West of Red River and east Questa, the Columbine Creek Trail is an eight mile one-way route up the steep and rocky route along the namesake stream in surprisingly lush deciduous forest. The route begins at 8,000 feet and climbs through pine and aspen forests on the way to 11,200. About a mile from the trailhead, the route also interests with the Columbine-Twinning National Recreation Trail.
The cross country ski trailhead is on the south side of NFS Columbine Campground. The campground is located 8 miles west of Questa on the south side of SR38.
Overall, Columbine Creek Trail is the 5th most popular cross country ski area of all 12 Nordic ski destinations in New Mexico.