Hummingbird Gulch

North Loop Meadow

Flowing Spring Water in Hummingbird Gulch

Climbing over a Bike Jump on Gypsy Trail

The trailhead for this 6.2 mile counter-clockwise loop is at the Robbers' Roost parking area on Deer Creek Road (aka SR 158). The route can be described as 4 miles up and 2 miles down. Eleven hikers arrived for the fun, exhausting and hot hike. We started by crossing the road to the Robbers' Roost Trail. Up the first little hill, there is the old Deer Creek Road that runs perpendicular to this trail. We turned right onto the road and soon could see bits and pieces of the asphalt under our feet. This trail is part of an extensive bike route extravaganza in the area. Staying to the right, we curved around past a couple of bike routes coming in from the left.

Overlook from Gypsy Bike Trail

Gathering at the end of Gypsy Bike Trail

Starting up North Loop Trail

North Loop Trail

Soon, we were on the Gypsy Trail bike route that curved up parallel to the paved road below us to the right. There are several wonderful views from this trail. One of the first views from the trail was that of Robbers' Roost, Hummingbird Gulch and Fletcher Peak as seen in a photo above. The old road trail continues up the curve on a gentle slope and our pace was strong. Other views included Telephone Canyon, Angel Peak and the Juniper Trailhead. We ended up just below the North Loop Trailhead and were required to walk up beside the paved road for approximately 0.2 mile to reach it. This early in the morning, there wasn't much traffic. Although, be careful, because this summer, the traffic speed is very careless on Deer Creek Road. Just sayin' it could be scary.

Gathering at the North Loop Meadow

Flowers & Bristlecone Roots

Old Bristlecone and Mummy's Nose

Starting up the North Loop Switchbacks

At the trailhead, we separated to climb up to the meadow at our own pace. I believe everyone reached the meadow within 20 minutes of each other. It was here that we meshed with another hiking group who were headed to Fletcher Peak. Our stronger hikers wanted to get started up the switchbacks before the other group finished their break at the meadow so, off they went. The slower hikers ended up leap frogging with the other group of hikers all the way up the 12 switchbacks. We were all very considerate of each other and seemed to have a similar pace. This last section of the "4 miles up" was quite the challenge for me.

The Last climb before High Point Corner

Taking a break at High Point Corner

Mummy's Toe above North Loop Trail

Mummy's Toe & South Ridge from Fletcher Peak Trail

It was a good feeling when we reached the High Point Corner (10,025') for our break. Almost all of the remaining part of the hike was downhill! I found a rock to sit on and eat a small snack. Around this corner, there is a great view of Mummy's Toe. The North Loop Trail leads down between old scraggly bristlecones with the rock faced peak of Mummy's Toe rising in the middle. We talked and laughed for a few minutes. Breezes of cool wind alleviated the rising heat of the summer day up to this point. I had hoped the breeze would reach us in the gulch yet to come. So we started off again down to the Fletcher Peak Trail turnoff.

Fletcher Peak from approach Trail

Gathering at the top of Hummingbird Gulch

Wooded part of Hummingbird Gulch

Nearing the Narrows of Hummingbird Gulch

The left turn is found 0.3 miles down the North Loop Trail. After making the sharp turn up and over the log, we traversed the hillside and dropped down to the Fletcher Ridge saddle. This was our next and final gathering place, the tip top of Hummingbird Gulch … landmarked by a large beautifully ornate vertical bristlecone root. The trail down begins here! I led the veteran hikers down the wooded half of the gulch. The trail is pretty well worn and there are cairns every so often to comfort the hike leader. Still, it is suggested that the hike leader has a working knowledge about the gulch trail as a whole. It can be a little tricky.

The top of the Narrows

Passing the Spring Area

Starting the Up & Around

Following the Trail for the Up & Around

The wooded section of the gulch winds in and out of the wash that is filled with pine cones and a few fallen trees. My concentration was working non-stop to avoid a spill or missing the trail. About a quarter of a mile down, we came to the first high-walled narrows. But, it was almost another half mile before we came to the main narrows section that began with the flowing spring spilling down from the opposite side of the gulch. This water continued down the wash for only about 50 feet before it disappeared into the ground even before reaching the dry fall hidden in the foliage. It was here that the trail climbs up and drops down to the left, a very precarious and slippery section, to reach the bottom of said dry fall.

Brian carves in the Large chunk of Ice at Bottom of Up & Around Dry Fall

First View of the Walled Section of Hummingbird Gulch

Trail through Scree

Nearing the Bottom of the Gulch

After the dry fall, the trail dives into the rock walls, scree, and brush. It is a constant offering of various challenges of scrambles and finding the trail. The trail was mostly clear yet unintuitive at times. This lower part of the gulch was very hot and the heat wore on me. We felt none of those hoped for breezes. It was a very welcome sight to finally arrive in the juniper glade at the bottom. We turned left on the remnants of the same old road as in the beginning and had to do a little climbing. The road was cut away when the new paved road was built so, at one point, it is necessary to hike into the woods on a vague use trail to connect with the Robbers' Roost Trail. As we all hiked into the Robbers' Roost parking area, we exclaimed that it was, indeed, a Tuesday hike. … Especially in the heat of a July day. We conquered Hummingbird Gulch one more time! Best hikers in Vegas!
6.2 miles; 2200 feet elevation gain; 4.25 hours; average moving speed (including my slowdowns near end) 1.4 mph

Wooded Juniper Glade near Bottom of Gulch

Connecting the Route at Robbers' Roost Trail

Happy to see Cars on a Hot Day