[cdt-l] Conditions in the Black Range

Alistair and Gail Des Moulins aandg at telusplanet.net
Sat Nov 25 12:22:52 CST 2006

Some more details on water in the Black Range section:
We did this just using the 1:100,000 maps from the CDTA NM guidebook.

Oct 26th:
The last water we got was from the North Garcia Windmill about 6 miles west 
of NM163. Very good flow from pipe into large above ground tank.
We did see another above ground tank about 2 miles west of NM163 just south 
of the 'trail' but did not go to check it out.
Oct 27th:
We crossed NM163 and then headed ESE then SE following CDT markers then 
turned SW on a 2 track on the divide. The trail then left the divide and 
descended SSE into Wahoo Canyon reaching bottom about 1.3 miles east of the 
divide. There was some water in the east flowing tributary. The trail then 
headed SW up another tributary and there was more water in this one. We 
filled up after cooking lunch. Where the valley turned SE the trail 
switchbacked back to the Divide. We did not see Wahoo Tank. After the 
highest point in this section we descended to a col where we crossed NNW-SSE 
trail. Here right on the divide there was a tank which we assumed was Dry 
Time Tank. It had some water in it and we topped up. On the map the tank is 
marked as being on the south side of the Divide.
Oct 28th:
We found water in a west flowing stream just over a mile SW of Dolan Peak. 
Not much of a flow but it looked good.
We also saw water in the Kline Mt area.
Oct 29th:
The trail route is rather confusing between Frranks Mt and Lookout Mt. We 
were heading SE of the divide west of Frranks Mt and came to the new fence 
we'd seen earlier. Do we follow the fence or cross? The new fence goes SE 
away from the divide. We saw blazes on the east side of the fence so climbed 
over it. Came to a col then good trail traversed South side of Frranks to 
another col. Then we saw blazes on Divide climbing up SSE we followed these 
up to another top. We then followed blazes WSW but then lost route. We 
headed down to the low point of the divide north of lookout Mt and we'd 
obviously missed seeing the new trail which would have saved us the extra 
ascent. Good trail then took us on west and we came to the fence again. 
There was a blaze NNW along the fence line - many trees have been felled to 
put in this fence so the fence line is the easiest option in this area.
Excellent trail on west side of divide South of FR226A the road to Lookout 
We found water in the east flowing branch of Chloride Creek where the 
descending road initially comes to the Creek. However, more plentiful water 
was in the north flowing branch after we turned south.
Some water damage to trail where it climbed up south of Chloride Creek. One 
confusing unsigned junction near divide - we took the higher trail which 
deteriorated before we joined a better trail just NW of Byers canyon.
Oct 30th:
South of Byers the trail becomes rather indistinct in burned areas with just 
sawn logs and the occasional CDT marker guiding us. On the plateau north of 
Fisherman's Bluff we lost the route altogether due to the burn and all the 
downed trees but we found the trail just before descending round the west 
side of the bluff itself. South of the bluff the well graded trail was a joy 
to hike, great views, but there are some thorny plants starting to come up 
on the trail. One section on east side of divide seemed to be returning to 
nature more than the rest of it.
Diamond Peak Spring: just a trickle - we did not need any water - it looked 
like it would be difficult to collect water here.
When trail turned SE at head of Sheep Creek (west side) it became a real 
obstacle course due to numerous downed trees and some of these thorny 
plants. Some water by trail in the headwaters of Morgan Creek (east side of 
Trail then follows valley of Black Canyon down a bit. Found a spring here 
and got water, animal crap in area. Came to stream junction and turned east, 
better water in this tributary.
Oct 31st:
Slow flow at Squeaky Spring (which was silent!) but we were able to fill up 
our containers. Trail here is on the west side of the divide. We then came 
to a 4 way trail jct. We dumped our packs and climbed up the 1/4 mile trail 
to 10,000'+ Reeds Peak. I climbed the lookout for one of the best views on 
the whole CDT. We then followed Trail 74 SW along the divide. Water in 
stream just north of Signboard Saddle. We then headed SW along divide and 
then SW on NM61 to NM35. No water along here. We then walked to Lake Roberts 
to get more supplies.Water in Sapillo Creek but we did not take any.

Despite some hard work getting over logs and a bit of frustration trying to 
find the route at times, we thoroughly enjoyed this section of the CDT. I 
was going to hike the Gila route and save the Black Range for when we do the 
GET but the record monsoon this year made me decide to hike the Black range 


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Brett" <blisterfree at yahoo.com>
To: <cdt-l at backcountry.net>
Sent: Wednesday, November 15, 2006 1:30 PM
Subject: Re: [cdt-l] Conditions in the Black Range

> Many thanks for the update.
> Based on 3 seasons of observation (spring and fall) I now suspect Chloride 
> Creek is fairly dependable, except following a low-snow winter or weak 
> monsoon. Chloride Creek is about 10 miles north of usu. reliable Diamond 
> Peak Spring, and 28 miles south of Dry Time Tank. (Dry Time is probably 
> the least reliable of the three, although it has had some water during the 
> last three seasonal observations.) I've also seen water a short distance 
> off-trail in the drainages on Kline Mtn, which is part-way between 
> Chloride and Dry Time.
> See the updated Grand Enchantment Trail water chart for more info:
> http://www.simblissity.net/get/water-chart.shtml
> (FWIW, the GET Town Guide is also updated for '06-'07.)
> 2005 CDT hiker Trippin Ant (Anthony Culpepper) is currently hiking the GET 
> westbound. I haven't heard from him in a while, but suspect he's probably 
> in the Gila by now.
> - blisterfree
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Simblissity Ultralight :: One-of-a-Kind Designs for the Great Outdoors
> www.simblissity.net
>>>I'll reply in more detail when we get home. Water was in Dry Time tank, 
> in Chloride Creek especially the north flowing branch. Diamond Peak Spring 
> was
> just flowing and would have been difficult to collect from. Plenty in the
> headwaters of Black Canyon. Squeaky Spring was good. Worst trail 
> conditions
> were just north of Fisherman's bluff and in the aspen section just north 
> of
> the head of black canyon both areas due to downed trees.
> Dates Oct 27th - 31st
> Alistair
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Simblissity Ultralight :: One-of-a-Kind Designs for the Great Outdoors
> www.simblissity.net

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