Hike Embudo to Embudito canyon loop Sandias trail - part 1
I learned that the Spanish word "embudo" means (normal sized) funnel, and that embudito means (small sized) funnel. Which are names that fit for the two canyons that are the named that way in the Sandia mountains.
The Embudo canyon has big half mile wide area into which water flows into the canyon, and Embudito starts out at the top as a very narrow hallway of a canyon only a 20 feet wide or less which makes it a small funnel indeed.
The day that I decided to take my hike, it was nothing short of perfect. The temperature was in the mid -60's and a light breeze. In the exposed areas, the sun made it just a bit on the warm side, but in the shady areas, and later in the afternoon, it was absolutely perfect.
As I continued up the embudo canyon I could see the ridges close in to a narrow space about 30 feet wide, where there was a gap that the trail went through, and then on the other side, like the walls of a castle, the canyon opens up perhaps a half mile or more wide.
The base of the canyon slopes gently upward toward to "back wall of the castle", where you begin to hike up the mountain, and you start to be able to see the canyon from a better vantage.
Up at the crest of the Sandia mountains, there is a trail going North and South which is called the crest trail, where the view is pretty darned good. But at the top of the Embudo canyon there is also a lower "crest trail" that goes north and south, and connects with the Embudito trail, which connects with THE "crest trail" about 1,000 feet higher than the trail I hiked on this day.
Looking South, you can see for 60 miles or more at the top of the Embudo canyon trail where it joins with Tres Pistoles trail coming up from the south.
That trail winds through the top of the front crest of the Sandias, and goes over to the Embudito canyon, where you can see further North before you dive down into the canyon.
The sun was beginning to set when I entered the top of Embudito canyon, so I knew that I couldn't take my time going down the canyon, so I picked up the pace going lower. Somehow I did manage to take a few pictures, even though I was attempting to get down out of the canyon during daylight.
I did finally emerge into the wide spaces below the closed canyon just as and last moments of dusk were fleeting, and it was getting darker rapidly. When I finally reached the parking lot, it had just turned into the dark of night, and I had just turned my headlamp on to see the last 50 feet before the parking lot. It was a good hike, but unfortunately, the day was late when I entered the upper Embudito canyon, and so most of my pictures were either dark or colored by the sun light of late afternoon. Given that disadvantage, I was still able to get plenty of good pictures, and plenty of good exercise. It was a good day to take a hike in the beautiful Sandia mountains, and a good day to be alive.
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Last Update: December 21, 2015
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