"follow Ironwood Road, which is a partially paved road that is covered in dirt"
Actually there's no pavement once you start on Ironwood Rd. The major dirt roads in the valley are treated with an oil-based coating once or twice a year to keep dust down.
The directions to the summit are excellent btw. I would only add that Microwave Rd is periodically graded and often any vehicle can drive up there. I managed it in a low-clearance van all three miles to the top.
First, thanks for the excellent description. It was easy to follow, and made my weekend to be able to explore such an empty area.
I did this late April, 2013. I'd like to add that the bushwhack over the ridge had a lot of ticks, so take usual bushwhacking precautions.
Also, they may have redone the roads; I wanted to report slightly different distances. Car odometer, GPS, and Google Maps all somewhat agree that If you park 700 yards up Microwave road as suggested, total on-road distance is 5.7 mi to summit. Starting up higher from the base of ridge (again staying on the road) the distance to the doppler on summit is 3.2 mi.
Hope this helps others. Thanks for your helpful post!