Ascent of Jarbidge Peak on 2015-09-22

Climber: Lane Johnson

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Jarbidge Peak
    Elevation:10793 ft / 3289 m

Ascent Trip Report

Continuing up the Jarbidge River canyon where the main road switches back up the mountain toward Elko, I parked just past the first bridge. That's where the road to the old gold mines begins, at 6,500 ft., going steeply up in seven switchbacks to 8,000 ft. Just past the last switchback, you can leave the road and head directly up the ridge between Bonanza Gulch and Gorge Gulch, staying on the ridge all the way to the summit. I stayed on the road past the interesting mine tunnel, then turned off uphill where a large bulldozed cut severed the road. The hike is steep but easy going, and near the top you weave your way through stunted trees before coming out on an easy talus slope to the summit. I opened the mailbox and signed in on the log, took a few pictures, contacted one of my sons via the ham radio Intermountain Intertie, and then headed down the easy slope to the saddle leading to Jumbo Peak. Climbing up Jumbo is much more rocky, and the wind on the ridge tried to tear my hat off. There's a summit post and mailbox there, just like on Jarbidge Peak. Getting back to the Bonanza/Gorge ridge, I hiked back down to the saddle and followed a faint track down, traversing the unstable talus below Jarbidge Peak. Don't do what I did. It was hard going until I came across a good trail that headed downhill from the Jarbidge side of the saddle, which could have saved me a lot of trouble. The trail switchbacks down Gorge Gulch to I-don't-know-where. I left it when it came close to the ridge I had come up; and climbing to the top, I found my tracks coming up. From there it was an easy hike back to the car. It's a beautiful climb, with great views in all direction, and the weather was perfect. I consider trekking poles essential, especially as knee-savers on the way down. Also, take plenty of water, because there is NO water to be found anywhere on the climb. If you're climbing the entire ridge from Jarbidge to Jumbo, Flat Top, Matterhorn, and Cougar peaks, carry a minimum of 4 liters per person, because there's no water on the ridge until you reach Jarbidge Lake on the way down.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4298 ft / 1310 m
    Total Elevation Loss:4298 ft / 1310 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8.5 mi / 13.7 km
    Grade/Class:Class 2
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Scramble
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Clear
Perfect cool weather
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:4298 ft / 1310 m
    Distance:4 mi / 6.4 km
    Route:West ridge via road to mines
    Start Trailhead:Bridge crossing near road to mines  6495 ft / 1979 m
    Time:5 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:4298 ft / 1310 m
    Distance:4.5 mi / 7.2 km
    Route:Via saddle to Jumbo Peak
    End Trailhead:Bridge crossing near road to mines  6495 ft / 1979 m
    Time:5 Hours 

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