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Areas in The Highlands

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Elevation: 4,879 ft
GPS: 35.609, -115.042 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 303 total · 38/month
Shared By: DesertDan on May 20, 2017
Admins: Justin Johnsen
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Description

The Highland Range, also just called the Highlands, is a low set of hills at the southern border of the Eldorado Valley. Power lines frame the Highlands on east and west with many spurs into the shallow canyons providing excellent access all the way around. Scrub oak is abundant throughout the canyons and just to the south is the Wee Thump Joshua Tree Wilderness. This small range sports three springs and a couple of guzzlers making it popular with bird hunters. The water supply is one of the key factors in designating the Highland Range Crucial Bighorn Habitat Area and made it a regular stopping place for Native Americans.
This diverse and rugged range was formed in the geologic blender ending up with many rock types layered throughout but predominantly volcanic breccia, rhyolite, basaltic, and tuff. Most of the cliffs are choss but there’re areas of solid rock with good climbing. The central west side has bouldering down low in the wash on basaltic rocks and some of the better volcanic breccia a little farther up the slope here has more bouldering (also sport climbing potential). Most of the developed climbing in the Highlands is on the northeast end on a vertical dyke of trachyandesite. This dyke is a real gem with high quality climbing. Danny Meyers and Jenni Stone drove across the valley from Keyhole to camp and established the first routes here after the first Keyhole Classic in the late 80s. Later, around the early 2000s, Thomas Beck established a few more lines on this dyke. Currently the climbing is limited but the area has a lot of potential for much more. The Highlands have a feeling of remoteness and a sense of adventure, particularly on overcast, rainy days.

Getting There

To get to the east side: Go 21 miles south on US95 from the overpass of the US93/95 intersection, turn right on a power line road (turning left goes to Knob Hill) and follow it until it tees at another power line road after 3 miles and turn left.
To reach the west side: From the US93/95 intersection go south on US95 for 12.5 miles and turn right onto the paved road of Eldorado Valley Dr (where all of the substations and solar plants are). Go to almost the end of this road and turn left onto a power line road where a wash crosses the paved road, just before the gates of the last substation. Several power lines converge here so make sure you're on the correct one that goes south up the valley between the Highland Range and the McCulloughs.

Both of these power line roads that frame the Highlands can also be accessed from the Nipton Hwy a little ways west of Searchlight.

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