Grindstone Ridge Connector
ElevationAscent: 53' 16 m
Descent: -663' -202 m
High: 7,774' 2,369 m
Low: 7,163' 2,183 m
GradeAvg Grade: 5% (3°)
Max Grade: 18% (10°)
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“Admire Lincoln National Forest on one side and Mescalero Reservation on the other from this trail.”— Brendan Ross
Look to the right passing the half mile point. A fantastic view of Mescalero Lake, Cienegita Canyon, and the Inn of the Mountain Gods opens up below, a sight few visitors to Ruidoso get to experience. Shortly afterwards, the Ridge Connector crosses a dirt access road and enters into a heavily shaded section. While providing relief from the hot New Mexican sun in the warmer months, this area can become thick with snow accumulation during the winter. It also is a magnet for fallen trees, so be sure to look ahead and plan for any necessary diversions.
A signed intersection with the Grindstone Ridge Trail is at the one mile point. Continuing ahead, the trail makes a series of descending switchbacks, which can be a tough climb if taking the connector in the opposite direction. Keep an eye out for fast-moving mountain bikers in this area, as some sections of the trail can be obscured. A view of Grindstone Lake opens up as the path takes a slow descent into the canyon.
A few more switchbacks and descents follow throughout the rest of the route. Knee high grass occasionally covers the path in a few sections, but it is generally easy to locate by continuing forward.
The Grindstone Ridge Connector ends at a wide gravel access road. Exiting the trail here, a sign points the way towards Grindstone Lake Trail. For some reason, there is no sign on the other side of the post for the Ridge Connector, so if beginning the trail on this side, look across the road from the large stone arrow for the Lake Trail. The singletrack is visible near the side of the hill.
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We need help with the following missing trail information:
Photos, Need to Know, Flora & Fauna
Land Manager: USFS - Lincoln National Forest Office