One volunteer joined me to travel to Cowles and scout Winsor Ridge Trail in preparation for an NMVFO trail project later in the week. The USFS and state parks are still closed in the Pecos Canyon from the Hermit Peak Fire, but we had permission to enter. The weather is looking threatening, with rains predicted all week, and it was a good time to look at conditions for camping at altitude. We first headed for a large tangle of aspens several miles in, that needed to be cleared if Backcountry Horsemen were to come in with our gear on the first day of our project. We cleared about 37 trees.
Later, we counted another 30-odd downed firs on the way to Stewart Lake.
Rain started early, 11:30, and we began heading back and were not able to saw the rest of the trees. Rain continued light and hard before getting back to our car at 3PM.
Oddly, a photographer from the Santa Fe New Mexican was waiting near our vehicle, and we chatted a short while before heading home.
Ultimately, the Spirit Lake project got cancelled due to monsoon weather.
Eleven NMVFO volunteers camped at the huge open Resumidero Camping Area on the eastern edge of the San Pedro Parks Wilderness in the Coyote Ranger District for a long weekend.
We shuttled 3 miles south to the Rio Puerco trailhead and worked on clearing trees, eventually removing over 110 trees over a 2 mile span. Several trees required a 2-person crosscut saw, and a huge 2-cut log might require up to an hour to remove. We also used Katana-Boy 650s to good effect on smaller trees.
We had hoped to reach the vast meadow Vega Redonda and work on further trails, but the tangle of trees on Rio Puerco Trail was formidable. We all enjoyed the area and hope to return on future projects.
Thanks co-lead Christy, cooks Dave and Rifka, and crew Carlos, Dennis, Russ, Jamie, Paul, Sharon, and new volunteer Tom for a memorable adventure.
Four NMVFO volunteers met to scout the Rio Puerco Trail #385 at the eastern edge of the San Pedro Parks Wilderness north of Cuba, along with the Peñas Negras Trail #32 and Perchas Trail #418 that form a 6 mile loop together. We met at Resumidero Campground (Google Maps is wrong on how to get there!) and drove 3 miles south to the Rio Puerco Trailhead.
A huge number of big-diameter fir trees were down, making the trail an obstacle course to hike. Several cut ends of logs were visible to show us where the disappearing trail was supposed to go. The old cut marks demonstrated that the trail has seen love in the past. The trail needs more love from us right now.
We marked the route with biodegradable survey tape. After a difficult 2 miles in, we reached the beginning of the loop at a large park area, Vega Redonda, and had lunch.
We continued hiking on Rio Puerco Trail for another mile or so, to get an idea of the density of downed trees on the loop, and then returned to Resumidero Campground via the Vega Redonda Trail #43, as rain threatened.