South Ridge

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 45.74000°N / 122.23°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hike
Additional Information Time Required: Less than two hours
Additional Information Difficulty: Walk-up
Sign the Climber's Log


See the "Getting There" section of the main page for directions to the trailhead.

Route Description

Take the trail heading north from the parking area. A few hundreds yards in, stay right at the fork. The trail to the left goes further west and can hook up with an old road that goes past Sturgeon Rock to the summit but it's a bit longer and you can easily just make a side hike from the summit to Sturgeon Rock.

After about a mile, you will pass Pyramid Rock on the left. Stay on the main trail, mostly an old abandoned road with a few side trails to viewpoints along the way. After the first fork, there are two branches to the right you do not want. At the 2.9 mile mark, you will reach a 4-way junction. The trail to the right, marked Star Trail 174, is the trail out .9 miles to the Indian pits. It is worth is to go there. The middle part of this side trail is very overgrown with bushes and you have to fight through them. You'll hike out a ridge past some rock outcroppings to the Indian pits described on the main page. Great views here. If you don't want to go back to the main trail, there is a fork that branches off to the right that goes to the summit. Watch for it on the return hike from the pits.

If you don't go to the pits, continue on the main path north from the junction. It curves around to the right and on up to the summit. There are actually two summits, the one to the west is higher and has remains of an old lookout.

Another side trail is the one to the west of the 4-way junction. This goes out to Sturgeon Rock, a large rocky peak, about 1/4 to 1/2 mile west of the junction. There is a clearing that offers access to scramble up to the top of Sturgeon Rock.

If you don't want to take the same trail back, you can continue past Sturgeon Rock 1.4 miles to a 4-way junction at the Tarbell Trail. It's marked to the north but the sign that marks the trail back to the south is knocked down and broken. It's pretty obvious though. This return trail goes past a hidden waterfall once past the large semi-broken bridge. It's not really worth it in my opinion as the view is marginal at best and this route is a bit longer.

Distance from trailhead to summit 3.3 miles.
Side trail to Indian pits 1.8 miles
Big loop with Indian pits, summit and Tarbell Trail 9.7 miles
Elevation gain 2400 feet

Essential Gear

None needed. There is water on the Tarbell Trail.

SP member JoelDippold adds:
There is an apparently year-round spring just off the South Ridge route from Grouse Vista, just below the four-way junction where the main trail meets the side trail to the Indian pits (#180E). Drop down on the unmarked jeep trail to the left for about 75 feet, and a small side trail on the right (north) leads about 40 feet to the spring. A pipe feeds two small stock tanks.
This spring was flowing in late August of 2005.

Miscellaneous Info

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



Parents refers to a larger category under which an object falls. For example, theAconcagua mountain page has the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits' asparents and is a parent itself to many routes, photos, and Trip Reports.