The starting point for this hike is at the end of the one mile gravel road that you access from Hwy. 178 just before Jubilee Pass. It was one of the most difficult and exhausting hikes that I have been on in the park, but probably just because it was such a hot day. Joe, Charlie, and I parked our vehicle at the clearly marked parking sign and then headed northwest into the entrance for Virgin Spring Canyon. After hiking for about 3 miles and gaining just over 1,000 feet in elevation, we found Virgin Spring. Apparently, the spring dried up a few years ago, but the park service extended its life by sinking a pipe into the spring that allowed at least a little water to come out of the rocks and collect in a tub for the benefit of wildlife. However, once again no water is coming out, as we found the tub to be completely dry. But there were still quite a few green mesquite trees growing in the wash, so they must have been getting water from somewhere. The hike through Virgin Spring Canyon was quite pretty, with lots of flowers in bloom and colorful canyon walls. After we left Virgin Spring Canyon, we continued hiking on the lower loop trail until we ended up a couple of hours later at the Desert Hound Mine. There was lots of interesting relics of old west mining operations around the area to discover, as you can see in some of the pictures down below. I'm not showing pictures of everything, because I think some of you will enjoy discovering things for yourself if you're ever up there. I thought it was too risky to enter Desert Hound Mine itself, because it looked too dangerous. It's not like a typical mine tunnel where you just turn on your light and walk in to get a look. You have to navigate a difficult slope with slippery rocks and one slip puts you at the bottom of a chasm. But it didn't matter, because there was plenty to see outside the mine and the hillside all around. After exploring, we made our way up to a ridge and had a great view of Ashford Mine down below. Then we climbed up to the top of Desert Hound Peak at 4,472 feet and signed in to the official log book. Not many people had been to this peak, according to the register, sometimes years would go by without somebody visiting. Finishing up our hike, we began the long journey back to our truck, which was at the parking area for Virgin Springs Canyon. Charlie led us down and we decided to go off trail and follow an unexplored side canyon back down. It was extremely difficult as we had to navigate our way around about five huge dry falls. But with Charlie's help, we made it through all the tough parts. Once we got back to the truck, it was time to get some pizza and beer, and reflect on the success of this great hike.