Overshadowed by the Sawtooth Ridge to the east and The Incredible Hulk directly across Little Slide Canyon, Kettle Peak sees few visitors. This peak is mostly visited on good snow years when included on part of a ski traverse of the Sawtooth Ridge. At the summit, one will find three peaklets, with the center being the highest. There is an easy way to the top from the west side of the center summit with a small amount of class 3. The south summit is worth visiting for the views directly down of Robinson Lakes and Crown Lake in the Hoover Wilderness.
Kettle Peak is accessible most easily from three directions. The quickest route starts from Mono Village/Barney Lake Trailhead. A good use trail starts before the meadow below Little Slide Canyon. Look for a trail starting at the tree and boulder left of the trail north east of the meadow. From there the use trail heads down to the creek and across two logs, avoiding the need to navigate the beaver dams. From there the trail is easy to follow all the way to the top of Little Slide Canyon. Along the way the trail passes below The Incredible Hulk and ends at Ice Lake. The easiest route up Kettle Peak is to head west from Ice Lake Pass to the flat and then north to the peak.
Other options include access from the Mule Pass trail to the south and Burrow Pass/Matterhorn Canyon to the South East.
Mono Village charges $10 per night for overnight parking. Day parking is free. Wilderness permits are required for overnight camping in the Hoover Wilderness or Yosemite and are available at the Bridgeport Ranger Station.
When To Climb
Summer and Fall is the best time to hike Kettle Peak. It is an easy ski ascent in winter. The roads are not always plowed into Mono Village in the winter.
At the Summit
The best view from the summit is watching climbers on The Incredible Hulk directly east of the peak.
To the north the only view is of Hunewill Peak:
To the south Ice Lake and Finger Peaks are visible, with many other peaks in yosemite visible in the distance:
Ice Lake and Finger Peaks.
Peeler Lake and Crown Point are immediately west of the peak.