the upper portion of the east ridge leading directly to the small summit
The east ridge of Antoinette is a fun scramble up a fine ridge with good exposure on the north side. It is the most direct way to the summit when the south side is snow free, and only scree.
the east ridge on the right skyline taken from the trail. The main summit off to the left. The access gully is near the far right
Drive to the Swift Creek trailhead from the Granite Creek Road, described on the main page. From the trailhead, cross the creek on the bridge and go north for a few hundred feet until the small sign pointed to Swift Creek is seen. Follow the trail to the right.
The trail follows on the left side of the creek for almost two miles through some beautiful forest. The creek is crossed on some logs at a beautiful spot. Soon a intersection is found near a lovely meadow. Bear left and follow the main drainage.
The trail now begins to gain elevation. You pass near some wild rock formations as the trail continues to climb. You pass some steep rocky sections, and traverse some wild meadows. After a few miles a small,spring fed creek is crossed and the main peak soon dominates the view.
After maybe five and half miles from the car, you start to see the divide up ahead. You have already gained close to 3000 feet by now. When you start to approach the bottom of the east ridge, begin to plan your approach to the ridge proper. I normally traverse left around the first steep section through a small valley to gain the ridge from a loose gully. Now the scramble begins.
looking down the east ridge from near the subsummit
Once on the ridge just continue up. There are some fun blocky sections, but no more then class 3. Looking down the north face is exciting because it is a big drop. Continue up the ridge until the first subsummit is reached. Follow the short level section, then pass a small cliffband, and scramble up to the final summit. The actual summit is not so big, but a comfortable rounded place to enjoy the view. There is the normal cairn to be found, who knows how old it is. Be prepared for possible windy conditions on top. The panorama is vast, from the Tetons to the Winds, and everything in between.
For descent you can downclimb the ridge all the way back to the trail. I have gone directly down the south face, through the small valley at the bottom all the way to the trail. It is a scenic way down if you don't mind a few thousand feet of scree hopping.
Good boots or approach shoes depending on what is comfortable. Early season an ice axe will be necessary, possibly even crampons depending on conditions. A camera for the amazing panorama you will encounter.
"Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater."