Departure Time: 6:30am, please be prompt because we will leave at 6:35am.
Who Should Attend: Physically prepared and active backpackers.
Hike Description: This is a semi-EXPLORATORY backpacking trip. Semi-exploratory means that I have been on a portion of this trail, but not the entire trail to Victoria Lake located in South San Juan Wilderness, CO. The hike starts out incredibly strenuous with some 30 lung-busting switchbacks. They are some of the toughest switchbacks I have ever hiked, but after you get through that the scenery and beauty of the area is stunning.
Day 1: Arrive at the Ruybalid Trailhead at approximately 10:30am-ish to begin our backpacking trip. The switchbacks begin early and continue for 3.6 miles. Then the elevation gain mellows and we continue on past Alverjones Lake and then to our destination - Victoria Lake. Approx. Miles: 7.9 Elevation: 8,500ft. to 10,800ft.
Optional Hiking Trip: After setting up camp on Day 1, those interested in hiking another 2.0 miles to see a great view of Conejos Peak are more than welcome to join me.
Day 2: Backpack out from Victoria Lake, with a detour stop off the trail to see a fairly impressive waterfall and then head back to our vehicles. Approx. Miles: 8.0
Late Lunch: On the way home, we will make a stop at the High Country Restaurant in Chama, for a late lunch.
Road Conditions: Improved dirt roads will be our means to get to the trailhead. A high clearance, 4wd is not required, but the road may be rough in places, so an off road type vehicle is better like a truck or SUV. Note: I take an 16-mile dirt backroad to Chama, which saves a half hour in drive time, plus it is scenic.
Also, there is another 8 miles of dirt road that is a little bumpy to get to the trailhead too.
I will be able to take three people in my Jeep, maybe 4, if we need to for the trip.
Dogs: Allowed as long as you agree to the following guidelines:
1. Hikers with dog(s) must carry a leash(es).
2. If we run into horses on the trail, you must leash your dog(s), especially if we run into some on the steep, narrow switchbacks.
3. Your dog(s) must be leashed while your fellow hikers are preparing and eating any of their meals.
4. If your dog(s), display aggressive behavior towards other dogs or people, you must leash them.
5. If your dog(s) are running back and forth on the trail and interfering with your fellow hikers, especially during the steep, narrow switchbacks, you must leash them.
Recommended Item: Bug Spray
Waiver Info: Anyone attending our trips must have a signed Waiver & Release form on file with us. This waiver covers all trips and activities so you only need to sign it once. If you have not already signed this form it can be downloaded from our "Files" section and turned in to the organizer when you arrive for the trip.
Deadline Info: The deadline for changing a "Yes" RSVP to a "No" RSVP is July 15, 2013. If you RSVP "Yes" for this trip, please plan on attending. Please read our RSVP Policy located in our "Pages" section.
Drive Time to Trailhead/Camp Area on Friday: Approx. 3.5 - 4 hours from ABQ
Camp Area Location: Ruybalid Trailhead
Trip Rating: Strenuous, due to elevation gain
Total Trail Length: Approximately 16 miles
Elevation Range: 8,500ft. to 10,800ft.
Expected Temps: 80s day, 40s night