White Gully

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 36.16616°N / 115.44263°W
Additional Information Route Type: Scrambling
Seasons Season: Spring, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Rock Difficulty: Class 4
Sign the Climber's Log



MoapaPk recommended this route to me the first time I climbed Red Cap; of the four routes I have climbed on the peak, it is the easiest to follow, has the least exposure, and has the easiest scrambling.

Getting There

From Charleston Boulevard (Route 159) west of I-215 and Summerlin, turn onto the Scenic Drive in RRCNCA. Just before Mile 3, you reach the signed Sandstone Quarry area (it is the third developed pullout along the road); turn off and park here.

Route Description

RT distance is about 2 miles, and elevation gain is about 650’ (4280’-4925’).

About 3 minutes along the Calico Tanks Trail from its junction with the Turtlehead Peak Trail (or about 5 minutes from the parking area), you will reach a spot where the trail bends sharply to the right as it meets a wide, gravelly wash. Leave the trail and follow this wash-- avoid going left when you intersect another fairly wide wash-- through and over some small dryfalls and narrow sections that would feel like slot canyons if the walls were a bit higher. This wash will take you into open terrain near the left end of the peak’s western face; from there, look for a use trail that runs parallel to the north face of Red Cap.

Follow This Wash  
Small Slot  

The “White Gully” is the first significant gully you will see; look for a cairn on a boulder about 15’ or so up the gully (the photo shows the gully and the cairn).
Warning: Boring Route Information

Climb this Class 3 gully; turn around once in a while to check out the interesting views of Turtlehead Peak through the narrowing walls. At the top, where the rock to your left changes to red, look for a tree growing next to the wall to your left. You must climb this wall, which unfortunately is smooth and, although not high, just high enough to present a problem. When I climbed the route, there was a cairn serving as a “step” wedged between the tree and the wall, and this cairn was a great help, even if it made me feel a little dishonest for using it. Without the cairn, the pitch to get up to the red summit area would arguably be low Class 5. With it, the pitch is Class 3 or 4; go expecting Class 4 so there won’t be any shocks. There is also another option a short distance to the right; it is a short Class 4 pitch that is mostly a friction climb but does have some small holds. Photos below show both options.

The  Step  

Alternate Way: SP member Stu Brandel found an easier way up about 150' south of the cairn step and tree. He says it is a little bit of Class 4 at the end but easier than the wall. Please see below for two pictures depicting this option and read the captions for additional information.

Another Route Up Red Cap 1  
Another Route Up Red Cap 2  

Once up, hike uphill, keeping to your right, until you reach the tinaja below the summit block. If the water is gone and the depression is not obvious, look for a conical red outcrop on the right near the cliff edges; the tinaja is directly to the left of this outcrop.

By the tinaja, notice a crack about 8' high (pictured below). Climb it (marginally Class 4, could get harder if small holds break off, though) and then wander a short distance counterclockwise until you reach an easy break that gives up the summit itself.

Red Slopes to Red Cap s Summit  
Red Outcrop and Tinaja  
Class 4 Crack  



Parents refers to a larger category under which an object falls. For example, theAconcagua mountain page has the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits' asparents and is a parent itself to many routes, photos, and Trip Reports.