Pepper Peak

(West of Red Rock, near Las Vegas, NV)

Harlan W. S.
Tues., Dec 27, 2005

Take state route 160 west toward Pahrump. About 3.3 miles west of the Mountain Springs fire station, take the Lovell Canyon road N (right). Travel 7.6 miles N on the Lovell Canyon Road and turn right on the old Red Rock Summit Road (the southern half of the Rocky Gap Road). I took this road as far as I dared in my Subaru, to the "Park" on the map below. (The RR Summit Road was in terrible shape. I saw recent tire marks up to my descent point, but there were 2'-diameter boulders in the road to the north, and several significant washouts lower down.)

I have been interested in these peaks for years. While climbing on "Snoopy" I looked south and saw this incredible crag. There is an absolutely sheer 300' drop right below the crag, with an additional 300' you wouldn't want to bounce across. The view from the top is so expansive, you really can't capture it in photos.

This ridge was apparently surveyed, as there are a few aluminum-in-wood survey marks down low, and there were two cairns that look like survey posts on top of the peak. I left a mini-register in one.

The route along the ridge (western route) is preferred; you can avoid almost all brush by a circuitous route, going up and down a lot. The GPS put the mileage -- on averaged mode -- at 4.15, but I'm sure it was much more in practice. The descent route ran into a few dryfalls and some brush, and should be avoided

I meant to go to the slightly higher (and more wooded) peaks to the north, but I had started the hike after noon, and had allotted myself just three hours. Next time, I'll have to start earlier -- say, 11 AM. (Update -- Dec. 29, 2005 trip to additional peaks.)


The ascent is the western route, class 2. The descent is on the east, and is partly class 3.


View of Griffith at left, Harris at right.


Across the Rocky Gap, SSE to Potosi in the background.





View S, Southern Rocky Gap Road (south of Red Rock Summit).


View N on way up.


Top of the crest, view SSE toward Potosi





Panoramic view ~N. Here is a key to the peaks, showing (L to R) Griffith, Harris, Mummy, WPR, Big Mama, Sheep, Madre, White Rock Hills, East Madre, Damsel, North Peak, Muddy, and Frenchman.


A narrower view N.


Look at me, Look at me! Not much room to back up.







Another view S.





Heading back down S, with a view of the enormous drop-off.


More view S.


Looking E at the back of Mount Wilson.





SSW to Kingston Mt. in CA.


Wildlife eating pinyon nuts.







Wildlife eating juniper berries.


These interesting and ignored peaks are on the east side of the Red Rock Summit Road.






Rough road.


S to Pa's Rump.