Mount Patterson, Arc Dome, Mount Jefferson
By: Ron Jones
Eighteen climbers met me Saturday morning in front of the courthouse in Bridgeport. Rather than take the usual route up Patterson from Swauger Creek I decided to make the climb from the east. We caravaned north from Bridgeport on Highway 182 and stopped at the Sweetwater Ranch for road information. The rancher was accommodating and Adrienne repaid his courtesy by backing her van into his pickup. After exchanging insurance information we continued north on the highway over the Sweetwater divide to the turnoff west for Sweetwater Creek. All vehicles including Detroit automobiles made it to the cabin at road's end. From here we hiked up the stream to an obvious ridge leading southwest toward the summit. We were soon free of timber and the views to and from the summit were spectacular. This is a highly recommended route with perhaps five to six hours required for the round trip.
That afternoon we caravaned via highways 395, 120 and 6 to Tonopah Nevada where I had arranged a steak barbecue for us with a Former nurse from Trona, Aggie Jordan. Fate repaid Adrienne by arranging a blowout in route. After a nice meal, some wine and our entertaining the Tonopah locals we drove north past Carvers on Nevada 8A. We turned in at the Twin River campground and slept at the road's end along the south fork of Twin River.
Sunday morning we climbed the 5,200 feet elevation gain up Toiyabe Dome via the long but exciting and beautiful route up Twin River. This has been described in the November-December 1978 SAGE. I will only repeat that as a hiking/climbing adventure, replete with colorful canyons, flowers, 10 or 12 crossings of a swift-running stream (I took two ropes with which we leap-frogged crossings up canyon) and finally an alpine-like open valley and a walk on the snow covered Toiyabe Ridge. I rank this trip with South Guardian Angel and Big Picacho as one of the two or three best in the DPS. We returned to the cars after dark and spent the night in the Campground.
The next morning we ate a good breakfast at Carvers where Adrienne bought a secondhand tire to replace her second blowout. We drove south on 8A to Nevada 69, east through Manhattan to the near-ghost town of Belmont. This town was a former County Seat of Nye County in the 1870's and 80's and has an interesting old courthouse The area has many old mines, ruined mills and smelters. We drove north on Nevada 82 for 5.1 miles and turned west on the dirt road which eventually takes you to Jefferson Pass. The peak was easily climbed from the Pass and with the aid of 4WD from a point 500 feet higher and nearly a mile closer. The driving and climbing routes again are described in the SAGE for Nov. -Dec. 1978. We returned to the cars by 2:30 or 3:00 and concluded a most interesting Memorial Day weekend.
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