Guadalupe Peak Climb

	Guadalupe Peak Trail 
        Elevation - 8,749ft
        Texas State Highpoint

It was time for Eric, my son - HikerHayes Jr., to climb his first mountain. We decide to start with Guadalupe Peak in our home state of Texas. Jason, my good friend and climbing buddy was out in west Texas building a house, so on October 3, 2003, he met Eric and I in Van Horn where we ate a quick meal of Mexican food before heading to the trailhead. The drive from Van Horn to Guadalupe Peak was desolate. Nothing but sand, rock, cactus, and mountains for miles and miles. Be sure to fill up with gas in Van Horn!! We checked in at the ranger station and headed for the trailhead. Guadalupe Peak is actually one of the finest examples of an ancient, marine fossil reef on earth. There are alot of switchbacks as the trail winds up the east slope and the terrain is mostly rocky desert until you come around the north side of the mountain where you hit a forested area of junipers and Ponderosa pines. We made it to the designated camp grounds and started setting up camp just as a storm came through. Quickly we got the tent up and everyone settled in as the thunder and lightning came... Nothing like camping out on top of a mountain during a thunder storm!!

We got up early the morning of October 4, and headed for the summit. Shortly after leaving camp, we came to a very well built bridge spanning an area of the cliff side trail, crossed and continued the climb to the summit. Looking back at the bridge is when you notice just how much of a drop off the cliff there is! As we got closer to the top, Eric really kicked into gear and quickly scrambled to the summit with Jason and I close behind. We were on top of Texas, 8,749ft and Eric had bagged his first peak!! It was time to head back to camp, pack up, and climb on down. Eric loves Mexican food so the tradition of Jason and I eating Mexican food after a climb was fine with him!! Jason and I both agreed, HikeHayes Jr. was ready to head to Colorado!!

HikerHayes Jr at the trailhead!

Alot of switchbacks!!

Crossing the bridge

Looking back at where we camped..

Guadalupe Peak Summit - 8,749ft!! Highest Mountain in Texas!