Julie Struble, Luke Kroiss and I camped at the French Creek Trailhead Saturday night. I left the trailhead at 6 am, followed a thin trail past a couple of camp sites and joined the Holy Cross City Four Wheel Drive Road. I continued up this road while eating breakfast. I confirmed that my decision not to take my stock Jeep up the road Saturday night was a good one. I crossed French Creek, then continued up the Fall Creek Trail passing Hunky Dory Lake and three of the Seven Sisters Lakes. I left the trail at this point and headed for the highest of the Seven Sisters Lakes at 12,750 feet, then traversed around its south side and climbed talus and scree to the 13,500 foot saddle east of 13768.
Whitney Peak from 13768's south slopes.
I climbed 13768's east ridge, finding some enjoyable slab. I arrived at the summit at 9:32 am. The summit provided good views of most of the Halo Ridge, which I climbed last summer, and Whitney Peak.
"Holy Cross Ridge" & Mount of the Holy Cross
I descended southeasterly bypassing the saddle. I passed a group of 4 ascending that I saw leaving camp at the 11828 foot Seven Sisters Lake. I descended past the 12,750 foot Seven Sisters Lake, then further north of my ascent route past the third highest of the Seven Sisters Lakes. Just before reaching the Fall Creek Trail, I saw Julie and Luke hiking up the trail. I gave a wave and continued up the trail at a lessened pace. Just before reaching Fall River Pass, I communicated with Julie and Luke to head east to the saddle south of Fall Creek Pass. We hiked up Whitney Peak's northwest slopes. The slopes are mostly grass, but become rockier near the summit.
13768, "Holy Cross Ridge" & Mount of the Holy Cross
We got to the summit at 11:37 am. The summit provided good views of Mount of the Holy Cross, "Holy Cross Ridge" and 13768. We all climbed the summit boulder, signed the summit register, snacked and headed down our ascent route. Julie and I waited in a shaded, rocky area for Luke to take a swim in one of the Seven Sisters Lakes. We continued to the French Creek crossing where we watched a heavily modified Jeep cross French Creek on the Holy Cross City Four Wheel Drive Road after several attempts. Finally, we finished the hike out and reached the trailhead at 2 pm.
13768 & Whitney Peak. ~12 miles with ~4,600' of elevation gain. Click to enlarge.