On 15 October 2013, I hooked up with Dinah Kruze and Bob Spirko for a third day in a row to climb a peak near Las Vegas, Nevada (NV).  Joining us on this day was Bob's and Dinah's friend, Shin Goto, a Las Vegas resident who is also an avid peak-bagger.

Bob had picked an objective known as "Mount Stewart" from Andy Zdon's guidebook, Desert Summits:  A Climbing & Hiking Guide to California and Southern Nevada.  There is a lot of confusion regarding the name of this peak which is located on the California side of the state line just west of Pahrump, NV.  While some, like Zdon, use the name "Mount Stewart", others refer to this peak as "Stewart Point".  To complicate matters, the USGS topographical map names the peak as simply "Stewart".  I am a big advocate of simplicity and have opted to go with the USGS name although I think "Stewie" would be a catchier moniker.

Our trip got off to an inauspicious start when, after hiking for about 600 metres, we turned around and noticed a couple of police vehicles congregating around our car on the side of the highway.  Bob and I hurried back only to find out that the police were simply doing a routine check given that our car was parked seemingly in the middle of nowhere.

Bob and I eventually rejoined Dinah and Shin, and together we hiked to the base of Stewart where we entered a canyon of black rocks.  This canyon presents some route-finding challenges, and although cairns are present, they are not always obvious.  We eventually ended up off-route and had to traverse some unpleasant terrain to get back on track.  Once we gained the southeast ridge of Stewart, we enjoyed a straightforward albeit steep climb to the summit.

On descent, we again had some route-finding issues in the canyon, but this time, we managed to stay on the right track and avoid difficult down-climbs.  The remainder of the hike back to our car was uneventful.  A quick stop in Pahrump for ice cream and cold drinks capped off yet another beautiful day in the desert.

Be sure to check out Bob's trip report here.
Be sure to look back every once in awhile to see if someone is checking out your parked car! Shin, Bob and Dinah head across the flats toward Stewart (left).
According to Wikipedia, all tarantulas are venomous, but historically, no human has ever died from a tarantula bite. Maybe Bob will make history... Bob is actually grinning about having a huge tarantula crawling on his arm!
In terms of distance, we're about halfway to the summit from here. In terms of elevation, we still have a lot of climbing ahead of us... Shin surveys the entrance to the canyon at right.
Abandon all hope ye who enter here! Shin and Dinah enter the canyon of black rocks.
Although fun, this is the wrong way. We should have headed to climber's left just before this pour-over. Shin and Dinah wait at the top of a pour-over while Bob scrambles up beside it.
We're definitely off-route here, and the intervening terrain between us and the ridge is not as trivial as it looks. The route to the summit follows the ridge at centre.
Whew! This is hard work! With route-finding difficulties behind them, Shin, Bob and Dinah push on up the ridge.
And we still have to climb higher than those peaks and ridges in the background!! The long slog continues.
Just like corporate America... Black rocks give way to white rocks higher up.
Wow. That felt like a lot more than just 750 metres of elevation gain! Shin, Bob and Dinah reach the 1592-metre summit of Stewart.
Look at me! Dinah looks on disapprovingly as Sonny pays tribute to avid Las Vegas peak-bagger, Harlan Stockman.
I would like to climb all of these! Visible to the northwest are Eagle Mountain (centre) and Pyramid Peak (distant right).  Barely visible on the horizon at far left is Telescope Peak.
Looks like a long slog, but I wanna climb it too! Shadow Mountain attracts all the attention to the north.

The clouds kinda look like smoke coming out of Charleston Peak.

This panoramic view to the east includes the town of Pahrump, snowy Charleston Peak, and Potosi Mountain (far right).

Hey, is that someone checking out my parked car again down there? I better head back to see what's going on... At right, the Nopah Range stretches away to the southeast.
There once was a fellow named Stewart... Shin reads the summit register while Bob and Dinah marvel at the surrounding views.
Missed an opportunity here to do Y-M-C-A! Shin, Dinah, Bob and Sonny pose together near the summit of Stewart.
To quote The Office's Michael Scott: “Wikipedia is the best thing ever. Anyone in the world, can write anything they want about any subject. So you know you are getting the best possible information.” This is one of two geodetic survey markers on the summit of Stewart.  According to Wikipedia, the triangle indicates that this is a primary point or main station among a group of such markers (the others are referred to as reference marks) used in triangulation surveys.  The hole marks the precise spot that a surveyor's plumb-bob is supposed to be dropped.
Time to turn on the cruise control! Shin, Dinah and Bob leave behind all difficulties and hike out of the canyon.
Good route-finding is a must on this trip! Total Distance:  ~10.2 kilometres*
Round-Trip Time:  6 hours 31 minutes
Net Elevation Gain:  754 metres

*Not including an extra 1.2 km on the initial backtrack