Alpine Loop Labor Day 2022

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OCWanderer

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Lee
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Wright
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Starting to think about a trip to the Alpine Loop in late August/ early September '22. Will make the trek up from Orange Co., CA and a buddy is planning on driving in all the way from TN. Have never been to the area and would greatly appreciate some local knowledge.
 
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OCWanderer

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Irvine, CA
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Lee
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Wright
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8569

how to break up days on the trails, where to camp, how big of crowds to expect the week before Labor Day, etc. I'll take anything you got. Never been there and can't be over prepared.
 

zgfiredude

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Shoot me a PM, and I'll get back to you. I've been there several times (all on motorcycle) and am going back this year with the Jeep. Tell me about how much time you have, rig types, experience level off road, hopes, etc. and I'll offer some help.
 

DaJudge

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I have been several times a year since I moved to NM. zgfiredude is right though, we need more info.
It will be crowded but it will be much worse on Labor Day weekend than the week before.
 

OCWanderer

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Lee
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Wright
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I have been several times a year since I moved to NM. zgfiredude is right though, we need more info.
It will be crowded but it will be much worse on Labor Day weekend than the week before.
We'll be there the whole week before Labor Day and will leave the Saturday morning of Labor Day weekend to hopefully avoid most of the crowds. At this point, hoping to get some advice on how to plan out days on trail. Which trails can chain together? Where should we start and end days to be most efficient with our time? This may be the only shot I get at getting up there, so want to make the most of it.
 

DaJudge

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Glen
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Do you want to base camp or camp somewhere different each day? We always base camp, you can reach every trail and be back in time for dinner from one location.
If you don't already have it, get Charles Wells' book for the area. It is very good for planning your day and gives a good description of the trails.
Alpine Loop itself can be done in a day easily. You can string together Corkscrew, Hurricane, stop at Lake Como, and California with a stop in Animas Forks ghost town.
Some people put together Black Bear and Imogene but I have never done them together. I usually do one or the other and then Ophir or loop around on the paved roads.
If you search for "greater alpine loop" you will find a map that shows all of the trails in the area.