Thursday, August 2, 2012

Hillsboro Peak, Gila National Forest

 Our first hike in the  Black Range was along the Hillsboro Peak trail(FT 79).  We had driven through the range on an earlier vacation on winding,but very scenic NM152.  When we moved here it was our first destination for some forest hiking. That first time we ended up stopping after a couple of  miles on a late summer day due to us not getting the earliest of starts, but we would get back soon enough. I remember being delighted  and surprised that there were aspens along the trail here. In my mind they belonged to more northerly climes. I think we've gone all the way to the top three times,but we've used the trail for a hike to Hillsboro Lake(see earlier blog entry) as well. One variation we've tried was to return  from the summit on the Hillsboro Peak bypass trail(FT 412). This makes for a longer hike, and there is one sketchy section barely notched into the  side of steep,open hill,but it's hard for me to do the exact same hike too many times. I don't know if they still leave the lookout open,but it's great fun for map junkie like me to go up there have that bird's eye view of all the places I've studied over. It's like Google Earth, but real. This hike, Sawyer's Peak, and the Mimbres River  usually end up in the various New Mexico hiking guides, so we've seen a few people  out on the trail on weekends, but it's not crowded by any means. I encountered more people on a weekday hike to Nambe Lake near Santa Fe than  probably all my hikes to Hillsboro Peak put together. IMPORTANT UPDATE: This area has been burned by the Silver Fire(June,2013).


Eric and Noelle Grunwald said...

Very interesting blog. Thanks for some ideas for some adventures in the Cruces area.

devon said...

I haven't gotten half of things to do around here onto the blog yet.There will be more posts about the Organ and Dona Ana Mountains coming in the cooler months,plus more about the Gila and San Mateos coming soon. If you need any info that's not in the blog feel free to ask questions through the comment box.