North Ridge via White Pine

North Ridge via White Pine

Page Type Page Type: Route
Additional Information Route Type: Hike with Routefinding
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Difficulty: Class 2
Sign the Climber's Log


This route to the summit of Red Stack is by way of the White Pine Canyon trail, which is actually the remains of an old road, therefore quite easy to follow.

Although this route involves somewhat more elevation gain than the Gad Valley route, the White Pine trail is very scenic, and provides a good alternative for those wishing to avoid hiking through a major ski resort.

Getting There

Take the 6200 South exit (exit #6) off I-215 and follow highway 190 south-east approximately 2 miles to the intersection with Big Cottonwood Canyon road. Continue straight through the stoplight and follow the road another 4 miles to the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, where an electronic billboard on the right provides current road and/or weather conditions.

Continue east up Little Cottonwood Canyon approximately 5.5 miles past the billboard to the White Pine trailhead, on the right (south) side of the road. There is a large parking area at the trailhead.


One-Way Hiking Distance: 3.7 miles
Elevation Gain: 3,744 ft.
Average Gain per Mile: 1,012 ft.

Trailhead Elevation: 7,626 ft.
Summit Elevation: 11,370 ft.

Route Description

From the White Pine trailhead, cross the bridge and follow the trail southwest for approximately 1 mile to a trail junction. The right fork of the trail continues into Red Pine Canyon. Take the left fork which contines into White Pine Canyon.

Beyond the junction the trail makes a couple of switchbacks as it begins climbing to the south east. It then levels off somewhat and continues south for a pleasant bit of level hiking through forested terrain.

The trail once again makes another series of switchbacks, then crosses through several small open meadows, where views of the White Baldy summit appear to the south.

The summit of Red Stack is the prominent peak at the top of the ridge on the left (east) side of the trail. Although the main trail continues south all the way to White Pine Lake there is no trail to the summit of Red Stack, so at some point it will be necessary to leave the trail for routefinding to the summit.

There are a number possible lines which may be used to reach the summit ridge. The best stategy is to leave the trail some distance to the north of the ridge, and head up the west ridge band which eventually gains the main north ridge some distance to the north of the summit. Somewhere in the vicinity of 9,000 ft. elevation is a good time to begin thinking about leaving the main trail.

From the main north ridge it is an easy class 2 ridge walk to the summit.