BETA PHOTO: Gertch's Half Brother, old Southwestern Mountainee...
Named after a miner who met his demise here, Gertch isn't really a peak, but it offers a huge face with many possibilities. The normal route up Gertch is considered an Organ Mtns classic, and is well worth the effort you will expend to just get to this remote cliff.
Identify Gertch by first locating the Rabbit Ear's Massif and the low horns (refer to Ingraham's guide web.nmsu.edu/~amato/ingrahamgu...
. The large gap between these two peaks is called Big Windy canyon. Gertch is the face on the south side of Big Windy Canyon, a tall un-broken face that leads all the way up to the summit ridge. There isn't really a trail, although you may find a few cairns scattered in logical locations. Mostly you will be traveling over Cat's Claw and Prickly pear vegetation, so long/sturdy pants are a must.
Approach from the Topp Hutt rd. At the Topp Hut, strike out South towards a small hill. Pass this hill on its eastern flank and head towards a slightly larger hill, crossing a few gulches on the way. From the base of this hill, a ridge leads all the way up to the base of Gertch.
Descent can be made by scrambling off the North side of the ridge (4th class) and into Big Windy canyon, where some terrible bushwhacking will get you back to the base of the mountain. Alternatively, you can head back towards the Low horns and scramble down a gully to the South. Two rappels at the bottom of this gully will land you back at the base of Gertch, but not without its fair share of bushwhacking.
Climbing Season For the Organ Mountains area.
Weather station 11.3 miles from here
2 Total Climbing Routes
['4 Stars',1],['3 Stars',1],['2 Stars',0],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]
Classic Climbing Routes in Gertch
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Gertch
Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Gertch:
Featured Route For Gertch
Gertch's Folly 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c New Mexico
: Organ Mountains
: ... : Gertch
One of the Classic climbs of the Organ Mts. It takes an obvious weakness up the cliff with mostly good rock, and comfortable belays. The last pitch tackles a headwall with beautiful exposure and clean granite.Pitch 1: climb the corner under a large roof. Pass an old 1/4" bolt to a ledge just below the roof where another old 1/4" bolt is found. Belay from here, or continue up around the right side of the roof and belay at another large ledge with a tree.Pitch 2: Continue up the corner/crack syst...[more] Browse More Classics in New Mexico
BETA PHOTO: Gertch and Gertch's Half Brother (to the south of ...
BETA PHOTO: Gertch from SoCo approach
The relatively non-thorny west-side descent just s...
BETA PHOTO: The large gap is Big Windy canyon. Gertch is the b...
By Karl Kiser
Apr 2, 2008
The south descent was the most common. I expect the rap bolts need replacement.
By Bill Lawry
From: New Mexico
Nov 2, 2013
As Karl Kiser said, the rap bolts on the South Descent need replacement. As of 1 Nov 2013, the first rap anchor consists of two rusty 1/4 inch bolts (with chains) that are challenging to back up; the second rap consists of a single 3/8 inch (?) bolt which is also challenging to back up. We did the raps with a single 70 meter rope but believe a single 60 meter rope would be just fine. Also, be mentally prepared for a lot of relatively non-thorny bushwhacking above the raps: Photo.