Ascent of Old Woman Statue on 1996-01-27

Climber: Richard Carey

Date:Saturday, January 27, 1996
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Old Woman Statue
    Elevation:5105 ft / 1556 m

Ascent Trip Report

The name comes from the Indian word "No-mop-wits" or "Nomopeoits" which means "old woman" because the granite pillar resembles an old woman. (Hanna, p. 217, Gudde, p. 227) Lynn Foster in "Adventuring in the California Desert", p. 323, says the Statue resembles an old woman with a shawl on her head when viewed from the east.

Old Woman Statue is in the Old Woman Mountains Wilderness. The area is open to hiking and no permits are needed. Section 13 east of the Statue is private land, but there are no signs or restrictions. The wilderness is administered by the BLM Resource Office, 101 W. Spikes Rd., Needles, CA 92363. Tele.: (619) 326-3896

To reach the trailhead from the south take highway 62 east from Twentynine Palms to its junction with highway 177. From here continue east on 62 for 7.3 miles and turn north onto paved Iron Mountain Road. After 3.9 miles turn right onto a graded dirt road. Reset your odometer. At 0.4 miles go left at a "Y" junction and at 7.9 miles make a jog left about 30 ft. and then right along power lines. After 8.6 miles you will reach a stop sign at a railroad crossing. Continue straight ahead on the generally good road. Go straight at a junction at 19.4 miles and then turn left onto a poorer road at 25.2 miles. UTM here is: 679330E, 3818700N (NAD27). Reset odometer again and go NW on this road. At 4.8 miles continue straight when another road comes in on the right. After about 50 ft. stay to the left when the road splits and then at 5.0 miles turn left (S) at a junction. At 6.5 miles turn right at the Painted Rock area and continue west to a windmill at 7.9 miles. UTM here is 671130E, 3821100N. Park here and hike WNW 0.8 miles to a saddle just north of point 1354m . The Old Woman Statue can now be seen on a bearing of 255 degrees. Contour north below the ridge top then SW to the base on the north side. From here climb up easy 3rd class ledges to a large slanted rock. Climb a 25 ft. crack rated 5.7 to a belay ledge where there is a row of about 12 bolts up the face of the large boulder to the top. The hike to the Statue is 1.8 miles one-way with a gain of 1400 ft. and takes about 2 1/2 hours. Allow several hours for the rock climb of the Statue depending on your skills and the number of climbers. 1/96 RLC
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Definitely an aid climb on the summit block (1996-01-27). Photo by Richard Carey.
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Summary Total Data

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