Canyon Point, Corkscrew Peak
By: Greg Roach, Mirna Roach
On Friday evening Mirna and I drove to Death Valley. We arrived at the trailhead for Corkscrew Peak at about 10:30 PM and decided to look for a place to camp. After looking at the map we chose the road to Chloride City (ghost town) that is about 3 miles north of the trailhead. We turned off the main road on to a dirt road leading to Chloride City. In half mile we spotted a flat place to park and camp. It looked as if it was out of site of the highway. In the morning we were greeted by the Death Valley National Monument Ranger who informed us of the rules for camping in the National Monument. You must be one mile off the main road and out of site. Thank goodness he did not give us a ticket. So when camping in the National Monument remember the first rule is to "Observe all rules" Big brother is watching. There may be good campsites further up this road toward Chloride City -- that would be "legal".
The hike to Corkscrew started as planned at 7:30 AM. We followed the route in the Guide that went very nicely and we were up to the summit by noon This peak offers a grand view of Death Valley. We identified Thimble Peak to the North and it looks like an interesting peak to climb. Thimble Peak may be a good exploration climb. I understand that it can be done from Titus Canyon. We got down from the Corkscrew peak around 2:30 PM and drove out of the National Monument to Nevada. We found a good did road, settled there, and had our happy hour combined with dinner. Mirna made her fabulous vegetarian tacos, Bill Stevens brought his most famous Julian apple pie, and the rest of the group brought some hors d'oeuvres.
The next day (Sunday) we drove over to Stovepipe Wells and took the dirt road to Cottonwood Canyon. There is no camping allowed off this road until you're 8 miles from Stovepipe Wells. Cottonwood Canyon is a beautiful canyon and 4WD was not necessary. it has a good place for groups to camp. From the end of the road in Cottonwood Canyon we followed the ridge route in the Guide up to Canyon Point. Everyone in the group liked the peak because it has a good view of Death Valley, in addition, it has a great scree run coming back down. Also the drive through Cottonwood Canyon is very picturesque. All these factors make Canyon Point worthy of being on the Desert Peaks list.
Thanks to everyone who participated in this weekend adventure. The participants were Kathy Price, Jim Adler, Bill Stevens, Patty Kline, Ron Young, Eileen Ricks, Bob Greer, Steve Gatlen, (Saturday only), Paula & Bruce Peterson (Saturday only).
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