This article may contain affiliate links where we earn a commission from qualifying purchases.
Hang gliding in the Western United States is one of the best experiences you’ll ever have. Here are the best locations to go hang gliding in New Mexico.
Going out west to take advantage of the amazing sites, breathtaking views, and incredible weather is a dream for many. And even though I might be a little bit biased here, I think it’s even better to take advantage of all of this from the skies. That’s why I think New Mexico is one of the best states in the country to go hang gliding. But where in the state should you go?
The best places to go hang gliding in New Mexico are High Desert Hang Gliding (Albuquerque), Sandia Crest (Albuquerque), Up Over New Mexico (Albuquerque), La Bajada Ridge (Santa Fe), Crossroads Windsports (Hobbs), Dry Canyon (Alamogordo), La Luz (Alamogordo), La Jara Ridge, and Farleys Ridge.
Looking for a great place to go hang gliding in New Mexico? Look no further! In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best places to go hang gliding in the state. Each location offers amazing views and a unique experience. The weather is good year-round, so you can always find a time to go hang gliding. And if you're looking for something else to do nearby, don't worry! We'll also talk about some of the other great things that each location has to offer. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your next hang gliding adventure today!
Our main goal here at Flight Notch is to provide you with the best hang gliding content that you’ll find on the web. To ensure that these really are the best places to go gliding in New Mexico, we took our own personal favorites and combined them with input from other gliding enthusiasts that frequent the state.
Is New Mexico A Good Place To Go Hang Gliding?
As one of the warm, dry, and sunny western states here in the US, New Mexico is without a doubt one of the best places to go hang gliding. The best gliding weather is warm, dry, low chance of storms, and a bit of wind here and there. New Mexico checks off all of those boxes making its weather almost perfect for hang gliding at just about any time during the year. That said, the summer can get a little too hot on occasion!
To go along with the amazing weather, New Mexico also has some of the best views from the air that you’ll find anywhere in the country. You’ll get a variety of landscapes to see from high above, including red rocks, desert sand, mountains, grass, hills, and more. If you’re looking for great weather and beautiful landscapes, then New Mexico should be at the top of your list.
Best Places To Go Hang Gliding In New Mexico
Now that you know that New Mexico is undoubtedly a great place to go hang gliding, let’s dive into the details so you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. We’ll look at companies that offer lessons and tandem gliding as well as some launch areas that you can take on by yourself. These are the best locations to go hang gliding in New Mexico.
High Desert Hang Gliding — Albuquerque
Let's start off in one of the state's biggest cities: Albuquerque. High Desert Hang Gliding is located right in the heart of the city, making it the perfect place to go hang gliding for beginners or first-time visitors. This company offers tandem flights, so you can experience the thrill of hang gliding with a friend.
The views from up high are simply amazing, and you'll see everything from the Sandia Mountains to downtown Albuquerque. The weather is great year-round, especially in the spring and fall when it's warm but not too hot. However, be warned that it can get a bit windy and chilly during the winter.
Albuquerque is also home to a ton of other activities and attractions. There's plenty of great food to try, interesting museums to explore, and beautiful parks to relax in. So, if you're looking for a great place to go hang gliding in New Mexico, be sure to check out Albuquerque!
Sandia Crest — Albuquerque
Located in the Sandia Mountains east of Albuquerque, Sandia Crest is one of the best places to hang glide in New Mexico. The views from Sandia Crest are amazing, with a panoramic view of Albuquerque and the Rio Grande Valley. The launch site is at an elevation of about 10000 feet, so the views are instantly breathtaking.
During the spring and fall, you can expect temperatures in the mid-70s with moderate winds. In the summer, temperatures can reach the upper 90s at times (if not even hotter), but the winds are much lighter. In the winter, temperatures can drop below freezing, but the winds are much stronger.
There are a few things to do nearby if you're not into hang gliding. There's a restaurant and gift shop at the top of the mountain, and there are also hiking trails if you want to explore the area. Sandia Crest is also close to other popular tourist destinations like Santa Fe and Bandelier National Monument.
Up Over New Mexico — Albuquerque
Next up on our list of the best places to go hang gliding in New Mexico is the company called Up Over New Mexico. Located in the heart of Albuquerque, this company takes advantage of the incredible views that can be seen from the Sandia Mountains (such as the Sandia Crest you just read about!). With a backdrop of the cityscape and Rio Grande River Valley, hang gliding with Up Over New Mexico is definitely an experience you'll never forget.
The average weather in Albuquerque from spring to summer is usually quite nice, with temperatures hovering around the mid-80s. However, fall and winter can get a little bit chillier with temperatures averaging in the 50s. Regardless of when you go, make sure to bring plenty of sunscreen!
As for other things to do in the area, Albuquerque has plenty to offer. From the Petroglyph National Monument to the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, there's definitely no shortage of activities.
La Bajada Ridge — Santa Fe
Let's move away from Albuquerque and into the state's capital, Santa Fe. La Bajada Ridge is one of the best hang gliding spots in New Mexico for many reasons. First and foremost are the views. La Bajada offers pilots a view of the entire city of Santa Fe, as well as the Sangre de Cristo mountain range in the background.
The weather is also great here for hang gliding, with spring and summer temperatures averaging in the 70s and 80s. In fall and winter, temperatures are still mild with averages in the 50s and 60s.
Another big plus for La Bajada Ridge is its location. Santa Fe is a popular tourist destination, with plenty to do both in and around the city. The ridge is also close to other great hang gliding spots like Glorieta Mesa and Pecos Baldy.
Crossroads Windsports — Hobbs
This is the third and final company that made a spot on our list, so you know you can't go wrong if you go gliding with Crossroads Windsports. Located in Hobbs, this company has some of the most beautiful views you'll ever see. You can see the Chihuahuan Desert and the Rocky Mountains in all their glory, and it's definitely worth a trip to go hang gliding with Crossroads Windsports.
The weather is great here most of the year with mild spring and summer temperatures and fall and winter temperatures that aren't too bad either. If I were you, I would try to come in the spring, but that's the same for just about any trip to New Mexico!
There are a few things to do in the Hobbs area if you want to make a day of it, but the main attraction is definitely the hang gliding. But when you get done gliding, you can visit the Lea County Cowboy Museum, wander around the Desert Lakes Golf Course, or see the Blackwater Draw National Monument.
Dry Canyon — Alamogordo
Next up is one of the top launch sites in Alamogordo, Dry Canyon. The views from the top of the canyon are simply amazing, with the Organ Mountains in the distance. As soon as you take off, you'll be treated to a beautiful view of the valley below. There's also plenty to see while in flight, including the Sacramento Mountains and White Sands National Monument.
Like most of the other locations on this list, the best time of year to visit Dry Canyon for hang gliding is in the spring and summer. The weather is usually mild and sunny, with very little wind. However, it's worth noting that the site can get quite windy in the fall and winter.
If you're looking for something to do while in the area, be sure to check out the White Sands National Monument. It's only a few miles down the road and is definitely worth a visit. You can also check out some of the other great sites in the area, including the Holloman Air Force Base and the White Sands Missile Range.
La Luz — Alamogordo
Sticking in the same area as Dry Canyon, the other launch site you should check out while you're there is La Luz. Located just outside of Alamogordo, this is an easily accessible launch site with plenty of space to take off and land. The views from La Luz are pretty great, as you get to see the Organ Mountains and the Tularosa Basin.
The weather is usually good here in the spring and summer, but it can get a bit windier in fall and winter. During spring and summer, you can expect temperatures in the mid-80s, while it can get down to the 30s in fall and winter.
There aren't a lot of things to do nearby that we didn't mention in the section above, but you can always check out Alamogordo for some food or shopping. And if you start here, you can always stop by Dry Canyon for some more hang gliding!
La Jara Ridge — Grants
We had La Bajada Ridge above in the Santa Fe area, but now we're going to head to Grants for another incredible ridge to launch from. La Jara Ridge is a bit more remote than La Bajada, but it makes up for it with some of the most beautiful views in the state. The Sangre de Cristo Mountains tower above you while you're hang gliding, and on a clear day, you can see all the way to Colorado.
If you come during the summer, expect it to be pretty hot, with temperatures often creeping up into the 90s. The good news is that the wind usually dies down a bit in the afternoon, so it's a great time to fly. The fall and winter months are much cooler, with temperatures in the 50s and 60s and winds that usually stick around all day.
When you get done gliding for the day, there's plenty to do in the area. The Grants area is home to a number of Native American pueblos, including Acoma Pueblo, the oldest continuously inhabited settlement in the United States. You can also visit Bandelier National Monument or take a trip to nearby Santa Fe.
Farleys Ridge — Grants
While you're in the Grants area, consider checking out the other stunning ridge nearby: Farleys Ridge. The views from up here are simply unbeatable, and on a good day, you can see all the way to Arizona!
The weather is great pretty much year-round, with temperatures in the 80s and 90s in the spring and summer and 50s and 60s in the fall and winter. The wind is usually pretty consistent, making it a great place to fly all day (and all year) long.
We already went over some of the great things to do in Grants just above, so I won't force you to read the same stuff over again. But of course, the best thing to do in the area is to launch from both ridges and take it all in from high in the sky!