Tuesday night we settled in to our desert vacation home in southern Death Valley, planning on staying here through Sunday. Throughout the rest of the week our friends will roll in for a few days of hiking, peak bagging, and Thanksgiving festivities around the campfire.

Our first hike, on Wednesday morning, was Jubilee Mountain, an easy desert summit with a pyramid profile and incredible summit views along Death Valley.

Hiking the ridge up Jubilee
Hiking the ridge up Jubilee
View from the summit of Jubilee
View from the summit of Jubilee

We were back at the cabin by lunch and spent the afternoon exploring the area. I ended up wandering up a ridge to a volcanic outcropping from which I had a great view of the area. As I scrambled around the rock I spied a dust plume on the old dirt road that leads to the cabin. Soon, Robin pulled up and shortly after that Sooz arrived followed by Mandy. Let the pre-Thanksgiving party begin!

Desert Cabin
Desert Cabin

The next morning we hiked Sheephead Peak, a colorful peak with bands of red, white, orange, and grey rock. It’s stripes make it an eye catching peak no matter what angle you see it from, and I’ve had it on my to-do list for a while.

Sheephead Approach
Sheephead Approach
Colorful rock of Sheephead
Colorful rock of Sheephead
Sheephead Summit
Sheephead Summit
Climbing the final ridge
Climbing the final ridge

The hike starts off through a wash and over some dry falls, then up through some loose rock to a wide ridge. After scooching around a gap in the ridge and scrambling up the final rocky stretch we made the summit of this beautiful peak. We spent quite a bit of time up there enjoying the view and celebrating Robin’s first summit after recovering from foot surgery.

Happy Turkey Day!
Happy Turkey Day!

By mid afternoon we were back at the cabin and ready to start preparing our Thanksgiving dinner. A bunch of other friends had rolled in during the day and by the time everyone arrived we were ready to make our Thanksgiving feast. Everyone brings a dish, and this year we brought turkey that we had smoked at home and vacuum sealed and frozen. Reheated over a fire, it came out perfect! Inside the cabin there is a beautiful old wood stove that we used to keep the food warm until time to eat. Everything came together in an amazing way, as usual.

Thanksgiving Dinner, Rustic Style
Thanksgiving Dinner, Rustic Style

Jubilee


Sheephead

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