This blog post will again be endorsing a new book, but, unlike the previous post it endorses a hiking book. Seven years ago when we first moved to Albuquerque, one of our primary resources for learning about hikes in the area was the 2nd edition of Stephen Ausherman’s 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of Albuquerque. The 3rd edition has just been published and we bought a copy as soon as we heard about it.
When we first started using the 2nd edition I set a goal of writing the date we did each hike on the description page of the hike. Once the novelty wore off and we began to find hikes using other resources I didn’t follow through with the goal. No matter, though, as the book continued to be a valuable resource.
As soon as Lee got the new edition he wanted to go through it and mark all the hikes that hadn’t been in the 2nd edition. To keep the number of hikes at 60, obviously some hikes from the 2nd edition were no longer in the 3rd. I balked at Lee’s idea of tearing pages out of the old book to stick into the new book. We’ll just have to keep both books for now.
Knowing that a spell of nice weather has arrived for this week, I used the new book to stir up some ideas for hiking. The hike we chose for today wasn’t a new one in the 3rd edition, although an option for a longer loop had been added. It was a new hike for us; one we knew about but hadn’t yet gotten around to doing.
It fit into our collection of hikes that cover a section of the Continental Divide Trail (CDT). These include two hikes that we did last summer and one on Labor Day. Today’s section didn’t have spectacular scenery, especially since the loop back to the car had us walking on a dirt road for 2 miles. If we were to do it again we would probably make it just an out and back on the CDT.
The CDT trailhead is at the base of a cluster of red hills known as Deadman Peaks. After climbing the side of a ridge pointing south from the base of the peaks, the trail levels off as it follows the rim. The main peak is to the left of the trail. To the right, over the edge of the rim, are good views of Cabezon Peak south in the far distance. Miles of emptiness stretch in all directions. Hiking in such isolated places is, for me, one of the most enjoyable features of our New Mexico hikes. We didn’t see another car or person once we turned off the main road onto the BLM road that leads to the trailhead.