Awesome desert adventure!

This is a great spot for when you're feeling those winter blues in Seattle and need some sunshine and sagebrush country. There are 12 miles of trail throughout the Ancient Lakes network, so you can expand your adventure if you want to. Definitely be wary of rattlesnakes, especially in the early morning or getting closer to sunset (when I came across one right in the middle of the path soaking up some warmth). This area also has Western poison ivy, so generally a good idea to stay on trail here. There are fantastic wildflowers here in the spring and a wildlife reserve where you can see lots of different bird species as you hike. Make sure you bring all the water you need for a day hike or overnight because all water in this area is irrigation runoff and not safe for drinking even after filtration. Discover Pass required here.

Awesome views, but not for the faint of heart!

Its name and its views seem like something out of Tolkien novel, but we're lucky enough to have it right here in WA. Follow the trail directions for Colchuck Lake to start this adventure. Where most day hikers turn around at Colchuck is where you'll continue to rock hop your way around the lake to meet the base of Asgard. You will need familiarity with route finding for this section as there is no marked trail. Ascending Aasgard should not be attempted by novice hikers - you gain just shy of 2000ft in 3/4 of mile over rocky, loose, and often poorly marked terrain. As you get closer to the top there are sections that require some scrambling and, depending on how much weight you're carrying, you may need to take your pack off and launch it up ahead of you to maintain your balance as you climb. And as if all that wasn't enough, keep in mind that the pass you see from Colchuck is a false summit, so there will be even more to go once you get to what you've been thinking is the top. When you do come out on top, thighs burning, you'll be at 7,800 ft and the expansive views will simply knock you on your ass (probably even literally so that you can catch a breath!). It's stunning!

Beautiful hiking and educational adventure

A great spot to introduce yourself to the history of this region and the people who used to call it home. Great for when you're looking for something shorter (although there are lots of options for longer hikes in Bandelier, as well!). ***Due to recent flood damage the kiva in Alcove House is closed to visitors. Alcove House has reopened but you cannot enter inside the kiva until the roof can be stabilized.***