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Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

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Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby spacemonkey » Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:25 am

I've been sidelined since last summer from all hiking/backpacking/climbing activities due to an ankle injury requiring surgery. Doc recently gave me the green light to get back out there, so I'd like to do a quick day trip somewhere and maybe bag a peak or two. I'll be on a solo road trip next week up in the Eastern Sierras/Tuolumne areas and wanted to see if there were any relatively easy peaks in the area. I've been doing some looking around online and sounded like maybe Mt. Agassiz could be a possibility... Any other/better suggestions? I'd prob want to keep it 3rd/4th class or easier.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby jesu, joy of man's desiring » Sat Sep 01, 2012 2:27 am

-


Cathedral?





...Space Mountain?



.
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spacemonkey

Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby lcarreau » Sat Sep 01, 2012 2:59 am

Steve1215 wrote:-






...Space Mountain?



.



Image
Last edited by lcarreau on Tue Sep 04, 2012 1:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby spacemonkey » Sat Sep 01, 2012 6:00 am

Between the approach on SuperTaco and description in Secor, West Face of Cathedral is lookin good. Independence Peak looks perfect, exactly what I was looking for! Thanks guys. I'm guessing Space Mountain was a joke...
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby phydeux » Sat Sep 01, 2012 3:27 pm

Mt. Gould or Kearsarge Peak. Like Independence Peak, they're both out of the Onion Valley trailhead and should take 4-5 hours max for each peak.

Kearsarge is probably easier - go to Onion Valley, then head back DOWN the raod about 1/2 mile till you see a dirt road on the left - follow that up about 3/4 mile until the locked gate. From there just follow the road until it disappears, where it'll turn into a trace trail up onto the ridge. Scramble along the ridgetop (easy Class 2) to the highpoint at the west end. Decent views from the top, too.

Been a llloonnngg time since I've been up Mt. Gould, but just take the regular hiking trail up towards Kearsarge Pass - jump off the trail at the lakes and head north just before the pass and hike/scramble north to the summit (better check a map on this for better beta). It can also be done by going directly NW out of Onion Valley towards the basin witht he lake shown on the map that's just to it's east, then scramble up the scree slope to the summit (a long scree slope! :| ).
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby Bob Sihler » Sat Sep 01, 2012 3:46 pm

Having done both Independence and Gould this summer and gotten a good look at Kearsarge from up high, I'd recommend Independence if you have to choose just one.

Gould is easily done from Kearsarge Pass, but the Class 2 route up from the pass (summit block is Class 3) is loose talus that often is like sand. I had traversed over from Dragon and fortunately descended the route to the pass. I would not have liked going up it.

The peaks and crags south and east from Independence are nothing short of spectacular, and the views were some of my favorites from the trip. The north ridge has a lot of scrambling that I hear can easily get into Class 5, and it starts lower than the trail to Robinson Lake, so I think most people probably go up the west face more or less directly to the summit. That ascent would not be much fun, either, because it is also steep and very loose and scree almost all the way. I hiked to the rise above Robinson Lake and then went up the face to the south ridge. There was still lots of loose scree, but not as much as the other way since I left the trail higher and attained the ridge some distance below the summit. Then there was sustained and fun Class 3 and 4 scrambling along the ridge crest for about half a mile to the summit. In all, it was only about two miles to the top.

Kearsarge would have nice views, but the route looks pretty boring.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby tadman » Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:14 am

If you have never done Agassiz, go for it!
Beautiful hike, the views from the summit are awesome and the down climb is pretty delicate if you are traveling in a pack. Lots of looseness! The setting is pretty awesome...
If you have the juice, Mt Goode is just across the pass. Only class 1-ish, 2 in places, but once again...What views. Not a bad day

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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby Diggler » Tue Sep 04, 2012 12:57 am

Mt. Conness (3rd class standard route) & Basin (4th) are both worthy objectives; superb views from both, too. White Mountain Peak offers a mellow hike via the standard route (road; class 1), & isn't in the Sierra, but the views OF the Sierra are amazing.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby Ambret » Tue Sep 04, 2012 2:08 am

You might also consider hikes in the Little Lakes Valley (turn off of 395 at Tom's Place, about 30 miles northwest of Bishop). Get there early so that you can park right at the trailhead -- Mosquito Flat (don't let the name worry you this year; my friends and I were there in early August and only saw a couple). You want to park at Mosquito Flat, as the overflow lot adds another half mile. Little Lakes Valley is beautiful and from there Mt Starr (12, 835') is very accessible in a relatively short hike. You could also try Mt Morgan (13,748') -- you can hike to Morgan Pass and climb Morgan via Little Lakes Peak. It's probably Class 3. We tried but ran out of gas. There looks to be an easier approach to Morgan via Francis Lake, in which case you would start your hike from Rock Creek Lake instead of Mosquito Flat. There are other possibilities as well at the end of the valley, though it would be a longer day.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby KathyW » Tue Sep 04, 2012 2:15 am

North Peak and Conness - both have Class 2/3 routes and are not death marches. That's also a really pretty area.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby Gafoto » Tue Sep 04, 2012 5:53 am

If you want a good day adventure do a perfect loop of Picture Puzzle, then climb the ridge to Cloudripper and descend via Green Lakes. Great views, good climbing and a gentle descent. Just make sure you follow the old DWP pipe from the green lakes trail back to the parking lot at South Lake rather than descending all the way to parchers.
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby aran » Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:30 pm

I would also highly recommend N Peak/ Conness. The link up may be more climbing than you're looking for, but Northeast Ridge of N Peak by itself or the East side of Connness would each be beautiful in their own right. Great views, nice rock. Haven't done 'em, and I know they may be beyond a day trip, but with an overnight basecamp it seems there lots of great 3/4th class routes in the Palisades. Good luck!
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby spacemonkey » Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:28 am

Appreciate all of the recommendations everyone. There are definitely some great peaks mentioned here that I would never have considered. I ended up going for Independence Peak last Weds. Got a later start than I should have, and I didn't make it to the summit. I saw some dark looking clouds rolling in and decided to bail. I started up somewhere between the south and west up the scree field and made it to the summit ridge which was good enough for me. I was a bit south of the summit and could see someone up there. I decided I didn't want to chance it with the weather, being solo and not having a ton of experience with the local weather conditions. Had a blast, it was beautiful up there - fun little outing!
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Re: Short/Easier Worthwhile Peaks Sierra Nevada

Postby 2600fromatari » Tue Sep 11, 2012 7:11 pm

You might want to looks at Cloudripper for future outings. It starts at South Lake just like Agassiz, but the approach is much shorter. You head towards the Chocolate Lakes. There's a Class 3 route up. I found out about it a few years ago from the page right here on Summitpost.

The mountain seems to get ignored, but is very fun and of course has great views.
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