Southwest Chute

Page Type
California, United States, North America
Route Type:
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Time Required:
Less than two hours
Class 2-3

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Southwest Chute
Created On: Jul 16, 2007
Last Edited On: Jul 16, 2007


This is the easiest route to the summit of Feather Peak.

It is also a convenient descent route from any of the more difficult routes, as it provides easy access to the Feather/Royce Saddle.


The route starts from the Feather/Royce Saddle. You can reach this either by...

-starting at the Pine Creek Trailhead, and heading up the Pine Creek Trail to Pine Creek Pass, then contouring around to the Royce Lakes Basin. Head up to the small lake between Royce Lakes #3 + 4, and go to the obvious snow chute above. See picture for details.

-starting at Piute Pass Trailhead, and heading over Piute Pass, down Piute Creek, up French Creek, up a side-drainage to Merriam Lake, and then north along the creek to the head at the saddle.

Route Description

From the Feather/Royce Saddle, you must traverse to the WNW below some cliffs, and then enter the chute at the base of those cliffs. There are easy Class 2+ ways through these cliffs. The chute then becomes a standard Class 2-3, loose + sandy chute with plentiful slabs and a few blocks as well. Ascend directly to the summit.

When descending this route, the top of the chute can be intimidating (large gaps between ledges, very steep slabs). Try descending via the rib to the west of the chute, through easy Class 3 broken blocks. Then traverse into the chute once the going gets easier.

Essential Gear

Scree gaiters and water.

Southwest Chute

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