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Northwest Flank

 

Page Type: Route

Location: New Mexico, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 35.61400°N / 107.167°W

Object Title: Northwest Flank

Route Type: Hike/Scramble

Time Required: Less than two hours

Difficulty: Walk-up

Route Quality: 
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Page By: Garon Coriz

Created/Edited: Aug 23, 2005 / Aug 23, 2005

Object ID: 166428

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Approach


Drive north on I-25 to Bernalillo from Albuquerque and take exit 242 onto US-550. Travel west through Bernalillo (1 mile), and northwest to San Ysidro (22 miles), and then an additional 19 miles to the turnoff to the villages of San Luis, Cabezon, and Torreon, which are on NM-279. It is a paved road for a couple miles past the village of San Luis and then becomes an equally wide dirt road around 8 miles from US-550. The main road takes a sharp turn to the left at a sign that warns you to slow down to 15 mph; another road you don’t want to take continues straight forward. After half a mile the road forks; stay right. Once you pass two fences, you should be on the north side of the peak. You can park off the road wherever you see fit, just keep away from the house and cemetery on the south side of the road (private land).

Route Description


From where you park on the road, head straight towards the peak. A 10-15 foot series of ravines may cut across your path after half a mile depending on how close you parked to the last fence that crossed the road. If you encounter it, search for ways down and walk up the stream bed to find a way out. If there is a possibility of rain in the area, find the way down and up before committing yourself to the crossing. A barbed wire fence marking the border between private and public land runs east-west on the other side of the arroyo (ditch). Go through the fence by spreading two of the wires so people can pass through. Continue to the northwest flank of the butte and walk up the first 60 foot tall ridge radiating from the peak. Hike along the ridge up to another fence, which you must get to the west of. Follow the fence up to the scree slope that borders the hard rock portion of the butte all along the west side. Walk south on the rocks for 50 feet or so and then start the scramble up to the main ridge. Beware of where you put you hands and feet because rattlesnakes and cacti are common on the volcanic buttes in the area. Once on top of the main ridge, which is thin and made of loose rock in parts, go north to the summit.

Essential Gear


Basic hiking gear is good enough for this peak. You might want to bring gloves because hands may be placed into cacti. Also, since a lot of the rocks are loose and can be kicked off, climbing helmets may be a good idea.

Miscellaneous Info


If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.