Wheeler Peak, NM

11:04 a.m. on August 29, 2011 (EDT)
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I'm going to the Taos ski valley the 6th thru the 9th of Sep.  I'm going to climb Lobo peak and Wheeler Peak.  I have heard there is a new trail which was built by the forest service to replace the old climber's route to Wheeler from Williams lake.  Supposedly, the trail has many switchbacks and the old scree field is easier to negotiate than it used to be.  Has anyone been up there recently and taken the new trail?  I was going to hike the long route using Bull of the Woods and return the same way.  I was also considering making it a loop by descending from the saddle between Walter and Wheeler to Williams lake.  Thanks for the info.

1:08 a.m. on October 7, 2011 (EDT)
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How'd it work out?  Did you use the new trail?

1:17 p.m. on October 7, 2011 (EDT)
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Just saw this. I went up Wheeler Peak by the new trail on Sep 18 and again with Barb on Sep 26. Sep 18 was a picture-perfect day, while Sep 26 produced a bit of rain on our way down, along with graupel. My previous experience with Wheeler was in 2006, same time of year. That time I went up by the gully from Williams Lake, encountering a whiteout snowstorm about 800 ft below the summit. Turned around, of course. The new trail is much easier than the old direct, straight up way, though one party on the 18th and one on the 26th came up the old route. The scree and talus sections are much easier on the new trail. However, the new trail is much longer, about 2 miles (per the GPS track) than the old, direct route. The climb is still about 2800 ft (compared to Bull of the Woods, with a gain of more like 4800 ft).

View from the summit

The new trail

4:32 p.m. on October 7, 2011 (EDT)
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I went up the new trail on 9-8 in very changeable weather conditions.  Went up Lobo also.


11:52 p.m. on October 7, 2011 (EDT)
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Great trip, rob5073!  I haven't been out to those mountains since a long time ago in summer jobs with the Forest Service--nice to see they're doing such good work with new trails like that one to Wheeler (great photo)!  Amazing how you can walk out from behind a big rock in those places and suddenly see the most awesome panoramas! 

Thanks for taking time to take pics for the rest of us.

2:51 a.m. on October 19, 2011 (EDT)
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Looking for anyone who might have hunted the Wheeler Peak area neat Taos NM. Drew a mule deer tag this year. I have looked at Google Maps but cannot determine the best access routes to Wheeler Peak. Thanks in advance.

9:48 a.m. on October 19, 2011 (EDT)
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I did see two guys with pack horses when I hiked up to Lobo Peak.  They had spotting scopes and were looking across a valley to the west of the peak.  Didn't see anyone scouting on Wheeler.

May 24, 2018
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