Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Pinkley Peak

The last week has been about hiking. Monday Brian, Sardius and I hiked the Bull Pasture/Estes Canyon Trail. Sardius is a seasonal ranger and he is writing a trail guide book. Here are Sardius and I at an overlook with Mexico in the background.
Most of the wildflowers are past their prime and the heat is making them wither, but the cactus are just starting to bloom. A pretty hedgehog.
We completed the 4 mile loop and I wanted to continue on, so we ventured off the trail and down a large wash. The wash has a quick vertical drop and we reached a point where we could not continue down.
Instead of going back up the wash we went up the very steep side, shorter and a little hairy.
The hike was good, but it was just a warmup for Thursday's adventure. Pinkley Peak is named for the monument's first Superintendent, Frank Pinkley. This peak is climbed by no more than 10 people a year. There is no trail and it is all find your own way. The peak is about 3,200' and we started at 1,700'. The route we took was up through the wash on the left and up the back side.
Looking back down the wash and scrambling up the scree is Jim.

 We made it to the top and enjoyed the fabulous views.

Going down was tricky, it was sliding down on loose rock much of the way. But we did it and we felt good for our accomplishment. Maybe Sardius will include this hike in the trail guide.
On Saturday a Gila Monster was reported to be snooping around the administration building. It is rare to see one of these famous and poisonous lizards, so we all converged with cameras in hand. I'll leave you with two photos of the mad fellow.


  1. Wow that was one SERIOUS hike. Amazing that you all are now one of 10 a year who do it.

    What happened to the monster??


  2. Great hikes and congrats for making it to the top of Pinkley Peak!!

    Never saw a Gila Monster before...Thanks!!