Miller Peak #1
We Walked In the Clouds
My Fun Meter is Pegged at Zero
Miller Peak: Elevation 9,466 feet high (Chiricahua Peak 9,759 feet highest in Cochise Countyty)
Montezuma Pass: Elevation 6,575
Distance from Montezuma Pass to Millers Peak 5.3 miles (10.6 miles round trip)
Elevation change 2,891 Feet (over a 5.3 miles! hike)
Participants: Phil & Lisa Sloss, (and their 3 dogs), Mark Wallace, Alan & Michelle (and their 1 dog), Richard & Tammy (No dogs) and me (also with no dogs)
Some random thoughts from our Jacuzzi while drinking Rough Stocks “Black Label” Whiskey (114.8 proof)
We left Montezuma’s Pass at 8:50 AM, temperature 39 degrees, wind 25-35 MPH with gusts up to 45 MPH and arrived back at the starting point around 3:00 PM not a lot warmer, wind even worse…one long, cold, windy day.
Starting out we could not see the mountain top or much else due to low hanging clouds (we would not see the top very often on this day). Along the way we went into the clouds, then an” Ice Forest”, then thru the “Ice Storm” , finally just plain high velocity wind at the top!.
Ice Forest: The winds were driving the clouds up the mountain side, forcing the moisture from the clouds to deposit and freeze on the grass, brush and trees. When the sun would come out, which was not often, it would reflect off the frozen landscape, like diamonds. BEAUTIFUL BUT SOOOOO COLD AND WINDY.
Ice Storm: While the Ice Forest was beautiful, the ice flying off the trees at 45 MPH HURTS. Conclusion: east side of mountain “GOOD” (no wind), west side of mountain “Bad” (windy side).
While the wind was always blowing, once at the top it was at least 45MPH. Wind chill: God only knows what the wind chill was BUT it was COLD and WINDY! Phil found a small 18” high ledge, at the top, which we huddled behind while we ate lunch. Visualize this: 8 adults hunkering down behind a 18” ledge, trying to stay warn and eat all the while trying not venturing above 18”into the wind. Ok, some of us are short BUT not THAT short. Lucky for us, while we were at the summit, the clouds broke and the sun came out so for a few minutes we had a spectacular view of the surrounding area below us.
If we walked 10.6 miles the dogs walked 25, as they would run up and down the pathway we were hiking on. Oh did I mention that the path was only 18’’ wide? Most of the time and when the dogs past you by, they just blew by….made for some very interesting moments when the drop offs are 500-1500 feet straight down!!!!!!!!!!!!
About half way back Phil made the comment “My fun meter is pegged at zero”!! Arriving home Mark wanted Cherie (his wife) to come fetch him with the wheelbarrow so he would not have to walk home…Phil, being the good driver/neighbor drove him ALL the way across the street to his home!
This whole adventure was my idea (I just had not planned on doing it this day) and I said “if I EVER have an idea like this again, kick me in the ass” AND if these people ever go along with another one of my ideas I will kick their collective asses!
Injuries: MY Toe, when I arrived home other than being totally exhausted, worn out and generally beat up, I felt pretty good…until I took off my left hiking boot (not really boots but they are NOW! I would latter buy Kerr hiking boots). My next to small toe, on my left foot hurt while I was hiking but not all THAT bad. After viewing the toe, a ½ inch piece of skin was hanging from it: INSTANTLY it became excruciatingly painful…ouch!! My little piggy hurt too! Oh I smacked my head when I feel so maybe that is why I wrote this…brain damage???
Note from Patti – “the brain damage happened waaaaay before the hike!!!!!”