Castle Peaks, New York Mountains
By: Jon Petitjean
Our group met at 7:30 Saturday morning at the Nipton-Ivanpah corner for the climb of Castle Peaks (Dove V.A.B.M.). We had eleven participants; Dave Burdett, Pat Lavengood, Jack Grams, Harold McFadden, the Akawies, the Magnusons and Petitjeans. After allowing our extended five minutes for possible late-corners, we drove up the Ivanpah Road to the site of Barnwell. Here we took the Hart Mine Road for 5.8 miles to a road leading northwest (left). We were able to follow this all the way to within 1-1/2 miles from the summit. All dirt roads were in excellent condition; however, our car did manage to have a gas line jar loose from road vibration, thus causing a sudden loss of forward movement. Luckily, I discovered the minor problem just before people were about to tamper with the engine itself. However, this 25 minute delay didn't deter us too much, so our roadhead departure was still made at about 9:30. The difficult part of this impressive crud heap Is Its summit block. It is a rather loose Class 4 from two possible routes. All eleven made the summit despite the biting cold wind. We managed to reach the cars for lunch, but not until about 2:45. After lunch we headed for camp near New York Mtn. We followed the New York Mtn. Road to the road leading north to Giant Ledge Mine. We followed the road to the mine for about 1-1/2 miles to an excellent camping area with ample firewood. While most of us cooked dinner, Harold and Jack took the easy way out and drove back to Stateline for dinner. Too bad they missed the fragrance of skunk during their supper:
We were greeted Sunday morning by a cold breeze and an overcast sky We were able to drive an additional half mile or so before getting started with the hike. To mike a short story shorter, we made the summit in a couple of hours in 29° weather and blowing wind. Our choice was to end the day short and head for home (at about 1:00). Despite the cold, it was rather a fun trip, and as usual, the group was compatible and enjoyable.
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