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Ascender Title
February 2010
Volume 16, Issue 2


February 19-20, 2010
Report and Photos by Joel Brewster

Sierra and Joel lounging around camp


Chris modelling some vintage snowshoes donated to the club by Snafu.
Unfortunately, they broke about two minutes after I took this picture.


Toby snowshoeing on the North Loop Trail


These clouds brought heavy snow as we descended.

My kids, Toby and Sierra, and I joined a group of seven others from the Las Vegas Mountaineers Club for a winter car-camp at Kyle Canyon campground and a snowshoe up the North Loop Trail the following morning. Chris Ransel organized and led a very enjoyable trip. For me and the kids, it was our first time camping in winter conditions. We noticed that there are a few differences between winter camping and summer camping:

1. Hammering tent stakes into snow is easier than into rocky ground.

2. The snow covers up those annoying rocks that are uncomfortable to sleep on.

3. Ice chests are not really necessary when the air temperature is the same as the temperature inside the ice chest.

4. Most critters that would try to get into your food are hibernating.

5. Campgrounds aren't as crowded as they would be in the summer; only the hardy want to camp on top of snow!

6. Kids get less dirty playing in snow than in dirt.

7. Starting a campfire in winter is more difficult.

8. Piles of snow in campsites can be great for sliding down.

9. Icy campground roads can be very slippery.

10. Sierra does not like being cold; she prefers warm-weather camping.

The kids stay warm by exposing no skin.


Toby is King of the Hill on pile of snow in our campsite.



Report and Photos by Henry Jingle

In Red Rock during winter the canyons can be cold. On a sunny day, a good winter or early spring hike is the Grand Circle. At 11.3 miles, it is BLM’s longest official hike. There are trail signs along the way.

While BLM calls this a difficult hike, I rate it as an easy class 1 except for the distance. The morning views of the mountains after a snowfall are beautiful.

From the visitors’ parking lot, you hike around the new Visitor Center to find the trail. You then hike towards the Calico Hills to the Calico 1 parking.

From there you hike down the trail to the trail sign. The trail heads West with good views of the Calico Hills. If you look carefully you may see climbers on the numerous sports routes on the sandstone walls. On the way, you go past a Native American Petroglyph site.

The trail comes out at the Sandstone Quarry parking area. Heading down the trail towards Turtlehead, you'll find a sign for the Grand Circle on your left.

The trail then heads across the desert towards White Rock Hills. The trail crosses the 13 mile drive once and comes out on the road at the junction with the dirt road that leads to the White Rock parking. You hike up the dirt road to the parking area, which is the high point of the hike at 4920 feet. There is a trail sign on the left. From here you hike in front of the White Rock Hills on the White Rock loop trail. If you want a longer hike, you can go right behind White Rock to the Willow Springs picnic area and then to the return trail to the Visitor Center.

A short ways down the trail from the parking is a junction with the trail that leads to White Rock Springs. The spring is about the halfway point and has a good bench for lunch. In December, there were no birds; however, in early spring we have seen many here.

After lunch, we hiked in front of White Rock and checked out a chute that someone reported could be climbed. This looks like a good adventure for the spring when the days are longer. One of the advantages of Red Rock scrambling is there are different ways to get to the summits and loop hikes are fun. Continuing, we finally reached the trail sign at the junction of the return trail that leads back to the Visitor Center. Hiking the 4 miles back, you get great views of Turtlehead and the Calico Hills.

The following is a topo map of the Grand Circle hike, which has an elevation gain of about 1200 feet.



Xavier Wasiak

Where were you born?
On July 22, 1970, a bright star shone above a humble little manger in San Antonio de Padua, a town just outside Buenos Aires, Argentina. I doubt there was a virgin involved.

How long have you lived in Las Vegas?
33 years now. Ahhh home...

What is your occupation?
I'm an industrial real estate broker by day and taxi dancer by night. Being in the love trade can be difficult.

How long have you been an LVMC member?
About 14 years now.

What is your favorite hike/climb?
I have sooo many. Hiking is what I do to get to the base of my climbs, so I guess my favorite climbs would be Nightcrawler, Epinephrine, Triassic Sands and Only the Good Die Young at RR, as well as many in the Sierra and Tuolomne Meadows.

What is the most challenging hike/climb you have done?
I felt completely worked on Lightning Bolt Cracks on the North Six Shooter at Indian Creek recently. That was hard even though it was just three pitches.

How did you get into hiking/climbing?
I was 26 and looking to get outdoors. Vance Sutton from what was then Great Basin Outdoors introduced me to Greg Sarantos, Richard Baugh and the Club. Richard and Greg taught me a ton and I loved it!! I was hooked.

What are your hobbies other than hiking/climbing?
I enjoy moonlight walks along the beach and soft music. My favorite color is blue but everyone says I look my best in green. My favorite number is 4 and I'm not looking for any drama... I'd like somebody who... Wait... Wrong questionnaire. I enjoy my work and I also like to dance... I'm from Argentina, so I tango, duh...


President: Kristi Meyer
Vice President/Training Director: Richard Baugh
Secretary: Lynda Gallia
Treasurer: Beth Ransel
Newsletter Editor: Joel Brewster
Outings Director: Nasrin Houston
Membership Director: Chris Ransel
Website Director: Amy Brewster
Public Relations/Marketing Directors: Jose Witt & Heather Torrey
Club Gear Director: Xavier Wasiak
Social Director: Skip Spilman
Assistant Director: Doug Hladky
Assistant Director: Dale Lindhorst
Assistant Director: Kim Owen
Past President: Nadia von Magdenko

The Ascender is the monthly online newsletter of the Las Vegas Mountaineers Club. All content is property of LVMC and may be used only by the original submitters. All others must obtain written consent from the Board of Directors.
All Club members are invited to submit trip reports, photos, trip listings, recipes, classified ads and other related information. March 10th is the deadline for the next issue.

Joel Brewster




Please send any address, phone number and e-mail changes to Chris Ransel, membership director. LVMC currently has approximately 120 paid members or families.

If you wish to send a check instead of using PayPal online, please make your check payable to the Las Vegas Mountaineers Club and mail to: P.O. Box 36026, Las Vegas, NV 89133-6026.
Single membership is $30 per year, $85 for three years. Family annual membership is $40, $110 for three years.

To the following members, please note that your membership will expire this month:

Bill Inglehart
Brian Carella
Dave Myhre
Henry Dziegiel
John Lindsley-Thayer
Paul Des Roches
Sharon Miller
Stephen Paplinski


This club gear is available at no charge to members:

4-season tent
Bear Barrels
Alpine Axes*
Strap-on Crampons*


*Will require a signed waiver.

Non-members are not eligible to borrow club gear. Deposits taken on gear must be in the form of cash or check and will be returned upon return of equipment. Gear is also available to members for courses with no deposit required. If you have any questions or would like to inquire about club gear, please contact Xavier Wasiak.

Classified Ads
Members: Free
Non-members: $5

Business Ads
1/8 page (business card): $5
1/4 page: $10
1/2 page: $15
Full page: $20
All rates are per issue and will be discontinued automatically unless renewed. Ads must be prepaid and sent by e-mail or submitted on CD. Please make checks payable to Las Vegas Mountaineers Club.




The Las Vegas Mountaineers meeting this month is on Tuesday, February 23rd
at Sahara West Library, 9600 W. Sahara. Meeting time is 7 p.m.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Sahara West Library

Climbing in Turkey & Russia
Kurt Wedberg


Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Sahara West Library

Mountaineering in the Alps
Sergio Colombo

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