This is your official invitation to join me on Guadalupe Peak to celebrate the conclusion of the 50 by 50 adventure!
In February of 2010, breathless, blistered, and muscles aching I stood atop my first mountain, giddy with exhilaration. That mountain was the 12,662′ Borah Peak, the tallest mountain in Idaho and my good friend and EO Forum Mate Rick Overholt stood beside me. Rick had climbed a number of mountains already and invited me to join him on this climb. Standing there I felt such an overwhelming sense of accomplishment, that it was there on that mountaintop that I set the 50 by 50 goal.
To walk, climb or crawl, the the highest point in every state in america by my 50th birthday.
So now I am inviting you to join me on the final climb of my 50 by 50 adventure. I intentionally saved Guadalupe Peak, the Texas state highpoint, for last with the plan of standing at the summit of my home state and 50th state highpoint on my 50th birthday, which is October 29th 2016.
About Guadalupe Peak
Guadalupe Peak is an 8 mile day hike with a 2,906′ elevation gain. There are no special skills other than walking uphill required, but you should be in reasonably good shape. It should take around 8 hours to summit the mountain and get back down. Here is National Parks Service Document which describes the climb and gear required in detail.
The top of Texas is a 9 hour drive west, very near El Paso, and just south of Carlsbad. We will be setting out in BigByrd (our Motor Coach) October 23rd. To our knowledge, nobody else is coming that early, but we plan to spend some time exploring that part of Texas.
Basecamp will be at the Carlsbad RV Park and Campground, located at 4301 National Parks Hwy Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220. This park is 47 minutes north of the highpoint and has lots of amenities, like full RV hookups, pool tables, indoor heated pool, and even a couple of cabins. Click here for a full list of amenities. There are lots of tent and RV sites, but only 2 cabins, so I would suggest making reservations now.
Climb Day – Saturday October 29th
Not everyone will be climbing; Susan for one will stay behind and prepare for the celebration that evening. On October 29th, I will be arriving at the trailhead at 5:00AM, will get my gear squared away, and we will leave the trailhead at 6:00AM. Sunrise is at 8:14, so it will be dark for the first 2 hours, so bring a headlamp. The actual Guadalupe Peak trailhead is located at the West end of the Pine Spring Campground (WE ARE NOT STAYING HERE) 400 Pine Springs to Guadalupe Peak, Salt Flat, TX 79847.
A Vintage Port for the Summit
Chris Britt, my stepson, surprised me with a very special bottle of 53 year old vintage port which we will crack open at the summit and toast to our success. He told me that he tried to find a 50 years old bottle of port, but this was the closest he could get to 50. I thought it was a very nice gesture, and appreciate his thoughtfulness. At one point when it seemed impossible to get them all done, and I was considering extending the goal completion date, it was Chris who convinced me to stay the course and finish them by 50. He also offered to fly me to the Guadalupe summit in his helicopter, but of course I declined.
The Evening Celebration
After we have drank our port and smoked our cigars, we will descend the mountain and head back to Basecamp at the Carlsbad RV Park and Campground where we will be staying. We will take a few hours to clean up and rest, then the real celebration begins that Saturday evening at sunset which is around 7:00PM.
Some folks are leaving Sunday, we will be leaving Monday. So that is the current plan, stay tuned to the Danger Network for updates.
Current RSVP list
Ting Ting Bensen
Michael Scogin – Maybe
Mrs. Scogin – Maybe
Robert Danger Byrd
Carlsbad RV Park and Campground (This is Basecamp)
4301 National Parks Hwy
Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220
Phone: (575) 885-6333
Note: Located 47 minutes north of the trailhead on 62, this is where we will be staying. This is an upscale RV park with lots of amenities.
Guadalupe Peak Trailhead
Note: The Guadalupe Peak trailhead is at the West end of the Pine Spring Campground.
Pine Spring Campground
400 Pine Springs to Guadalupe Peak
Salt Flat, TX 79847
Phone: (915) 828-3251
Note: While there are tent and RV campsites here, it is simple desert camping with no RV hookups and they do not allow you to run a generator after dark. There is no reservation system, so all sites are available on a first come basis. According to the park rangers, they typically book up this time of the year. Due to these limitations, WE WILL NOT BE STAYING AT Pine Spring Campground, but at Carlsbad RV Park and Campground listed above.
Carlsbad Caverns National Park
727 Carlsbad Caverns Highway
Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220
Note:We will be too close to Carlsbad caverns to pass up the opportunity to visit this national treasure.