Monday, May 14, 2012

Mimbres Lake, Aldo Leopold Wilderness,Gila NF

 We did the Mimbres Lake hike from Laurence Parent's Hiking New Mexico a few years back. We timed it perfectly for the fall aspen display on Mcknight Mountain. It was a our first time driving all the way to the crest on the legendarily awful Mcknight Road ( FS 152). It took close to an hour to drive the last 10 or so miles. In retrospect it probably isn't the best idea for  a dayhike, unless perhaps you live a little closer than Las Cruces. Even then it's pretty iffy proposition.The hike was definitely less exhausting than the drive, although it had a few steep spots especially where it follows the old fire road. It also had some very inconvenient downfall. There are some of the largest douglas firs and aspens to be seen in the whole Gila just before the trail descends to the lake. I wish I'd been more of photo junky back then because I can't find a single shot of these massive trees anywhere in the archives. Hopefully I'll make it back someday. The lake was more of mud puddle on our trip (which may be another good reason to return as well) but the aspens around it were beautiful- a truly perfect spot to camp on a backpack. I peaked down the North Seco trail(FT 110) which intersects the Crest Trail(FT 79 the trail we were using) here. It look very dark,wild and a bit forbidding. I could feel the  Crest Trail calling northward but alas, we had to leave and have our bones rattled on the return to pavement and civilization. Update( June, 2013): the  trail condition and scenery as described here may be vastly altered by the Silver Fire

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