The Oak Flat Group picnic site includes a combination of three different picnic sites and a trailhead, that border four communal playing fields suitable for all sorts of outdoor games. The site is paved and accessible. It is a great place for play, rest and recreation. The picnic sites are surrounded by ponderosa pine forest, mixed with oak, piaon, juniper, and plenty of yucca plants -- New Mexico's state flower. You can look at the day use map, to choose your reserved picnic site, by clicking on the tab above this overview. There is no overnight camping at this site.
The sheltered sites are replicas of the mid-1930s Civilian Conservation Corps design. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) has a rich history and lasting presence throughout the Sandias and Manzanitas. In their honor, we ask that you take extra care to leave no trace when you visit.
The Oak Flat Group picnic site features three picnic sites and a trailhead. The trailhead connects to an extensive trail system plus four big playing fields. -Oak Flat- Oak Picnic site is the largest of the three sites in the Oak Flat Picnic Loop. It has a huge paved area with enough tables and grills to handle 1 to 500 people. -Locust Picnic site has a shelter and can handle 1-125 people. -Yucca Picnic site has a shelter and can accommodate 1-60 people. -Oak Flat Trailhead is located past Locust picnic site, which is to your left when you enter the Oak, Yucca and Locust Group Picnic Site. Water and electricity, firewood/charcoal are not available at these sites. Accessible vault toilets and bear proof trash receptacles are provided. More about Bears and Food
The Sandia Ranger District is committed to the health and safety of recreational visitors and our staff. We are following the guidelines from our agency and the CDC regarding COVID-19, closely monitoring the situation, and responding to current conditions. Forest visitors are expected to comply with the current New Mexico Public Health Order for COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions. Please visit here to obtain the current public health order. We appreciate your understanding during this unprecedented time and hope you will continue to enjoy the Cibola National Forest and Grasslands.
Gate Lock Combination: The combination for the gate lock will be provided in your reservation confirmation email. Have questions? Call the Sandia Ranger District Office, Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at (505) 281-3304.
The Oak Flat Group picnic site is just that. It is 7,660 feet above sea level, and as flat as a pancake. The Oak Flat Trailhead leads to a trail system with a variance in elevation of 50-200 feet as the trails amble through the forest. You can find a link to the Manzanita Mountain Trail map in the Know Before You Go section.
The Manzanita trail system is second to none. See map links in Know Before You Go.
There are four large, shared playing fields perfect for outdoor activities. Want to hike? Oak Flat Trailhead leads into a widespread, multiuser trail system shared by mountain bikers, hikers, horseback riders and dirt bikes. The parking lot is small, but is able to accommodate small trailers for horses and motorcycles. However, we suggest horseback riders use the Pine Flat picnic site for trailering. It is located on State Hwy 337. The trail from Pine Flat connects to the Oak Flat site trail system, has larger trailering parking slots and is a shorter drive from I-40 and Historic Route 66/333. Pine Flat also has two reservation sites for picnicking.
If you stay into the evening, the stars will dazzle you. Once a month from May to September, the Albuquerque Astronomical Association has a STAR PARTY. You can find the link to info, in the Know Before You Go section.
For campground inquiries, please call: 505-281-3304
From Albuquerque: drive east on I-40 to Exit 175 toward Tijeras, NM. Drive south for 9 miles on State Road 337 (aka James McGrane Memorial Highway). Look for the brown Oak Flat - Cibola National Forest sign, on the east side of the road. Turn east onto Oak Flat Road and follow it for .39 miles until you reach the entrance on the left side of the road. Follow the directional signs at the entrance to your site.