We’re in Mexico to celebrate the new year with Sary’s family in Monclova, but we went to the city of Monterrey in between Christmas and New Year’s to visit other family. Monterrey is surrounded by mountains on all sides, and one of the trademarks of the city is the Cerro de la Silla, which means saddle mountain. It really does look like a saddle with a sharp peak on the north side and a little more rounded one to the south with a U-shaped valley in between.
Sary has told me how amazing it is to see the city from the north peak and she went there several times during 1996 when she lived in Monterrey. Her uncle takes a yearly trip up to the peak later in January, but this year we convinced him to take us while we are here before New Year’s. I am very glad he did. It was quite a trip.
We started ~6 am by driving to a neighborhood at the foot of the mountain and literally walking through a tunnel under somebody’s house to get to the beginning of the trail. And I use the word trail liberally here, because it’s just some arrows painted on rocks to give you a hint of where to go. It was hard. And I say this having been down to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.. it was hard. The trail is completely unimproved and almost every step is on a rock. We spent 3-1/2 hours climbing to the top, sometimes on all fours pulling ourselves up. But it was worth it. The view from the top is, well, it’s like this:
El Pico Norte
Gracias, Tio Lico, por prestarme la gorra (the hat)! We will, of course, post some more pictures when we get a chance, but let me put up one more to give a little perspective.
Pico Norte in context
My legs are still killing me, but it was a great way to finish up 2006! Happy New Year!!