Otero County High Point Trip Report

Date: September 2001
Author: Scott Casterlin

If hiking up the trails (recommended), rather than the ski runs at Ski Apache, look for the marked trailhead on the right at the last left-trending curve into the ski area parking lot. Good quality trails #15 and #25 are sometimes frustratingly level, but they go to the top. Watch for the correct switchbacks and signed junctions. I think if you stay left at all signed forks, you'll make it, I think. Signed Ice Spring was flowing nicely in a drainage along the trail near the crest and the final push to the top is on a ski run. The lookout is just southeast of the gondola top.

There were no signs or fences on the way to Blanca and the final push to the top is not exposed if you use the faint hiker-made route just west of the "crest", as others have reported. What little trash there was I carried out. The descent down Apache Bowl, southernmost part of the ski area's top, and the Deep Freeze runs, along a service road, is quick and made nicer by a running stream. You'll come out at the ski area and can walk up the road back to the trailhead parking area where you parked anyway since the ski area parking lot is locked up at 4:30 pm.