Bart Daly, Noor Khalsa, Tianshu Li, and Francesco Grilli
This backpack to the Truchas Peak turned out to be quite an
On Friday we drove to the Pecos valley and left Jack's Creek
Campground at 1.30 pm toward the Pecos Baldy Lake. It took us
almost 4 hours to reach the lake hiking along trail n. 257: the
numerous snow patches and fallen trees in the upper part of the
trail considerably slowed down our progression. We set camp at
the lake and enjoyed Noor's delicacies for dinner. The next
day we woke up at 6 am, packed the tents and left at 7 am toward the
Truchas Peak. The initial part of the trail was still in the
woods and still covered with snow. We reached the flat (and very
windy) part of the Trailriders Wall, finally free of snow. At
the end of the flat traverse, at the base of the peak, we dumped
most of our gear, in order to be lighter for the final steep ascent.
We reached the summit of the South Truchas Peak at 10.30 am.
Francesco ran quickly to the nearby top of Medio Truchas, while the
others enjoyed the view from the summit. We went back to our
gear and, following the original plan, we tried to find and follow
the trail n. 264, which should have brought us to Beatty's Flat.
It was very difficult to follow the trail in the woods, due to deep
snow and fallen trees. After numerous attempts to track the
trail, we decided that the safest option would be to go back to the
Pecos Baldy Lake and camp there again. For dinner we enjoyed
Noor's and Bart's cooking and we went to sleep quite early.
The next day we traced our steps back to the car.
Since in this region there are several peaks packed quite closely to
each other, I started wondering when a top can be considered as a
"peak" with its own identity and not just a sub-peak of a higher
summit. I learned the interesting concept of topographic
prominence. It seems that in the Truchas group only the
South and North Peaks have enough prominence to be considered peaks,
Middle and Medio Peaks are mere sub-peaks. Anyway, despite
the definition, they are all beautiful mountains!