The northeast ridge on Patterson Peak is an interesting, yet straight forward scramble from the prominent flat north of the Four Lakes Basin. The ridge offers several interesting rock towers that block the ridge proper and offer the chance to make the route as difficult as a Class 4 scramble, or as easy as Class 2 by dropping down primarily on the east side of the ridge. This route can be incorporated into a ridge traverse that encompasses the nearby peaks. Blackman Peak to the northwest would be the most obvious link up, while Born Quiet (10,857) to the northeast, offers a more challenging and time consuming ridge traverse. The ridge south goes to Peak 10,707 which lies steeply above Washington Lake. Along along this ridge Castle Peak dominates the scenery to the east.
Northeast Ridge (Class 2-3)- the broad, flat pass just to the northeast of Patterson makes for a logical start to the ridge. Access this flat area from Born Lakes to the northwest via a trail, or from the Four Lakes Basin (Cornice, Glacier, Rock, Emerald) to the southwest. Ascend southwest from the pass over straight forward Class 2 terrain. Further south, two prominent rock towers block the ridge proper. Either drop down on the east side (Class 2), traverse the solid, blocky ledges just below the ridge on the east (Class 3), or climb up and over the ridge (Class 4) to reach a much smaller saddle just 0.4 miles from the summit. Climb the last section over a straight forward ridge to reach the summit. The rock on most of the ridge towers is usually solid with plenty of ledges, steps, and holds.
Approach- The Born Lakes Basin can be reached via trail from the Fourth of July Creek area, or from the Warm Springs Creek Trail. From Born Lakes, find the trail or ascend open sandy slopes to the broad pass. Access the Four Lakes Basin via a much longer approach from Little Boulder Creek. Along this approach you'll pass the access to Boulder Chain Lakes, Baker Lake, Slickenside Creek, Noisy Lake, Quiet Lake, and lots of great views of Castle Peak.
Descent- Either retrace your steps, or continue south from the Patterson summit to one of a few saddles south of the peak that will give you access to Fourth of July Lake or Four Lakes Basin. Take the west ridge from the Patterson summit to access the trail at the pass.
Gear- typical scrambling gear and plenty of water as there's no water much of the year above the lake basins.
From the broad saddle northeast of the summit : 0.9 miles and 814 feet gain (one way)
From the Born Lakes area : 1.6 miles and 1602 feet gain (one way)
From the Fourth of July Trailhead via Ants Basin : 7.8 miles and 3882 feet gain (one way)