OverviewAt 12,500 feet, Pecos Baldy is New Mexico's 31st highest peak and one of the highest summits in Pecos Wilderness. It is located 0.8 miles southwest of its slightly higher parent peak, East Pecos Baldy. Though Pecos Baldy is soft ranked, only rising 280 feet above its highest saddle, its stature is never in question. When viewed from south or north, Pecos Baldy appears larger and higher than East Pecos Baldy.
Route InformationThere is no direct trail access to the summit, but it can be reached either by ridge traverse from East Pecos Baldy or by ascending southern slopes from Skyline Trail (Trail #251).
Ridge Traverse from East Pecos Baldy:
Total Distance from Jacks Creek TH: 15 mi RT
Elevation Gain: 4,200 feet RT
The traverse from East Pecos Baldy provides the most expedient way to climb Pecos Baldy. The approach route and trailhead information for East Pecos Baldy can be found here.
The entire length of the connecting ridge between East Pecos Baldy and Pecos Baldy is 0.8 miles (1.6 mi/RT) with roughly 400 feet of elevation gain (800 feet/RT). The initial section of the ridge going over the summit of UN 12,380 is easy walking (Class 1), while the rest of the traverse is Class 2. There is a couple of rocky more exposed sections roughly half-way between UN 12,380 and Pecos Baldy summit, but they can be easily bypassed by traversing below on the south side of the ridge.
Red TapeThe summit of Pecos Baldy and access routes are located in Pecos Wilderness. Wilderness regulations apply. No permits are required for both day-hikes and overnight backpack trips. Camping is not permitted in the Pecos Baldy Lake basin. For more information, contact Santa Fe National Forest (505-438-5300)
When to ClimbMid-June through October is considered the best time to climb. July-August are the typical monsoon season, with regular afternoon thunderstorms. Plan your day accordingly to be off the exposed slopes and ridges and below the treeline before noon. Winter/early spring ascents are possible, but the long approach makes it a VERY long day or requires an overnight backpack. Bring your snowshoes or skis and be aware of current avalanche conditions.
Miscellaneous InfoPecos Wilderness map (published by the US Forest Service)
USGS Map Quads: Cowles and Truchas Peak
Santa Fe National Forest webpage
Pecos Wilderness webpage