Jupiter Mine Peak & Excelsior Mine Peak

Where: Kingston Range, southern California
When: February 2009
Partners: Solo

25 years since the last sign-in...

On a day that forecast rain and snow for my entire region, I was anxious to find something, anything that wouldn't get me too wet. So I found myself once again exploring the obscure Kingston Range, home of the desert ultra-classic, Kingston Peak - perhaps the craggiest and most alpine-like of the desert peaks of the region.

Spotting a pair of nice-looking, prominent peaks nearby, I started out and up. With some easy desert hiking on the approach, I soon found myself scrambling 200 feet of class 2 & 3 terrain that led to a summit in the clouds. To my utter surprise, there was a register! Placed by Barbara Lilley and Gordon MacLeod in spring 1984, the register hadn't been signed in nearly 9 years. They called the peak Jupiter Mine Peak.

Dropping down to the saddle south of Jupiter Mine Peak, I scampered up to the next peak, 300 feet above the saddle. There, another register dubbing it Excelsior Mine Peak had been placed by Lilley and MacLeod back in spring 1984. And there had been no sign-ins since! Damn, I love these obscure summits!

I headed back to the car and on to the next peak...