Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Santa Fe National Forest: Nambe Lake

Despite Parker's difficulties with the hike yesterday, Noelle and I felt confident that he would do better in the cooler, shadier mountain air today. Our proposed hike would be one listed as difficult in our hiking guide; a six mile round-trip hike to Nambe Lake.

We started our hike at the trailhead at the Santa Fe Ski Area parking lot.
Hiking Winsor Trail
We followed the Winsor Trail for a couple pleasant miles into the Pecos Wilderness before turning onto the Nambe Lake Trail.
Hiking in Spruces
Eric at Pecos Wilderness Sign
At the junction of the two trails was a wonderful panorama of Santa Fe Baldy, a 12,000 foot plus mountain that towers over the southwestern Pecos Wilderness.
Santa Fe Baldy
Once on the Nambe Lake Trail the hike got considerably more strenuous. We roughly paralleled the Rio Nambe as it cascaded down the mountains.
Rio Nambe Cascades
Small Waterfall
It was a steep trail, with lots of pockets of deep drifted snow in the dark, shady areas of the canyon.
Snow on the Trail
We crossed through two small meadows before making the final ascent to Nambe Lake.

Nambe Lake is a beautiful spot. There's the shallow lake surrounded by a ring of spruce trees and the surrounding peaks. We lingered for a while at the lake, took some photos and then felt forced to move on due to the serious insect hatch.
Noelle and Parker at Nambe Lake
Happy Family at Nambe Lake
I'm not sure what type of insects they were. They weren't biting, but there were just so many of them as to be annoying.

The hike back to the trailhead went much faster than the hike up. Still, the deep patches of snow slowed us down on places. Despite the difficulties, this turned out to be our favorite hike in quite some time.          

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