National Historic Trail Groundbreaking on El Camino Real in Santa Fe

« Back to News Listing

October 19, 2017

On Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 2:30 p.m.— 419 years after colonist Juan de Oñate settled the “Kingdom of New Mexico”—a groundbreaking will take place for construction of a 14.7 mile nonmotorized trail segment of El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail (NHT) at the US Forest Service Headquarters Well Trailhead, County Road 62, Santa Fe, NM. When completed, this will be the longest stretch of publicly accessible, nonmotorized trail in existence along the El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro NHT.

The new trail will allow the public to follow in the footsteps of history—a vicarious experience through the nearly unchanged, historic landscape—along with increased access to federal lands between downtown Santa Fe and recreation areas west of Santa Fe on the Caja del Rio Plateau. Project activities include construction of the historic retracement trail, development of parking areas at two trailheads, trail and road signing, and installation of interpretive exhibits.

This project is a partnership of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Federal Lands Access Program (FLAP), Santa Fe County, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), US Forest Service, National Park Service (NPS), and City of Santa Fe. The majority of the project funding comes from FHWA FLAP money totaling $3.7 million. Additional matching funds were provided from Santa Fe County, the City of Santa Fe, and the NPS Connect Trails to Parks funds.

El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro connected Mexico City to the historic capital of San Juan Pueblo (Ohkay Owingeh), a distance of 1,600 miles. The 404-mile section of the trail within the US was designated as the El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro NHT by Congress in 2000. The NHT is co-administered by the BLM and NPS.

For more information on El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro NHT or the project, please visit: