Sunrise start from the abandoned campground
Climbed the southeast ridge then traversed north to Peak 6259. A classic day in Death Valley.
X2 for me, this time with a group of four, all a bit tired from festivities at the pads the prior night and from Eagle Mountain Traverse the prior day. A windy day with wispy clouds enshrouding the summit just as we were ready to descend. I enjoyed Grotto Canyon with Chris the next day on my way home. Sheephead Mountain and Kaleidoscope Canyon were quick colorful hikes a couple days prior to start my desert trip.
2nd ascent. Now 43 peaks into my second DPS list finish. Nearly stepped on a rattle snake along the way. It was sluggish with the cool weather and didn't even rattle, or move.
Fantastic hike, except almost stepped on a large sidewinder snake near the top!
I ascended the SW Ridge to the Pyramid (6,060 feet) and then the West Ridge proper to the summit. I descended the standard SE Ridge. This is a fine desert peak.
This peak has a lot of scree!
In 6 days we also did Eagle Mountain, Beatty Mountain, Bonanza Mountain, Sutherland Mountain, Rainbow Mountain, Black Peak, Thimble Peak, Manly Beacon, Golden Canyon Peak, Jubilee Mountain, and Corkscrew Peak. We also explored Rhylite Ghost Town, Leadfeild Ghost Town, Titus Canyon, Golden Canyon, Sidewinder Canyon, Badwater, Mosaic Canyon, and the Mesquite Dunes.
The first day of a four day Death Valley peakbagging trip. This was a nice peak. We also went and tagged the Funeral Mountains Wilderness Highpoint on the way back. It really felt remote out there.
After doing nearby Eagle in the morning, we popped over to do this in the afternoon, finishing after dark. Not especially clear, but we could still see all the way to the Sierra Nevada. Trip report.
Why spoil the fun? I didn't bother to consult Zdon's guide and had my wife read me the description from SP as we drove through Furnace Creek. I awoke the next morning, crossed the road and enjoyed the spectacular desert scenery. I saw the normal SE ridge route, but continued further around the mountain and headed up some interesting quartz scree farther to the east, eventually reaching some nice dark ridges with ample opportunities for scrambling and peering over long drop-offs. I seemed to end up one ridge over from the standard SE route, but was not on the long, interesting looking northeast ridge system (one more ridge over from me to the north). Summit views were spectacular on a clear, calm day. I stayed near the normal SE ridge route on the way down, but veered onto sheep paths and paths of my own creation at times. I never needed to backtrack, but was glad I had great scrambling shoes on for maintaining balance on the scree and sharp rock. Fun hike!
Although the weather and the views were good, what I remember most was a long slog up steep, loose slopes. Pretty much endless. Fortunately, the good views started almost immediately, and that kept my mind off the slogging!
After a couple of my friends expressed displeasure with the west ridge, I decided to give the other option a try. Once the ridge was found, the way up was pretty obvious. Class 2 all the way, but don't underestimate the tedious nature of loose talus! Fine desert peak...and it was all mine!
We began our hike the evening before and camped at about 3,600'. The next morning we started hiking a prominent ridge which looked like the southeast ridge. We encountered a couple of short sections of class 3 rock and reached the summit. We took an easier way done slightly to the north of the route we took up. We ran out of water at the beginning of the 3 mile slog back to the car. We were happy to reach the car which contained a few gallons of water. We should have brought more water along with us!
This was supposed to be a straight forward Class 2 hike on an unassuming mountain whose only "distinction" was that of being the highest point in the Funeral Mountains... instead it was an adventure from beginning to end!
For a full trip report with photos, you are welcome to visit my website: Peak Fever
Fine day, with Evan Rasmussen. Trip Report
My first peak in Death Valley. Solo hike of SE ridge.
Easy and enjoyable outing up the standard route. Excellent weather and views throughout. A good way to spend Thanksgiving Day.
Some sketchy moves along ridge, 3rd/low 4th class which made things interesting. Not your typical desert slog
Climbed from South West Ridge in 2009 and 2010. It took us 4.5 hours to the Peak and 2.5 hours down.
Total Distance of 8+ miles and Total elevation gain of 4,500+ ft. Lots of Class 3 and some easy class 4 scramble.
My Photo Album of 2009
My Photo Album of 2010
Nice hike but real windy.