Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Mt. Wilson Peak from the Back - 10/9/12

                           Mt. Wilson from the Front of the Escarpment

                                  View from the Peak of Mt. Wilson

 The Super Tuesday Hikers transferred over to Red Rock Canyon NCA today starting out with a bang! A new hike for the club, Mt. Wilson Peak from the backside! The most prominent peak of the Red Rock escarpment and for which many call the escarpment the Wilson Cliffs. Today's report was contributed by Larry D. (narration, GPS, and photos) and Susan M. (photos). We really appreciate you guys sharing your day with us!

 Today, ten able hikers, with Richard Natale and Steve Anderson in the lead, hiked from the First Creek Overlook trailhead in Lovell Canyon to the north summit of Mt. Wilson, the highest point in the Sandstone Escarpment.  There was a fairly even mix of Wilson first-timers and old hands.  It was a perfect day – 70°s cool, full sunshine, and just enough breeze.

                Team Photo on the Keystone Thrust (Add Larry, the photographer)

                       Ascending the Sandstone Portion of the Hike

 The hike, a six mile out-and-back, had three segments in both directions:  the ascent from the trailhead, mainly up the wash, to the top of the limestone ridge; the descent down the east side of the limestone ridge to the saddle between the limestone and the sandstone;  the ascent up the sandstone to the north summit of Mt. Wilson; then repeat in reverse!  The wash was – well, the wash.  The “crux” was the east side of the limestone ridge – steep, loose, brushy, and often semi-exposed.  Most agreed that down was more difficult, due to the loose and slippery footing.  It involved a moderate amount of Class 3 scrambling…and bleeding!  The climb to the summit, over sandstone gravel and “pavers” and some steep-but-grippy slab, was the best part of the hike for this writer.  We were somewhat surprised to see Ponderosa pines in a small valley below the top.  

And the summit…WOW!  This peak has, by far, the most spectacular east-facing panoramic view of any peak in the Escarpment!  Nothing impedes the view.  It’s no wonder when one considers the normal west-facing view of Mt. Wilson from SR 160 – all sheer cliff.
As usual for a Tuesday hike, the pace was fast and the route was challenging.  We summited in three hours and descended in slightly less, covering about 7 miles with 2600 feet gross elevation gain and loss. 

                                                Almost There!



Larry Dunn said...

Thank you, Kay, for publishing our excellent Tuesday adventure! We missed you n the actual hike, but sincerely appreciate your willingness to accept our data and photos and turn them into a wonderful blog post.

Anonymous said...

interesting! but some content part text with link is not appearing proper, u may check it in edit mode once..

Las Vegas Cockapoo said...

Sorry, anonymous, I checked the edit mode but it is working fine on my computer.