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Ascent to Hunter Peak-Upper Bear Canyon on 2015-07-11

Climber: Brad Repass

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, July 11, 2015
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Point Reached:Hunter Peak - Upper Bear Canyon
    Location:USA-Texas
    Elevation:7800 ft / 2377 m
    Remaining Elevation:568 ft / 173 m (24% left to go)

Ascent Trip Report

This was a spur of the moment trip which ruined the rest of my 2015 season. Noticed late in week forecast for Guadalupe ridiculously cool and sunny for Saturday the 11th. High 74 at Pine Springs. sixties in mountains. Left work Friday in Dallas and made it to Pecos about midnight. Did not get the earliest start and made it to trailhead at 930. One other car in parking lot besides my truck! Since starting late decide heading up steep but much shorter Bear Canyon route. Now to say that trail is maintained at the upper levels is a bit of a stretch but I do think that trail is must do hiking for anyone who frequents that area. It has the reputation of being a steep scrabble of rock and that is true for the top third or so of trail. However, the lower third was in decent shape - high desert sort of terrain with a little more grass than usual. The middle third is just great stuff - in and out of terrific rock formations, shocking number of trees - at moments thought I was in New Mexico. The top third is as advertised. My issue was after 3 climbs in 4 days in New Mexico around June 1, I had some mild plantar fasciitis in one foot. Had rested it for few weeks, thought it was fine. It flared up suddenly in middle third of Bear Canyon and by the time I got a few hundred yards into upper third, it was on fire plus pain extending into Achilles tendon. Turned back estimated 500 feet and one mile short of summit for the long limp home. About this time, notice wind shifted to out of SW and it is getting hot. Thankfully had taken 1.5 gallons of water. After a close encounter with a Diamondback literally 50-70 yards from parking lot on Tejas Trail arrived back at truck. 92 degrees. And that other car- mother and two teenage kids there waiting on husband/father. They had all tried to climb Guadalupe Peak and those three had turned back. They were worried about Dad - I asked and they said he had a single 16 ounce bottle of water. I would have taken water up and met him but was in no condition to do so and neither of the three looked like they could do it either. Never heard anything else about it so guess he made it. Long drive home.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1820 ft / 554 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1820 ft / 554 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6.2 mi / 10 km
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Hot, Breezy, Clear
About 65 at trailhead, hot once wind shifted - 92 degrees at end of trip.
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1820 ft / 554 m
    Distance:3.1 mi / 5 km
    Route:Tejas, Frijole, Bear Canyon Trails
    Start Trailhead:Pine Springs Trailhead  5980 ft / 1822 m
    Time:3 Hours 35 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:1820 ft / 554 m
    Distance:3.1 mi / 5 km
    Route:Bear Canyon, Frijole, Tejas
    End Trailhead:Pine Springs Trailhead  5980 ft / 1822 m
    Time:3 Hours 10 Minutes



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