Cibola County High Point Trip Report

Mount Taylor

Date: May 26, 2000
Author: Ken Jones

For those not inclined to Martinize by driving as high as possible, or without high clearance, a pleasant hike on a good trail will take you to the summit of Mount Taylor.

In Grants NM, on the I-40 business loop (Santa Fe Avenue), find the intersection with state route 547 (First Avenue). Turn north and follow SR 547 through a right turn at 0.8 miles and a left at 1.2 miles. Continue to where the pavement ends at 13.0 miles from the start. This is a multiple-way intersection. Just before the end of the pavement, the rightmost fork (gravel) is forest route 193. Turn right, and follow the road about 5.1 miles from the pavement. On the left, set back from the road, is a sign indicating "Gooseberry Trail" and "T77". A few feet further ahead, there is a parking area on the right.

The Gooseberry Trail (or Gooseberry Springs Trail) leads to the summit of Mount Taylor. About a half mile up it crosses a road -- you might be able to drive here, but we didn't try. About a mile up, it breaks out of the woods and stays in open meadows almost to the summit. The summit is perhaps 3 miles, and 2000-foot gain, from your vehicle. There is a sign ("Mount Taylor, 11,301'") and a register in a mailbox on the summit. It is quite a pleasant hike. We were fortunate to have clouds and a breeze to hold the temperatures down. We saw some patches of snow in northern exposures, but the trail was completely dry this drought year.