the long ridgeline that makes up Peak 13,360 (W Ri...
Peak 13,360 (known informerly as Mt Gould after evolutionary biologist Steven Jay Gould) is a massive peak in the Evolution Range. It is best known as the first peak in the nine peak, 8.5 mile Evolution Traverse. Given the magnitude of this undertaking and the otherwise relative obscurity of the peak, it is rare to encounter another party en route.
Being an alpine route, be cautious of loose rock. That being said, the rock faces are of high quality and largely free of the crumbly flakes found on occasion in the High Sierra.
Route Summary W Chute (Class 2) - RG Dunn, 1964 W Ridge (Class 3) - Peter Croft and Dayle Masserella, 1998 E Face (Class 3) - Chris Schneider, 2002
Routes on Peak 13,360 are best approached from the North Lake trail head out of Bishop. From the junction of Highway 395 (Main St) in Bishop go W on Highway 168 (W Line St) for ~17.1 miles. Turn right on N Lake Road (gated seasonally once the snow falls). Continue for 1.7 miles up the hill and to the large parking area near the pack station. Parking at the end of the road is limited to campground patrons. As of Sep 2010 the campground fee was $21 a night. Walk the remaining ~0.5 miles to the trailhead. There are bathrooms at the hikers'/backpackers' parking lot and both bathrooms and potable water at the campground. Overnight wilderness permits are available through the Recreation.gov or ranger station in Bishop. The route is popular with backpackers so plan accordingly.
From the end of the campground loop road take the trail toward Lamark Lakes (the junction is very close to the trailhead). Continue on the trail past Lower Lamark Lake. To reach Upper Lamark Lake skirt the southern shores of Lower Lamark Lake, following use trails. There is a well-maintained upper trail in addition to a less defined one that follows the stream connecting the lakes.
From Upper Lamark it gets a bit more confusing. As you near Upper Lamark Lake look to the steepish slopes to your SW. Here you will find a trail that switchbacks up and brings you over several benches and finally to Lamark Col (12,960). You are aiming for the portion of the ridge directly above the southern end of the tarn below the col. There is a sign and large cairn on the ridge (as of Sep 2010). Dogs are not permitted beyond this point.
From Lamark Col follow one of the use trails down into Darwin Canyon. Avoid contouring too high as you head down and W as the likelihood of getting cliffed out increases. Once you reach Darwin Canyon skirt the northern shores of the lakes to your destination. For the western routes head to Darwin Benches at the end of the very western end of the range. At the end of the Darwin Canyon lakes the trail continues on the northern edge of the meadow before swinging due south. For the E Face route you will be aiming for the northern end of the glacier below Mt Mendel. Note that the route from Upper Lamark Lake is often not marked on topo maps. The total distance to Darwin Benches is ~10 miles. Do not underestimate the difficulty of the approach.
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Peak 13,360: