Ascent of Culebra Peak on 2019-07-14

Climber: William Musser

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Sunday, July 14, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Hi-Clearance Vehicle
Peak:Culebra Peak
    Elevation:14047 ft / 4281 m

Ascent Trip Report

Left at 6:40 AM
12 30 down
After finishing the mosquito traverse with Dan and Glen, I began my long trip down to Culebra to get the isolated 14er. The drive is very confusing, so immediately I give a warning. Believe it or not there are two towns named Chama both in the south east portion of Colorado. my Google map picked the one tiny town near another tiny town of Red Wing and once I got there I was screwed. It was almost dark and I had no cell service and once you get into that region it is a nightmar. It’s very difficult to get out.
It took me 1 1/2 hours to navigate using a gazetteer to the ranch gate which is just outside of the other Chama which is not that much further south but a very circuitous route to find it. The correct Chama is a town near San Luis, Colorado.

At the gate there was about 20 vehicles with about 30 people who had paid to do the hike. I ate a quick dinner and went to bed. The gate was opened a little bit before 6 AM and we checked in with the rancher and drove to the ranch. The roads are mostly paved from San Luis and Chama and it is only the last bit of roadway to the ranch that is dirt road. However, the dirt roads are well graded and easy on vehicles. At the ranch you’re giving instructions and anything, but a passenger vehicle is able to drive to the trailhead. There were many four-wheel-drive vehicles at it is a four-wheel-drive road, but the road is beautifully maintained and there were many Subaru’s and other all-wheel drive vehicles that had no issues driving to the Trailhead. The only thing I would not recommend is a passenger vehicle or a non-all-wheel-drive vehicle.

The hike begins as a class 2 open country slog up grassy slopes. Once you obtain the rocky ridge it is mostly class 2 but there is a long stretch of class 2 + with one minor class 3 move

The second peak red mountain requires a typically nasty slog down talus then a traverse to the peak. The up climb is easy to hike scree.

On the way back I hiked past the enormous cairn that stands about 10 feet tall and went to serpentine Rich. At this point the rain clouds were beginning to roll Lynn and I needed to get back to the car quickly there were some large no fields available for some easy clothes stating they could be done with a hiking pole however the snow was so mushy they weren’t very fast it was certainly nice to get off of my sore feet and ankles
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2592 ft / 790 m
    Total Elevation Loss:797 ft / 241 m
    Round-Trip Distance:3.7 mi / 6 km
    Grade/Class:2, lots of 2+ minor
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Snow on Ground
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2592 ft / 790 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 2392 ft / 729 m; Extra: 200 ft / 60m
    Loss on way in:200 ft / 60 m
    Distance:2.9 mi / 4.7 km
    Route:see GPS track
    Start Trailhead:Upper TH  11655 ft / 3552 m
    Time:1 Hours 53 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:597 ft / 181 m
    Distance:0.8 mi / 1.3 km
    Route:see GPS
    End Trailhead:saddle between peaks  13450 ft / 4099 m
Ascent Part of Trip: Culebra

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Culebra Peak2019-07-14 a2592 ft / 790 m
2Red Mountain2019-07-14 b618 ft / 188 m
3Culebra Peak2019-07-14 c747 ft / 228 m
4Punta Serpiente2019-07-14 d206 ft / 63 m
Total Trip Gain: 4163 ft / 1269 m    Total Trip Loss: 4163 ft / 1269 m
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by William Musser
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
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. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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