Ascent of Lake Peak on 2010-08-08

Climber: Richard Oestreicher

Date:Sunday, August 8, 2010
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Lake Peak
    Location:USA-New Mexico
    Elevation:12409 ft / 3782 m

Ascent Trip Report

Since this is a relatively short route (3.2 miles one way according to Bob D’ Antonio’s Santa Fe Taos Hiking Guide) and 2200 feet net elevation gain, I expected a relatively easy ascent. It turned out to be a bit more than I expected for two reasons: the trail goes down and back up three saddles adding several hundred feet to the total elevation gain; and the last 1/3 of a mile from the top of nearby Deception Peak cuts across a knife edge ridge line with some tricky climbing.

I left the Santa Fe ski basin on the Windsor Trail. At the Wilderness Boundary (about half a mile or a little more) I turned right and followed an unnamed trail that hugs the wilderness fence line for about ¾ of a mile until you reach a stunning overlook. From there I followed the ridge up to Deception Peak. Total time from trail head to Deception Peak about two hours. However, the last 1/3 of a mile to the top of Lake Peak took me another half an hour. After a slight descent, the trail appears to head right over the top of the knife-edge. That’s the tricky part. On the way back I discovered a trail that hugs the ridge just below the ridge line (on the south side) and was easier. I recommend that. Great views in all directions from the top! This was my birthday present to myself. I’ll be 63 tomorrow.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:189 ft / 57 m
    Distance:7 mi / 11.3 km
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Scramble, Rock Climb
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:139 ft / 42 m
    Extra Loss:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:3.5 mi / 5.6 km
    Trailhead:12320 ft / 3755 m
    Time Up:2 Hours 35 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Extra Gain:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:3.5 mi / 5.6 km
    Time Down:1 Hours 45 Minutes

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