South Ridge (winter ascent)

Page Type
Idaho, United States, North America
Route Type:
Basic Snow/Scramble
Time Required:
Most of a day
Class III/Moderate Snow

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South Ridge (winter ascent)
Created On: Dec 20, 2005
Last Edited On: Dec 21, 2005


To access the winter ascent route for Cerro Ciento from Ketchum, Idaho, drive north on Highway 75 for 23 miles or until reaching the large bend in the road with a pullout on the southwest side or where Owl and Spring Creeks meet with the Big Wood River. Park here.

Route Description

Route Stats
  • Total Mileage:6
  • Total Elevation Gain:4,150'
  • Class:III

    As this is a popular destination for outdoor recreationists, i.e. snowshoers, skiiers, etc., it will most likely be possible to follow in some one else's tracks for the first little bit.

    This route is highly dangerous when avalanche conditions are unstable and should be avoided in the dead of winter as deep snows would make the climb very difficult.

    Begin by hiking up Spring Creek and quickly leaving the stream bottom to gain the ridge above. Follow the ridge northeast until reaching the forest. If unaware with the terrain, pull out a compass and continue northeasterly through the flat terrain.

    Continue a little over a mile making sure not to confuse Easley Peak with Cerro Ciento as it is more formidable along the approach. Gain two small ridges just before reaching the abrupt south ridge of Cerro Ciento. Be sure not to drop down and cross the creek into the cirque below the second small ridgeline.

    The next couple hundred feet are the steepest and most difficult of the climb. Ice axe and crampons are a must if the snow is consolidated. Climb roughly 400-500 feet to the base of a rock outcropping. Bypass this feature on the east side and regain the ridgeline.

    At 9,600' the trees fade and there is a plateau before the ridgeline ramps up again. Here is a good place to assess the snow situation for the rest of the climb.

    The ridgeline is typically windblown on the west side from here on out so it is personal preference from here on out whether it will be a cornice or scree climb. Continue to 10,800' where the crux of the route will become apparent.

    A short class three stretch on horribly rotten rock is located directly in the center of the ridgeline before the false summit. Bypassing this feature in winter would mean putting one at great risk of avalanche danger. If it is dry, a small, but obivous gully tops runs the length of the outcropping on the east side. Be prepared with crampons just in case the gully is snow filled or the rocks are veri glaced.

    Continue onto the easily attained false summit. Turn north and take the short walk to the true summit and enjoy the views!

    Essential Gear

    A compass for those not familiar with the area is a must for the first stretch of the route through the forest bottom.

    Snowshoes, obviously are needed but it is also recommended to bring along crampons and an ice axe as the snow conditions may vary considerably.

    Miscellaneous Info

    If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.

  • South Ridge (winter ascent)

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