Back 2022 Trek 12-23 Forward

Strenuous; Approximately 76 miles; Maps required: north; No KMZ data available

Trek History: New as 12-23 in 2020; 12-23 in 2021-22

This trek offers breathtaking views on a grand scale, beginning with a scenic bus ride through the pyric ecosystem of Cimarron Canyon and subsequent regrowth from the 2018 Ute Park Fire. Your first night is with your Ranger at Cimarron River Camp, but be sure to enjoy the programs at Cimarroncita before you hit the trail. The next morning you will begin your ascension to Head of Dean, where the staff will share with your crew valuable conflict resolution skills. The Continental Tie & Lumber Co. awaits your crew at Pueblano before you cross Wilson Mesa and the waters of Middle Ponil Creek to historic Rich Cabins. Milk a cow, feed the chickens, and enjoy the Rich family gathering at night before setting forth the next morning into the Valle Vidal. Enjoy the Earth’s magnificent geology as you hike along steep cliffs and the flowing stream that created them as you head to Little Costilla Low Impact Camp for a night of rest. In June, explore the Shuree Cabin site and Shuree Ponds sites. (Little Costilla is closed to the public for elk calving season in June.) The cabin is a historic recreation of a cabin that existed there in the early 1900s. LA Times newspaper baron Harry Chandler used to bring silent film stars of the era to this cabin, and Shuree Ponds is the site of the Penzoil Corporations retreat facilities, prior to the land being donated to the Forest Service. In July and August, enjoy the challenge of climbing Little Costilla Peak! The next day brings you the opportunity to learn about the history of Ring Place or ride some outstanding mounting biking trails with the staff at Whiteman Vega. As your crew returns south, enjoy a night at Seally Canyon camp, near the old town of Ring, NM. Make your way to Dan Beard to try new elements and see how far your crew has come as a team since your time at Head of Dean. After camping for the night at Cook Canyon, head to Metcalf Station to drive some spikes and learn about the railroading history of the North Ponil, then on to the archeological site at Indian Writings where you can help decipher the ancient petroglyphs. One more breathtaking view will be enjoyed up and over Hart Peak, before you reach the original Base Camp, Ponil. Lasso a tall drink of root beer at the local saloon…this cantina gets lively at night and you won’t want to miss the action. Circle the wagons and follow the dinner bell for an authentic chuckwagon dinner, then off to the Cantina Show for a raucous evening of music and festivities. The last roundup gets you in on a morning horse ride before returning you to the Ponil Trailhead as you hop the bus to the present era and modern amenities found at Base Camp!

Per the Guidebook to Itineraries: "Due to potential emergencies, such as catastrophic fires, Crews must not deviate from their assigned itinerary. Changes are only permitted for bona fide medical emergencies and must be approved in advance by the Logistics Department."

- No photo available for this campsite or this program at this location. Click icon for specific needs.

DayCampProgram FeaturesCampsite Features
1CHQ Trailbound Opening Campfire Commissary; Showers; Trading Post;  
2Cimarron River Ranger Training Trail Camp; 

Food Pickup @ CHQ TrailboundCommissary; Showers; Trading Post;

Bus to Ute Park Trailhead

Hunter Education & Laser Range @ Cimarroncita
3Head of Dean Challenge Events  
4Rich Cabins Crosscut Saws / Tie making @ PueblanoCommissary; Low Impact Camp;  

Food Pickup  

Hike over Wilson Mesa  

5Little Costilla Low Impact Camping Low Impact Camp;  
6Little Costilla Side Hike Little Costilla and/or Ash Mountain Low Impact Camp;  
7Ring Place Food Pickup Commissary; Low Impact Camp;  

Mountain Biking @ Whiteman VegaLow Impact Camp;
8Seally Canyon Water @ Ring PlaceLow Impact Camp;  (Commissary; Low Impact Camp; at Ring Place)

Conservation Project @ Ring Place 

Folk Weather Forecasting @ Ring Place 
9Cook Canyon Challenge Events @ Dan BeardTrail Camp; (Low Impact Camp; at Dan Beard)
10Indian Writings Petroglyphs Tour Showers;  

Railroading @ Metcalf Station

Blacksmithing @ Metcalf Station 
11Ponil Atl Atl Darts @ Indian WritingsCommissary; Trading Post; Showers;  (Showers; at Indian Writings)

Cantina Show  

Chuck Wagon Dinner  


Food Pickup  

Western Lore / Branding  
12CHQ Homebound Horse Rides @ PonilCommissary; Showers; Trading Post;  (Commissary; Trading Post; Showers; at Ponil)

Awards Campfire  

Hike to Ponil Trailhead
Warning: Itinerary details provided by PhilSearch are for planning purposes only.  Only the current year's "Treks" book and the addendums to it, if any, should be used for final trek selection.

Crews passing through staff camps are not scheduled for program. If time and space allow, some crews may be able to participate in some of the programs offered.

DayCampPotential Additional Program FeaturesCampsite Features
2CHQ TrailboundVisit the Villa PhilmonteCommissary; Showers; Trading Post;
National Scouting Museum
Cimarroncita3D Archery
Ute Park Pass Hike Prep
Hike through 2018 Ute Park Fire Zone
3Head of Deanpickup crew based challenge events
4PueblanoContinental Tie & Lumber
spar pole climbing
Rich CabinsEvening musicCommissary; Low Impact Camp;
Cabin Tour
Animal Care
6Little CostillaSide Hike Ash MountainLow Impact Camp;
8Ring PlaceAstronomyCommissary; Low Impact Camp;
Historic Homestead
Side Hike to McCrystal Creek Ruins
9Dan BeardLeave No Trace TrainingLow Impact Camp;
10Metcalf StationMorse Code
11Indian WritingsArchaeologyShowers;
Petroglyphs Tour
12PonilCantinaCommissary; Trading Post; Showers;
Western Lore / Branding
Cantina Show
Climb Hart Peak
Cowboy Action Shooting
CHQ HomeboundVisit the Villa PhilmonteCommissary; Showers; Trading Post;
National Scouting Museum
This list is not complete and is dependent on the route you take each day.