Near Las Vegas, lonely inhospitable mountain peak out in the middle of the frick’n desert…
Activity: Peak Bagging, Trail Blazing,
Date: November 13, 2019
Distance: 6.5 miles, altitude: 5,226 feet, Prominence: 2,426 feet, 7 hour duration, rated Difficult
“If it doesn’t hurt, it’s not worth it.” – Keith Christensen, Mountaineer. Arrow Canyon Range High Point is for Peak Baggers, its hard, its suppose to be, thats the point.
In Las Vegas I met up with a friend Keith Christensen. He is a multi-titlest North American Hobie 16 Champion and Alter Cup Champion. Most of my life I have been racing sailboats mostly small fast catamarans, Hobie Cats, but also Nacras, A-Cats, and Prindles. I have also done some big boat racing. I have numerous sailing championships two of which are National Titles, and I love sailing! Keith and I have known each other via sailing for a long time.
Keith and I teamed up for my last Sailing World Championship, now its been like 7 years ago. He came in as an alternate at the last minute when another friend had to drop out just prior to the event start, due to an previously unknown heart ailment. Keith had not been sailing in years, as his passion had turned to Peak Bagging, and despite just jumping on the boat we still made the event finals. He races dirt bikes, and 10 Speeds, still… Keith is a little younger than I am, and is quite passionate about the things that he does even though he has a very California kick back attitude. Among these many facets, Keith Christensen is also a mountaineer, and is a self proclaimed Peak Bagger.
What is a Peak Bagger you might ask? Well, I suppose that is a climber an outdoorsman who is out for a challenge, exercise, to be active, maybe to be in the Wilderness, to take in nature and the scenery, the sport of it all, could be to test his or her metal. I would ponder that it is all or at least a combination of many of those things and more, but according to Peakbagger.com, “He climbs a peak to get to the summit, because it is there, because it needs to be climbed.“ The “Because it is there” expression was coined from a quote by the famous Mount Everest Explorer George Mallory while speaking to a New York Times reporter in 1923.
I was soon to discover just what a Peak Bagger Keith Christensen is. I knew he climbed peaks and when he sent me his resume ahead of time, I fully expected to see like 15 peaks or something, which would have been impressive, but no… Hundreds! So, I was quite apprehensive about trying to bag peaks with him. I am an adventurer, but going more for the nature aspect of it and the scenery, although I will say the harder it is, the more I respect it, and the more that it means. I am intrigued by peaks, but it is not my main thing.
So, Keith drove from Long Beach, California to hike with me in Vegas. We did three peaks in three days. Peaks he needed to add to his collection. The first, Arrow Canyon Range High Point, was a lonely peak out in the desert about an hour or so from Las Vegas. The last portion of our drive was on dirt roads for 30 minutes to finally arrive at the spot.
This was not a fun hike, nor a scenic hike, well except for from the top there was a nice views in every direction of desert and far away mountains. This was a hike that was trail blazing, meaning no trail. Loose rock… three steps forward one step sliding back. The going was tough, the rock was sharp, the brush had thorns, everything wanted to reach out and bite you.
I was fine going up. I stayed up with him, made the summit and there was a register. Usually when I see registers they are multiple booklets and mostly full with no place left to sign, dozens and dozens of entries from just that month. Well, this place had 2/year, and they were all people Keith knew, Peak Baggers. You don’t come to this place unless you are a Peak Bagger. It is pretty much a “Because it is there” type of accomplishment. The way down I found more difficult. Even the large rocks that you stepped on adjusted with each step. Keith was much quicker than I, as I concentrated painstakingly on each and every step.
Keith and I want to thank you for joining us while we were Pursuing Balance Through Adventure – Las Vegas Area Hiking and Peak Bagging a lonely, desolate, desert peak in the middle of no where. Not for the faint of heart, and it wasn’t supposed to be, after all it’s an adventure and the best way to gain that balance in life so sought after. This is day one of a three day Peak Bagging Adventure with Mountaineer Keith Christensen don’t miss the next step, because one missed step could send you down a steep ravine in this business. Please COMMENT, LIKE, FOLLOW and SHARE. Also checkout SHOP APPAREL for adventure hats, shirts, beanies and more. The menu above will send you to more PBTA locations for your adventure pleasure. Each one is independent and thus needs to be Followed independently.
Roger Jenkins, Pursuing Balance Through Adventure