birdandhike.com logo
Home | Wilderness | Hiking | Mojave National Preserve | Backroads
Caruthers Canyon Road
Hiking Around Las Vegas, Mojave National Preserve
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at NY Mountains Rd (view N)

Overview

Caruthers Canyon Road is an old mining and ranching road that runs up to a mine at the head of Caruthers Canyon. Most of the road is fine for 2WD-HC vehicle, but it is rough in a few spots with washouts, rocks, and gravel in the wash. Farther out, the road is badly washed out, and a landslide blocks the end of the road, but I drove my jeep to the Stone-Table campsite in 2WD.

This road provides access to several primitive camping areas, including the Stone-Table campsite, areas to scramble among the rock outcrops, and access to several hiking routes, including Giant Ledge Mine, New York Mountain Peak, and New York Two Mountain Peak.

Link to map.

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at windmill (view N)

Watch Out

Other than the standard warnings about being in the desert, ... the road is easy in a 2WD-HC vehicle out to the campsites, and most of it should be passable in a carefully driven sedan. If driving a sedan, inquire locally about current conditions and use your own good judgment about the road conditions, as the road is subject to washouts.

While out in the desert, please respect the land and the other people out there, and try to Leave No Trace of your passage. Also, even though the road is short, the area is remote, so be sure to bring the 10 Essentials.

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at small water tank (view N)

Getting to the Road

This road is located in Mojave National Preserve, about 2-1/4 hours south of Las Vegas.

From town, drive south on I-15 into California to Nipton Road (Table 1, Site 1008). Turn left onto Nipton Road and drive east about 4 miles to Ivanpah Road (Site 1264). Turn right onto Ivanpah Road and drive south for 24.2 miles to the signed New York Mountain Road (Site 1259). Turn right onto New York Mountain Road and drive west for 5.7 miles to an unsigned four-way intersection with Caruthers Canyon Road (Site 1260).

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at fork past small water tank

The Road

From New York Mountain Road at Caruthers Canyon Road (Site 1260), turn right onto Caruthers Canyon Road and drive north. On Caruthers Canyon Road, all forks (except a washout) are passed by driving straight up the canyon.

The road forks at an old windmill with a large, rusted water tank (Site 1261), and the main road stays right. The road passes a small water tank, then forks again (Site 1459); the main road stays right. For drivers in sedans, this might be a good place to park because the main road drops to cross a side wash just past the fork.

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at fork (view N)

The road forks again (Site 1460), and the main road stays right. Before long, the road forks again (Site 1461). Here, the road bears left, as the right (straight) runs into an impassable, washed-out ditch. Climbing out of the ditch could be difficult for 2WD vehicles.

Passing the ditch, the bypass road merges back into the main road at a spot that, again, could be difficult for 2WD vehicles.

Continuing, the road forks again (Site 1462), and the main road stays right. The road drops into the wash, but the gravel is firm (May 2013) and should be fine for 2WD-HC vehicles. At this point, the road enters into an area of tall Canyon Live Oak that shade several primitive campsites (Site 1262). Hikers with 2WD-HC vehicles might want to stop here.

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd bypassing washout (view N)

Otherwise, the road continues to another fork in the road (Site 1463). Here, the main road continues straight (left) up the canyon, while the right runs up to the Stone Table primitive campsite (Site 1466).

Continuing straight, the road passes a "Caruthers Canyon Trail" sign (Site 1464). In this vicinity is the last place to safely park a 2WD-HC vehicle.

The road deteriorates rapidly beyond the sign, becoming more and more rocky and washed out. Eventually the road becomes so rocky that none but rock-hopper jeeps would continue (Site 1465). The road, such as it is, continues to a landslide (Site 1466) where it appears that turning around isn't even fun in a rock-hopper jeep.

Caruthers Canyon Road
Bypass merging back into Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at fork (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Rd dropping into wash and main camp area (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd under oak trees (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Campsite under oak trees (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Rd at fork; right to Stone-Table Campsite (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at "Caruthers Canyon Trail" sign (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at a rough patch (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at a rough patch (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at a rough patch (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at a rough patch (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at a rough patch (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at hand-made road (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd (view N)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at landslide (view N)

Side Road to Stone-Table Campsite (good, 2WD-HC road)

Caruthers Canyon Road
Side road to Stone-Table Campsite (view NE)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Stone-Table Campsite (view NE)

Last Side Road to the Left (good, 2WD road)

Caruthers Canyon Road
Caruthers Canyon Rd at fork; left to campsite (view N; Site 1462)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Two-track side road (view W)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Two-track side road (view W)
Caruthers Canyon Road
Two-track side road at a single campsite (view W)

Table 1. Highway Coordinates Based on GPS Data (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Highway GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Site Location UTM Easting UTM Northing Latitude Longitude Elevation Verified
1260 NY Mtn Rd at Caruthers Rd 655000 3898275 35.21733 115.29701 5,397 Yes
1261 Caruthers Rd at Windmill 654761 3899152 35.22527 115.29947 5,510 Yes
1262 Caruthers Rd at 2WD parking 654729 3900872 35.24078 115.29950 5,623 Yes
1263 Caruthers Cyn Mine Site 654718 3902453 35.25503 115.29932 6,069 Yes
1459 NY Mtn Rd @ Fork 654658 3899839 35.23148 115.30047 5,512 Yes
1460 NY Mts Rd @ Fork 654650 3899981 35.23276 115.30053 5,525 Yes
1461 NY Mts Rd @ Washout 654620 3900251 35.23520 115.30081 5,537 Yes
1462 NY Mts Rd @ Fork 654666 3900738 35.23958 115.30021 5,576 Yes
1463 NY Mts Rd @ Fork 654840 3901032 35.24220 115.29825 5,585 Yes
1464 NY Mtn Rd @ 2WD Parking 654882 3901088 35.24271 115.29777 5,685 Yes
1465 NY Mtn Rd @ 4WD Parking 654952 3901547 35.24683 115.29692 5,740 GPS
1466 Stone Table Campsite 654942 3901041 35.24227 115.29712 5,615 Yes
1468 Caruthers Canyon Rd @ Landslide 654632 3902087 35.25174 115.30034 5,961 GPS

Happy Hiking! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 130609

Backroads Hiking Around Mojave Preserve Hiking Around Las Vegas Glossary Copyright, Conditions, Disclaimer Home

 

Google Ads