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New Meetup: Weekend Backpacking Trip to Serpent Lake (Pecos)

From: Bob F
Sent on: Wednesday, May 5, 2010 11:27 AM
Announcing a new Meetup for The New Mexico Backpackers Meetup Group!

What: Weekend Backpacking Trip to Serpent Lake (Pecos)

When: Friday, October 15,[masked]:00 PM

Serpent Lake
Pecos-Las Vegas Ranger District Pecos Wilderness, Santa Fe NF
Pecos, NM 87111

This trip will take us to lightly visited Serpent Lake in the Pecos Wilderness. This lake (and a 2nd smaller one) sits in the middle of a large, grassy meadow (11,500 ft) with several high peaks (slightly under 13,000 ft) surrounding the basin. We'll take the Alamitos Trail #19 from the parking area at the trailhead all the way to the trail spur that drops us down to the lakes. We'll have the option of a day hike up to the summits of two surrounding peaks (Jicarita at 12,835 ft and an unamed peak at 12,828). Because of the high elevation and lateness of the season, be prepared for cold temps and changing weather conditions with appropriate clothing and gear.

Please Note: Anyone attending our trips must have a signed Waiver & Release form on file with us. This waiver covers all trips and activities for 2010, 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.

If you RSVP "Yes" for this trip please plan on attending. Please read our RSVP Policy located in our "About" section.

The deadline for changing a "Yes" RSVP to a "No" RSVP is October 1, 2010

Trip Dates: October 15 (Friday evening) thru October 17 (Sunday hike out)

Drive Time to Trailhead/Camp Area on Friday Night: 2.5 hours from ABQ

Camp Area Location: Near the end of Forest Road 161

Directions to Camp Area/Trailhead: Take I-25 north to Santa Fe, then US 84/285 (St Francis Exit) out of Santa Fe north towards Pojoaque. Just after Pojoaque you will turn right (east) onto State Route 503 which takes you through Nambe. In about 6 miles look for State Route 520 and turn left (there's a large sign that says "High Road to Taos Scenic Byway), taking you to Chimayo. In Chimayo you will turn right onto State Route 76. You will drive through the village of Truchas where things can get tricky. In Truchas you actually have to make a left turn to stay on State Route 76. If you don't make the turn and continue straight, you'll be on Route 639 which eventually deadends. Back on State Route 76 you'll drive through the villages of Trampas and Chamisal before coming to SR 75. Turn right onto SR 75 and in 6 miles you will come to the junction with SR 518 where you will stay right (basically continuing straight) and be on SR 518. Continue approx 13 miles on SR 518 and look for Forest Rd 161 where you will turn right. Continue down Forest Rd 161 for 4.5 miles and look for our camp and meetup sign. This Forest Rd is gravel so a passenger car can easily make it.

Trip Rating: Moderate (day hike could be difficult with elevation gain)

Trail Length: 4 miles Saturday, 4 miles Sunday (8 miles total) *With option for day hikes to peaks

Elevation Gain: 1,080 ft to lake and 2,115 ft to Jicarita Peak (day hike)

Elevation Range: 10,720 ft to 11,800 ft (to lake) and an additional 1,335 ft to Jicarita Peak summit

Expected Temps: Highs 50 to 60, lows in 30's *This time of year the weather & temps can change dramatically from day to day

*Make sure you bring appropriate clothing and gear for this elevation

Dogs Allowed

Notice: Disregard the info/map directions link as it is incorrect!

Contact Bob F with any questions

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