Ascent of Peak 12225 on 2015-07-03

Climber: Phil Robinson

Others in Party:Just me
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Friday, July 3, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Peak 12225
    Location:USA-New Mexico
    Elevation:12225 ft / 3726 m

Ascent Trip Report

My wife and I traveled to Red River, New Mexico for the 4th of July weekend and rented a place for 3 days and 2 nights so that she could study while I spent the 3 days peakbagging. We drove to Red River early in the morning, July 3, 2015, and secured our location for the 2 nights. I headed west to Questa then North on Highway 592 to Costilla, NM. From there I headed southwest to Amalia and turned left on Ventero road and continued on the lower east road until I came to a locked gate. I headed back east then north to Areliano road then to the little town of Ventero then looped south on a public road and parked. I planned to make a straight beeline to Peak 12225 on the ridge. This was an overlooked peak and was not listed on any site. It is now listed on Peakbaggers and Peakery with a prominence of 205 feet. My son and I hiked Jarocito Creek Peak on Ted Turner’s Vermejo Park Ranch when we paid to stay as guests there in 2012. Peak 12225 was only 1.1 miles from Jarocito Creek Peak and I wanted to do it that day, but it would have been too much, almost 18 miles for the day if I had done it. See the Jarocito Creek trip report.

I started hiking later than usual, 10:30 AM. The starting elevation was 8990 feet. The GPS said 2.9 miles as the crow flies. It was a pleasant temperature and partly cloudy. I headed east across a large sagebrush covered open area, scouting ahead which ridge to go up. At one point I almost started on the wrong ridge which would have been a lot of trouble crossing to get back to the correct ridge. I crossed a beautiful stream and headed up the forest covered ridge. There were 2 very hard climbs to the peak, at the start of the ridge, and then three quarters of the way up. My perception has changed over the years, and the 2 very hard parts years ago would have felt brutal. Part way up the mountain it started to hail mixed with rain. I could hear thunder in the area. I delayed a bit, then decided to put on my rain poncho. I only needed it for about 5 minutes and the rain and hail was over. I arrived at the top after hiking about 3 hours and 3.5 miles. The views are beautiful for about 270 degrees. The other 90 degrees tree covered. I planned to hike to Jarocito Creek Peak then back, but I got such a late start and I wanted to have a nice dinner in Red River with my wife so I did not continue. I stayed at the top for 15 minutes and had a bite to eat. The hike back was cool and pleasant. I followed the same route that I came up, crossed the beautiful little stream again, then the sagebrush field and back to the SUV. As I was getting ready to leave, a truck drove by and a man asked me where I had been. I said, “Up the mountain.” He was drunk and very mad and said I had crossed private property and not to come back. I did not cross a ”No Trespassing” sign. Maybe they could put a few signs in the area. The locked gate, which was a long way from where I was, said behind the gate was the Rio Costilla Park Land and Cattle Company. You can pay them to park and camp in the Latir Lake area and when I first started to hike I thought if it were their land I would drop by to pay them. I stopped at their office on the way out and asked if it was there land and they said, ‘Yes.” I said I was on the land, apologized, and offered to pay the fee. They said not to worry about it, but you cannot pay to be in that area. They said the “drunk” was probably a part co-op owner. Even though I parked on a public road I would not recommend parking there nor doing the peak from this direction. The lady said that one could pay one of the many owners of the land to take you into the property and that might be the best way to hike in that area.

The total hike was 7.2 miles and it took 6 hours to hike with the short stop at the top. The total elevation gain was 3285 feet. I drove back to Red River and had a nice t-bone steak at Texas Reds with my wife. (Over the weekend I hiked 6 peaks, 20 miles, and had an elevation gain of 7218 feet. See trip reports for Ortiz Peak and Peak 10848)
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3235 ft / 986 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.2 mi / 11.6 km
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3235 ft / 986 m
    Distance:3.5 mi / 5.6 km
    Route:Hiked directly east up a ridge
    Start Trailhead:Road South of the town Vetero  8990 ft / 2740 m
    Time:3 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Distance:3.7 mi / 5.9 km
    Route:Directly west the way I came up
    Time:2 Hours 45 Minutes
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. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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