I was on my way to Colorado to spend some time with my old friends but
had about a week before I was to meet up with them. I thought I might
tag some peaks on my way through Nevada and Utah, but at the height of
summer, temperatures are usually quite high even at 8-9,000ft. This
would mean hiking in the early morning before it got too warm, then
spending the hotter part of the day doing the driving. Since I started
San Jose in the morning, it was already too hot by the time I got to
Nevada. I figured I could do some drive-ups if I could find some,
and used the peakbagger app to this purpose, finding some along my
drive through the state on Interstate 80.
My first stop was found on the south side of the interstate between
Fernley and Lovelock, a P1K.
The drive is a little more than 10mi on good dirt
road, starting from Exit 231, at Bradys Hot Springs. The area is very
geothermally active, with various pipes running over the landscape and along
the access road. The route makes a broad arc around the mountain on
the west and south sides before passing a geothermal plant and then
heading up to the mountain from the south. There is a cell tower and
microwave relay installation on the north side of the summit. The east
side has an old radio reflector, the summit nicely left unmolested,
save for the fallen survey tower and the benchmark.
This P1K has a paved road going to the summit, making it very easy. It is
located on the northwest side of the town of the same name. Access is
from the northeast off US95, where one goes past a landfill and then
shooting area before the road winds its way
up to the summit. There are very old installations at
the summit, mostly abandoned and covered in graffiti,
relics from the cold war, probably. There are some active telecom towers
on the east side of the north and south summits. It seems the
may be the highest since the north summit was leveled some for the
old buildings found there.
Mt. Lewis / Peak 9,321ft
Mt. Lewis sports over 4,000ft of prominence and a very good gravel road
that any vehicle could drive. The main road reaches up to the lower
west summit where there is an FAA installation.
A rougher road forks off from
the saddle and goes nearly to the top of the higher east summit where
there are some small installations. A pair of steel ladders helps one up
the side of the rocks to the summit where an old, army green container
is found, apparently still active. There is a benchmark just west of
the container. There is also a register with 14 pages left by Gordon &
Barbara in 1997. Lots of the usual peakbaggers in this one.
Peak 9,321ft, with just over 400ft of prominence, lies a
little over a mile to the south from Mt. Lewis along what
looked like a pleasant ridgeline. It turned out to be less pleasant
than it had looked due to lots of rock and some brush. It was a good
leg-stretcher, though, after three drive-ups, so I didn't mind too much.
I left a register at the lonely summit,
not expecting it to see much