Nevada birthday trip
- A recent trip to Nevada netted 5 peaks which will be thumbnailed here.
Hole in the Mountain with Dennis Poulin and Ken Jones. We were able to drive each of our three vehicles up to Lizzie's Basin. Not really recommended even if you have 4WD and high clearance (both required). Nice hike to the summit. Watch for gps track posted by either Dennis or Ken in the near future. (9/10/13) Register was missing.
Reveille Peak. Bad weather forced us to forgo our climb of Currant Peak and so we drove to the trailhead for this one. Richard Carey's trip report and description were very helpful. We endured a full evening of rain at the trailhead but the rain let up enough to allow us to climb the mountain the next day. (9/12/13)
Kawich Peak. Looking for a place where the weather seemed decent, we picked Kawich instead of the intended Quinn Canyon HP which was in the center of bad weather. Using Andy Martin's helpful trip report, we found our way there via Hall's canyon.While at our "trailhead", a storm came in and dumped on us all night. It was a bit wet going the next morning as we went through the wet brush which kept us cool until the sun came out. I actually thought this peak was easier than I had anticipated (thanks to Andy's directions with his Bob Sumner variation). The last 400 feet is a brushy mess but not as bad as I thought it'd be. We found some pink ribbons on the route, probably dating back a few years. They were helpful. It was nice to get this one. Fortunately the roads had dried out during the time we were on the mountain and we escaped the way we came in. (9/13/13)
Portuguese Mountain. Driving from Kawich, we drove US 6 and while getting rained on, drove to the turnoff for Portuguese mountain. We car camped a few miles up the road and hoped the skies would be clear in the morning (they were). Driving into the area of the mountain we found the roads to be a mess. Two notable washouts almost stopped us but we found ways through the brush to connect roads. Dennis had to rescue my truck on one occasion when my truck went into a washout section and got stuck. Carrying a tow strap is good insurance and his big Tundra easily extracted me from my predicament. I'd still be there shoveling if I was there solo.
We drove to within 3/4 mile of Little Ike Spring and hiked from there. Dennis found a great route all the way to the summit but arriving at the summit, we saw a black wall of clouds heading right at us and we barely had enough time to sign the register and start almost running downhill. John Ide had been there two weeks before us and before him, nobody in four years. We beat a hasty retreat to our vehicles and made it out of the bad road sections before a major storm hit where we'd just been. Whew.
Blue Eagle Peak. Following John Vitz's tips, we drove in via the Andrew Spring way and the roads were nasty with one mud section I almost got stuck in on the way in and on the way out. Ugly conditions but we had been promised by the weather report that the weather was going to be better (it was). We parked near Tank Pass and made our way up and over some ridges to get on the mountain proper. Dennis once again led a good route and it worked well for our needs. Wonderful views from the summit and I celebrated my 73rd birthday with the summit as a gift. Dennis was patient with my slow progress both up and down this one as I was feeling everyone of those years on this hike. With promises of eating at Margaritas in Ely, I moved as fast as I could and I thank Dennis for treating me to a birthday dinner. The drive out to US 6 was more of a thrill ride than what you can get at Magic Mountain, yikes. I hope they repair those roads.
Many thanks to Dennis for spending most of a week with me as we rattled around on some very isolated roads in the Nevada outback. It was rewarding adventure wise and wonderful to get some difficult peaks that I will always look back on as part of my Nevada birthday trip. Thank you Dennis, it was very much appreciated. He let me pick the peaks and never complained once about my choices. Sorry to Ken about not saving Kawich for him but the weather gave us few options in our choices.
Dean Molen - older and maybe a bit wiser.