Two Hikes in the Columbine-Hondo
Wilderness Study Area
August 13 and October 1, 2005
Leaders: Karen Grace
with co-leader Kathleen Gruetzmacher (8/13/2005), and David Brown (10/1/2005)
Trip Participants: Los Alamos Mountaineers and guests
Author: Jan Studebaker
Photo Gallery: Jan Studebaker, View our
Wilderness Study Area" North of the Taos Ski Valley is a wild mountain basin
boasting one of the healthiest mountain watersheds in the region. The
trail system is diverse enough to offer a spectacular hiking experience for any
fitness level. Gold Hill and Lobo Peak dominate the ridgeline at over 12,000'.
Elevation gained, as measured from our trail heads, ranged to about 3600 vertical
feet on both hikes. We managed to climb almost to Gold Hill on our August 13, 2005 day
hike, and to the top of Lobo Peak on our October 1, 2005 hike. Each day hike was a 13 mile loop hike
starting and ending on State Highway 150 (the road to Taos Ski Valley).
Contact the Carson Ranger District for trail options.
View from near Lobo
Peak looking toward the Jemez Mountains.
Karen Grace with co-leader Kathleen
Gruetzmacher (8/13/2005), and David Brown (10/1/2005), all of Los
Alamos, lead these two great day hikes. I
had been in the area on many occasions in the past, but not on these
particular loop hikes. My last trip into this wilderness study area was
a cross-country ski trip to the Bull of
the Woods / Gold Hill Yurt that Cosima and I did with Gracia
Coffin and Don Gettemy during March of 2005.
The August trip was best for
mushrooms and wildflowers, with Columbines, among others, in full bloom.
Our October trip was spectacular due to the golden aspens. The March trip
was a fantastic spring sking experience. I highly recommend the
"Columbine/Hondo Wilderness Study Area"!