Granite Mountains #1, Mitchell Point

14-Nov-92 (Official version)

By: Greg Roach, Jim Schoedler


"Friday the 13th we drove out to the Providence Mountains in the Eastern Mojave Scenic Area. A warm wind blew across the desert when we arrived at the campsite off Black Canyon Road. This was a good omen we would have good weather, food, and comradeship on this outing. Our group numbered four: Mark Webster, Jim Schoedler, Mirna Roach, and myself. We were a small but congenial group.

Saturday morning we set off to climb Mitchell Peak. We drove to the ruins of the Bonanza King Mine and started southwest then up the mountain side until we gained the Eastern ridge. The route up the eastern ridge to the peak went slowly due to the rough terrain. The sharp abrasive rocks and cholla make the climbing slow. It took us about 4 hours to climb the two miles and 2800 feet elevation gain to the peak. Future climbers may find leather gloves helpful.

Although we encountered rough terrain, the climb was most rewarding. Jim kept spotting fossils on the way to the peak and explaining them to us. At the summit we had a tremendous view. The day was so clear we could see Mt. Charleston to the North covered with snow and a desert panorama in all directions. While we were having our lunch we noticed an enormous amount of ladybugs on the summit. I guess they were enjoying the view as we were.

After returning to our vehicles that afternoon we decided there was still enough daylight left to do a little desert exploring in our Jeeps. We crossed the Providence Mountains by way of Foshay Pass and found a good campsite near the Vulcan Mine on the western side of the pass. That night we enjoyed a warm campfire and good food.

Sunday morning we headed down the Foshay Pass road to the trailhead for Granite Mtn. #1. The western side of the pass is a 4 wheel drive road with some ruts and roller coaster hills. At Kelbaker Road we turned left(southeast) then right (southwest) on a dirt road to Cottonwood Springs. The description in the Desert Peak Guide is accurate as to where to turn off Kelbaker Road and the big rock where you park your cars. This would also make a good campsite.

Granite Mountain # is an easy climb and took us four hours round trip. The terrain is quite a contrast to Mitchell. Here the route is much easier and the rocks are big granite boulders somewhat like Joshua Tree National Monument. The area had some fall color since there is water here. We took a ridge route up and on the way back down from the peak decided to follow a canyon. It was pleasant walking in the Granite Mountains and we got back to the cars by two p.m. which left us plenty of time for the drive home.


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