“Loose masses of rock projected over the edge and we soon began loosening them and watching the fun. The falling stone would gather hundreds of others in its course, and thus the growing avalanche would thunder down the cliff amidst the most deafening reverberations from the cañon walls, till the final crash at the bottom sounded like a cannon shot. We went along the cliff and rolled huge rock masses to our heart’s content. We would all get on the ground behind one, and with one push of the feet send the rock over the cliff sometimes as large as ½ a ton. For two hours we enjoyed this sport and then returned to the summit. Lake started along the cliff to the south, and climbed without difficulty to the summit of one of the great columns on the cliff front. He pushed boulders over the cliff and we could see the white streak of dust and the black masses of stone shooting downwards like rockets, the roar of the fall upon the debris pile coming up only after many seconds.”

—Joseph N. LeConte, 1890

Section 2

THE MOUNT WHITNEY AREA

The Mount Whitney Area begins at Cottonwood Pass and ends at Vacation Pass.It contains four of the twelve 14,000-foot peaks (Mounts Langley, Muir, Whitney, and Russell) in the Sierra, and encompasses parts of Inyo National Forest (Golden Trout and John Muir Wilderness Areas) and Se­quoia National Park. Because Mount Whitney is the highest point in the continental United States, and has a trail all the way to its summit, its en­virons are the most popular destination in the Sierra. It is the only section of the Route where a group can routinely expect to find others. The Route or its alternatives traverse the following major features in this area: “Miter Basin,” the summit of Mount Whitney, Crabtree Meadows, Arctic and Wallace Lake basins, the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek, Tulainyo Lake (the highest named lake in the Sierra), Rock Creek, Siberian Outpost, Kern River Canyon, Chagoopa Plateau, the Kaweah Peaks Ridge and Basin, Nine Lake Basin, the Southern Great Western Divide, and the Kern-Kaweah River.
            The first to seriously explore the Sierra Crest in the Mount Whitney Area were members of the California State Geological Survey, later known as the Whitney Survey. Under the direction of the State Geologist, Josiah Whitney, this Survey’s charge was “to make an accurate and complete Geological Sur­vey” of the state.13 In July of 1864, members of the field party were camped near the base of Mount Brewer, named by Survey members for William Brewer, the leader of the Survey’s field parties. From the summit of this peak, they observed what they considered to be the “the highest and grand­est” group of Sierra peaks. Clarence King, one of the field party members, described the highest of these peaks as “a noble pile of Gothic-finished granite and enamel-like snow. How grand and inviting looked its white form, its untrodden, unknown crest, so high and pure in the clear strong blue! I looked at it as one contemplating the purpose of his life.”14 Survey members named this peak Mount Whitney.
            King made four attempts to ascend this peak. The first time, in July 1864, he and Richard Cotter climbed Mount Tyndall, thinking it was Mount Whitney. Later the same month, he made a second attempt, which was stopped by tech­nical difficulties several hundred feet from the top. On his third attempt in 1871, King and Paul Pinson, by mistake, climbed what was then called Sheep Mountain and would later be officially named Mount Langley. In his defense, however, the California State Geological Survey map he was using incorrectly placed the name “Mt. Whitney” on the future Mount Langley. On the other hand, King was the one who had originally named it Sheep Mountain in 1864. Once he was made aware of his error, King immediately returned and finally completed a successful ascent. Unfortunately for him, though, he discovered that others had been there before him, all within one month of his ascent.
            According to John Muir, King’s summit entry read, “Sep. 19th, 1873. This Peak, Mt Whitney was this day climbed by Clarence King, U.S. Ge­ologist & Frank F Knowles of Tule River. On Sep 1st in N.Y. I first learned that the high peak south of here which I climbed in 1871 was not Mt. Whit­ney & I immediately came here. Clouds & storms prevented me from rec­ognizing this in 1871 or I should have come here then. All honor to those who came here before me. C. King.”
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The first ascent, first ascenders, and even the name of the peak were contested issues for some time. However, credit for the first ascent was fi­nally given to “The Fishermen,” Charles Begole, Albert Johnson, and John Lucas, who ascended the peak on August 18, 1873, while on a fishing trip. Some other names given Mount Whitney were “Fishermans Peak,” “Dome of Inyo,” and “Dome of the Continent.”
            John Muir also completed some noteworthy explorations on the Crest Route in this area. Early in the morning of October 25, 1873, he started a “hike” to Mount Whitney from the town of Independence. He was using the same map as King and ended up, like King, climbing Mount Langley. Muir related, “To the North about 8 miles I saw a higher peak & set off to climb it the same day. I reached the summit needles about 11 oclock that night and danced most of the time until morning as the night was bitterly cold & I was in my shirt sleeves. The stars & the dawn & the sunrise were glorious.” Muir returned to Independence, started again the next day, and ascended the peak from the east side via the “Mountaineers Route.” In ad­dition to the King entry, Muir found a half dollar with the following inscrip­tion, “Notice. Gentleman, the looky finder of this half a Dollar is wellkome to it. Carl Rabe Sep 6th 1873.” Muir continued, “Of course I replaced these records as well as Carl Rabe’s ‘half a dollar’ but I did not add my own name—Have never left my name on any mountain, rock or tree in any wilderness I have explored or passed through though I have spent ten Years in the Sierra alone.

                                                      
The Crest Route

From Cottonwood Pass, ascend northwest over the summit of Cirque Peak. Descend, and hike around the west side of the basin containing High Lake. Cross over New Army Pass, turn north, traverse Army Pass, and ascend the South Slope of Mount Langley. Descend west then northwest and traverse “Tuttle Pass,” the low point between Mount Langley and Peak 4161. Turn north, pass east of Iridescent Lake, and then turn northeast and ascend a chute towards the low point between Mounts Corcoran and LeConte. Leave this chute just before reaching this notch and traverse northwest over sev­eral ribs into the Northwest Chute of Mount LeConte just above its “Water­fall Pitch.Ascend this chute to the summit of Mount LeConte, descend its East Arête, and then traverse northwest onto the plateau between Mounts LeConte and Mallory. Traverse northwest to the summit area of Mount Mal-lory, descend its Northwest Ridge, and then traverse to Arc Pass. Ascend across the Middle Peak of Mount McAdie, and then descend to the notch be­tween the Middle and North Peak. From this notch, descend this peak’s Southwest Chute towards Crabtree Pass until it becomes possible to leave it and ascend the South Slope of Discovery Pinnacle. Descend its Northwest Side to Trail Crest. Remaining near the trail, descend past the John Muir Trail junction, and then ascend north to the summit of Mount Whitney. Hike west along the northern edge of this peak’s summit plateau until just past the Northeast Ridge. Descend Mount Whitney’s North Slope into the basin containing Arctic Lake. Move northeast then north traversing “Whitney-Russell Pass” and the low point on the ridge to “Sakai Col,” a notch located between the low point and the South Face of Mount Russell. Continue north and ascend the South Face (Right Side) of Mount Russell to its summit ridge, and then traverse this ridge east to this peak’s East Summit. Descend Mount Russell via its East Ridge, traverse east across “Russell-Carillon Pass,” the low point between Mounts Russell and Carillon, and then scram­ble to the summit of Mount Carillon, via its West Ridge. Descend this peak’s Northeast Ridge to “Cleaver Col,” the low point between Mount Carillon and “The Cleaver” (Peak 4079), then traverse north then northwest above Tulainyo Lake to the summit of Tunnabora Peak. Descend this peak’s West Slope, traverse west, and then ascend north to Vacation Pass, located north of the low point northwest of “Mount Carl Heller” (Peak 4031).

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Mountaineering from the Crest Route

Cirque Peak: South Slope, West Side; Mount Langley: Southeast Slope, West Face; The Major General: Northeast Side; Joe Devel Peak: North­west Ridge; Mount Pickering: Southeast Slope, South Slope, Southwest Ridge; Mount Newcomb: South Ridge from Mount Pickering; Mount Chamberlin: East Ridge from Mount Newcomb; Mount Corcoran: North Notch from the East, Traverse from Mount LeConte; Mount LeConte: Tra­verse from Mount Corcoran, Northwest Chute; Mount Mallory: South Slope, Northwest Ridge; Mount Irvine: Southwest Ridge; Mount McAdie: From Arc Pass, Southwest Chute; Discovery Pinnacle: South Slope; Mount Hitchcock: From “Discovery Pass”; Mount Muir: South Chute; Crooks Peak: West Side; Keeler Needle: West Side; Mount Whit­ney: South Side, North Slope; Mount Russell: South Face (Right Side), East Ridge; Mount Carillon: Southwest Slope, Northeast Ridge; “The Cleaver” (Peak 4079): Northwest Ridge; Tunnabora Peak: South Slope, West Slope; “Mount Carl Heller” (Peak 4031): West Face.


                                               
Alternative Routes

1. From anywhere on the Crest Route between New Army Pass and the summit of Mount Langley, descend west to Rock Creek, and two choices.

   a. Follow this creek north through “Miter Basin” to the eastern shore of Sky Blue Lake, and two more opportunities.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Langley: West Face; The Major General: From Almost Anywhere; Joe Devel Peak: Northwest Ridge; Mount Pickering: South Slope, East Slope; Mount Corcoran: North Notch from the West; Mount LeConte: West Couloir.

     
(1) Ascend north into the cirque west of Mount Mallory, and discover two additional options.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: The Miter: Northwest Chute.

         (a) Ascend east and meet the Crest Route south of Mount Mallory.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Mallory: West Slope.

 

        (b) Continue ascending north to Arc Pass, and meet the Crest Route there.     Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Irvine: Southwest Ridge.


      (2) Ascend northwest past Lake 12129 (3697m) to the Crest Route be­tween Crabtree Pass and Mount McAdie.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Newcomb: Northeast Ridge; Mount Chamberlin: East Ridge from Mount Newcomb; Mount Hitchcock: Southeast Saddle.

b. Continue west across Rock Creek, and then traverse around the south­ern base of Joe Devel Peak to Perrin Creek, and three more possibilities.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Joe Devel Peak: Northeast Ridge; Mount Pickering: Southwest Ridge; Mount Newcomb: South Ridge from Mount Pickering; Mount Chamberlin: East Ridge from Mount Newcomb.

(1) Ascend the Southwest Slope of Joe Devel Peak, and then traverse across the summit of Mount Pickering. Climb the South Ridge of Mount Newcomb, and then descend its Northeast Ridge to the Crest Route north­east of Crabtree Pass.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Joe Devel Peak: Southwest Slope, Northeast Ridge; Mount Pickering: Southwest Ridge, North Ridge; Mount Newcomb: South Ridge, Northeast Ridge; Mount Chamberlin: East Ridge from Mount Newcomb.

(2) Ascend Mount Chamberlin via its South or West Slope, and then turn northeast and descend to the low point between this peak and Mount Newcomb. Descend northwest past the Crabtree Lakes, turn north before reaching Crabtree Meadow, and then ascend northeast past Guitar and Arc­tic Lakes to the Crest Route at “Whitney-Russell Pass.”
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Anna Mills: From Almost Anywhere; Mount Guyot: Northeast Ridge; Mount Chamberlin: West Slope, South Slope; Mount Pickering: West Slope; Mount Newcomb: Southwest Slope, Southwest Ridge, South Ridge from Mount Pickering; Mount Hitchcock: Southwest Slope, West Slope; Mount Young: South Slope, East Slope, Traverse from Mount Hale; Mount Hale: South Slope, Traverse from Mount Young; Mount Whitney: West Slope, North Slope.

     
(3) Traverse northwest then north around two ridges into Crabtree Meadow. Continue north above Sandy Meadow and over one more ridge to Wallace Creek. Follow this creek to Wallace Lake and the Crest Route at any of the following summits: Mount Russell via its West or North Arête, Tunnabora Peak via its South Slope, or Mount Barnard via its Southwest Slope, or at any of the following passes: “Russell-Carillon Pass,” the sad­dle between Mounts Russell and Carillon, “Cleaver Col,” the low point be­tween Mount Carillon and “The Cleaver” (Peak 4079), or Vacation Pass, located east of Wallace Lake, all in either the Mount Whitney or Mount Williamson Areas.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Anna Mills: From Almost Anywhere; Mount Guyot: Northeast Ridge; Mount Chamberlin: South Slope, West Slope; Mount Hitchcock: West Slope; Mount Young: South Slope, East Slope, Traverse from Mount Hale; Mount Hale: South Slope, Traverse from Mount Young; Mount Barnard: Southwest Slope; Mount Russell: West Arête, North Arête, East Ridge; “The Cleaver” (Peak 4079): Northwest Ridge; “Mount Carl Heller” (Peak 4013): West Face.

2. Leave the Crest Route above Crabtree Pass, and traverse west to the Southeast Saddle of Mount Hitchcock, located southeast of its summit, and discover two more possibilities.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Newcomb: Northeast Ridge; Mount Pickering: North Ridge from Mount Newcomb; Mount Chamberlin: East Ridge from Mount Newcomb; Mount Hitchcock: Southeast Slope.

   a. Ascend the ridge between Mount Hitchcock and Discovery Pinna­cle, and join the Crest Route at “Discovery Pass.”
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Hitchcock: Southeast Saddle; Discovery Pinnacle: South Slope.

   b. Descend north between the Hitchcock Lakes to the northeastern shore of Guitar Lake, and two additional choices.

      (1) Ascend the West Slope of Mount Whitney and meet the Crest Route at its summit.            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Whitney: West Slope.

      (2) Ascend northeast past Arctic Lake to the Crest Route at “Whitney-Russell Pass.”   Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Young: South Slope, East Slope, Traverse from Mount Hale; Mount Hale: South Slope, Traverse from Mount Young.

3. Leave the Crest Route at Arc Pass, descend north to the northern shore of Consultation Lake, and then hike northwest up a chute to the Trail Camp area. Traverse north, keeping to the west of Wotans Throne, then traverse northeast across a cirque to “Pinnacle Pass,” which is lo­cated on Pinnacle Ridge to the east of “Pinnacle Pass Needle.” After de­scending this pass, two options exist.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Irvine: Southwest Ridge; Wotans Throne: South Face, Northwest Arête; Thor Peak: West Arête.

   a. Traverse north to Upper Boy Scout Lake and two more possibilities.

      (1) Ascend north then northwest onto a plateau and meet the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Carillon: South Slope.

(2) Follow the inlet stream of this lake northwest past a tarn, and as­cend the “Rockwell Variation,” the highest chute on the Southeast Face of Mount Russell, northeast onto a plateau. Traverse this plateau northeast to the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Rus­sell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Carillon: South Slope.

   b. Ascend northwest to the western shore of Iceberg Lake, and two more options.


      (1) Ascend Mount Whitney’s “Mountaineers Route,” which begins in the chute between this peak’s East Buttress and Northeast Ridge, to the Crest Route near its summit.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Whitney: Mountaineers Route.

(2) Continue northwest to the Crest Route at “Whitney-Russell Pass,” the notch at the base of the Northeast Ridge of Mount Whitney.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Whitney: Mountaineers Route.

4. Leave the Crest Route where it turns northwest towards Discovery Pinnacle, just north of Crabtree Pass. Cross Whitney Pass, located north­west of the twin pinnacles at the head of the Crabtree Lakes basin, and then traverse north, keeping to the west of Wotans Throne. Turn northeast and traverse across a cirque, then cross “Pinnacle Pass,” which is located on Pinnacle Ridge to the east of “Pinnacle Pass Needle.” Traverse north to Upper Boy Scout Lake, and then ascend north then northwest onto a plateau and meet the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located be­tween Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Wotans Throne: South Face, Northwest Arête; Thor Peak: West Arête; Mount Carillon: South Slope.

5. Leave the Crest Route at Trail Crest by descending northeast via the broad chute on the east side of the Crest to the west side of Wotans Throne. Turn northeast and traverse across a cirque, then cross “Pinnacle Pass,” which is located on Pinnacle Ridge to the east of “Pinnacle Pass Needle.” Traverse north to Upper Boy Scout Lake and then ascend north then northwest onto a plateau and meet the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Wotans Throne: South Face, Northwest Arête; Thor Peak: West Arête; Mount Carillon: South Slope.

6. Leave the Crest Route at “Sakai Col,” the notch located between the low point on the Crest and the South Ridge of Mount Russell, and then traverse northeast to the Southeast Face of Mount Russell. Ascend the “Rockwell Variation,” the highest couloir to the north, onto a plateau. Traverse this plateau to the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.

Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Carillon: South Slope.

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                                    Approach/Escape Routes

Cottonwood Pass—From Lone Pine, follow the Whitney Portal Road 3 miles to Horseshoe Meadows Road. Follow this road 20 miles through Horseshoe Meadow to the Cottonwood Pass Trailhead.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Wonoga Peak: South Side; Owens Point: South Side.

1. Follow the Cottonwood Pass Trail to its junction with the trail lead­ing to Mulkey and Trail Passes, and two choices.

a. Turn south towards these two passes and hike to a junction, and two more options.


         (1) Take the left fork and ascend to the Crest Route at Mulkey Pass, in the Olancha Peak Area.


         (2) Ascend the right fork to Trail Pass, and the Crest Route, in the Olancha Peak Area.


      b. Continue on the Cottonwood Pass Trail to the Crest Route at Cot­tonwood Pass.

 

Cottonwood Lakes/New Army Pass—From Lone Pine, follow the Whit­ney Portal Road 3 miles to Horseshoe Meadows Road. Follow this road 20 miles into Horseshoe Meadow, then turn right at the Cottonwood Lakes junction, and follow this road to the trailhead.

1. Follow the Cottonwood Lakes/New Army Pass Trail to a junction northwest of Golden Trout Camp. There are two choices from there.

a. Take the left fork, cross Cottonwood Creek, and then follow the trail past the southern shores of Cottonwood Lakes #1 and #2, Long Lake, and High Lake to the Crest Route at New Army Pass.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Cirque Peak: Northwest Slope.

      b. Take the right fork and follow it north of Cottonwood Lakes #1 and #2. Hike northwest between Cottonwood Lakes #3 and #4 to a trail junc­tion, turn west and ascend to Lake #5, and then follow the trail west to Army Pass, and the Crest Route.

Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Langley: Southeast Slope.

“Diaz Pass”—From Lone Pine, follow the Whitney Portal Road 3 miles, turn south on Horseshoe Meadows Road, then, after 2 miles, turn west on Granite View Drive. Diaz Creek parallels this road on its south side. Stop anywhere before the slope begins to steepen, and traverse south to Diaz Creek.

1. Follow Diaz Creek to the East Slope of Mount Langley, ascend, and meet the Crest Route on its summit.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Langley: East Slope.


“Tuttle Pass”
—From Lone Pine, follow the Whitney Portal Road 3 miles to Horseshoe Meadows Road, then turn south and travel 2 miles to Granite View Drive. Turn west and follow Granite View Drive 2 miles to a fork. Take the right fork and drive another 2 miles to a parking area and the trailhead.

1. Hike up the road to the stone house, and then follow the course of Tut­tle Creek to where it forks near the base of the East Ridge of Peak 4161 lo­cated between Mounts Langley and Corcoran, where three options appear.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Lone Pine Peak: Southeast Slope.

a. Ascend the Northeast Chute or the North Face of Mount Langley to the Crest Route at its summit.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Langley: Northeast Chute, North Face.

b. Take the left fork and ascend west to the Crest Route at “Tuttle Pass,” the low point between Mount Langley and Peak 4161.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Langley: Northeast Chute, North Face; Mount Corcoran: North Notch from the East.

c. Ascend northwest into the northernmost cirque in the next basin to the north, and two further opportunities.

(1) Turn west and ascend to the deep notch between Mounts Corco­ran and LeConte, and then descend a short distance to the Crest Route.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Corcoran: North Notch from the East.

         
(2) Ascend north through “LeConte Pass,” the low point on the ridge between Peak 3925 and Mount LeConte, and meet the Crest Route northwest of Mount LeConte.
            Mountaineering Opportunity:
Mount Mallory: East Slope.

Mount Whitney (Meysan Lake) Trail—To reach the Mount Whitney Trailhead, follow the Whitney Portal Road west from Lone Pine 11 miles to its end at Whitney Portal.

   1. From Whitney Portal, two possibilities exist.

      a. From the Whitney Portal Campground, follow the Meysan Lake Trail to Meysan Lake. Continue southwest past this lake and ascend to the Crest Route at the summit area of Mount Mallory.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Lone Pine Peak: Southwest Slope; Mount Mallory: East Slopes; Mount Irvine: East Chute.

      b. Follow the Mount Whitney Trail to a point just before the second creek crossing, and two additional options.

         (1) Leave the Mount Whitney Trail and follow the use trail west on the north side of the North Fork of Lone Pine Creek approximately .2 mile to a fork near a large piece of granite. Take the left fork and cross the creek to its south side. Follow one of the several use trails until they come to­gether just before the canyon narrows, and then cross the creek to its north side. Hike upstream approximately fifty yards to a section of broken rock on the north side of the canyon. Climb this broken rock to the “Ebersbacher Ledges.” Follow the use trail along the ledges, and then up the canyon to the point where a creek descends from the northwest. At this point, two fur­ther opportunities present themselves.

            (a) Ascend this creek northwest into the next cirque to the north. At the head of this cirque, climb west to the Crest Route at “Cleaver Col,” the low point between Mount Carillon and “The Cleaver” (Peak 4079).

            (b) Continue ascending the North Fork past Lower Boy Scout Lake, and then climb talus on the south side of the canyon above this lake to the terraces that are above and to the west of Clyde Meadow. Continue to follow this creek west until it forks, where two more choices exist.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Thor Peak: Northeast Slope.

                1). Follow the left fork southwest into its basin. Ascend north­west past Iceberg Lake and meet the Crest Route at either the summit of Mount Whitney, via the “Mountaineers Route,” located between the East Buttress and Northeast Ridge of this peak, or “Whitney-Russell Pass,” lo­cated between Mounts Whitney and Russell.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Thor Peak: West Arête; Mount Whitney: Mountaineers Route.

2). Hike northwest up the right fork to Upper Boy Scout Lake, and then follow one of two further alternatives.

a). Ascend north, then northwest, onto a plateau and meet the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Carillon: South Slope.

b). Ascend northwest and climb the “Rockwell Variation,” the highest chute located at the base of the Southeast Face of Mount Rus­sell, and meet the Crest Route at “Russell-Carillon Pass,” located between Mounts Russell and Carillon, or the summit of Mount Carillon, via its South Slope.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Mount Carillon: South Slope.

(2) Continue following the Mount Whitney Trail and join the Crest Route at either Discovery Pinnacle or Trail Crest.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Thor Peak: Northeast Slope, Southwest Slope, West Arête (from Mirror Lake); Mount Irvine: North Slope, West Face; Wotans Throne: South Face; Discovery Pinnacle: South Slope; Mount Hitchcock: From “Discovery Pass.”

George Creek—To reach the trailhead, follow the Onion Valley Road 4 miles west from Independence, then turn south and follow Foothill Road past the Shepherd Pass and Bairs Creek turnoffs to the end of the road at George Creek, a distance of 9 miles. This route includes crossing both forks of Bairs Creek, which could be difficult if the water is high. Also, the last half mile of the road will require a high clearance, 4WD vehicle.

A second option, the George Creek Road, eliminates the need to cross Bairs Creek, so it would be preferable at times of high runoff. It is located off Highway 395, 10 miles north of Lone Pine or 5 miles south of In­dependence. Turn west, pass the Manzanar Cemetery, then after 2 miles, turn right at a fork and, after another 5 miles, go straight at the second. The trailhead is approximately 1 mile farther, but, again, the last half-mile requires a 4WD vehicle.

1. Discover a route up George Creek to the 8,800-foot level where a tributary stream enters this creek from the southwest, and two options.

      a. Follow this stream to an unnamed lake and two possibilities.

(1) Ascend south to the summit of Tunnabora Peak via its North­west Face, and join the Crest Route there.
            Mountaineering Opportunity: Tunnabora Peak: Northwest Face.

         (2) Ascend southwest to the Crest Route at Vacation Pass.


      b. Continue following the main course of George Creek until it again forks, providing two more opportunities.


          (1) Take the left fork and follow it southwest past a small lake and then west up a chute onto a plateau. This leads to the Crest Route above the West Face of Trojan Peak, in the Mount Williamson Area.

            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Barnard: Northeast Slope; Trojan Peak: South Slope, Southwest Ridge.


          (2) Take the right fork and ascend northwest into the basin south­east of Mount Williamson and two additional choices.


             (a) Ascend west to the saddle between Trojan Peak and Mount Williamson. Descend past Lake Helen of Troy, and then traverse northwest through Williamson Bowl to Shepherd Pass, and the Crest Route, in the Mount Williamson Area.

Mountaineering Opportunities: Trojan Peak: Northwest Face; Mount Versteeg: Northeast Ridge, North Slope, Northwest Ridge; Mount Williamson: Southeast Ridge, Bolton Brown Route, West Face.


             (b) Ascend northwest past a small lake to the summit of Mount Williamson either on its Southeast Ridge or north of it. Descend either the Bolton Brown Routeor the West Face into Williamson Bowl and then tra­verse northwest through this bowl to the Crest Route at Shepherd Pass, in the Mount Williamson Area.
            Mountaineering Opportunities: Mount Williamson: Southeast Ridge, Bolton Brown Route, West Face; Trojan Peak: Northwest Face; Mount Versteeg: Northeast Ridge, North Slope, Northwest Ridge.

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