Ascent of Corkscrew Peak on 2020-03-11

Climber: Ray Thompson

Others in Party:Jalen Rubin
Date:Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Corkscrew Peak
    Elevation:5804 ft / 1769 m

Ascent Trip Report

Spent five days touristing around Death Valley NP with my nephew Jalen Rubin on his spring break from Loyola Marymount. On day four we hiked Corkscrew Peak, starting from the pullout by the "Pay Fee Ahead" sign and going up the "Ridge" route. As others have noted there are plenty of cairns to guide your way up the wash and once out of the wash the use trail is very well travelled, vey clear. We had a soft rain falling on us for the first hour of the hike and shortly thereafter, around 4500 feet, we entered into the clouds that had been generating the rain. Jalen noted that hiking in rain and fog probably isn't all that common in Death Valley and it certainly was a first for me. We got to the summit in good order but it was totally enveloped in the cloud, so there were no views on offer. Bummer. On our way down we stopped for the obligatory picture at the rock arch that's immediately adjacent to the trail a few hundred feet below the summit. As we continued to make our way down the trail the clouds started breaking up and by the time we got to the wash we were under blue skies. Excepting the lack of a view at the summit it was, all and all, a pleasant and rewarding hike.
Click on photo for original larger-size version.
Rain in Death Valley ??? Jalen Rubin on the Corkscrew Peak trail (2020-03-11). Photo by Ray Thompson.
Click here for larger-size photo.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3234 ft / 985 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8.2 mi / 13.2 km
    Route:"Ridge Route"
    Trailhead:NPS "Pay Fee Ahead" sign  2570 ft / 783 m
    Grade/Class:Class 1, w/ short 2
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Open Country
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Raining, Pleasant, Calm, Low Clouds
Soft rain
Ascent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 

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