The Rio San Antonio Wilderness is located within the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument. A flat plain at about 8,400 feet in elevation contains a gorge about 100 feet deep carved by the Rio San Antonio. The plain is grass and shrub covered, while the gorge includes stretches with Douglas fir and spruce.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Rio San Antonio Wilderness.
You can reach the wilderness’ southern edge from Highway 285 by taking Forest Road 118 (north of San Antonio Mountain - about 19 miles north of Tres Piedras). Take Forest Road 118 west for just over three miles to an unmaintained, unmarked dirt vehicle route, which leads north and branches into other routes. At about two miles, these routes intersect or come very close to the wilderness boundary which is located to the west.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.