Borrego Mountain-East Butte

As the end of the year keeps getting closer, I have to be mindful of my remaining peaks. Today I planned to summit either 3 or 4 peaks out in Anza Borrego. The forecast was for highs in the mid-80s, so by the fourth peak, it might be too warm to want to do. It also meant back to being at the trailhead at dawn.

First up was Borrego Mountain East Butte. Unlike last time, where I went up the boulder-filled gully, this time I was going to try a different route from the west side. I drove up Goat Trail, a dirt road across from the Desert Ironwood Resort. Just as the road makes a sharp left is a nice parking area and the trailhead.

The sun had just risen, but it had not cleared the Butte yet, so I grabbed my gear and crossed over the land bridge to Butte.

Once across, I began carefully climbing up the rocky slope.

While not the craziness of the gully, this route still took a little care and effort. A few cairns mark the route, but if you have some desert route-finding skills you should be able to pick your way up.

Once I reached the top of Butte, I made my way to the high point and the register. I signed my name as an x2, then took in the views.

As I knew the forecast was going to be in the mid-80s, I did not linger. Back at the car, I was off to Borrego Mountain West Butte, about 10 minutes away. Peak #84 was now done.


I am an avid peak bagger, sometimes backpacker, and former sea-kayaker living in San Diego. In 2019, I became the third person to complete the San Diego 100 Peak Challenge. Not stopping with that accomplishment, I set my sights on the harder San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list, which I completed in 2021. In addition, I have conquered several Six-Pack of Peaks challenges (SoCal, San Diego, and Arizona-Winter). Beyond attempting the San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list a second time, I am looking forward to exploring new summits and new adventures across the southwest. 

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