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West Slope

 
West Slope

Page Type: Route

Location: New Mexico, United States, North America

Object Title: West Slope

Route Type: Hiking, Bouldering, Scrambling

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Time Required: Less than two hours

Difficulty: Class 1/Summit boulder is Class 3

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes
 

 

Page By: davebobk47

Created/Edited: Feb 4, 2009 / Feb 5, 2009

Object ID: 486453

Hits: 642 

Page Score: 72.08%  - 2 Votes 

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Facts

Distance - 1.5 miles (one-way)
Trailhead Elevation - 6000'
Summit Elevation - 6860'
Gain - 900'

Approach

See the "Getting There" section on the Point 6860 main page.

Route Description

 
Parking Area
Parking area and South Sandia Peak
 
Parking Area
Road and Saddle

From the parking area go past the gate on the main trail but make a hard right turn down to a dry creekbed. Follow this trail for a short distance to where it will come to an opening in a fence. Go through the opening onto the dirt road. This is the road that will take you all the way to the saddle between the summit and the northern sub-peak. While hiking up the road you will come to the first group of large boulders 0.6 miles into the hike. Be careful, there is a lot of broken glass here from people smashing beer bottles. Head up a short sandy hill on the south side of the boulders and back down onto the road. Up to this point the hike has been very flat but now the road will start to climb up a gentle hill while turning north. The gentle hill will flatten out and there will be great views of the southern Sandia Mountains directly in front of you with another group of large boulders on your left. The road here turns right towards the saddle but the hill gets steeper and the road becomes much more rough here. Just before the saddle the road runs out and becomes a well defined path through some large boulders to the true saddle.  
Steep Hill
Leaving the saddle
Once at the saddle the trail goes downhill on the other side of the saddle but a different trail turns right (south) up towards the summit. Head uphill on a steep but well defined path. After the short steep hill the trail will wind and swithback a few times to the west slope of the mountain. At 1.4 miles into the hike the trail will come to a T with both ways being equally well traveled. 
Summit Boulders
Summit boulders
Take the right fork as the trail to the left ends shortly and requires some bushwhacking through a cacti filled slope to get to the summit. After turning right there will be one more trail intersection that comes from down the hill. This is a variation that is very steep and filled with loose rock - not a fun hike! Continue on the main trail uphill until it starts to flatten out on an open summit area. There are some boulders with blue graffiti in the middle of the flat area off the right side of the trail; this is the true summit. This is a fun class three scramble with many different ways to do it.

Essential Gear

Typical Gear for a short hike.

Images

Point 6860 SummitParking AreaSteep HillSummit BouldersSaddle