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Lone Mountain - South Ridge Route
Hiking Around Las Vegas, Other Areas
Lone Mountain Route
Lone Mountain
Toe of South Ridge along Alexander Rd (view W)

Overview

Lone Mountain is a steep, isolated, rocky butte in NW Las Vegas just inside the Interstate-215 Beltway. The summit stands some 600 feet above the surrounding homes, giving great views of the city and the surrounding mountains.

There are several routes up Lone Mountain. The South Ridge (Class 4) is short and steep (0.58 miles), and it takes only about 45 minutes to reach the summit if you stop to enjoy the scenery. The North Ridge and East Buttress also provide challenging routes.

Lone Mountain is good place for a quick get-away or after-work hike; and as one guy on the trail said, it beats an afternoon workout on a treadmill.

Link to route map.

Lone Mountain
Toe of South Ridge along Alexander Rd (view NW)

Watch Out

Other than the standard warnings about hiking in the desert, ...this is a challenging hike with a bit of Class-4 scrambling, and there are many places where hikers could stumble off the mountain and roll all the way to the bottom. The west face of the summit is nearly vertical, so don't fall off that side. There is a fair bit of loose gravel on the use-trail and plenty of loose rocks to roll on others in the hiking party.

While hiking, please respect the land and the other people out there, and try to Leave No Trace of your passage. Although this hike is short, be sure to bring what you need of the 10 Essentials.

Lone Mountain
Hiker on South Ridge (view N)

Getting to the Trailhead

Lone Mountain is located in the northwest part of urban Las Vegas, just inside the Western Beltway (Highway I-215) between Lone Mountain and Alexander roads. From town, drive north on Highway 95 or Highway 215 to the northwest part of town.

Continue to the Lone Mountain Discovery Park Trailhead, which is located on the east side of the mountain, or to the Vegas Vista Trail Trailhead, which is located on the west side of the mountain.

Toe of North Ridge along Alexander Rd (view W)
Base of First Buttress (view N)

The Hike

From either trailhead parking area, hike to the south end of Lone Mountain (Wpt. 30). Here, right along Alexander Road, the South Ridge Route turns north and begins to climb the South Ridge.

Gaining the crest of the ridge, the route climbs towards the first buttress, which is passed on the southwest side (Wpt. 31). Several possibilities present, but 3rd-class climbing into the bowl on the southwest corner, and then climbing to the right of a Hole-in-the-Rock leads back onto the crest. After a few steps of airy 4th-class, hikers can scramble along the edge of the cliff to get above the Hole-in-the-Rock.

Beyond the Hole-in-the-Rock, the route follows the more-or-less level, but knife-edge South Ridge towards the Second Buttress. At the base of the buttress (Wpt. 32), the Southeast Gully routes gain the crest of the South Ridge.

Lone Mountain
Easiest route on South Ridge (view NE)

Continuing, the route climbs onto steep, west-facing slopes staying tight against the base of near-vertical limestone cliffs. Near to the southwest corner of the Second Buttress (Wpt. 33), a very steep route climbs skyward, but it appears to be minimal 5th-class.

Bypassing this steep rock, hikers can continue north below the cliffs following use-trails onto a knob (Wpt. 34) on the side-slope. From atop the knob, hikers can pick their way up the steep slope to safely regain the top of the ridge (Wpt. 35).

Following the ridgeline north, where the route is not so steep as it looks, hikers soon climb onto the edge of the summit plateau (Wpt. 36) and then arrive at the summit (Wpt. 11).

Returning from the summit by the Regular Route would be the safest option.

Lone Mountain
Hiker on South Ridge (view NE; 4th class section)
Lone Mountain
Notch on ridgeline (view N towards Lone Mtn Park)
Lone Mountain
Hole-in-the-Rock (view S)
Lone Mountain
Route follows ridgeline (view N)
Lone Mountain
Route follows ridgeline (view N)
Lone Mountain
Route on east side of ridgeline (view N)
Lone Mountain
Route on west side of ridgeline (view N)
Lone Mountain
Approaching Second Buttress (view N)
Lone Mountain
Base of Second Buttress (view N)
Lone Mountain
Route across west face below Second Buttress (view N)
Lone Mountain
Hiker crossing west face below Second Buttress (view N)
Lone Mountain
Hikers crossing west face below Second Buttress (view S)
Lone Mountain
Steep slope on west side of Second Buttress (view NE)
Lone Mountain
Hiker on steep slope on west side of Second Buttress (view NE)
Lone Mountain
Steep slope on west side of Second Buttress (view NE)
Lone Mountain
Ridgeline below summit (view N)
Lone Mountain
Hikers on ridgeline below summit (view N)
Lone Mountain
Hikers on summit (view N from steep slope)
Lone Mountain
Hikers on summit (view W)
Lone Mountain
Hiker on the summit (view W)

Table 1. Hiking Coordinates and Distances based on GPS Data (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Hiking GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Wpt. Location UTM Easting UTM Northing Elevation (ft) Point-to-Point Distance (mi) Cumulative Distance (mi) Verified
30 Toe South Ridge 651771 4010935 2,669 0.00 0.00 GPS
31 First Crest of the Ridge 651669 4011027 2,880 0.13 0.13 GPS
32 Base of Headwall 651557 4011264 3,071 0.21 0.34 GPS
33 Base of Gully 651563 4011296 3,147 0.04 0.38 GPS
34 Bottom of Summit Slope 651470 4011372 3,160 0.08 0.46 GPS
35 Crest of the Ridge 651524 4011397 3,248 0.05 0.51 GPS
36 Edge of Summit Plateau 651503 4011455 3,340 0.06 0.57 GPS
11 Summit 651486 4011469 3,301 0.01 0.58 GPS

Happy Hiking! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 140103

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