known archeological sites, in Frijoles Canyon near the Visitor Center, were inhabited from the 1100s into the mid-1500s, and earlier groups had used the area for thousands of years. Modern pueblo people maintain strong ties to this area that is their homeland.

A paved road leads from the entrance to the campground, Visitor Center, and a picnic area. Access to the archeological sites is by foot. The main trail is 1.2 miles round-trip. Portions of the trail are relatively flat and permit access by wheelchair. Other parts include stairs and a chance to climb ladders into cavates. An additional mile round-trip walk leads to Alcove House which is reached by climbing 4 ladders and a number of stone stairs. Winter weather can limit what areas can be visited.  Approximately 70 miles of backcountry trails are available for day or overnight foot travel (wilderness permit required for overnight use; available at visitor center).

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