The Upper South Ridge offers a more technical and interesting way than the standard route to the summit of Sperry Peak, without the commitment level of one of the north side routes. While this route is not overly loose, it suffers from a large amount of vegetation which significantly reduces the quality of climbing on it. Not a recommended route.
Getting ThereApproach to Headlee Pass (see the main page). Cross the talus towards Vesper Lake then take the first ramp heading up and to the right. Follow this up to the base of the South Ridge.
The route climbs the ridgecrest with a brief excursion to the left side about half way up. The first tower is about 200 feet high and class 4 followed by some easy class 2 / 3 before regaining the ridgecrest. Here is the 5th class section which is actually downclimbing off of a block. Now climb a couple more ropelengths of class 3 / 4 to reach the false summit. From here it is a couple more ropelengths to reach the main summit.
Note: This is a route you would want to simulclimb or do unroped.
Descent: Follow the standard route (class 3) down to the west to the pass between Vesper and Sperry then head south back to Headlee Pass, then back to the car.
Essential Gear1 short rope for simulclimbing
A light rack to 2"
Long slings (for slinging trees)
Ice axe for the approach to Headlee Pass
Crampons (optional) for the approach to Headlee Pass