The Catwalk National Scenic Trail area is approximately 5 miles from Glenwood, at
the end of NM Highway 174, also known as the Catwalk Road.
Note: Two low-water crossings provide access to the
recreation area on Highway 174. Use caution if crossing when water is present.
Glenwood is about an hour north of Silver City on Highway 180; the drive winds
through the high desert of Grant and Catron Counties and includes a number of spectacular
views. Close to Glenwood, bands of mountain bighorn sheep may sometimes be seen
on the cliffs over the highway.
The Catwalk National Scenic Trail offers a fascinating glimpse into the
geologic and historic foundations of Grant County. The result of cataclysmic
volcanic actions, the area now offers a beautiful picnic spot next to Whitewater
Creek, a challenging one-mile trail along the historic 1890's mining waterway,
and a sense of place that creates images of an earlier time.
The name for the area, The Catwalk, refers to the original plank-board walkway
placed atop the steel pipe used to bring water to the ore processing plant,
ruins of which can still be seen near the parking area. Although most of
the pipe is now gone, much of the current all-access trail follows this original
route, winding right through the center of the creek canyon perched safely a
dozen feet above the creek. Keep an eye out for trout cruising in the
The first portion of the trail is relatively easy and leads to hidden
pools and splashing waterfalls — magical spots in our high desert
environment. Beyond the developed trail, more rigorous trails lead into
the Gila Wilderness. Consult with the Forest Service before venturing
beyond the Catwalk trail area.
The Catwalk Recreation Area is a day-use area and is open from
sunrise to sunset. A parking fee of $3.00 per vehicle is paid at
a self-pay station in the parking lot.