Granite Hills HP
The Granite Hills are a small range in Nevada northwest of Reno and just north of US395. Already they are feeling the encroachment of Reno Sprawl to the east where the Reno Stead Airport and a number of suburban neighborhoods are located. The hike to the highpoint from the southeast off Red Rock Rd is little more than 2.5mi with 1,000ft of gain. There are much shorter routes from the east, but I wanted to tag the named Granite Peak located in the SE corner of the range. I had finished watching my daughter's team play volleyball in the morning wave at a tournament held at the Reno Convention Center and was looking to get some hiking in during the remainder of the afternoon. The weather was decidedly rough - just above freezing and precipitating lightly at the start, alternating between rain and snow. Visibility was only a few hundred feet and there would be no views anytime during the hike. The forecast had this continuing through the night so I knew it wasn't going to improve and I even left the camera in the car to keep it from getting damp. Any pictures I might have taken would only be that much worse than the usual assortment. In fact this was almost the worse sort of weather to be out in - colder and it would be all snow and I'd stay dry. Warmer and it would be, well, warmer. In these conditions I would likely get wet and cold and go downhill from there. But for two reasons I went anyway: I had been sitting all day in a teen estrogen-charged environment and needed to get outside, and I also looked at it as a challenge - it would only be a few hours and I wanted to see how I might manage.
I managed just fine, thank you for asking. My feet got somewhat wet as the drizzle slowly worked its way into my boots. My legs were pretty soaked since I had no rain pants with me. Both of these areas were moving continuously so they never really got cold. I had a fleece and rain jacket with a hood along with wool gloves and overmittens which did a decent job of keeping my upper torso, head, and hands mostly dry. I needed my hands periodically to check the GPS for navigation in the foggy conditions. The hike was along jeep roads that could be driven by high clearance 4WDs, but were fine for hiking. The hills are moderately vegetated, meaning cross-country routes wouldn't be all that difficult, but the roads sure made it easier. I can't say I had a great time, but it wasn't bad either, especially knowing it would only be a few hours and I could drive back to a hotel in Reno immediately afterwards. And it sure as heck beat spending those two hours watching more volleyball back at the convention center. Not that I don't enjoy it, mind you, just that I'd already had my day's fill...
For more information see these SummitPost pages: Granite Hills HP
This page last updated: Tue May 6 20:29:26 2014
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