Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Failed Attempt at Anthony's Nose

Last night I camped in the BLM lands off the Sierra Vista Trail. I noticed another dirt road just across the highway from where I spent the night and so this morning I decided to give that road a try. Sure enough there was a BLM sign indicating that the area is off-limits to target shooting. Despite the sign there were shotgun shells and bullet casings everywhere. As I parked the car I realized that the area looked familiar. Noelle and I had hiked from the parking lot several years ago to visit Anthony Gap Cave.
Noelle in Anthony Gap Cave

Anthony Gap Cave Entrance

I made my way up the trail to the top of a ridge and then descended into a pleasant little valley. There were lots of small peaks all around and I decided that the one that looked the most like a human nose must be Anthony's Nose.
Summit Objective
I decided to make that peak my objective for the hike. There was a user trail that ran through the valley, eventually leading to the junction of two canyons. I headed up the canyon on the left, eventually finding myself on a well defined trail. I made a right turn onto the trail and followed it for a bit until I came to an area of slatey looking rock. At the slatey looking rock I headed uphill to a small saddle. There was a cairn of small, brown stones there.
Cairn and Mountain
One of the stones had a name carved into it.
Carved Rock
Another of the stones had the name of the saddle scratched into it. Unfortunately, I could not make out the name. From the saddle I started to make my way up a ridge. The ridge was covered in thorny lechuguilla plants. I've never seen the lech so thick. It was difficult to find places for footing, and sure enough I accidentally stepped on one of the spines. It went right through the sole of my boot and pierced my foot. Luckily, the wound was not deep, but it sure hurt!

Soon I found my way to the top of my objective and quickly realized that it was not Anthony's Nose.
Eric on Summit
I didn't consider the trip a failure though, as I gained considerable intelligence from that high precipice. I could see the ridge that I could take if I ever again decide to attempt an ascent of Anthony's Nose ever again.
The High Franklins
It was a quick, downhill walk back to the car and I was able to stop and admire some of the wildflowers as I made my way down.       

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