Hachita Peak Trip Report

Hachita Peak (6,639 feet)

Date: November 9, 2005

Note: All NAD27 UTM coordinates are in zone 12R.

Hachita Peak is the Little Hachita Range highpoint and is on the New Mexico Fifty Finest list of prominent summits. Bob Packard and I climbed it as part of a longer journey bagging New Mexico prominences.

From the junction of Route 146 and Route 9 in Hachita drive west 2.2 miles to a left turn (south) onto Little Hachita Road. Continue another seven miles as the dirt road curves to the west along the north side of the range, parking at this saddle with UTM (740090 E, 3527988 N) and elevation 5,100 feet.

Hachita Peak is the southeasternmost of three bumps on the southeast to northwest-oriented main ridge. It is hidden from view at the above carpark by the slightly lower subpeaks in one's viewshed.

A dirt track heads south towards a windmill about ten minutes into the hike From the windmill note a broad jeep track that heads up a ridge that trends south and eventually meets the main ridge here with UTM (740110 E, 3526373 N) and elevation 6,200 feet.

At this point the northwestern subpeak is immediately to your southeast. It does not need to be climbed. Locate a horse path that traverses around the subpeak's southern face, gaining very little altitude in the process. The horse path is narrow and rocky, eventually reaching the saddle between the northwest subpeak and the middle subpeak.

From this saddle the path continues by skirting the middle subpeak around its southern face, and with little gain or loss in elevation. After the middle subpeak is behind your left shoulder, muliple braided paths appear as you start descending perhaps 50 feet to the saddle between the middle subpeak and the main peak at UTM (741063 E, 3525522 N). From this final saddle ascend the main peak with about 200 feet of remaining elevation gain.

Bob Packard and I consumed 1.5 hours for the ascent and only 1 hour on descent. Together with a nice half hour summit break the entire affair lasted 3 hours.

Hachita Peak should not be climbed in the summer owing to the excessive temperatures. The net elevation gain is 1,500 feet; the total elevation gain 100 feet more. Round-trip distance is roughly 4 to 5 miles.