NE Ridge Black Peak

Page Type
Washington, United States, North America
Route Type:
Trad Climbing
Time Required:
One to two days
Much of the route is Class 4
Rock Difficulty:
5.2 (YDS)

Route Quality: 8 Votes

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NE Ridge Black Peak
Created On: Jun 17, 2003
Last Edited On: May 30, 2014


    Floating Ice - Black Peak
Black Peak from Wing Lake.  NE Ridge and Point 8995 are on the right.

This is a relatively popular route on a beautiful peak, so don’t be surprised if you have company.

A strong fast party can do the route in one day from Rainy Pass, but most groups opt to camp at Wing Lake.

Descent is via the South Ridge.

Distance: From Rainy Pass: about 11 miles.   From Wing Lake: about 2 miles.

Elevation: From Rainy Pass: about 5,000 feet.   From Wing Lake: about 2,050 feet.


Starting at Rainy Pass, follow the Lake Ann side of the Lake Ann/Rainy Lake loop trail. When almost at the top of the ridge (Heather Pass on the map), the main trail swings left and a line of rocks are meant to keep hikers on the main trail. This is where the trail to Wing Lake leaves. Drop about 200 feet on a long traverse above Lewis Lake (there is a well defined trail), crossing 2 prominent rock slides. Bypass the lake on the south and continue towards the prominent moraine . Stay north below the moraine and hike through a series of larch meadows to Wing Lake. There are good camping spots near the lake.

Route Description

Black Peak
On the NE Ridge

From Wing Lake ascend to the obvious col between the NE Ridge and Point 8995. 

Above the col, the route is a  straight forward ridge climb.  Low on the ridge the rock is not the best, but it gets better the higher you go.  Most of the climbing is 3rd and 4th class with the low 5th class crux (consensus is about 5.2) being about half way to the summit. 

Northeast Ridge
Northeast Ridge

Essential Gear

Rope and a small rack.

Ice axe and crampons depending on the time of year, snow cover, and your comfort level on moderately steep snow. 

Note that a snowfield can persist below the col into September.  (see title photo)

External Links

A quick Net search for this route will yield numerous trip reports, many of which have excellent photos showing differing conditions.

Here a just a couple:

At Cascade Climbers

mvs Trip Report

Sergio Verdina's Trip Report