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Ascent of La Cueva Peak on 2013-05-18

Climber: Phil Robinson

Others in Party:My Dog Daisy
Date:Saturday, May 18, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:La Cueva Peak
    Location:USA-New Mexico
    Elevation:10669 ft / 3251 m

Ascent Trip Report

Sandwiched between Wheeler Peak to the north and Truchas Peak to the south, and their many accompanying 12 and 13 thousand foot mountain peaks, is a set of 6 slightly smaller 11,000 plus peaks. I left the house with my dog Daisy at 5 AM, May 18, 2013, to pick up my last 11K peak in that area The peak’s name is Cerro Del Oso. The elevation is 11,255 feet. To make it a longer hike I planned to bag 2 other 10K peaks along the way. It was a three hour trip from my home. From highway 518, south of Taos, I took Forest Road 442 to the east for about 8 miles. It is somewhat of a rough road. I had my 4WD SUV, yet with some maneuvering a passenger car “should” be able make it. I parked when my GPS said 6 tenths of a mile to the peak. It was a chilly cloudy morning. I was carrying about 15 pounds of emergency gear and water just for the conditioning. The starting elevation was 10,400 feet. I trudged up the northeast side of the peak through quite a bit of snow. The snowfall was unusually small this past winter. If it had been a regular snowfall year it would have been very difficult to maneuver on this May 18th date. It was not too difficult today. My dog got stuck a couple of times with her spiky legs so I took her little pack and lifted her over a few places. The hike to the top was 9 tenths of a mile straight up and I hiked it in 45 minutes. It was totally tree covered and there was no view. I headed south for La Cueva Peak, elevation 10,669. Snow was no longer a problem for the rest of the hike. This was one of the best parts of the hike because the forest opened up and there were incredible views of the surrounding mountains. I reached the top after hiking 2 miles in 1 hour and 30 minutes. You could see Gallegos Peak in the distance, elevation 10, 528. Do not go as the crow flies or you will drop into a valley. I headed back north then west and stayed along the ridges all the way. The views are very nice. At a certain point I was back on Forest Road 442 hiking. You could drive to within 2 tenths of a mile of the peak, yet I wanted the excercise. Along the way I crossed knoll 10,353. I arrived at the peak after hiking 3 hours. The distance from the start was 5.7 miles. The peak was tree covered with no views. I headed down the peak to the road and followed the road all the way back to the SUV. The total distance was 8.1 miles and it took 4 hours and 25 minutes to hike. I did not stop any to rest, just stopped to take some pictures.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:19 ft / 5 m
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Bushwhack
    Weather:Cool
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:19 ft / 5 m
    Distance:1.1 mi / 1.8 km
    Route:From Cerro Del Oso Peak
    Trailhead:10650 ft / 3246 m
Descent Statistics
Ascent Part of Trip: Cerro Del Oso

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDate
1Cerro del Oso2013-05-18 a
2La Cueva Peak2013-05-18 b
3Gallegos Peak2013-05-18 c
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip


 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Phil Robinson
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Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. Peakbagger.com accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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