Glen BM P300 RS
California Ridge P500 RS
Glendale Point P300 RS
Peak 2,050ft RS
Peak 2,335ft RS
Peak 3,001ft P500

Feb 16, 2024

With: Tom Becht
Iris Ma
Tom Grundy

Story Photos / Slideshow Maps: 1 2 3 GPX


Our first day in the Las Vegas area had four of us camped in the North Muddy Mtns off the Hidden Valley exit on I-15, northeast of the city. The range is primarily limestone, much like the larger Muddy Mtns to the south. We did a couple of summits in this range, and also did some summits further north, on both sides the Interstate. The first five summits are found in Purcell's Rambles & Scrambles. None of these were long outings, but the six of them would keep us busy for most of the day.

Glen BM

There are two very tall antennae that have been installed between the first two peaks of the day, above a geologic feature called The Bowl on the topo map. A decent dirt road leads from the Hidden Valley exit into the range, primarily to service these two towers, each several hundred feet high. They are so high that they are the highest points in the North Muddy Mtns even though they are not installed at any summits. We piled four of us in my Jeep and took the road up to the towers. Locked gates keep one from driving to the towers, but they weren't our objective anyway. We parked just behind the gate leading to the NE tower and started from there for Glen BM, less than half a mile to the NE. We went up what we thought was the East Ridge of Glen BM, only to find we had accidently climbed its lower sister to the south. The two are connected by a ridgeline that we crossed in 13min, taking about half an hour to reach the summit. In addition to the expected benchmark, there was a register left by Mark Adrian in 2007. There were three other parties to sign the register before our arrival. The previous party was in 2023 and had evidently left a small scorpion in the register jar. It was cold but still alive when we freed it among the summit rocks.

California Ridge

Back at the Jeep, we took another fork of the road towards the SW tower, stopped a second time by a gate, leaving us about a mile to California Ridge. This is a more interesting hike than the previous one, following the North Ridge, narrow at times, with swell views and some decent scrambling along the way. There are five points that Richard Hensley identifies as of similar height along the ridge. Three of these have spot elevations. LoJ has the spot elevation 952m as the highpoint, and it was the second point that we visited (we also visited the 1st point with the cairn, and unlike Richard, measured it to be a few feet higher than the second point). Not knowing that Richard had done more homework than ourselves, we decided to call it good and didn't visit the other points, though we acknowledged they certainly looked of similar elevation. Richard identified the fourth point, with a small 950m contour a the highest by two feet. Might have to come back to visit this one again.

Glendale Point

We drove back out to the highway and headed north, getting off at the Glendale exit a few miles later. We took a series of dirt roads right off the exit to reach Glendale Point and Peak 2,050ft. These were some of the easier summits of the day, with Glendale Point taking less than ten minutes to reach the top from where we parked on its south side.

Peak 2,050ft

Getting to this one was more involved. It could easily have been ascended from the west side where the better roads are, but we took some pretty bad roads around the north and east sides to make it as easy as possible - just five minutes to the summit.

Peak 2,335ft

There are easier ways to do this than what we did. There is a truck parking area on the southbound side of I-15 with a gate that provides access to the telecom installations atop Peak 2,335ft on a good gravel road. To reach it, we would have to drive five miles further north to the next exit so we could then get to the southbound parking area. This would have been a 10 minute detour, but instead we began a driving odyssey from the I-15/SR169 junction that took us on some pretty bad (but fun) roads that see little traffic to get us to the telecom installations via the backdoor. This would take us more than twice that of the detour route. There is a gate keeping one from driving to the very top, so this was another five minute hike to the summit from where we parked at a lower installation. This summit used to be part of the Airway Beacon mail route from back in the 1920s. The concrete arrow that pilots would use to guide them was still serviceable near where we parked.

Peak 3,001ft

This is the next summit north of Peak 2,335ft, not part of the original plan. But since we found ourselves with some extra time in the afternoon, we started looking around for something extra and settled on this one. From Peak 2,335ft, we followed some BLM roads to a powerline road heading northeast that would get us within about a mile of the peak on its southeast side. We hiked across desert flats to the base of the peak where we ascended a limestone gully that was surprisingly fun. So much so that we descended the same way. There is another point to the south with the same number of contours that looked to be of similar height. But since LoJ and PB both had the northern point as the highpoint, we simply visited that and called it good. Back at the Jeep, we drove the powerline road another 4mi to the next freeway exit. It would have been easier to drive back to the truck parking area and go through the gate there, but at the time we thought this gate was locked (it's not, a sign on it simply says Keep Gate Closed).

I drove the others back to the Hidden Valley exit and their vehicles. They would drive out to the Valley of Fire road to camp for the night while I headed back to Las Vegas. My wife's plane was due to arrive in a few hours, giving me time to check into our motel and take a shower. She was in town for a girls' club volleyball tournament where she would be reffing the next three days. So while she was doing that, I would drive back out each morning for more peakbagging with the others...


Submit online comments or corrections about the story.

More of Bob's Trip Reports

This page last updated: Wed Feb 28 09:36:06 2024
For corrections or comments, please send feedback to: