Climb Telescope Peak ~ Death Valley

Enjoy the little things for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.

During Thanksgiving break, I had the extreme pleasure of meeting up with hiker friends, Drop n’ Roll and Wired to climb Telescope Peak in Death Valley National Park. Both friends were visiting Love Note and Burly’s abode in Lone Pine, CA. Many of you may remember these fun characters from my Continental Divide trek in summer of 2013.

Telescope Peak has been on my list to climb for several years. It is the tallest mountain in Death Valley and is a prominent peak viewed from the Sierras. The entire route is on trail with easy navigation.

The day was not only full of hiking, but also an abundance of trail talk, trip dreaming and planning, relationship analysis, and some shenanigans #streakthepeak. The summit offers sweeping views of Badwater and the High Sierras, which in itself is worth the climb. Just think… a bird’s-eye view of the lowest (in the Western Hemisphere) and highest (in the contiguous United States) in one neat spot.

To celebrate a great day, we headed over to soak in the sunset at Mesquite Dunes east of Stovepipe Wells.

It doesn’t get better than this. 🙂

TRIP DATE November 28, 2014
LENGTH About 14 miles round trip
TRAIL HEAD Mahogany Flat campground (8,133′), last 2 miles up to the campground is on rough dirt road. High clearance vehicles are recommended.
DIFFICULTY Moderate on well-maintained trail
PERMIT None required
BEST TIME TO HIKE Spring and fall
LINKS Summit Post, Park Service, bird and


Early morning at the Telescope Peak trail head
Early morning at the Telescope Peak trail head


Awesome lighting!
Awesome lighting!


Drop n' Roll, Wired, and Rockin' (Telescope back right)
Drop n’ Roll, Wired, and Rockin’ (Telescope back right)



Wired and Drop n' Roll on the way up
Wired and Drop n’ Roll on the way up.
Rockin' it at the top
Rockin’ it at the top



View of summit looking northwest
View of summit looking northwest


View north
View north
Drop n' Roll, wired, and Rockin' on the summit
Drop n’ Roll, wired, and Rockin’ on the summit



Sunset at Mesquite Dunes
Sunset at Mesquite Dunes


Sporting our Gossamer Gear packs at Mesquite Dunes
Sporting our Gossamer Gear packs at Mesquite Dunes




  1. Hi there,

    I’m hoping to do this trail December 29th of this year. Some friends and I will be trekking to Death Valley on a NYE trip. I was wondering if you think we may encounter snow? And if you think it’d be too strenuous of a hike during that time? Thanks!

    • Christy "Rockin'" Rosander

      Olivia, Telescope does get a lot of snow and requires ice axe, snowshoes, and full size crampons in the winter. We just got our first significant snow in the mountains so winter gear would be required. It is a great climb late spring, summer, and fall.

  2. Nice to see you hiking together again, how fun!

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  5. Looks like a great trip. Also, is that a large geocache box in your Northwest summit picture?

  6. For a beginning hiker from KS what do you recommend should be my bucket list hikes? Going to Zion and Arches this summer to start my adventures. Great pictures, thanks for sharing.

  7. Great to see you together again ! The photos were spectacular ! What camera were you using ?

    Have a wonderful Holiday with friends and family.

  8. Are those Bristlecone Pines, on the way up? I’ve been reading up on them on conifers dot org/ Gymnosperm database. Heavy duty.

    • Had to look it up to make sure…yes indeed those are Bristlecone Pines. Yes, very. If they appeal to you, be sure and visit the Bristlecones on the way to White Mountain in the Inyo Mountains.

  9. Great pics! glad you S. Cal’s are getting some rain, finally!!

  10. Awesome mini-reunion pictures. Cool that you could make a lasso of the hike. Adds to the fun.

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