Jul 5, 2016 at 10:48 am #3412376
I have been stuck behind my desk for months. If I don’t get out soon Ill loose my marbles. Even a couple of days would be fantastic
I have a brief window from July 28 to August 1. Southwest has a cheap flight that will allow me to hit the ground in Albuquerque at 9 AM on Thursday . And fly out Monday morning at 5 AM what’s forget me back to my desk perhaps an hour late (smelling quite nice I’m sure!)
That gives me about two and a half days 2 night hiking somewhere within driving range of Albuquerque.
Given the heat and the short schedule, does anyone have any suggestions of about 10 miles a day––that’s worth this mad dash?Jul 5, 2016 at 11:02 am #3412380
There is tons not far from ABQ. A few suggestions:
- San Pedro Parks Wilderness: seriously the wettest place in NM. Altho it’s high elevation, the actual elevation gain isn’t much. You can hit part of the CDT there on a nice loop.
- Pecos Wilderness
- Santa Fe NF — there are tons of trails, you can easily put together a route to suit your schedule. Nice lakes up there
Check out the NM Backpacking group on MeetUp for some trip ideas — http://www.meetup.com/newmexicobackpackers/
Factor in acclimatizing to elevation in your plans.Jul 5, 2016 at 11:19 am #3412386
Help! Too much good stuff on the menu! Any specific suggestions? (pick one or two of your favorite)
I was thinking of a half day the first day (4 to 7 miles) as we are quite fit but could take it easy if altitude is an issue. 10 miles for the next two days.Jul 5, 2016 at 11:55 am #3412398
San Pedro Parks Wilderness is one of my favorites. Partly because it lacks the steep elevation gain of so many other NM hikes (sometimes a gal just gets tired of slogging UP) and it’s just gorgeous (there’s a reason there’s “Parks” in the name). Plenty of water — no need to carry more than a liter or so at a time. Lots of places to set up camp. Nice temps, wildflowers. Downsides are some marshy areas, even into July/Aug. It can rain — we’re not talking just monsoonal rains, but actual rain lasting hours (although, to be fair, I have a tendency to attract rain on backpacking trips, so that just might be me!). There are free range cattle who will give you the hairy eyeball (I’m pretty comfortable with livestock but bushwacked around large herds a couple of times). The cattle can make the marshy areas way worse by trampling & pooping. Last year I was there the weekend of July 18th & it was still marshy and churned up by the cattle. If you like to fish, bring your rod — there are at least a couple different kinds of trout and not many people fishing once you get a couple of miles from the trailhead. Good chances of seeing elk there (although my luck has been abysmal, limited to tracks & scat).
I have not backpacked in the Pecos Wilderness yet, but it’s great from what I hear. I’m headed there next month.
Also have not backpacked in Santa Fe NF, but have done some dayhiking there. It’s lovely, lots of shade, many of the trails have water access and you can link together some nice trails to alpine lakes. Trails are a bit more crowded than San Pedro Parks Wilderness but most are not bad, even on summer weekends.Jul 5, 2016 at 12:17 pm #3412405
Some photos from last July in San Pedro Parks:Jul 5, 2016 at 12:31 pm #3412409
San Pedro Parks would be easy to do a 4-7 mile first day, followed by a couple of 10-ish days. About 4 miles in from the San Gregorio Reservoir TH is a nice campsite.
From there you can continue north & pick up a short section of the CDT, loop around, coming back south.
Here’s an 18-mile route I mapped out with the campsite marked — you could easily make it longer by incorporating some of the other trails:Jul 5, 2016 at 1:07 pm #3412422
Yup. That will work. Thanks!Jul 5, 2016 at 2:28 pm #3412442Nick GatelBPL Member
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
Here’s what I did a few years ago under similar circumstances. However, it was during the week, not the weekend, and I didn’t see many other people.Jul 5, 2016 at 2:50 pm #3412446
Nice write-up, Nick!
There are some folks who like to do the Sandia Crest Trail as a marathon day hike (it’s about 26 miles) — not recommended during monsoon season for obvious reasons. ;-)Jul 5, 2016 at 10:04 pm #3412540Nick GatelBPL Member
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
Thanks, Mercedes! It, like many of my trips, was pretty much unplanned. Best way to hike IMO.Jul 6, 2016 at 6:32 am #3412581
Unplanned can be a lot of fun — you end up places you might never have. I also like planning, though — especially if life is stressful & I haven’t gotten out much. A lot of the research on happiness points to anticipation as a key component of enriched, fuller happiness experiences — for me, planning enhances anticipation.Jul 8, 2016 at 4:17 pm #3413175
Finally got a trails illustrated topo map of Pecos. (Side question: anybody found an online map source thats worth a damn?)
Looks like we will do Jacks Creek to Trucha’s and make a loop back on Beatty’s Trail. Or whatever along the way strikes our fancy.
Pecos Ranger Station says nothing is burning, no know nut jobs with guns and the streams are flowing nicely.
High country weather. I assume 6 degrees F per 1000 feet above Rociada, NM?Trailfinders Wall — Hike the high side or low side?Jul 10, 2016 at 7:48 am #3413403
Bugs shouldn’t be an issue — they generally aren’t in NM.
Weather is quite variable here, especially during monsoon season. A thunderstorm can drop the temp down significantly, especially at elevation. If you’re hiking in full sun or even partial sun it can be very hot, even if temps are in the 60s. Lows really depend on what elevation you’ll be camping at but it’s not unusual for temps to drop into the 30s above 10k ft. in the summer.
Umbrellas rock here…if you have one, bring it. :-)Jul 10, 2016 at 12:06 pm #3413452John S.BPL Member
Starting July 27, 2014, three of us hiked there, similar route. Jack’s Creek to Pecos Baldy Lake campsite, then to Truchas Peaks area campsite, along Santa Barbara Divide down trail 24 to Hamilton Mesa campsite, out.Jul 13, 2016 at 3:40 pm #3414048
Thanks John. Looks like we are going to be following in your foots steps for the first day and a half. (Oddly String on July 27 also). Do you recall if you walked the high(251) or low(257) side of Trailriders WallAug 3, 2016 at 3:36 pm #3418109
Just a quick follow-up. Thanks everyone for your input we had a fantastic trip. We started it at jacks Creek and I hiked up to Truches Peak. The view off the top of trail riders wall was something very special. I’ll post a follow-up trip report with the exact details in the next few days in case anyone is interested.Aug 4, 2016 at 11:15 am #3418251
Sounds awesome, John — glad you had such a great trip!! I look forward to your trip report.
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