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Dog Canyon Trail #106 - 2 members in 32 triplogs have rated this an average 4 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Dec 09 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Dec 09 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering7.30 Miles 2,700 AEG
Canyoneering7.30 Miles
2,700 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
My fifth time up Bishop's Cap... but today was out first group hike. I limited the attendance to Eleven... and that was likely too many to keep together up this very difficult, hyper steep Spur Canyon. Four hikers turned back at the mouth of the canyon; the group size from there on up was about right.

My exploratory outing back earlier this year included a heavy pack (over 50#) and a bike ride out to the park. Today was much nicer. Approach to the canyon was 1.5 hours... that day 2 hours. Scrambling with a lighter pack: much easier! Interestingly, the small wall further up where I left an assist rope hanging proved about as difficult... the rope was needed. Jason did spot a second ascent with good footing... but a bit too exposed for most folks to enjoy.

Everyone agreed that this hike has the most scrambling of any of our southern NM hikes... up or down... no level areas! Just pure fun! Down and out around 2:30pm with a 7:30am start and easier pace. Slower would have been better... lots to appreciate up this demanding canyon. The one monster dryfall in the lower section still goes unclimbed. 170' fall lacks appeal. We may go in and set safeties to allow a day of near vertical scrambling in our 2018 Adventure Series? Not sure there is any interest...

Overall... great day out!
_____________________
Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Sep 29 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Sep 29 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering8.90 Miles 3,400 AEG
Canyoneering8.90 Miles
3,400 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
IV - Long, full day, bivy possible
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This was our second attempt to top out the Dog Gap. First hike turned back half way up... 12' cliff. Today, we came prepared. Rope, overnight bivy supply, and sort of a plan. Initial surprise came after we topped the minor cliff obstacle... I was expecting something of a walkup past that ledge; instead, more and more demanding scrambles. Yet, it did allow us to top out!

From there we headed over to check out a potential down... Dog Cleft. Not good. Second option: Deadman North or Middle... alas, both came with too much risk of cliffing out. I did not really want to have to bivy over, so the next option was to head up and around the ridge to Jody... a south side spur that would allow us to drop into upper Dog... from where we could attempt to climb out onto Joplin Ridge... and back to Dog Canyon trail.

We got really lucky. Horse/Deer trail wound us down and around nicely into our desired canyon. Jody was a joy to descend with a couple of fun mini-drops. Unfortunately, Jody intersects upper Dog too far West. We had never climbed out from that low in the canyon. We were hoping to ascend just right to stay away from the 1,000' cliffs of the Eyebrow, skirting that formation to traverse around to the trail without ascending all the way up Joplin Ridge. Sort of worked out that way. We did a forced climb up through the upper layer of cliffs in Dog... and looped over to the top of the Eyebrow... but it did not give way nicely. It forced us ever up and around... but finally down. We made the trail around 6:30pm!

We hiked the trail down to the old line cabin... setup headlamps... and slowly hiked out. 8:45pm exit... bit over a 14 hour hard effort. Group was a bit wasted. I felt good, but had an odd bout of leg cramps around 5pm... not nice. Wished I'd thrown the Pickle Juice in the pack... but at least had it waiting in the car.

The highlights of the exceptional Dog Gap have been somewhat lost in the effort to get down and out. The pictures do not capture the day. I used my phone only for pics... and too often my hands were too busy with the scrambles to capture shots. The hike illuminated a variety of potential future exploratories... which may end up being done solo. The difficulty of this day just might serve to delimit future hikes getting anyone to sign on...!?

It was a great route... and fun day!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
1 archive
Sep 02 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Hiking avatar Sep 02 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Hiking1.20 Miles 300 AEG
Hiking1.20 Miles
300 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hikers were no shows for today's outing... and that may have been a good thing! I took off with an extra battery for assisted pedaling of my 100# bike, but realized I'd forgotten to grab the key to allow battery access! So, I had to pedal to the park with little to no assistance. That made my arrival just on time, and with a bit too much effort. I did a short loop hike... and headed home. I was nearly back to Mary's house, again pedaling with low assist, when I realized I did have a charger... I could recharge the mounted battery at her house! Wish I'd thought of that earlier. Oh, well. Sat around for an hour to get a few bars back, then made my way home. All good.

Low energy day yesterday. Not great energy today. Guess I'll rest up for Monday's harder hike!?

Note... official Riparian Trail washed away! I did not care for that loop, but odd to see it gone.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
May 28 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar May 28 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.60 Miles 900 AEG
Canyoneering5.60 Miles
900 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Checked out Lawson Springs... South Fork, including the very challenging dry fall up in the left side spur... Ross and Mary along. Sounds as if Mary used this fork to exit after missing her turn up the North Fork when leading her Ladies Day hike. It is nice!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
May 21 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar May 21 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.60 Miles 2,200 AEG
Canyoneering5.60 Miles
2,200 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Ongoing exploratory of the various Dog Canyon Spur cuts. Today, N1... Dog Stairs... and S3...Dog Steppes. Both proved to be exceptional and I'll need to detail them with their own descriptions. Today, with Teresa along for her first trip up the canyon bottom, we celebrated the Riparian area, nicely greening out. Then, hiked up to Kong to let her enjoy that odd feature. Then, back down canyon to the north side cut at the lower caves (top of the Riparian area) and climbed steeply up to the base of the blocking cliffs.

Back down, and across the canyon below the man made dam... up into the bedrock Steppes... with a steep climb up to the Dog Canyon Trail.

Group opted for canyon descent... dropped into Lawson Steppes to close out the day.

All in all... great early loop before the heat of the day settled in...
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
May 14 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar May 14 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering6.20 Miles 2,100 AEG
Canyoneering6.20 Miles
2,100 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Feels odd to be hiking only one day weekly... but even that is proving to be to much if I go out for too long or too hard. And, with just the single hike I fall further out of shape, so too hard comes at a lower level. I'm beat up from yesterday's seven hour effort. Should not have even felt this one!

Nice Exploratory route up to the Cave in the north cliff walls of Dog Canyon... traversed the base of the cliffs over to Bishop Cap Cut for a semi-shady descent. Ross and Lewis enjoy the outing. Forgot camera so picture set is all smart phone! I need to download the pics to the computer... for now, posted over on Facebook.

Guess I'll adjust the Sunday hikes to shorter efforts until I can get back into a fuller hiking schedule: 2018!!?
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Apr 30 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Apr 30 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.60 Miles 1,900 AEG
Canyoneering5.60 Miles
1,900 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Ross, Will and William along with me to retrieve over sized fossil rock... worth the over the top effort because it appears to be a 350,000,000 year old rock among our 60 million year old layers.

We tagged on some nice upper canyon scrambling in Bishops Cap Cut (fossil down in lower section)... then began the awkward down canyon scramble with the 70#+ rock... after that, steep side hill scramble. Blew out pack shoulder strap buckle on the way up! Eventually, made it to trail... and after a bit over a mile, blew out the other strap buckle...? Rock may be heavier than I thought!?

Made it back to truck... home... and collapsed! I am way too far out of shape. Oh, well.

Now... need to get some geologists involved...
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Mar 10 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Bishops Cap Cut, NM 
Bishops Cap Cut, NM
 
Canyoneering avatar Mar 10 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering7.00 Miles 3,100 AEG
Canyoneering7.00 Miles
3,100 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Wow!

Lots of Questions going into this day... Would the Cut allow access up and out the top? How would the Radwagon do on the longer ride out/back to the Trailhead? How would I do packing 40# pack on such a difficult route? Was I in shape for a longer hours day?

5:30am... packed and ready to go: 80# Bike... 50# Payload... rode off in the dark. Stopped at Mary's house to drop off extra bike battery for pick up on return ride.

7:00am...at Oliver Lee Park. Suited up and off... moving purposefully slow to conserve energy. 2.5 gallons of fluids. Fruit and salads (?), Bivy gear...Emergency gear.

1.5 Miles...Stashed Qt of Poweraid for end of day...

2 Miles... diverted off trail to find drop in to Canyon. Got Lucky and found goat trails switchbacking down into the Giant Boulder section above the Narrows. I got to play and stretch out on those big rock drops for awhile.

9am...Mouth of Bishops Cap Cut. I stopped long enough to break fast: Chocolate Milk! Not sure what I was thinking when prepping for this hike. This was clearly a high calorie burn day... Peanut Butter/Banana/Honey kind of day. I brought Salads!?? I also had 1/2 gallon of milk and a gallon of OJ. I start with the milk.

The lower section of the canyon was open bouldering... but graduating into steep. I was projecting I'd get stopped/blocked or top out by 1pm. Top out and I could traverse Joplin Ridge around to the Dog Canyon Trail. Blocked... perhaps explore the bottom of the upper cliff edges around to the trail. Either way... I had four hours of climbing?

The first Surprise... upon reaching the lower obstruction dryfall, I discovered it was not the 30' fall we could see from the south side of Dog... but twisted around a sharp corner: 100'+ off steep cascading, interestingly accented Fall. Dramatic! I envisioned setting ropes and having a most interesting group event.

Today, I looped around and up an iffy dirt/rock side bank. This section and lead up to it have been steep enough to keep me breathing hard...and this was the easy parts...?

Tiny reward: great Horn Coral Fossils along the bypass on the west side!

Beyond this Fall, the climbing began in earnest. Staircase falls... House size boulders... Bus size boulders. Climb after climb. So often we hike interesting cuts with great scrambles. Our typical laments are we reach the top and wish there was more of the good stuff. This canyon is the solution to that issue... it just does not stop climbing. You climb to reach the next climb! They do not stop!

Next nice bit: soil layer filled with Gypsum! Plates of glass like pieces... I gathered some, protected them in the now empty milk jug.

Ate a couple oranges.... set the OJ out in the sun to thaw. Drank my second Monster drink of the day. Warm to hot in the sun... cool breeze in the shade.

Noon...I've been active 6.5 hours...hiking now for 5 hours. I am about to clear the lower cliffs... entering the upper canyon. I take a longer break, eating my first salad. I think about the hours ahead... wondering if this was the hike to ride my bike out and back...? After a 30 minute break I move up to what I think is the blockage noted from the bottom. I spend 20 minutes attempting various routes to scale a simple 12' wall. The grips are just not there for me today. Thinking that if I can get around this problem, the canyon will let me go to the top, I decide to take a questionable approach. I take out my rope, tie it to the pack, and using the pack as a "Sea Anchor", I throw it up and over the lip of the rock.

If I pull acutely down on the rope, it holds. There are no other hikers here to tell me how dumb this might be. So, up I go. As I get near the top, my pull on the rope is no longer angled enough... the pack starts slipping back towards the edge... I let go of the rope and move on to the rock... interesting moment! :scared:

Now... legs shaky... lots of wasted energy.... but I am up!

The canyon gets ever steeper... the climbs get bigger! Can You Say Climb!This day is shaping up to be twice the effort of anything I've done in years.

2:30pm... Blocked!! 9 hours into my activity day... 7.5 hours into the hike. Exploring is over. I tagged on a mini-reward... Cave. Of course, it took more climbing!

Those bigger climbs up turned to bigger downclimbs... often forcing me to remove the pack. I did get to enjoy a fully tied on rope to descend the Sea Anchor spot.

4:15pm... As I approached the top of the huge Dry Fall, it occurred to me I could check out a cut a bit further West... doing a Naughty No_No of canyon hiking: do not drop down what you have not come up. In this case, I felt okay about switching back into Exploratory mode... it was a short canyon with side hills that would allow escape if necessary. It was good!

4:45pm... down! Now... move around the Narrows... cross the canyon and climb out the West side... get to the trail!

5:15pm... Dog Canyon Trail at Cookie Rock (Mile 1.5)... and over to the Rock Bench... I drink the last of the OJ... and retrieve the Qt of Powerade for the hike down the trail.

These last hours have enjoyed some Saving Grace breezes... and the cooler low sun angle, setting just as I reach the Visitor Center. Unlock my bike... head out for the ride home!

My only change in plans: at Mary's I decide to lay over and put her spa to use! Wow... that was a lifesaver. Soaked for an hour... it likely saved me from massive leg cramps.

So... a day sort of like my old days. 11 hours of hiking... 2.5 hours of biking. The hiking was upper level effort. Hard. Makes me nearly feel like the old me. As I move through my 68th year days like this likely to be few and far between... but on this day... really nice!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Feb 18 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Feb 18 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering9.00 Miles 2,700 AEG
Canyoneering9.00 Miles
2,700 ft AEG
Canyon Hiking - Non-technical; no rope; easy scrambling; occasional hand use
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Well... Interesting day!

43 Hikers showed up to enjoy a variety of routes in the Dog Canyon area. Initial posting was for an Intro to Canyoneering hike... short outing up Lawson Steppes. We had never offered that canyon for any of our group hikes... that might explain the big number of signups... or the 10am late start... or the much easier hike? Not sure, but most of the hikers signing up did not need an intro to canyoneering; they were well versed!

I had already decided to add in a second hit... an afternoon hike to make it worth the trip out to Dog. Now, with the large registration (50 hikers!?) we decided to split the morning group. Mary opted to lead the more experienced hikers up Lawson Spring North... I'd go as planned up the Steppes, ideally with the group needing an intro. It worked out great!

I had 16 hikers. Mary 24. We topped out about the same time...and joined up for the easy trail descent. Most of my group might have had a problem with a more difficult route; Some really needed the easier introduction.

Half the hikers headed home after our lunch break... the rest, plus a few new hikers, headed up through the Riparian area in Dog Canyon. For the hikers never there before it was a revelation... a true hidden gem. A number of the hikers turned back at Kong... some a bit later. For the balance of the group... a nice challenge up Devil Dog... and a difficult exit effort up Kong's Krack.

The hike ended with a descent along the Dog Canyon trail... and a surprisingly early finish.

I rode my bike ten miles out/back to round out the day. Good outing!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Feb 16 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Lawson Spring North Fork, NM 
Lawson Spring North Fork, NM
 
Canyoneering avatar Feb 16 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering6.60 Miles 1,700 AEG
Canyoneering6.60 Miles
1,700 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
wow... I'd forgotten how exceptional Lawson Springs drainage was... providing a bit of everything. Water, Big dryfalls, lots of bedrock...challenging scrambles. So nice that we'll be offering it as an alternative route to this Saturdays group hike... splitting the too large group for the morning hike. Mary will lead the Springs group.

After enjoying the Springs, we ambled up and around... then down into Dog Canyon bottom. We did a bit of exploring and plotting for future hikes, then enjoyed the greening Riparian area.

We checked out the potential for a more dramatic exit for Devil Dog second group hike this Saturday... proved too dangerous so did not set any ropes... We'll exit up and out Kongs Krack.

Great bit of hiking!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Feb 07 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Feb 07 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.60 Miles 1,900 AEG
Canyoneering5.60 Miles
1,900 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
A - Dry or little water; shallow or avoidable water; no wet/dry suit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Checking out yet another spur canyon on the south side...and enjoyed some great scrambling...and a couple great climbs!

Moved on to a rock hounding hike up above...sort of looking for Mary s missing horn coral.

Knocked off a third leg exploring the south side cave down by the lower trail.

Mary and Ross exited Lawson Steppes.

Too warm out!!!

Luster and Clinton scored the best rock.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Jan 19 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Lawson Steppes, NM 
Lawson Steppes, NM
 
Canyoneering avatar Jan 19 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.00 Miles 1,100 AEG
Canyoneering5.00 Miles
1,100 ft AEG
Canyon Hiking - Non-technical; no rope; easy scrambling; occasional hand use
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Not the day planned, but in many ways, a great day out! Plnned: Bishops Cap Cut. Too wet (dangerous) and Ross and Mary more in the mood for an easier hit. So... hiked up T106, then I diverted off for my sixth search and rescue of the mystery rock (left there a few years ago... for some odd reason!?)

Rejoined group after searching first ridge... Ross headed down and out. Mary and I walked back on to 2nd ridge with me recounting the specifics of my memory of the day when I abandoned the rock. Oddly, that allowed us to walk right over to it! It is now safely home!

I mentioned to Mary a cut that I wanted to check out for the last few years... an obvious bit of bedrock minor drainage than showed some potential. Beautiful day out... so, we headed over and dropped in. It proved to be a delight... all the way down and out. It is oriented just north of Lawson Springs... so, Lawson Steppes! It is ideal for an introduction to Canyoneering. It's going on the February calendar.

Now... another wet weekend headed our way... oh, well!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Jan 10 2017
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Devil dog Spur, NM 
Devil dog Spur, NM
 
Canyoneering avatar Jan 10 2017
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering3.10 Miles 1,600 AEG
Canyoneering3.10 Miles
1,600 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
This one has been on the list for years... now done!

This south side spur canyon in the Dog drainage (S3) is more of a ladder of bedrock, rather than the usual stairstep. It mixes in some large boulders to keep the climbing constant. Rock drama abounds, especially upon reaching the upper falls. The primary face is not viable. Moving over a bit to the East... a climbable slide... but not safe, at least not without setting ropes.

Today, we wanted to check out a connecting drainage further around to the East, so we followed the cliff base around to the obvious slot fault. Over grown, but doable. Nice climbs mixed in... no exposure! Exited right where we thought we would. Alas. did not get pics of the slot climb... hands were a bit busy!

Exited the Dog Canyon trail... short mileage but scored nearly four hours of great exercise!

Celebrated on top with Ross's applesauce muffins...
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Dec 30 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Hiking avatar Dec 30 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Hiking7.00 Miles 1,100 AEG
Hiking7.00 Miles
1,100 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Mary, daughter,Lynda,Ross...up the riparian...exit to trail below the Narrows. Great loop.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Dec 03 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Hiking avatar Dec 03 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Hiking6.00 Miles 2,100 AEG
Hiking6.00 Miles
2,100 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Our first Saturday Series caught nasty weather this month. 10 of the 23 hikers cancelled... but the ones that did the drive over got to enjoy a very odd environment for this all weather trail hike. I'll reschedule the planned Deadman Adventure to another month in this Series. Oddly, most of the group had never done this trail! So, the day worked out well. With visibility often down to less than 50 feet there was a very eerie feel to most of the trail. Fortunately, the fog broke briefly just as the hikers gathered up on the highpoint bellow the Eyebrow... they did get to glimpse some of the towering cliffs.

All in all... a good outing! This trail is good even in pouring rain... rare for our area.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
2 archives
Nov 25 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Hiking avatar Nov 25 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Hiking5.60 Miles 2,400 AEG
Hiking5.60 Miles
2,400 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Exploratory... checking out the options for approaching the Bishops Cap cut... alas... all we accomplished was to eliminate a variety of spur dryfalls! All were nice, but too difficult to use for an approach. We enjoyed a great exit along the lower bench cliffs, checking out the old mine out on the west end of the canyon.

I managed to play pincushion all day! Stuck way too many times... it even turned me back along one ledge... just too painful!

Views from the north side of the canyons are exceptional... too bad there is no looping trail allowing a true loop. We spotted a variety of additional Spurs to go explore... shorter day trips. Dog still has lots of bark!
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Mar 27 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Hiking avatar Mar 27 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Hiking10.00 Miles 3,400 AEG
Hiking10.00 Miles
3,400 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Supportive group hike for the El Paso hiking group... they wanted to hike down from Sunspot ( the way the guide book suggests!) so we hiked from the bottom up. I did not have to go all the way; Burt did the key exchange. Mary and Adam enjoyed the climbing portion of the trail, then an easy descent. A couple of the hikers did the full ascent/descent. Mellow day.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
2 archives
Mar 05 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Canyon Trail #106Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Mar 05 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering5.60 Miles 1,600 AEG
Canyoneering5.60 Miles
1,600 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
24 hikers showed to close out the Canyon Light Series...great group. Ascended through the riparian section... Up to the Narrows... Then exited to the trail using the new south side Spur...
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Feb 23 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Deadman South: Main, NM 
Deadman South: Main, NM
 
Canyoneering avatar Feb 23 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering9.00 Miles 2,400 AEG
Canyoneering9.00 Miles
2,400 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
I'd hoped to top out going up the main canyon today... and get back into writing route descriptions (I'm over 50 behind!!?) Alas... we needed many more hours and probably bivy gear to go higher than we hiked. I did not want a repeat of our 18 hour adventure when we hiked up and out the South Fork of Deadman a few months ago. So, hiked up to our turnaround safety time limit, then started the looping traverse north across the other two main upper drainages. There was not a nice Bench to stroll; it was steeper sidehill interrupted by numerous gully washes. Awkward, but doable. Ross scored an interesting bit of surfing when a 300# rock slid out from under him, carrying him as ways down the hill. Fortunately, he arrested before sliding too far.

The approach to Deadman begins as an easy amble cross country from Oliver Lee State Park. Taking off from the lower bathroom along the old jeep track to Larson Spring, the better route seems to be not crossing the North/South fenceline. Stay on the West side of the fence all the way across to the Deadman lower drainage, then turn up canyon for easy walking into the mouth of the canyon. An easier pace will get you to the wash in about 45 minutes (1.3 miles). Another 30 minutes will move you into the mouth of the canyon (1.8 mile).

The lower portion of the canyon provides easy scrambling and a variety of great rock textures. Crinoids and Horn Coral fossils abound.

At 2.6 miles you will reach the South Fork Dryfall... around 2.5 hours into your day at an easier pace. That canyon will allow you to climb and exit out onto the top of Burnt Ridge. If you've set up a car shuttle on West Side Road that route can make for an exceptional day. You can also access a south side Spur canyon: Monument Cut (still unexplored).

Proceeding up the Main Canyon, you soon begin what amounts to the longest, tallest set of Stairstep Falls we have yet to encounter. They are not all Dry; this canyon has water! We topped out the falls at 3 miles (3.5 hours taking lots of nice breaks!)

On this day we continued up through a series of over grown Springs until we had a clear view of the upper Canyon Fork. The next section looks to be massive boulder clusters... probably allowing us up and through? We stopped below the 6,000' level, around 11:30am. Our mandatory turnaround time was noon; we decide not to go higher, but instead to check out the side ridge that might provide easier up access. The Springs section had been nasty... really slow progress.

Once moving, we looped north instead of doing the ridge descent. We decided to check out the North Fork with the thought of dropping in and descending a nicer bedrock path. It is not bright to descend any canyon you have not ascended (unless you have lots of rope!) but it was too appealing to see new areas.

As we worked our way around and across, the weather shifted. Looking up canyon we noted a light blizzard sliding off the mountain... we hiked in snow for 30 minutes, then the day cleared. It was even hot for brief periods.

The bad sidehill eventually carried us over to the North Fork, south split. We could see some great potentials above us: slot cut that might let us up and out? For another day. and... no way down the cut... undercut cliffs... 40-70'. Yep... oh, well. Easy traverse over to the north split... same story! We were not getting down.

Fortunately, on a prior exploratory a few weeks earlier, we'd hiked the high bench out of Dog Canyon around to check out Deadman. Now, that was our target... move across to that exit. It was a bit nasty... Ross celebrated with his bit of rock surfing. But, it allowed us up and out. Once on the Bench we knew we had a soft walking route all the way around and down to the Dog Canyon Trail. We checked out an alternative down Scramble, but neither of us really wanted any more challenges. We did the extra easy mileage.

So... great day out. We spotted a variety of future hikes: couple cuts west side of ridge, Monument Cut, the two upper forks in the Main Canyon, the Slit Cut in North Fork, the Broad Cut in the North Fork, Dead Dog Upper... and then there's the Cleft, Upper Gap, Bowl and Slide. Those are all off Burnt Ridge. Too many canyons!

Hope we enjoy some mild weather this Spring.
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Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
Feb 16 2016
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 Guides 253
 Photos 6,930
 Triplogs 2,467

72 male
 Joined Nov 05 2008
 Cloudcroft, NM
Dog Point (Joplin Ridge via Dog Canyon)Southeast, NM
Southeast, NM
Canyoneering avatar Feb 16 2016
imikeTriplogs 2,467
Canyoneering14.50 Miles 4,750 AEG
Canyoneering14.50 Miles
4,750 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
 no routes
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Headed out before 6am...on trail out at Oliver Lee State Park around 6:20am. Ross and I met Mary at the trailhead. Started the hike off in T-shirt!

Easy but steady pace up to the Line Cabin...then the ever steeper hike up below the Eyebrow. Plan for the day: exit the trail before it climbs back to the East... heading for the low saddle overlooking San Andreas Canyon to the North. We followed the second canyon cut on our left and enjoyed some minor scrambling before exiting to the dividing ridge to move to the top of Joplin Ridge. This route was a re-peat from our snowed out attempt a couple months ago... and today was crystal clear vista views.

Once on the spine of the ridge we moved further to the north side and caught glimpses over and up into San Andreas. We spotted an new cut on the north side of the canyon that looks to offer a route up and through the blocking cliffs. It should allow us to get up to the old jeep roads on Burleson Ridge... another potential long/big day?

Great upper meadows and rock gardens... ever greater views...
... then, our real goal for the day: Joplin Ridge West: W4... Yvonne's Cut. We knew the canyon was blocked off from below...a short section needing rope for safety (30')... and we'd spotted what appeared to be a larger blockage above that... but no clear view of it from the bottom. Today was to determine what might be possible. After a fairly easy side hill descent we reached a canyon bottom that was changing to levels of bedrock dryfalls... easy drops. Finally, a bedrock section narrowed and dropped us into the Narrows, and real down climbing began. It was great! Layer after layer, level after level... very nice section.

We set a safety hand rope for a small 12' drop with rotten rock... otherwise, just nice minor scrambling.

In short order we made it down to the upper blockage. 40-60' Rap... our turnaround for the day. We could see the lower drop, so it will be a two rappel descent when we return in the Fall to do the entire canyon.

Mary was having an off day... Ross was not looking forward to the climb all the way back to the top of the canyon. Once up and out of the Narrows, I volunteered to route us on a "softer" loop up and out. They were both skeptical... but after minor grumbling followed me off and up. We got lucky. Moderate amount of climbing and we were south side cliff top... well below the mid ridge elevation. With luck we could loop this route all the way back to the trail... if Bishop's Cap Cut did not blind us off. It didn't... let us around and through with little extra effort... and the rest of the hike over to the trail was pretty much along Elk Trails. We dropped in below the Eyebrow at the exact point we'd projected an hour earlier. The views into and across Dog Canyon were exceptional. We identified another five or six potential cuts to check out.

The four miles back down the trail were slow... but nice. We hit the trailhead after sunset; drove home in the dark... nice twelve hour hike logged. Great loop. There is still more to check out from Joplin Ridge; we'll be back!

Pics posting tomorrow?
_____________________
Ageless Mind... Timeless Body... No Way! Use It and Lose It. Just the way it is...
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WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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