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Rogers Peak via Arcane Meadows
Hiking Around Las Vegas, Death Valley National Park
rogers peak
Rogers Peak (view north from Bennett Peak)

Overview

This fairly strenuous, 2.4-mile route starts at Mahogany Flat Campground and follows the Telescope Peak Trail into the Death Valley Wilderness Area and up to Arcane Meadows, a windswept saddle on the south side of Rogers Peak. At Arcane Meadows, the route leaves the Telescope Peak trail and climbs off-trail up the south ridge of Rogers Peak to the summit. Climbing this peak might seem trivial with Telescope Peak just down the ridge, but the views from this summit are every bit as spectacular as those from Telescope, and nobody should feel bad for "only" climbing Rogers Peak. The road on the north side of the peak makes for a nice way to return to the trailhead.

Link to map or elevation profile.

Rogers Peak via Arcane Meadows
Rogers Peak (view north from Arcane Mdw)

Watch Out

Other than the standard warnings about hiking in the desert, ...this is a steep and narrow, but pretty safe trail when it is clear of snow. Stay off the ridges and the summit if lightning threatens. Snow accumulates on the ridges, so winter ascents might require ice axes, crampons, and mountaineering experience. Beware of altitude sickness, as the peak is some 10,000 feet higher than the surrounding desert valleys.

There is no water at the campground, trailhead, or on the trail. Get water at Wildrose Campground.

While hiking, please respect the land and the other people out there, and try to Leave No Trace of your passage. Also, this is a fairly long hike, so be sure to bring the 10 Essentials. This hike runs up into the Death Valley Wilderness Area, so pay particular attention to respecting the land.
rogers peak
Rogers Peak with communication towers (view north)

Getting to the Trailhead

This hike is located in Death Valley National Park, about 4 hours northwest of Las Vegas.

From town, drive out to Death Valley, then continue on westbound Highway 190, past Stovepipe Wells to Emigrant Canyon Road. Turn left onto Emigrant Canyon Road and drive up into the mountains, eventually arriving at the Telescope Peak Trailhead. Park here; this is the trailhead.

The last 0.7 miles to Mahogany Flat Campground might require a 4WD vehicle or a hike.

rogers peak
Death Valley (view east from the summit)

The Hike

From the trailhead (Table 2, Waypoint 1), hike up the Telescope Peak trail for 2.0 miles to the crest of the ridge (Wpt. 2) at Arcane Meadows. For details, see the description of the Telescope Peak route.

The Telescope Peak trail levels out at Arcane Meadows, the broad saddle between Rogers and Bennett peaks. At the crest (Wpt. 2), leave the Telescope Peak trail and hike off-trail up the ridge to the north. You can see the communication towers on the summit, so it is easy to tell where to go. The ridge is barren and windswept, and the vegetation is a few low-growing sagebrush, lupine, and a few other stunted shrubs and annual flowers, but mostly it is bare rock, so route finding is easy.

rogers peak
Bennett and Telescope (view south from the summit)

Near the top of the ridge to the west of the peak, the Rogers Peak Road makes a big bend (Wpt. 3). This is a good place to pick up the road and follow it to the summit (Wpt. 4).

On the summit, there are buildings, communications towers, solar panels, and propane tanks, so it isn't a true wilderness experience, but the views a grand. You can see down into Death Valley (Furnace Creek and Badwater), east into Nevada, south to Bennett and Telescope peaks, west to Panamint Valley and the High Sierra Mountains, and north to Wildrose Peak and the vastness beyond. Views from the summit of Rogers Peak are every bit a good as those from the top of Telescope Peak.

rogers peak
The summit isn't a wilderness (view west)

From the summit, either walk back down the route you came up, or walk down the dirt road and make a loop trip (or choose some other, perhaps more direct, route back down). This is a neat mountain with many possibilities and great views in every direction.

Along the route, watch for Panamint Chipmunks, Sagebrush Lizards, Rock Wrens, Clark's Nutcrackers, and Red Crossbills.

For backpackers, there is a nice stockade-type campsite (Wpt. 5) with log-and-rock windbreak in the stand of pinyon pine due west of where the trail crests out in Arcane Meadows.

Table 2. Hiking Coordinates Based on GPS Data (NAD27, UTM Zone 11S). Download Hiking GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Wpt. Location Easting Northing Elevation (ft) Point-to-Point Distance Cumulative Distance Verified
01 Mahogany Flat Trailhead 493943 4009255 8,133 0.00 0.00 Yes
02 Arcane Meadows at the crest 492077 4007487 9,571 2.00 2.00 GPS
03 Road 492209 4007794 9,836 0.25 2.25 GPS
04 Summit 492392 4007926 9,988 0.20 2.45 GPS
05 Campsite 491985 4007609 9,653 . . GPS

Happy Hiking! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 120423

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