Cross-post w/ the El Paso Hiking Meetup. (http://www.meetup.com/El-Paso-Hiking/events/114904492/)
Hillsboro Peak, part of the Black Range of the Gila Mountains, is one of the tallest peaks in the Gila National Forest.
On a clear day, you can easily see Mount Taylor west of Albuquerque; on a REALLY clear day, you can see Colorado. If you've binoculars, this would be a great place to try them out.
We'll start at Emory Pass Vista (along NM 152) and hike up to the top of Hillsboro Peak, upon which a heliport/fire lookout sits. Since we're in the midst of fire season the tower may be open.
Food for thought, Philip Connors, author of Fire Season: Field Notes from a Wilderness Lookout (http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Season-Field-Wilderness-Lookout/dp/0061859370/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1367619123&sr=8-1&keywords=Fire+Season&tag=aflattrcomx361-20), spent most of his time in the Hillsboro Peak lookout tower
DISTANCE is ~10–12 mi round trip
ELEVATION GAIN is ~2000 ft gained.
FEES: None. Of course, if you carpool, please compensate your driver for gas!
DURATION: Finish by mid to late afternoon.
PET FRIENDLY? Yes. Bring a muzzle (you shouldn't need be told to bring a proper leash), and if you'd like to unleash, ask others before you do so.
SKILL LEVEL is *NOT* beginner friendly. No whiners!
TERRAIN is on a well-maintained, but very rocky trail through very, very dry forest. Plenty of shade.
WEATHER is TBA.
AFTERWARDS is TBA.
MEET for carpool at:
Las Cruces: 7:45 am, K-Mart parking lot on North Main/US 70 and Del Rey, near Shell. GPS:[masked]°N,[masked]°W (http://www.meetup.com/las-cruces-hiking/events/geo:32.35083,-106.76538) (see on Google Maps (http://maps.google.com/?q=32.35083,-106.76538&z=18), OpenStreetMap (http://www.openstreetmap.org/?mlat=32.35083&mlon=-106.76538&zoom=18), USGS topo map (http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=32.35083,-106.76538&marker0=32.35083,-106.76538&z=18)). El Paso: 6:45 am, I-10 and Redd Road Kohl's, in the south end of the parking lot near Starbucks. GPS:[masked]°N,[masked]°W (http://www.meetup.com/las-cruces-hiking/events/geo:31.865651,-106.576615) (see on Google Maps (http://maps.google.com/?q=31.865651,-106.576615&z=18), OpenStreetMap (http://www.openstreetmap.org/?mlat=31.865651&mlon=-106.576615&zoom=18), USGS topo map (http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=31.865651,-106.576615&marker0=31.865651,-106.576615&z=18)). Note: your organizer is not meeting here, please self-organize! Emory Pass trail head: ~9:30 am. GPS:[masked]°N,[masked]°W (http://www.meetup.com/las-cruces-hiking/events/geo:32.91019,-107.76433) (see on Google Maps (http://maps.google.com/?q=32.91019,-107.76433&z=18), OpenStreetMap (http://www.openstreetmap.org/?mlat=32.91019&mlon=-107.76433&zoom=18), USGS topo map (http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=32.91019,-107.76433&marker0=32.91019,-107.76433&z=18)) MORE information:
GPS track (http://www.gpsies.com/map.do?fileId=zbfpeonlckjpxquf) Samat's photos of Hillsboro Peak (http://www.flickr.com/photos/tamasrepus/tags/hillsboropeak/) Hillsboro Peak on Summitpost (http://www.summitpost.org/hillsboro-peak/331555)