West Ridge

Page Type
Route Type:
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Time Required:
Most of a day

Route Quality: 2 Votes

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West Ridge
Created On: Apr 18, 2010
Last Edited On: Apr 18, 2010


The western ridge is one of several, albeit the easiest, routes to the summit. This approach can be snow free at its lower elevations as early as March. Time required varies with the hiker and number of stops, but with 3,800+ elevation gain over 2.5 miles, plan on at least a 4.5 hour approach and 3 hour descent. If electing to add Big Sister to this climb, plan on an additional 2-3 hours.

Route Description

From the campsite, the western ridge appears slightly split into two main ribs. The more southern of the two ribs will provide a tree-free first 1,000 feet.

West Ridge RibThe far (right) rib of the western ridge starts this climb.

At this point you will begin to enter the white bark pine/juniper forest and head in a steady northeastern direction. Continue in this direction and around 9950 enter into an open area.

Headwall AreaStaying close to the trees in the "headwall" section of this climb.

Continue northeasterly and back into the trees until you reach the high ridge at approximately 10,200 ft.

Exposed RidgeThe exposed upper ridge of Little Sister

Stay with the ridge, enjoying the slight exposure, as the final face summit push comes into view.

Little Sister Summit Ridge

Follow the ridge along the face for the last 500 feet to the summit. Enjoy your summit!

Essential Gear

Water: There is no water available along the route.
Sunscreen: Skin cancer, enough said.

West Ridge

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