“The most commonly used route to access Kachina Peak and Wildy Bowl during the spring backcountry season.”
— J. Bella
Type: In Bounds (completely
inside ski area boundary)
This route is open to public access after Taos Ski Valley has closed for the season, usually during mid-April. During the ski season when resort operations are underway, the ski area does not allow uphill access. Like most of the routes in this area, this one crosses several avalanche paths. Standard protocol for traveling within avalanche terrain is recommended.
Begin at the Bavarian Restaurant, or the Williams Lake Trail
hikers parking on Kachina Road in Taos Ski Valley. Follow the ski runs alongside Lift #4 to the top of the lift, at the bottom of Kachina Peak's north facing basin. The route continues up Kachina's steep north-facing terrain and makes several switchbacks, across the bottom of the K Chutes and the Main Street ski run before reaching the ridge just above treeline. Follow the ridge south to the summit; be aware that the cornices to the left drop onto large cliffs and should not be approached.
Spring dumps during April and May are common, and most years these are the snowiest months in New Mexico's northern mountains and avalanche danger can be high. This route is not recommended immediately after a storm or during the afternoons when wet slides are probable. When conditions are determined to be safe, this is the most used route to access Wildy Bowl and Kachina Peak's backcountry terrain.