North Spirit, NV (5189’)

NW of Laughlin

pics by Harlan W. S.
Feb 23, 2008

 

The granites of Spirit Mountain are fairly young – about 17 million years.  Immediately to the N are much older rocks (more than a billion years) that were intruded by the Spirit Mountain Pluton. North Spirit is made of the old gneisses.

 

Years back, I saw this peak from the top of Spirit, and wondered about the possibility of a loop over both peaks. This hike was an attempt to scout out the route, and look at the Proterozoic rocks on the N end of the pluton.  My trip was an offshoot from an LVMC trip to Spirit Mountain proper; the other folks went up the traditional granite peak.

 

The trip began somewhat inauspiciously, when I gave Joel incorrect directions to my house.  Then on the way down, we drove through rain, and finally into a cloud near Searchlight.  The campsite was foggy, damp and cold, but the next day dawned bright and clear.

 

 

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100k topo.  The red track denotes the traditional

Spirit hike; the blue is for the northern peak.

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24k topo for northern peak.There is an old rough road for about a mile. On the way down, I stayed W of the wash below 3500’, and found much better footing, allowing me to jog.  The round trip took about 3h 20m, with a substantial stay on top, and was ~6.5 miles with ~2500’ elevation gain accumulated.

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We camped in rain and clouds at Christmas Tree Pass. The yellow blob at left is Bob G; at right, the fainter orange blob is Joel B.

 

 

 

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The next morn, I start at the SE end of the blue route.  This view is to the NW; the peak at R is the N summit. The lighter rocks at L are from the 17 Ma Spirit Mt pluton; the darker rocks at R are the much older gneisses.

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View W toward alternative Spirit Mt. access.

 

 

 

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Rough granite spires to S.

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View SW to northern end of Spirit proper.

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View NE to Lake Mojave, as seen from gneiss ridge.

 

 

 

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View NW up ridge.

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View S from summit of north peak

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View E.  Hualapai Mts are in distance.

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View NNE; Copper Mt looks unimpressive from this angle.

 

 

 

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View W to Castle (CA), Hart (NV) and Clark (CA).

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MacLeod and Lilley register. The incorrect elevation is something of a mystery, since older maps also assign 5189’ to this peak. The GPS gave ~5200’ at the summit.

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Previous visitor was Nevada Bob.

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Dang itchy foot!

 

 

 

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A closer view S to Spirit.  There is an apparent diagonal “weakness”; however, there is a rough airy edge (hidden from view) that one must cross to get to the true summit of Spirit.  (In the photo, the true summit is visible at L.)

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This photo was taken looking up; the terrain is nearly vertical.  I came down this, unwisely, after deciding to descend S from the north peak.  I think it would be best to look for a descent route on the sides of this stuff.

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View W from the saddle between Spirit and North Spirit.  This ravine looks OK for ascent.  Note the broad gravel road to the valley.

 

 

 

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Another view toward the unknown road.

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On the route down, one encounters some small, mellow dryfalls.

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Stope blocks of amphibolites in the granites.