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Telescope Peak Trail - 2 members in 8 triplogs have rated this an average 5 ( 1 to 5 best )
8 triplogs
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8 Triplogs
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Oct 18 2019
rcorfman
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 Guides 1
 Routes 113
 Photos 1,398
 Triplogs 965

60 male
 Joined Oct 17 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar Oct 18 2019
rcorfman
Hiking12.53 Miles 3,365 AEG
Hiking12.53 Miles   5 Hrs   57 Mns   2.30 mph
3,365 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After hiking nearby Wildrose Peak yesterday, I drove up to Mahogony Flats campground where I spent the night. It was cold once the sun went down so I had an early night and 12 hours sleep. :)

It wasn't quite quarter of seven when I started. I noticed three others had started about an hour earlier. It was cold this morning, probably mid 30s but I'm just guessing. I started off wearing my fleece and wind jacket, hoods up, and fleece liner gloves, eating a BoBo's bar. The trail starts off climbing which made it difficult to chew. Eventually I finished eating and stopped to remove the fleece and gloves, though I kept my hands in the wind jacket sleeves. Somewhere, it warmed up enough to take the hood off and free my hands.

After ascending to the saddle between Rogers and Bennett Peaks, the trail levels off for awhile before the steep switch backed ascent to the summit. The switch backs are tough, from 10K to 11K altitude, but graded well enough. Once at the top of the switchbacks, the trail levels off for a bit then makes the short climb to the top.

I caught the three just before the summit. They came from Chicago just to hike Telescope. They asked how long I took, 3 hours to their 4. I smoked them - their words.

The views from Telescope are amazing. Nothing is in the way and you can see the low spot at Badwater Basin and the high spot, Mt. Whitney too. Just beautiful.

It was very cold on the summit. My hands would freeze trying to take pictures and my legs were getting cold too. We all signed the summit register, took some pictures, and I headed down to the top of the switch backs to get out of the wind where I had some drink and some food before heading down to the trailhead.

This is a great trail. The tread is good and it's easy to follow. This made for a really nice day hike.
Named place
Named place
Telescope Peak
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Go find a LonelyCache
Jun 21 2019
Jim_H
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 Guides 59
 Routes 55
 Photos 8,207
 Triplogs 1,770

41 male
 Joined Sep 08 2006
 University, AZ
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar Jun 21 2019
Jim_H
Hiking14.00 Miles 3,082 AEG
Hiking14.00 Miles   9 Hrs      1.93 mph
3,082 ft AEG   1 Hour   45 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Nice hike, much more enjoyable than Charleston's snow covered slopes. Calm today, but wind brought in haze. Much nicer the day after. Shame, as the view when clear is fantastic.
Flora
Flora
Bristlecone Pine
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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"Mmmm, Yes I would, Kent". [ youtube video ]
May 27 2018
Booneman
avatar

 Guides 9
 Routes 33
 Photos 736
 Triplogs 3,372

40 male
 Joined Nov 25 2008
 Chandler, AZ
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar May 27 2018
Booneman
Hiking13.60 Miles 3,458 AEG
Hiking13.60 Miles   4 Hrs   52 Mns   2.79 mph
3,458 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Over the past couple years I have missed opportunities to hike Telescope Peak from Shorty's well, due to weather and logistical issues. I wanted to get up there and see what the standard route was like and have a better "feel" for the big hike. I absolutely loved this trail! Everything about it was great..the distance and steady elevation gain, nice single track and an incredible 100-mile panorama. Hitting a national park high point is pretty cool too!
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May 19 2018
BiFrost
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 Guides 4
 Routes 356
 Photos 7,656
 Triplogs 911

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Telescope Peak from Shorty's WellDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar May 19 2018
BiFrost
Hiking21.90 Miles 11,753 AEG
Hiking21.90 Miles   16 Hrs   37 Mns   1.52 mph
11,753 ft AEG   2 Hrs   15 Mns Break
 
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slowandsteady
A few years ago I did Telescope Peak with @sbkelley and everything went off without a hitch. So I returned with Kathy to try this beast again so she could experience the route from Shorty’s Well. We arrived the day before and car camped then waking up early to start hiking at 3:30am from Shorty’s Well -253 below sea level.

Not much to see in the dark but this is the relatively boring part of the hike up the road into Hanaupah Canyon although we did have some nice views of sunrise. The road continues for about 8 miles and gains a gradual 3000 feet as the road gets into the tighter part of Hanaupah and eventually stops. From there it’s a canyon hike upstream to where Hanaupah Spring appears out of nowhere at about 9 miles. The spring has very good flow with plenty of pools to filter from. We stopped to filter water and took a nice break since this was the only water source for the day.

After the break the route leaves Hanaupah Canyon on the north side about ½ mile from where we stopped for water. The initial climb is very steep but gets slightly easier towards the top ascending 1500 feet in about a mile. There are also some intermittent use trails that can be found on the ascent that make the steep more manageable. Once on top we were on the main ridge line that we would follow up to the Telescope Peak trail. We took another break here before doing the next 1.5 miles of ridge hiking with much less AEG and probably the easiest part of the hike.

Eventually the ridge starts to go vertical again as we took another break at 6500 feet. At this point we started to get awesome views of Death Valley and the low point Badwater Basin. We also started to hit the thicker pine trees for shade although it wasn’t that hot this high up on the mountain. This section definitely had the nicest stands of forest on the route so we took more breaks.

After the last break it was on and up the most difficult part of the route. It gains 2500 feet to where we reached Telescope Peak Trail but the most challenging part is the final section which gains 1900 feet in just 1 mile. Also, there was loose scree and talus on the relentless climb that made the nice clear trail a welcoming sight. This one really hurt! We took a quick breather and then headed for Telescope Summit.

We passed three other hikers heading down trail but had the place to ourselves once on top. Really awesome 360 views with BadWater Basin over 11,000 feet below and the Sierras to the west although it was a bit hazy. Usually you can make out Mt Whitney but not today. We took about 35 minute much needed break to take in the views and recover.

All packed up we headed back down the trail towards Mahogany Flat. It’s 7 miles to the campground but it’s good downhill trail so after what we just climbed it felt like an easy stroll. We arrived a little before dark and our shuttle driver Scott had camp all setup! We enjoyed not having to hike anymore and relaxing in camp. Mahogany Flat is a nice campground but there are only 10 spots first come first serve and they fill up fast. However, it all worked out after a great day of hiking!

Flora
Flora
Dudleya

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Hanaupah Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
very good flow in Hanaupah Canyon a mile downstream from the spring. Appears to be reliable source
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2 archives
May 21 2016
slowandsteady
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 Routes 67
 Photos 966
 Triplogs 694

46 female
 Joined Jan 05 2012
 Phoenix,AZ
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar May 21 2016
slowandsteady
Hiking13.81 Miles 4,059 AEG
Hiking13.81 Miles
4,059 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
BiFrost
I drove the shuttle car from Shorty's Well up to Mahogany Flat Campground, with a brief stop at the Charcoal Kilns to be a tourist.
I started hiking at 9:30am. The trail is in excellent condition and I chugged along. It wasn’t long before I noticed Joe and John coming up to pass. I learned that if John asks if I know how far it is to the summit, I do not want to respond with “We are on switchback number five of 14.” That response is worthless. :)
I came across a patch of snow and took time to make a snowman. I arrived at the summit in time to watch the drone take off. When I hike I measure in Piestewa Peaks, and I know Angela counts Shaw Buttes. It was neat to learn Joe thinks in terms of Camelbacks and John thinks in Flat Irons. I’m pretty sure if I was on a hike and someone said “only two more Flat Irons and we are done” that I would sit and cry.
Soon Karl, Scott and Ken showed up and I heard their tale and I was glad I was the shuttle driver.
On the way down to Mahogany, Karl and I stopped at Bennett and Rogers Peak and we took the service road down from Rogers.
Culture
Culture
Coke Ovens
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1 archive
May 21 2016
joebartels
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 Guides 241
 Routes 830
 Photos 11,838
 Triplogs 4,679

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Telescope Peak from Shorty's WellDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar May 21 2016
joebartels
Hiking21.90 Miles 11,700 AEG
Hiking21.90 Miles   9 Hrs   54 Mns   2.51 mph
11,700 ft AEG   1 Hour   10 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
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BiFrost
desert_boonie
JuanJaimeiii
sbkelley
jj sums the hike up well in his [ triplog ]
Thanks for driving, the caviar and the crackers too!

Scott deserves the lifetime award for persistent planning which included a thousand year flood, snow in May and scheduling conflicts.

Great to see the Good Humor Man, the Frosts and the dog sitter too!

On April 15th Carrie Underwood hiked Camelback. I made the poor choice of hitting Squaw Peak. Missed Carrie and something in my knee popped. Standing without falling over was a challenge. With Telescope on the horizon I modified RICE. Dropped rest, ice, compress and converted elevate to exercise. Dialed back to flat hikes I could manage with hiking poles. After four weeks got back to average on Squaw. A week ago I began to press it. Two days to go I felt a slight tear. Instead of worrying about it I vested my trust in the full moon. The hike went well and the moon was beautiful. Doo, bow bow, chick chicka chicka

Death Valley is very intriguing. The drive along Furnace Creek is a kaleidoscope of mineral hues. Mountains beside each other can be drastically different.
Culture
Culture
Point

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Hanaupah Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
unbelievable, the creek was flowing very well
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- joe
Jul 04 2015
mwiles
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 Routes 11
 Photos 46
 Triplogs 49

49 male
 Joined Sep 15 2009
 Goodyear, AZ
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar Jul 04 2015
mwiles
Hiking13.90 Miles 2,950 AEG
Hiking13.90 Miles   7 Hrs   42 Mns   2.16 mph
2,950 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Early morning cold temperatures and rain made this a tough hike to get started but ultimately paid off in the form of great hiking conditions. I arrived at the Mahogany Flat campground at 5:30 and began the walk to the top of Death Valley. The first 1/3 of the hike is pretty steep with teaser views of Badwater Basin all along the way. Soon the trail levels off and it's a walk along a relatively flat ridgeline for awhile with the occasional Bristlecone Pine and an abundance of wildflowers. Finally, the hike to the summit comes in the form of 14 punishing switchbacks. By the end of the switchbacks I had to stop at the end of each one and catch my breath at the 11000' elevation. The views are nothing short of spectacular for the entire hike. Being able to see the Sierra Nevadas, the Spring Mountains in Nevada and Badwater Basin all from the same spot is awesome.
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Aug 26 2012
autumnstars
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 Guides 25
 Routes 19
 Photos 558
 Triplogs 1,385

female
 Joined Jan 04 2011
 Las Vegas, NV
Telescope Peak TrailDeath Valley, CA
Death Valley, CA
Hiking avatar Aug 26 2012
autumnstars
Hiking13.84 Miles 3,771 AEG
Hiking13.84 Miles
3,771 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Drove up the day before to camp so we could get an early start. Good thing - the recent monsoon storms had completely washed out the road. It was difficult getting to the kilns with high clearance, normally accessible by passenger vehicle. We stayed just past the kilns at Thorndike since there was no way our vehicle was making it to Mahogany Flats. That added about 1 mile each way to the hike.

Fun hike with breath-taking views almost from the trailhead. The trail begins on the steep side slopes of Rogers Peak with sparse pinyon cover. Views down to Badwater open up immediately and continue until you round Rogers and head around the west side of Bennett Peak. Once west of Bennett, the views down into Panamint Valley take over. The trail works its way steadily up, but nothing terribly steep until the final summit push. Even the final push was really only difficult for us due to the elevation - someone more acclimatized would find it pretty easy. From the top, views extend from Badwater to Mt Whitney - highest and lowest in one sweep. Great way to spend the day!

Some isolated flowers, but most plants were done. Temperatures about 70 degrees - delightful considering the temperatures on the valley floor in the mid 110s. Saw a few birds, lizards, and chipmunks, but nothing too exciting. Saw one solo hiker from New York at the peak, and we chatted for a while. Saw only 2 others on the way back down. They seemed very unprepared for such a late start.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
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"Let it ride / Let it roll / Let it go"
average hiking speed 2.2 mph

WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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