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There are all sorts of comments about the Needle hike: like, "hike of a lifetime, you only do it once," "I'll never go back there again!" etc, etc... The most humorous comment might be the one in the log on the top that says, "now I am here, how the heck am I supposed to get down!" The uniqueness of that humor is, if a hiker hadn't been there, they don't get that taste.
Yes, it's extremely strenuous a hike. The round trip is 8 miles, with close to 4,000' of elevation gain. It takes about 9 hours to do this hike.
The second half of the trail is especially steep and on loose ground. Every step of it demands full body response and mental focus. It is not only a physical challenge, it's also a spiritual/mental/psychological strain. At the very last stage of the ascending, there's a spot of class 4 scrambling that is quite intimidating.
This hike coincides with an Albuquerque group event in the Organs. Meet us at (plaza outside of) Milagro's Cafe at 7:30am or La Cueva parking lot.
Questions or concerns, contact Yubao at[masked]