3.0 miles (one-way)
Trailhead Elevation -
Summit Elevation -
See the "Getting There" section on the Point 7860 main page.
From the TH begin by heading due east up the main trail, following the orange "U-mound access" signs. This trail will follow a few switchbacks up the south side of U-Mound.
A view of the frozen waterfall in winter.
Once you reach the top of the switchbacks there will be a number of trails. Follow the trail due east away from u-mound, towards the waterfall.
Another view of the waterfall when dry.
Staying on this trail you will be on the south side of the waterfall. Shortly before you reach the base of the waterfall the trail will start climbing rapidly uphill (You may also choose to climb directly up the waterfall itself if the rock is dry. This is an easy, straightforward Class 3 climb - very fun). Once you reach the top there will be a short steep downhill. At this point the top of the waterfall is about 10 meters to your left (west) but you will want to turn right and continue heading east up the sandy creekbed. After about 0.1 miles there will be a main trail that turns left (north) out of the creekbed.
There appears to be an old campsite with a fire ring here. Just past this, the main trail turns sharply back west, there is a carin here as this turn can be missed if you are not paying attention.
At this point the trail is very well defined and easy to follow. After some climbing you will reach an intersection. Here you will turn right (east). Later the trail will split but you may take either way since they meet up less then 0.25 miles up the trail. Shortly after the trails meet the trail will level out in a large meadow. From here if you look east you will see a saddle with a single tree in the middle. This is your target and the trail will take you directly to it. Once you reach the saddle the trail comes to a T.
The trail splits... The upper meadow below the saddle
Pt 7420 and Boulder Ridge saddle Rock slabs Boulder Ridge
Going right (South) will take you up to Point 7420
(an excellent trip if you enjoy Class 3 and 4 scrambling), going left (North) will take you up a ridge. Follow this trail as it switchbacks up the ridge to the top where there are many large boulders and interesting rock formations. The trail is easy to see but in a few areas you will come to some low angle granite slabs. Walk up these slabs and you will see the trail continue on the other side.
Once you come to the top of the ridge if you look east you will see the ridge summit of Point 7860. The trail gets a little more faint but there are carins to follow. The trail will start to decsend off the ridge. Once you are in a small grassy field there will be a carin and a very faint trail turning sharply right (east). This intersecion is located at 35.08642 N 106.45963 W
. Follow the faint trail segments and you will start to head uphill again. After following the trail segments you will need to begin drifting to the climber's right. Go between two boulders (pictured below, labeled "The Squeeze"). Shortly after the squeeze you will come to a small rock wall. Take a big step up onto a rock ramp and follow that. From here you should be able to see the summit boulder and head straight for it.
Leaving the Ridge Trail Ramp
The Squeeze Point 7860 summit
From the top of the ramp head for the east side of the summit boulder. There is a smaller boulder you can step up onto that allows for an easy move onto the highest boulder. The summit area is rather flat but offers some nice views of South Sandia Peak and the southern Sandias and northern Manzanos.
Typical gear for a short hike. A GPS would be very helpful for the last portion of the hike. The summit coordinates and the turn-off for the final segment coordinates are given.