One of the coolest bushwhacks I’ve done. The views from the ridge along El Capitan are the most dramatic I’ve seen in a long time, especially for a peak that sees such little traffic. All Trails has a great GPS track, but if you read the terrain it’s pretty obvious where you have to go. There are a few herd paths along the ridge that’ll help guide your way to the true summit.
Followed a trench south from Guadalupe peak summit and then stayed on the ridge to El Capitan. The way back was really cloudy and bearings were hard to find. Ended up losing more height than I needed and spend an eternity bushwacking and ascending a steep gully back to the Guadalupe peak trail. Still over all a great adventure.
Legs were cut to shreds from the briers... Try and find the washout that leads to the ridge and follow that.
Bushwhacking at its finest. Super adventure.
No trail...tried to stay on ridge...signed log at false summit and true summit. Was nervous at times by myself, would not do solo again. No one had signed log in over 2 months.
I thought the cliffs looking down were amazing and it was a nice offtrail route from the Guadalupe Peak trail.
I signed the book on the summit, but on returning to the Guadalupe trail and looking back over, I'm not sure if it was really on the high point of El Capitan or not. I might have been fooled by the summit register not being on the summit? I suppose since I signed the register, I will sign summitpost too!!
The view down the west face cliff were amazing, and the view back at Guad Peak showing it's cliffed west face were great too.
We hiked this on the way down from Guadalupe. It was harder than Guadalupe because of the scrubby low brush and the steeper terrain. Nice to peek over the westward cliffs and peer back up at Guadalupe but I won't do it twice! :-)
Bushwacked from Guad Peak. The register on the summit was placed back in 1989 and still had only about 30 signatures in it!
Quick side trip from Guadalupe, with no trail. Five hours round trip including 90 minutes between Guadalupe and El Capitan summits. Long pants and gloves are essential for this route of cacti and scratchy bushes. I agree with another person who wrote that, "the terrain on the peak left much to be desired." Gusts up to 30-40 mph.
stared over the abyss
The north sides of the ridges still held quite a bit of snow from the season's storms (up to 2' in some drifts), but made for a fantastic climb; kicking steps was both easy and secure. I actually lost a good bit of time trying to avoid the snow on the way up, but used it frequently going back over to the Guadalupe trail.
The steep descent from Guadalupe Peak and the stiff bushwack made this a nicely hard-won summit, but I wouldn't have missed it for the world. Not too many names in either of the two summit jars (two on the main summit, one containing the original film cannister register) which was a good feeling. We angled through thick brush to re-gain the Guadalupe Peak trail. No way I was clawing my way back up the screen we skiied down.
First I summited Guadalupe Peak, then El Capitan. Some hikers told me in advance that hiking up El Capitan was illegal, but a couple of rangers said it was OK (but that the terrain on the peak left much to be desired). Great scenery, and I was the first person on either summit that day. I did not see a summit register or jar.
Climbed on the way down?? from Guadalupe Mtn. campsite. Sore as a boiled owl from the day before. One of the Guadalupe best
I scrambled over here from Guadalupe Peak in early January 1994. Rather than climbing back up to the trail, I gambled and descended a canyon which, according to my map, would eventually intersect a trail, making for a grand circuit. After descending roughly 1000 feet, I was chagrinned to discover that the canyon funnelled into an unavoidable fifty-foot cliff. Rappel slings at the top of the precipice were not encouraging. My choice was to climb back up about 1500 feet to the trail or downclimb the cliff. I opted for the latter. About midway down, I found myself in hard 5th-class climbing. I remember thinking that it felt like a 5.9 climb that I had done many times. At that point I dropped my pack and was not encouraged by the result. The pack landed with a crash on the steep slope below and went careening down the hillside flailing through spiky bushes. I cleared my head and calmly finished the downclimb without mishap.
Took jeep over old Butterfield Stagecoach trail, hiked bone canyon to base of wall connecting Cap and Guadalupe to photograph possible technical rock routes. Hope to return next spring for successful western face summit.
Crossed over after summitting Guadalupe Peak. Looks like I left the main trail a little higher up than ideal.
The wind was crazy, especially in the notch between the two peaks. I'd hear a big gust approaching like a freight train, and I'd sit or lay down before it hit.
The wind seemed to mellow slightly towards sunset.
Summited April 14, 2006 along with 4 other 8,000 foot peaks in the Guadalupe’s that day. It took me 3 hours round trip back to the Guadalupe Trail after a long day of climbing. I could not find the summit register.
This can be harder than it looks!! Do not attempt
this with shorts on.....everything has thorns or spikes
or something nasty on it. Wind can be ferocious.
You will quickly forget about the casual stroll up to
the summit of Guadalupe Peak, however, the hard
earned view from El Capitan will be more than worth it.
You can almost see into tomorrow and back into
yesterday!! I would guess only 1 in every 1000 that
climbs G P attempts El Capitan. I recommend it!
Also, gloves, sturdy boots, long pants, and a good
hiking stick(or ice axe) are a must.