By: Bob Sumner
Ten desert peakbaggers met at 6:30 AM at the junction of Hwy 190 and the Big Four Mine Road. We caravenned to the dirt road, and parked in a large flat area on the left side of the road. This is where the road turns northeast and heads directly for the mine.
It was comfortable t-shirt weather as we hiked up the remaining stretch of 4WD road to the base of the ridge. Then up steep scree-ish slopes to get on the ridge proper. The ridge had many level stretches which provided some welcome relief. By the tine we reached the summit plateau, high clouds were overhead and a strong cold wind was blowing. We sought shelter behind some rocks just north of the summit, signed in, and had lunch.
The view from the summit of Panamint Butte was OK, and we could see snow on many of the surrounding peaks. Most agreed it was a good conditioning hike (5000' gain in 4 miles), but that the peak is not one of the best on the list. The descent went smooth1y, and we were back to the cars by 3:45 PM.
Seven people then gathered for an early dinner in Panamint Springs. Eat here only as a last resort - their pathetic food made McDonalds seem like a Beverly Hills restaurant. Special thanks to Barbara Cohen for assisting on this "I" provisional lead. The participants were Charlie Knapke, Gene Mauk, Delores Holladay, Rose Stein, Stuart Rigney, Doug Hatfield, Tom Moumblow, and Steve Nardi.
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