The upper tips of the distant Providence Mountains peer above the crest of Morning Star Mine Road

Bicycle camping in and around Mojave National Preserve 2006

Day 6: Nipton to Teutonia Peak area

30.87 miles, 3:27 hrs, 25.0 mph max, 9.0 mph avg

Elevation: 3000 feet to 2700 to 5000

I return to Morning Star Mine Road for the slightly steeper part of the uphill that awaits me and I trudge along upwards at 5-8 mph. I'm sweaty and feel gritty salt excretions getting mixed in with the sunscreen on my face. It must be approaching 90°F. Do I need those things called "facial tissues?"

Segment of the powerline road that provides a short-cut from Morning Star Mine to Cima Road; residual pavement provides a half-decent riding surface with traction

I rise infinitesimally while pedalling and much meditation is induced. I take in the very slowly changing views of the the surrounding mountains. I finally reach the powerline road that I've heard about, and head up it for a short-cut to Cima Road.

More and more joshua trees have been appearing along my route as I climbed Morning Star Mine Road. Now they're taking on a surreal effect along the powerline road with their increased density and the presence of the overhead powerlines and the giant towers that support them.

The powerline road has some residual pavement from long ago. The old pavement is crumbling and has some sand build-up in some spots, but it provides adquate traction and isn't difficult to ride up at all.

After a short mile or so on the powerline road, I reach Cima Road. I slowly head in the uphill direction toward the crest of the road, some five miles away.

Hmmm... that blank sign up on the hill near the Cima Road summit, visible from one of the camp sites that I choose not to occupy because it's too close to the road (the shade of that big tree would sure be nice though)

This is slow and visually quite interesting. This area is often described as the "densest joshua tree forest in the world," even though one would expect to find such a place in the more popular Joshua Tree National Park.

The sun is still hot, but I can feel hints of coolness in the breeze now that I'm up higher, slowly approaching the 5000-foot summit. The Ivanpah Mountains to my right are interesting to look at and Teutonia Peak off to my left inches its way closer as I rise.

When I reach the summit of Cima Road, I stop at the trailhead of the Teutonia Peak hiking trail. This looks like it would be a nice walk to do, only two miles to the peak. There is one car parked here, but no one is around.

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