Sandia Man Cave

Sandia Man Cave, Placitas: Address, Sandia Man Cave Reviews: 4/5

Sandia Man Cave
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4.0
16 reviews
Excellent
3
Very good
9
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4
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Sally T
Albuquerque, NM5 005 contributions
Oct 2021
A 15 mile leisure drive from Albuquerque to Las Placitas took us to Sandia Cave. It is located on the north end of the Sandia Mountains high up on the steep cliff walls of Las Huertas Canyon. The trailhead is off of NM 165 and is marked with a sign. It is a 0.47 slightly ascending mile hike from the parking lot to the cave. The trail leads to a concrete staircase, then to a limestone ledge in the cliff, and finally to a metal staircase that spirals up to the mouth of the cave.

The cave was discovered in 1936 by a University of New Mexico anthropology student. From 1937-1941 UNM excavated it. Found in the cave were stone arrow and lance points, basket scraps, bits of woven yucca moccasins, and skeletal remains of Ice Age animals such as the mastodon. This cave also played an important role in the history of how we think about the archaeological record in the Southwest during the Paleo-Indian period. No human remains were discovered.
Written 1 November 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ange
Albuquerque, NM172 contributions
Jul 2021
I would not suggest driving this road without a high clearance vehicle and even then beware that it is greatly rutted through out. The cave is a quick walk off of the parking area and relatively small. You have to ascent a tall spiral staircase. I wouldn't say the drive several miles up a now dangerous road is worth the few moments at the cave. Every time it rains the roads get worse.

This cave is a major source of archaeologist scandal. An archaeologist working this site claimed that he discovered items that were later proved to not be as old as he claimed and disputedly not even from this site. He once had a plaque for his accomplishments at this site, but it was taken down.
Written 27 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Marie5466
Guanajuato Municipality, Mexico1 007 contributions
Jun 2019 • Friends
Uneven gravel road for about 3 miles to get to parking area leading to cave. Only ½ mile walk to cave. The road hasn’t been graded for a while and there are some rough spots. Consider only using a vehicle with high clearance. The walk is easy but beware of poison ivy (all around the parking lot and some along the path), especially if you bring dogs who walk in it and then rub on you!!! The cave is not that large, but you still need a light to go to the end of it. Nice short detour to see a sight that was used by the native people eons ago. Nice view from the cave.

Talked to some locals who said the road is usually in better condition. It hasn’t rained in months so not sure what they are waiting for to fix it. Not sure it would be drivable during monsoon season in its current sad shape.
Written 28 June 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SoloEd
New Jersey72 contributions
Apr 2019 • Solo
The last 3 miles on the unimproved road was a bit rough with my rental car and had to take it real slow. There is a little parking lot at the beginning of the trail. I saw another cave high up along the trail but no access to that one.
I'm glad I went!
Written 12 May 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Bob Kellogg
albuquerque6 contributions
Dec 2017
Interesting, but could only see from a distance. Not a great deal of information available about this site.
Written 6 November 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Saoirse-sMom
Saint Paul, MN15 contributions
Dec 2017 • Friends
The hike isn't long or very hard though you do need to watch where you're walking on the rocky and uneven trail. The views in the Sandia Mountains are amazing, as are the far distant views back toward Bernalillo and to the north. The harder part of the trip is the long slow drive on the dirt and rocky road. We managed to get a flat tire on the way out!
Written 23 January 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sofotravels
Texas358 contributions
Jan 2018
You drive down a VERY bumpy road until you see the signs and parking lot. You may need an SUV or truck to survive the road. The trail is a slow uphill walk. The view is spectacular so bring your camera. You’ll be surprised by the spiral staircase that peeks out over the side of the cliff. Once inside you can climb through a rock window and slide down some slippery cave walls to the bottom. If you continue past that point and get injured I’m not sure you’ll make it out. It was an AMAZING experience. I have a lung disease and took my elderly parents. We all did well in all areas. Not the best place to take a pet.
Written 3 January 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

abeandsarah
Lubbock, TX167 contributions
Aug 2016 • Family
This 10-15 minute hike was so beautiful. The views of the mountains are just breathe taking. The road to this hike is very bumpy. I recommend if you are planning on taking this trip to use a truck. The road to the hike is about 3 1/2 miles but well worth the views.
Written 16 August 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

44dave56
Placitas, NM2 238 contributions
May 2016 • Solo
This cave is easily reached after a 15 minute hike up the mountain where you reach a spiral staircase in a metal cage to gain entrance to the cave.

If you plan to go deeper into the cave ensure that you have good sources of light and are not afraid of tight spaces.
Written 22 June 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Robert M
14 contributions
May 2016 • Couples
Had a great time nice trails. Great views. It was a good hike but not to strenuous. Great time of year to go. Saw many people walking everyone was very nice. A great place to take the family but some sketchy parts of the trail.
Written 31 May 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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