Jefferson Park Glacier

Page Type
Oregon, United States, North America
Route Type:
Mountaineering, Mixed
Time Required:
A long day
Rock Difficulty:
5.2 (YDS)

Route Quality: 4 Votes

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Jefferson Park Glacier
Created On: Oct 16, 2003
Last Edited On: Jul 18, 2014
The North face of Mt....
Jefferson Park Glacier
Mt. Jefferson from the...
 Jefferson Park Glacier



Approaching Mount Jefferson from the NW
On the approach.

Jefferson Park Glacier provides a more varied and alpine route than is found on most of the volcanoes. Depending on the time of year and conditions, the bergschrund can be extremely challenging and steep narrow ice and / or rock climbing from 5.0 to 5.2 may be encountered on the narrow ridge above the headwall.

Everett Darr, Jim Mount, and Barney MacNab made the first ascent of Jefferson Park Glacier in 1933.


Jefferson Park Glacier is best approached from Jefferson Park on the north side of the mountain.

From Highway 22, take USFS Road 2243 to the Whitewater Trailhead. Follow Whitewater Trail 3429 to its intersection with Jefferson Park Trail 3373. Follow Trail 3373 east to its junction with the Pacific Crest Trail which then leads northeast to Jefferson Park. The total hiking distance is about 5 miles.

Route Description

Summit Pinnacle, Mount Jefferson
Summit Pinnacle, Mount Jefferson

Mount Jefferson, Jefferson Park Glacier Route
From Jefferson Park, ascend to the glacier, approaching it on its east side. Climb the glacier via the line of least resistance to the bergschrund, which may be quite difficult to cross depending on the time of year and conditions. Climb the headwall above the bergschrund (normally steep snow & ice) to a saddle at the head of the glacier between the prominent point to the north and the main body of the peak. From this saddle, go south to the narrow ridge that climbs steeply eastward. This narrow ridge is the interesting part of the climb and may be completely ice, completely rock, or an interesting mix depending on the time of year and conditions. The most difficult rock pitch should be no harder than 5.2 and many sources rate it easier.

Once above the narrow ridge, ascend easy ground along the north ridge to the summit pinnacle and climb it by the route of your choice. (The routes on the summit pinnacle are 4th class or steep snow & ice depending on conditions.)

Climbing on the route.

First light on the headwallJefferson Park Glacier RouteFirst light on headwall.
Jefferson Park Glacier RouteTopping out the headwallTopping out headwall.
Jefferson Park Glacier RouteOn the narrow ridge.
Gendarme, Jefferson Park Glacier Route.Gendarme on ridge.


Essential Gear

Glacier gear, several long runners, and perhaps a couple of nuts or cams.

External Links

Here is a "photo album" of a climb of this route with less snow and ice on the narrow ridge - some nice pictures.Cascade Climber