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West Ridge

West Ridge


Page Type: Route

Location: Colorado, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 40.23950°N / 105.6632°W

Object Title: West Ridge

Route Type: Scramble

Time Required: One to two days

Difficulty: Class II

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes


Page By: ahansen54

Created/Edited: Aug 7, 2004 / Aug 8, 2004

Object ID: 161746

Hits: 2703 

Page Score: 71.06%  - 1 Votes 

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Because both approaches are long (7+ miles), this route is best done with a high camp in either the North Inlet (crosscountry zone 3M) or East Inlet (Lake Verna).

The shortest approach is from the East Inlet trailhead. Hike 7+ miles to Spirit Lake (10290). Then find the best route (no trail) directly north up a very steep, densely wooded slope about 1000 vertical feet to a saddle (~11360 ft) between the southeast ridge of Andrew's peak and the west ridge of Alice.

An easier and more scenic (but much longer) approach can be made from the North Inlet trailhead. Follow the North Inlet trail 8.5 miles to Lake Nanita, where maintained trail ends. Hike around the eastern shore of the lake and over a ridge extending northeast from Andrew's peak. After descending from this ridge into the upper North Inlet (crosscountry zone 3M, where camping is allowed with permit), climb southeast to the saddle between the southeast ridge of Andrew's peak and the west ridge of Alice.

Route Description

The route starts from the saddle (~11360 ft) located between the southeast ridge of Andrew's peak and the west ridge of Alice. The route follows the west ridge of Alice to about 12400 ft, offering superb views of the upper north inlet. It then heads directly east over the southwest slope of Alice to the summit, meeting up with the Boulder-Grand Pass route for the last ~300 vertical ft. From the saddle to the summit, the route is over talus and larger boulders.

Be aware of the two false summits. The first is about a half mile west of the true summit and can be avoided by heading directly east when the ridge begins to climb to the northeast (12400). The second false summit is just slightly east of the true summit and seems almost as tall as the true summit. (This false summit is worth climbing as it offers better views of wild basin to the southeast).

Essential Gear

I climbed this route in August and no technical equipment was needed. I imagine that snow melts out of this route fairly early as it has much southern exposure. Use common sense and bring appropriate gear for the conditions.

Bring sunscreen.