This site describes hikes and scrambles in New Mexico and areas nearby.

Everyone is welcome to use the site! The posts, however, are meant to introduce new hikers to New Mexico’s dazzling backcountry. If you are a high school student with new driver’s license or a recent arrival to the southwest with little hiking experience then you are in that target audience. Experienced explorers are not in the target audience and may experience too-much-beta issues! Readers must be in good physical shape to enjoy these hikes.

The central message is simple: explore!

Each post describes a single trip to a mountain range or to an interesting desert feature. A round trip of about 12 miles and an altitude gain of about 2500 feet might be considered typical. Each post is dated, important in a region where fires and floods destroy trails and wipe out roads every year. Most, but not all, of the trips are day trips.

Aside from the first few posts, most descriptions have a common format. They begin with an Overview that highlights the best (or perhaps the worst) features of a hike. The Driving Directions may be a little redundant in the age of GPS, but check them for indications of road conditions and missing road signs. There is a Trailhead section to let readers know what services are available and a Data section which maps the hike and estimates the trail length and altitude gain. The Hike Description has photos taken on the trail and text to record the notable features of the tread (especially the navigation challenges). The Recommendations section essentially holds information that doesn’t fit anywhere else and the Links section offers an easy view to what other hikers are saying about the trail.

Maps: it is possible to download the position data displayed on the map. Instructions (current as of November 2017) can be found here.

Hazards: some of the backcountry risks are briefly highlighted here.

Published Hiking Guides: Thie hiking guides that got me started are listed here.

Typical But Important Cover-Your-Bases stuff:

This blog is a record of casual observations. It is not a safety manual! These posts describe lessons learned in places that are usually high, often cold and frequently lonely. There are no warranties or assurances that the information is timely, accurate, sane or in any sense useful. The site will include factual errors, sarcastic asides, litotes, abstractions, oxymorons, legalese, sequipedalianisms and other potentially confusing verbiage.

Your safe return is not guaranteed. Let’s be careful up there.