Snake and Opportunity Mine Walks

SE Walk to Snake Mine RuinsWarm Springs Wash

From the Southeast

This walk starts at a pull-out on NM-152 (the first gated road on the left - north - after you crest the hill coming out of Hillsboro) and ends at the Snake Mine ruins.  From the parking area, pass through a gate and proceed north up the road.  Just past a windmill a road forks to the right and crosses a wash, this trail is listed as East Wash of Ready Pay - North of NM-152, in our inventory.  For this walk, stay left at this fork and continue uphill, staying to the left at the next road intersection.  

Just before a relatively level section of road the Opportunity Mine (and a miner's cage) is just off the uphill side of the road (your right).  Workings of the mine can be seen uphill and downhill from this point.

At the top of the pass there are ruins from the old Snake Mine.  Snake Mine Road (SW Route) describes the walk to this location which originates at the Warm Springs Wash/NM-152 parking area.

It is 1.1 miles from the parking area to the ruins.  There is a minimal elevation gain.

From the Southwest

This walk starts just east of Hillsboro.  It follows an old mining road, ruts and rocks are the only obstructions which you will encounter.  The usual suspects are on-the-scene; rattlesnakes (only Western Diamond-Back that I know of), Black Bear, Coyote, and Cougar are all possible - but not likely. 

The walk starts near the intersection of NM-152 and the Hillsboro Transfer Station Road, on the eastern edge of Hillsboro.  Enter the wash and take the first “road” to the right.  The walk ends at a pass where there are concrete remains of structures associated with the old Snake Mine.  Up and down (round-trip) is 4.1 miles, with about 500’ of elevation gain (5,149’ to 5,692’).

This walk is very good for wildflowers, as are all of the walks east of Hillsboro listed in the “Black Range Trails”.  It can be good for a variety of insects as well.  Birds are typical of the area: Black-throated Sparrow is the most common bird, Cactus Wren; Curve-billed Thrasher, etc. are likely; and Black-chinned Sparrow has been seen here.

On stormy days, views along the walk can be quite dramatic.

Along Warm Springs Wash, view from Snake Mine Road, east of Hillsboro, New Mexico, USA

© Robert Barnes 2018