Ascent of Peak 11055 on 2012-08-18

Climber: Phil Robinson

Others in Party:Just me
Date:Saturday, August 18, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Peak 11055
    Location:USA-New Mexico
    Elevation:11055 ft / 3369 m

Ascent Trip Report

It seems like I spend more time driving to peaks than hiking them. Rather than going by way of Santa Fe, which I usually do, I headed east on I-40, past Clines Corners, then north to I-25 then to Las Vegas, NM. I left the house at 5:00 AM, Saturday August 18, 2012. I didn’t have anyone that could go with me and didn’t take my dog on this trip. In Las Vegas I headed on Highway 518 NNE about 45 minutes to Road 121. I followed that paved road directly north for 8.5 miles until the pavement ended. The best way to get to the peak is to turn right. I did, and hunted for 45 minutes trying to find a way to get there, and all I got was closed gates. The gates did not have any signs on them. I thought I might not be able to hike the peak today and went back to where the paved road ended and decided that if I could get close enough to the peak, I would hike over a ridge to get there. This time I took a left where the paved road ended and went up the road 5.5 miles. The dirt road was good at first but later it turned into a very tough 4WD excursion. I had the peak marked on my GPS and I kept watching the numbers drop. I wanted to get to within 2 or 3 miles as the crow flies, 4 would be too much for today. You have to add about 50% for the twists and turns and 4 as the crow flies one way would have been about 12 miles round trip. The GPS kept dropping to 3.1 then it increased. I decided to try it, knowing it would be around 9 miles round trip. I parked the SUV at a beautiful meadow. The starting elevation was 9,250 and I started hiking at 8:45. I always carry about 12 to 15 pounds just to stay in shape. I have lots of emergency equipment just in case. I headed down a few hundred yards to a little stream and then started to plow up a thick forest with many fallen trees. I looked at the GPS and thought, “Oh know!” At first it looked like I was going to be bushwhacking all day and going up and down many ridges. I did not study this direction on the map earlier because I did not plan on going this way. I thought about going back and trying it another day, another way. I decided to climb to the top of the ridge and see if there was an easier way. Looking a little closer, it looked like I could skirt all the ups and downs. I made the ridge after an elevation gain of 775 feet and headed down through the thick forest and all of the sudden I saw beautiful flower filled meadows that extended all the way to the base of the mountain. It was a beautiful walk through the meadows. I crossed 2 little streams and headed down to a lower elevation than I had started. The GPS said 1 mile as the crow flies and I had to climb upward 1865 feet in elevation to the top, a ratio of 3.5 feet forward to 1 foot up and much steeper towards the end. It was a tough climb through thick forest and fallen logs. I arrived at the top after hiking 4.4 miles in 2 hours and 45 minutes. I really enjoy 12K peaks! All 66 of them have majestic views except one. The top of Peak 11,055 does not have a “WOW!” moment. It is in thick trees and while there were many beautiful views hiking, there were no views on the top. I stopped for 5 minutes. This was the only stop of the hike. I drank some water and ate an energy bar then started down. It was a hard downhill hike. Finally, I reached beautiful green flower filled meadows. From there it is a gradual hike uphill to the ridge, gaining about 800 feet in elevation. About a mile and a half from the SUV it started to really rain and then it began to hail. I put on my rain poncho. The ground turned white with hail. I made the ridge and decided to really slow it down on the steep, slick logged decent. I made the bottom, followed a little stream until the meadow and then back to the SUV. My total hike was 8.9 miles and I made it in 6 hours. I had a total elevation gain, with the ups and downs, of 3520 feet. I was the only one on the mountain. I never saw another person while hiking. I headed back home. The road had lots of holes covered with water. Watch out! One of the holes is very deep and made my SUV really sink, but I made it out okay. Going by way of Las Vegas seems to save a lot of time and looks like a better way for me to come to hike peaks in this area. I made it back in only 3 hours. If I had come through Santa Fe it would have taken 4.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3520 ft / 1071 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1715 ft / 521 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8.9 mi / 14.3 km
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2700 ft / 822 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 1805 ft / 550 m; Extra: 895 ft / 272m
    Loss on way in:895 ft / 272 m
    Distance:4.4 mi / 7.1 km
    Route:Hiked from a road to the west 4.5 miles away
    Start Trailhead:9250 ft / 2819 m
    Time:2 Hours 45 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:820 ft / 249 m
    Gain on way out:820 ft / 249 m
    Distance:4.5 mi / 7.2 km
    Time:3 Hours 15 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Phil Robinson
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Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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