|Hiking||14.30 Miles|| 8 Hrs 4 Mns ||2.02 mph|
|4,634 ft AEG|| 1 Hour Break|
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|Arc Dome (elevation of 11,773 feet and prominence of 5,213 feet) is out in the middle of nowhere. Arc Dome is in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, which is by far the largest national forest outside of Alaska. We drove in from the south via Tonopah, and the drive was about 80 miles from Tonopah, the last 60 miles of which were on unpaved roads. Fortunately the roads were mostly good, and we were able to drive as fast as 65 mph on some portions of the unpaved roads.|
We camped at the Columbine Campground, and started and ended the hike from there. We did a loop --going up on the Toiyabe Crest Trail, and coming down on an old jeep road and the Stewart Creek Trail.
It was a tough ascent -- we gained 2,000 feet in the first 2.5 miles, and the tread wasn't all that great. At that point we were at a saddle, and had to descend into and come back out of a gully. We eventually made it to just below North Arc Dome, where we descended 600 feet to the base of Arc Dome, and had to climb up 1,000 feet to the summit in a little less than a mile -- thank goodness for switchbacks!
Views at the top were awesome so we hung out at the summit for a bit. The descent down went fine, but then we had to regain the 600 feet that we descended earlier -- no fun! I thought about going up to North Arc Dome on the way back, but we decided that we were having enough fun without going up to North Arc Dome. There were some clouds building at that point anyway, and we figured it would be best to head back down.
Views to the west were really nice on the way back, so I am glad that we decided to do a loop.
As far as far flung and remote areas go, few places match central Nevada. Back in the day, this was a difficult area to cross for those on the California Trail and for the Pony Express. Except for some asphalt and dirt roads, not much has changed since then. If you like quiet and solitude, you will likely find it here.
|May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey|