A simple cross country effort of less than a thousand feet from a logging road at the 6000 foot level of the mountain on the east side. Sorting out the road system is the biggest challenge of getting close to the cross country route I took but there is no trail system and you could most likely access the peak from any direction. A good map and compass technique is helpful but even more helpful was using pre set coordinates in my GPS.
It is very helpful to GPS where you park your vehicle but lacking a GPS you could use surveyors ribbon to mark your way up and aid you back to your vehicle. Just remember to pick up your flagging ribbons on the way back down.
See the main page for information up to the point where you turn onto road 46. FR 4680 was blocked the day I went up Hamner Butte so I have listed the way I went. FR4680 will be shown as an alternate route a bit further on in this section. For the way I went, drive to FR 4674
) and turn right. Go to this junction (topozone
)and take a left and go to this point (topozone
) and stay easterly to this point (topozone
) until you find this junction FR 350
elevation 5930 and turn right. In about a mile you'll reach a switchback at this location
and turn hard left (elev 6100) and go up to a T junction
and turn right. This should be FR 050
. You could actually park here and start working your way up cross country but I found it easier to go to the right to where I indicated in the section below where I parked my vehicle. The roads up to this point were all good but I did make some wrong turns on the way up and had to back track. However, I did eventually find my way to a great spot that worked well for me. Make copies of the topozone maps as this was fairly decent in helping me sort out these roads. The area is crisscrossed with logging roads so it is important to do your homework (mapwork) before you go. Some roads were signed, others were not and this could change so a "feel" for where you are going is important. I found my way "by guess and by golly" without a road description and I'm sure you could too. Still, the most traveled roads are pretty obvious. If a sign is now missing, you will have to sort these roads out but keep trying to go up and stay to the east side towards the end.
Alternate route: Probably easier than my offering. Go north on highway 46 about a mile after you turn from county road 61, the Crescent Cutoff Road, and watch for FR 4680
. Turn right and drive to this junction (see topozone
)and stay left. I don't know the road number so it is important that you pre set GPS coordinates to aid you on this route. Continue to this junction (topozone)
and go left again. Then a right (topozone
follow this to a junction and turn right again (topozone
Good so far. Now go to this next junction (topozone
and go right and you are almost there. This should be FR 350 and follow it to this junction with FR 050 (topozone
)and turn right to get close to where I parked my vehicle in the route description above. Whew. You get a special prize if you followed all of the above and didn't end up in Gallup New Mexico.
OK Dennis, I know you have a better way to describe the route you went then what I just put up.
I'll be putting the above sections information in after I do this portion.
I parked my vehicle at THIS SPOT
at 6235 feet. The topozone roads are a bit off but I had made my way to the east side of the peak and had worked my way up to parking here. From there, i made my way up slope and made these waypoints as I went up:
From waypoint four, I walked southwest across the summit plateau which was pretty much burned forest with some snow patches and slightly uphill all the way to the summit rocks where the register and Benchmark were found.
Total elevation gain was close to 900 feet
Distance - About a mile each way or roughly a bit over 2 miles roundtrip.
Good hiking boots
Map / compass
water & sunscreen