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Mojave Preserve and Providence Mtns Rec Area over New Year's

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Mojave Preserve and Providence Mtns Rec Area over New Year's

Postby wingding » Wed Jan 04, 2006 12:51 am

On Friday, December 30th I drove to Mojave National Preserve and hike to Old Dad Mountain in the afternoon, which turned out to be a really nice hike. Then in the evening I camped at Kelso Dunes with Scott, Ron, Ray, Juliet, Gary, and Joe.

Here are my pictures from the Old Dad
Mountain hike and Kelso Dunes:

Here's my summitpost page on Old Dad:

On Saturday, December 31, 2005, we toured Mitchell Caverns and did a hike in the Hole-in-the-wall area. Then Joe and I camped out at the campground near Mitchell Caverns where we met up with Harlan, Courtney, and Rick. The winds picked up on Saturday night and were really strong that night - rocking our vehicles and blowing tents over, but it calmed down just in time for our hike to Fountain Peak in the morning. Sunday morning we all headed up the trail to Crystal Springs with the intention of getting to Fountain and maybe Edgar. Harlan, Courtney and Rick were moving really fast and looking for some extra fun along the ridge that leads to Fountain Peak; so we split up at Crystal Springs. Joe and I stayed in the overgrown canyon and the rest headed for the ridge.

We bushwacked through the vegetation and then when the canyon split we went right but after a while we decided that taking the left canyon would have been better because the terrain was getting pretty nasty, so we traversed over to to the other Canyon. From there it was steep but we were moving along okay. More choices - which saddle on the ridge was best? We picked one and climbed up some more steep loose rocks only to see that we'd have to traverse over a pretty rugged ridge to get to the summit of Fountain Peak. At first we thought we'd drop down and try to pick the ridge up closer to Fountain Peak, but we were feeling pretty beat up with our bodies all scratched and covered with stickers from cacti and other bushes; so we called it a day.

Other than getting scratched up more and falling on another cactus, the hike back down to was a speedy retreat - nothing like the hike up.

We got back to the parking lot about the same time as Courtney, Harlan, and Rick who not only got to Fountain Peak, but also made the rugged Class 3/4 traverse to Edgar Peak.

Pictures from Saturday and Sunday:

I didn't get too many pictures on Sunday - I guess struggling too much with the cacti to take pictures.


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Postby ironmike » Wed Jan 04, 2006 7:38 pm

Have you camped at Mid Hills yet? I recall there being some decent developed sites there once upon a time.

I'd also recommend some exploring back in the Granite Mountains. If you have 4WD you can access some outstanding secluded "use" campsites.

Thanks very much for the trip report. I've had similar experiences on Fountain. The ridge up there is much rougher than it looks from the valley.
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Postby wingding » Wed Jan 04, 2006 9:25 pm

Mike, I think Midhills campground is closed because they had a fire at some point. I think they'll open it again eventually.

Last year we did Granite Mountain - that was a fun hike. I'd like to check out some of the petroglyphs in the park next time I go out there and do Clark Mountain. Yes, I have 4WD - it's really helpful out in the desert. There are backcountry roads all over the place in the Mojave Preserve - it would be fun just exploring some of those roads some weekend.

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Postby madeintahoe » Thu Jan 05, 2006 9:26 am

Kathy I like the new looks really nice! Do you like them? This is a beautiful area it looks like. Old Dad Mt. has really neat old rocks it looks like. I love the picture of the Kelso Dunes, the color is beautiful!
Mitchell Caverns look pretty cool..that must have been quite interesting to see all that.

Beautiful sunset pictures..especially that one..those colors! Fire red and orange. How nice to spend the New Year in such a beautiful place. One of these days I will get myself down in that are so lucky you are fairly close to all these desert areas.
Thanks for sharing :D
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Postby wingding » Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:35 am

So far, so good with Smugmug. I'm working on transfering most of my photos over there. Webshots only allows so many photos and I want my pictures in one place, not on a bunch of different webshot accounts. Smugmug will allow me to have one account and all my pictures in one place. I can also customize it if I so choose.

I was deleting photos from webshots to stay under the photo limit, but I got to the point that I didn't want to delete more or open a second account.

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