The Verdi Range
Ladybug Peak in the Verdi range, California at 8,380′ is one of the two tallest peaks in the Verdi range. They are located just across the Nevada/California border west of Verdi, Nevada. This range is desert like on the east side, and forested on the west side. And is an example of how the mountain ranges in this area act as a rain shadow. Views east reveal a desert landscape, and views west show a forested landscape.
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In The Sierras
The Verdi Range, which covers about 12 miles north-south. It’s southern terminus is at I-80, it’s northern terminus at Henness Pass. The range is just north of the Carson Range, and is part of the northern Sierra Nevada Mountains. Not as tall as their southern counterparts, this range still rises up precipitously from the valley floor.
The two summits are located about a mile from each other and share a saddle at about 8,055′. They are both reached from the same approaches. These primary approaches are from the north side or northwest side near the Stampede Reservoir. Roads lead up to just below the summit of Verdi Peak, and within 250 yards of the summit of Ladybug Peak. So, a 4WD can get you really close to these summits. Without 4WD, the closest you can get is a little under 5 1/2 miles from Verdi Peak.
There is temptation to approach Verdi and Ladybug Peaks from the east side. Especially for those living in the Truckee Meadows area. Verdi is nearly 30 minutes closer to Reno/Sparks than the Stampede Reservoir. And there is a way to reach these peaks from the east, without crossing private lands, or at least without crossing lands with restricted access. However, to do so is brutally tough due to the thick brush and rocky four wheel drive roads on the east side. Because of the very steep, trail-less, route-less, eastern approach hiking it is not recommended. Although, in winter, it would be interesting to try this with snowshoes.
These peaks can be climbed year-round. Although typically they are snow covered from late-November through late-April-mid-May. The road to Stampede is closed if snow conditions warrant. Views are excellent, with mountains on all sides. Fall is probably the best time to hike here, or late spring if snow levels are adequately low.