West Ridge

Page Type
California, United States, North America
Route Type:
Mountaineering, Scrambling
Spring, Summer, Fall
Time Required:
One to two days
Class 3

Route Quality: 1 Votes

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Page By:
West Ridge
Created On: Oct 4, 2001
Last Edited On: Feb 27, 2006


From the Mono Pass trailhead, follow trail south over a forested valley, then take the right branch to Parker Pass after about 3 miles. The trail goes through several meadows interspersed with foret. After 2 more miles take a signed trail branch on the right to Spillway Lake. The trail disappears in the meadows before reaching Spillway Lake. Rather than going towards the Lake, angle left up hill and climb a moderate bench in the south. Above the bench you will reach Helen Lake, a large, round lake surrounded by a cirque of Kuna Crest. On its east side is the high talus slopes leading to the west ridge of Kuna Peak.

Route Description

Ascend directly the 2000-foot talus slope on the east side of Helen Lake. Once on top of the west ridge, you will see the summit of Kuna Peak. Follow the ridge toward it, treading over many sharp flakes sticking straight up. There is a 30-foot wide gap between the summit plateau and the last bump on the west ridge. Descend the gap over steep rock, cross over the thin ridge, then ascend about 200 vertical feet to the summit plateau via very exposed narrow ledges on the right side. Once on the summit plateau head over to the high point, crossing a narrow knife-edge before reaching the summit.

Essential Gear

Depending on snow conditions, ice axe may be needed. The last rock section may require a rope for some.

Miscellaneous Info

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

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HikeMonkey - Nov 6, 2002 4:56 pm - Hasn't voted

Route Comment

There IS a summit register on Kuna Peak. It's in a little bottle that I found at the base of the tallest flake that sticks up in the air at the summit. There's an old register dating back to 1964 and a newer one that starts in 1999 or so. Very cool.


gordonye - Nov 7, 2002 10:56 am - Hasn't voted

Route Comment

That's great news! I didn't make it to the summit in 2000 and my partner didn't find it. It could be due to the snow cover...

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West Ridge

4 Images 1 Climber's Log Entries 0 Comments 2 Additions & Corrections


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