The north summit is not the highpoint of Tresidder Peak. Still, the north summit provides a sporting scramble, and is often the first step for climbers traversing Tresidder's exciting summit ridge.
There are two standard approaches to the base of the north summit. The more popular one has climbers leaving the JMT south of Tresidder Peak, then ascending class 2 slabs to the lowpoint of the saddle between Columbia Finger and Tresidder Peak. A more difficult, but more direct route from the north, directly ascends Tresidder's 1000-foot North Ridge from the south shore of Upper Cathedral Lake. The lower 800 feet are a walkup, while the last 200 feet are mixed class 2/3.
There are many routes to the summit of the North summit. The easiest route seems to be 30' of friction (45°+) on the northwest side of the north summit. snwburd notes: "Sam and I climbed the North Arete from the NW and found it pretty straightforward class 4 (and pretty easy, other than the airiness of it along the top). I tried to downclimb the SE side in my hiking shoes, but that was a bit scary and I backed off (or rather, up). The rock is uncomfortably loose and it didn't seem wise to trust any single hold."
blueshade gives the following input:
"Alternative route for attaining the north summit.
Starting at the extreme north end, continue to follow the NE ridge to the ridge proper blossoming in front of you. Just to the right of a somewhat protruding (overhanging) rock there is a short 8’ crack. At the top of this crack a short climbing traverse (decent holds, but not bomber) leads directly to a small chute which then deposits you on top. A short but exposed crawl or straddle leads to the north summit."
Hardly long enough to bother protecting on the way up. If you must, a couple medium nuts or small cams. No bolts on the summit, but rappels may be possible by girth-hitching large flakes.
If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.
Starting at the extreme north end, continue to follow the NE ridge to the ridge proper blossoming in front of you. Just to the right of a somewhat protruding (overhanging) rock there is a short 8’ crack. At the top of this crack a short climbing traverse (decent holds, but not bomber) leads directly to a small chute which then deposits you on top. A short but exposed crawl or straddle leads to the north summit.
I could probably add a little for the North Summit, but I didn't check out the other routes or actually go to the top of the South Summit. So I wouldn't really feel right trying to help other people. (Nor do I live in California.)
OK, well, if you have any additional changes, post them here and I'll integrate them accordingly. Have been trying to get rid of the Tressider route pages for a while. I have attempted and failed to summit both the south and north summits. So I'm a terrible individual to be maintaining the page! I was one of the first SP members, though, and at that time we had a shortage of members!