18 votes

Bisti Wilderness

NCM Road 7297, Farmington, New Mexico 87499 USA

Free to Visit
Open Now
Fri 6a-11p
  • Independent
  • Pet Friendly
  • No Public
  • Outdoor
  • No Wifi
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“little known alien landscape”

The Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness is a rolling landscape of badlands which offers some of the most unusual scenery found in the Four Corners Region.  Time and natural elements have etched a fantasy world of strange rock formations made of interbedded sandstone, shale, mudstone, coal, and silt.  The weathering of the sandstone forms hoodoos - weathered rock in the form of pinnacles, spires, cap rocks, and other unusual forms.  Fossils occur in this sedimentary landform.  Translated from the Navajo language, Bisti (Bis-tie) means “a large area of shale hills.”  De-Na-Zin (Deh-nah-zin) takes its name from the Navajo words for “cranes.”

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Reviewed by

  • 1 Review
  • 6 Helpful
November 12, 2014
Rated 5.0

Stunning views, feels otherworldly and lunar. Bring a GPS because it's very easy to get turned around and lose your way -- there are no markers or trails, and cell reception is zero. A number of photographers have listed coordinates for interesting rock formations online, which I recommend using as a fun treasure hunt. We left a list of the coordinates with description in the box by the parking lot of the south entrance. Also, when you get there, head towards the left through the wash, although the right looks more interesting, the left side will bring you to the interesting hoodoos and "cracked eggs." Enjoy!!

6 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • 9 Reviews
  • 7 Helpful
August 01, 2017
Rated 5.0

Hands down one of the coolest places I've EVER been, and I've been all over the place. However, DO NOT do this drive in a car. I drove my Chevy Cobalt, and I am lucky to have made it out without any blown tires. It is a ROCK road to get into the place (not gravel, full on rocks... I went like 2 mph). If you have an SUV or truck though, don't pass up this stop! It's like being on another planet! I would love to come back again in the future a little more prepared with GPS to navigate as there are no trails and a better suited vehicle.

5 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
Kori and Brian Truono

  • Road Warrior
  • 78 Reviews
  • 160 Helpful
November 19, 2015
Rated 5.0

Oh what fun we had! We parked at the western most parking area (more scenic than the eastern) and hiked about 5-6 miles in a few hours. Very flay and easy to navigate. Be aware that there are NO trail systems, NO water, and NO facilities. It is truly a wilderness area. The geologic formations are out of this world and WILDLY different from 100 ft to 100 ft. You will see shields, badlands, volcanic flow, hoodoos, and all kinds of petrified trees. We had a great time.

4 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
Joel Schat

  • Photographer
  • 237 Reviews
  • 505 Helpful
July 14, 2014
Rated 5.0

Came here once and was slightly surprised as to what it was. First off its way far out! Basically you drive down a dirt road for hours until you reach a parking lot and I highly recommend bringing a GPS as its just flat rock and dessert scapes until you reach the crazy Bisti elements that look oh so cool! It will blow you mind when you stumble upon them! Its easy to get lost though especially if you are walking in the dark so this is where the GPS will come in handy!

3 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
Tatiana Danger

  • Road Warrior
  • 1,169 Reviews
  • 850 Helpful
July 05, 2014
Rated 4.0

This is a 45,000-acre wilderness area in New Mexico, and it's a photographer's playground. The best time to visit is Spring or Fall. Definitely bring tons of water if you go in the summer.

3 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • Road Warrior
  • 35 Reviews
  • 10 Helpful
August 02, 2014
Rated 5.0

Beautiful place. Hiked around for an hour and even if you can't find the exact location, everything is worth seeing.

2 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • 1 Review
  • 1 Helpful
August 30, 2021
Rated 5.0

This place is out of this world. Finding it is easy with signage off the main road, but the gravel road to the parking lot is at least two miles and very rough for cars.
Stayed in Farmington and drove in before sunrise. Locals we asked the day before about it knew nothing of it so it was a little worry some that we were going to the right place until we got there.
Sunrise over the hoodoos was incredible.
The hike is almost entirely flat and very easy depending on how far you want to trek. there is little to no cell service, so make sure you have GPS that is satellite connected. There are bathroom facilities at the parking lot but it was as basic as basic could be. Bring a roll of toilet paper with you.
Definitely going back for a longer trek next time.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • Road Warrior
  • 35 Reviews
  • 10 Helpful
September 19, 2016
Rated 5.0

Make sure you have a GPS or some sort of map- you could end up walking/driving around for hours and not find it.
An INCREDIBLE place to stop and wander. There's a measly wire fence and then...wilderness. As far as the eye can see.
Other-worldy rock formations. Make sure if you visit in the summer to bring a lot of water.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • 137 Reviews
  • 27 Helpful
October 06, 2015
Rated 3.0

We went to the eastern end of the area, off CR 7150. Not particularly scenic, like the western end is, but still a very nice place for a hike in good weather.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by

  • 11 Reviews
  • 19 Helpful
September 30, 2014
Rated 5.0

About 45 minutes south of Farmington. We camped a couple miles off the highway on the side of a dirt road. I'm not sure if we were in the "park" or not, but we really enjoyed hiking around the interesting gullies and hills the next morning. Very, very quiet out here and really otherworldly. I would come back and make a day of it, but not during the summer. By 8:30 or 9 a.m. in early September it was getting a little toasty.

1 person found this review helpful

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Bisti Wilderness

NCM Road 7297
Farmington, New Mexico
87499 USA


Open now until 11:00 pm
  • Sun - Sat: 6:00 am - 11:00 pm

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  • Parking
  • Pets Allowed
  • Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Outdoor Seating
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Parking, Dining

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