Signal Peak

July 2, 2024

I may have conquered my fear of Signal Peak. I'd been warned that the trail was extremely steep. I was also aware of an extensive burn scar from the Signal Fire of 2014. But with temperatures in the upper 80s PLUS humidity from a series of powerful monsoon storms, we were running out of options. Signal Peak, at least, less than 15 miles from town, with with a dense forest cover and a trailhead elevation of over 7300', checked the most important boxes.

views of Mogollon Mountains through the trees

The Signal Peak trail climbs 1700' in 2.5 miles. We were surprised to find that although it is unrelentingly steep, the grade is reasonable, with many switchbacks

nice trail throught the woods

We also appreciated a tread mostly composed of "pine straw".

hikers admiring the view

Dave, Debra and Janett stopping to catch our breath and enjoy the view.

forest with a carpt of pine needles

Fire damage is evident along the ridgeline when approaching the summit via Signal Peak Road, but the trail up the northwest side is blessedly forested all the way to the top.

Signal Peak Lookout

It took us just two hours to reach the lookout at 8,986 feet.

Lookout with Debra and Smoke in the foreground

It is well known as the nicest of the 10 remaining lookouts in the Gila National Forest. We were thrilled when Jim, the lookout, invited us up for a better view.

view from the tower toward Silver City

And wow, what a view it was, freshly washed after yesterday's big storm. This is looking southwest toward Silver City.

view toward Tadpole Ridge from the tower

Looking west toward Scott Peak and Tadpole Ridge.

nicely kept yard below the tower, seen from above

A lovely backyard, very nicely kept.

bright orange outhouse against a green forest

Yes, it's just a port-a-potty, but I love the bright orange against the emerald green of the forest.

western wallflower

Western Wallflower.

Thanks Jim (and Smoke!) for allowing us to visit! And thanks to #GilaHikersNM for accepting the challenge! Signal Peak is our new favorite summer hike!