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Little Santa Fe Trip
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Christopher Chupka

Locale: NTX
Little Santa Fe Trip on 07/11/2008 13:46:47 MDT Print View

I had a few days to spare in Santa Fe so I went and asked the guys at Sangre De Christo Mountain Works for some ideas.

I ended up heading out from the Santa Fe Ski resort up to Puerte Nambe for a short day 1, 4 miles. I left the trail head at about 3PM. No lakes in the meadow area so I followed a small spring up to a grassy pool and filled up. I dozed off about 6PM and was startled at about 7PM to an Elk doing its bleeting call about 50 yards from my bivy. I am glad I was napping on top of the bivy I would have shredded it trying to get out after that noise.

Bivy Site at Puerte Nambe Meadows

Bridge on Windsor Trail

On Day 2 I went up and over Santa Fe Baldy and came down to Lake Katherine via a talus chute on the NW side of the lake.

Santa Fe Baldy

Relaxed in the cool shade and headed out to Spirit Lake.

Lake Katherine from Santa Fe Baldy

Spirit Lake was closed to camping so I continued up the trail to the cutoff to Lake Peak and Pentitente Peak. I set up my shelter about a mile after the cutoff in a tall strand of pines. There was no streams or lakes in the area but there was standing snow so I melted some for water. The only rain occured here for about 30 minutes after I was set up so I relaxed in the cool shade of my tarp.

Relaxing under Tarp

Day 3 started out with the gentle climb up to Lake Peak.

Onto Lake Peak

To make things more interesting I scrambled across the ridge to Penitente Peak, also to avoid the up and down trail that followed the rdige line.

Ridge between Lake and Penitente Peaks

After Penitente Peak I followed the trail over the alpine tundra down to my starting point, pausing to take in the view over Nambe Lake.

View to Nambe Lake

I wanted this to be a four day trip but the distance were shorter than I expected. I was starting out each AM about 9AM and stopping by about 2PM. I think the round trip was close to 25 miles.

It was a slow relaxing few days for me.

I got to try out my Oware Epic Bivy and Cattarp 1.1, thanks Gear Swap. I loved the ULA Conduit pack, super comfy and more versatile than the Golite Jam2.

The first night's meal was baked goodies from Whole Foods, the rest of the time was a variety of the delicious Enertia Trail Foods. Combined with the AGG Enertia Wrap I never suffered through a cold crunchy dehydrated meal.

Mosquitos were never bad, early in the evenings it was cool enough to were my Patagonia Spraymaster jacket with the hood up. I never did apply any of the bug repellent I carried.

Temps varied from the low 40's at night to mid 80's during the day. It would cloud up each afternoon and cool off so I was usually pretty comfy.

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Little Santa Fe Trip on 07/12/2008 13:34:24 MDT Print View


Thanks for including the great pictures with your trip report.

Photos really gives a good sense of what it was like.

Because I am ignorant and geographically challenged, what State is this in?


Christopher Chupka

Locale: NTX
New Mexico on 07/12/2008 13:37:06 MDT Print View

The trailhead starts at the Santa Fe ski resort about 10 miles outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Great area, 12000 foot peaks on the edge of a scrub desert.

Thom Darrah
(thomdarrah) - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
"Little Santa Fe trip" on 07/12/2008 15:14:22 MDT Print View

Great pictures and report. Do you have a complete gear list to post? What was your pack/carry weight without food and water?

Christopher Chupka

Locale: NTX
Gear List Update on 07/13/2008 23:37:06 MDT Print View

I added my gear list under my profile. I did it from memory, I am pretty sure I have everything.

I could lose some weight, with a lighter sunscreen and stakes for sure. I also want a 8 oz waterproof/breathable jacket.

I would like lighter poles but I like the BD's adjustability and I know these BD poles are tough, they have saved my 200lb butt many a time.

Santa Fe Gear List 1
Santa Fe Gear List 2

Edited by FatTexan on 07/14/2008 09:05:23 MDT.