Alkali Flat Trail

  • View along the Alkali Flat Trail in White Sands National Monument.
  • Coyote in White Sands National Monument.
  • Sunset in White Sands National Monument.
  • Western Diamondback Rattlesnake in White Sands National Monument.


Dogs No

5 (miles)



Minimal (Elev. Δ - ft)

New Mexico

White Sands

Alkali Flat Trail is a moderate hike in White Sands National Monument near Las Cruces. The monument says this hike leads "you through the Heart of the Sands over unbroken dunes that stretch for miles and unfold into a stunning white vista, the Alkali Flat Trail skirts the edge of what is now the final remnant of Lake Otero. Having once covered 1,600 square miles of the Tularosa Basin during the last ice age, Lake Otero dried up 4,000 years ago. The trail is marked by posts so look carefully for the next trail marker before continuing. If you cannot see the next post because of blowing sand and dust or if a marker is down, turn back. Especially during the spring, strong winds can reduce visibility to just a few feet and knock over markers, making it easy to get lost." Warning, if you are hiking in the summer time, make sure to carry plenty of water and protection from the sun.


President Herbert Hoover established White Sands National Monument in 1933.

Red Tape

Entrance and Camping Fees
Contact: White Sands National Monument 19955 Highway 70 W Alamogordo, NM 88310

New Mexico Trails

White Sands Trails

White Sands National Monument Hiking Trail Guide

Get Directions to Alkali Flat Trail