Jacks Creek Campground to Pecos Baldy Lake
Let me start by saying that my good friend and I are from Dallas, TX, and that this was his first time to attempt a peak, let alone hike in a wilderness area or spend any amount of time at high altitudes. He joined me for the summit and my hats off to him.
We started from the wilderness parking lot at the trailhead of Tr 25 at about 1030am. Our target for the day was Pecos Baldy Lake, a grueling hike of around 7 miles up hill. Starting elevation read 8850ft. My friend had some trouble acclimating, but we took our time, with plenty of stops to enjoy the beautiful aspen meadows and amazing views. After about 6 hours at a pretty lazy pace we reached Pecos Baldy Lake and set up camp. My buddy was experiencing a moderate altitude sickness with some nausea at this point and was having second thoughts about going all the way to Truchas. After a good meal and some encouragement to see how he felt in the morning, he decided to at least hike to the base with me and then make a judgement about going up. By the end of the night he had acclimated some,and was already feeling better. A good sign for our 5 mile hike in the morning :)
Pecos Baldy Lake to Truchas Group
We woke up early and had breakfast under the incredibly beautiful East Pecos Baldy, just above the alpine lake resting in its arms. Some coffee got us going and we grabbed some water and prepared for a lightpacked hike north to the truchas group. We left camp and hiked into the saddle between East Pecos Baldy and it western neighbor ( I am not sure of the name of that peak ).The view of Truchas from that point was just incredible. She was massive and staring us down..beckoning. My buddy, awestruck with the view, was in good spirits and feeling much better. We started around the ridge and onto the trailriders wall where some elk were grazing. A beautiful sight in the clear morning light. We stopped once about halfway across the trailriders wall and had lunch, some ramen noodles and water. Delicious :) we finally left trail 251 and headed up an unmarked trail that lead up Truchas's southern base. Again taking our time, we slowly made our way to the top of the base where there is a nice grassy flat where some bighorn sheep were eating. We stopped for a moment here and decided that we would attempt the peak.
Starting up the first smaller peak on the south face we followed a few sheep that seemed to want to show us the way up. Sure enough, they led us up the trail to the top of the first hill where we got a good view of the summit route. We descended to the saddle and left our packs under some rocks. It was just a rock scramble to the top with a few spots of bouldering. Epic views of the Sangres all the way up. Hats off to my buddy who bagged New Mexico's second highest peak on his first adventure! Amazing journey!
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