16 October 2010

Autumn in the Magdalena Mountains

Autumn colors near North Baldy peak, Magdalena Mtns., NM, Oct. 2010

Autumn oaks, Patterson Canyon, NM, Oct. 2010
I've become positively addicted to hiking. Today, having pored over Forest Service and topographic maps, I set out to find a hiking route from lower Patterson Canyon up to the "main road" (such as it is) that winds south from Kelly Church across the western face of the Magdalenas. It was cloudy when I set out, so I kept my camera in its case and just hiked. And hiked. I found the route I'd hoped to (listed on one map as Forest Rd. 305) by cutting through a creekbed to get around a closed-off portion of another old forest road, and as I headed south I realized I was hiking straight into the view above. It took another mile or two and about 800 to 1000 feet of elevation gain to get to the spot from where I took this photo... and then the sun came out. Amazing. The hike itself, the discovery of yet another mine, and the other photos I got would have made it worth the effort, but... yeah, I'm pleased. I didn't have time to keep going upward (I set out at 2:30 this afternoon and had to turn back to get home before dark) but you can bet I'll be up there again to plow on towards the top. Just another 1200 feet or so to hit that 9400-foot peak. (Guess I'd better plan out more hikes if I want to get into good enough  shape for some serious peak-bagging...)
Aspens, oaks, and Ponderosa pines in the Magdalena Mtns., NM, Oct. 2010


Anna said...

Amazing views and trees. I will have to visit these areas one day. It looks like fall is a good time to visit NM. One oft travel plans/dreams includes driving down South from Calgary to NM.

Cindy Gimbrone said...

WOW what gorgeous scenery! I used to live in Tucson AZ and I miss hiking in the canyons and hiking in general. We have to drive to areas to hike here - just not the same. Enjoy your hikes and please keep taking those pictures! Amazing!

Anna said...

Hi Anna, thanks to your comments to my blog entries. I will be posting more pics of autumn and of James soon.
Happy hiking!

Leslie said...

Fantastic photos. You are a very good photographer in my book.

Anonymous said...

Very nice, Anna! Looks like a good year in the Mags. The Black Range had some pretty color this week too, but I'd say the Mags are looking better. I especially like the shot of the oaks.