Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 37.97056°N / 119.28556°W
Additional Information County: Mono
Activities Activities: Hiking, Skiing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 11239 ft / 3426 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Saddlebag Crest south panSouth from the Saddlebag Crest
The "Saddlebag Crest" (unnamed on topo) is the metamorphic ridgeline peak that runs northwest on the west side of popular Saddlebag Lake in the Tioga Pass area just outside the northeast boundaries of Yosemite National Park. It overlooks the beautiful lake region north of Saddlebag Lake, Saddlebag Lake itself and the Lee Vining Creek drainage.
This simple peak is an easy class 2 scramble that can be done in a few hours from the south end of Saddlebag Lake. The south and north slopes can be skied and Mt. Conness east ridge route starts just beyond the saddle at the northwest end of the peak.
The Sierra Crest looms above to the west, North Peak, the Shepherd Crest and Excelsior Mountain rise to the north. There is an outstanding view of Saddlebag Lake right below to the east. To the south is an unobstructed view down the Lee Vining Creek drainage to the Mt. Dana massif.

Getting There

Saddlebag Crest north panSaddlebag Crest north
From Hwy. 395 take Hwy. 120 10 miles west up to the Saddlebag Lake road.
From Tioga Pass take Hwy. 120 2 miles to the Saddlebag Lake road.
Go northwest 2.4 miles on the Saddlebag Lake road to the parking at the south end of the Lake. The southeast ridge is right above to the northwest. Take the trail that goes north around the west side of the lake. Just after crossing the small low point below the dam at .15 miles, break off and scramble the southeast ridge 3/4 mile to the highpoint.
The north slope from Conness Lakes and the south slope from The Carnegie Hall Natural Area look to be class 2 but beware of a potential screefest.
Scrambling to the saddle between Mt. Conness's east ridge and going east to the Saddlebag Crest looks easier.

Red Tape

Saddlebag Lake panSaddlebag Lake and the Tioga Crest
This is in the Inyo National Forest no permits are required for day hiking.
For wilderness permits for camping in the area contact the Mono Lake Visitor Center 760-647-3044.


Saddlebag Crest west panSierra Crest from the Saddlebag Crest

Saddlebag Lake: At the south end of the lake above the parking lot at 10,000'
Sawmill Campground: 1.8 miles north on the Saddlebag Lake road on the left at 9,750'
Northwest junction of Hwy. 120 and the Saddlebag Lake road: at 9,600'
Ellery Lake: 2.5 miles north of Tioga Pass off Hwy. 120 to the right at 9,500'
Tioga Lake: 1.5 miles north of Tioga Pass on the left at 9,600'

Current weather and 5 day forecast

Saddlebag Crest from Saddlebag LakeSaddlebag Crest from Saddlebag Lake
For the current weather and forecast for Lee Vining click here.