Spirit Mountain Hike
- Length: 5 miles roundtrip
- Estimated Time: 6 hours
- Elevation Gain: 2,400 feet
- Seasons: Fall, Winter & Spring
To get to to Spirit Mountain use the starting point of Davis Dam or Laughlin, Nevada; drive up Nevada Highway 163 about 6 miles to the Christmas Tree Pass turnoff. Follow this unpaved road for about 5.5 miles to a turnoff on the right side of the road. Park your car here to begin your hike up Spirit Mountain.
The hike up Spirit Mountain involves more scrabbling than upright walking. THIS IS A RIGOROUS HIKE WHICH SHOULD ONLY BE ATTEMPTED BY THOSE IN GOOD PHYSICAL CONDITION. During the warmer spring and fall months, keep an eye open for rattlesnakes. Always carry plenty of water and wear long pants to protect your legs from brush and cactus. The hike is well worth the effort, providing views of high desert country and Lake Mojave. Some days you can see up to 100 miles.
There is no trail up Spirit Mountain. Following these directions, however, will lead you up one of the easier routes. Go straight north from your vehicle following the relatively flat area west of Spirit Mountain. Once you are past the large granite rocks on your left, begin your ascent up the slope toward the ridge. From that point, the ascent is relatively simple, following the ridge the rest of the way.
You will cross three small plateaus during your hike, the upper ones containing a small forest of junipers and pinyon pines. Notice the rapid change in vegetation, and watch for hawks soaring below you. Of course, don't forget to watch where you put your hands; rattlesnakes don't care to share their rocks with even a finger.
On your descent, be sure to return by the same route you came up. The more southerly and westerly routes could lead you into ravines that are difficult, sometimes impossible, to get out of.
Hope you enjoy the adventure,
-- Cactus Jim