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So I’ve seen this outcrop of volcanic rock up in the Virginia Range, between Reno and Virginia City, that looks like Devils Postpile National Monument. This phenomenon is called Columnar Jointing.

Columnar jointing is a geological structure where sets of intersecting closely spaced fractures, referred to as joints, result in the formation of a regular array of polygonal prisms, or columns. Columnar jointing occurs in many types of volcanic rocks and forms as the rock cools and contracts. Columnar jointing can occur in cooling lava flows and ashflow tuffs (ignimbrites), as well as in some shallow intrusions. Wikipedia

So Rocket and I dropped off the big boys at school and wend to find and climb it. I was half hoping it would be roped climbing, but it was an easy scramble to a nice place to take in the view and eat Starbursts. We went in on the Jumbo Grade Road (MORE INFO) and exited on the Ophir Road to the south end of Washoe Valley.

Jumbo is a lot harder than it was when we made that video. I’d say it’s well out of Subaru territory now and low SUVs might have trouble with some of the cross-axle climbs.

Ophir road was rockier, and much rougher than Jumbo, but still passable by any regular 4×4. GPS track below and I got video, above, of all the hard parts.


The Virginia City Jeep Trail is one wee need to assess after last winter’s deluge. Hopefully we can get that in before snowfall closes it again.


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