Conejos County Highpoint Trip Report
Conejos Peak (13,172 ft)
Date: July 1, 2005
Author: Layne Bracy
The three county highpoints for Conejos, Archuleta, and Rio Grande each require
easy to moderate hikes but are fairly remote, requiring lots of driving on
unpaved roads. I decided to try to get all three with a loop from South Fork.
The total time, round trip, from South Fork was 15 hours.
I left South Fork at 3:30 am, heading west on Highway 160. Turned on Park Creek
Road (FR 380), taking that to FR 250 through Platoro to FR 105. FR 105 is
signed "Lake Fork Ranch". As I neared the TH, I passed a sign that said "Trail
Closed" so I kept driving until the road got too sketchy. By this time, I had
already seen many elk, including a calf or two. I would see 40 or so this day,
on all three hikes and along much of the drive.
I started hiking up the road at 5:52 am, shortly reaching the road's end and
realizing the closed trail was probably what I had wanted. Not wanting to turn
around, I just headed towards the western portion of the slopes ahead.
The bushwhacking was easy and I was soon strolling along the rolling tundra slopes
towards Conejos. My route was along the ridge above Tobacco Lake.
Summitted at 7:21 am. A new register was placed in May 2005 with just a few entries.
Had a nice view of my next target, Summit Peak.
Returned to the car at 8:48 am.