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Areas in 09 - Palisades and Surrounding Peaks

Boulder Alley 0 / 0 / 0 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 3 / 3
Columbine Peak 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
Isosceles Peak 9 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 9 / 9
Middle Palisade 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 1
Mt. Gayley 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 1
Mt. Sill 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
Mt. Winchell 4 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4 / 4
Norman Clyde Peak 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
North Palisade 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 1 / 3 / 3
Polemonium Peak 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
Split Mountain 2 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2 / 2
Starlight Peak 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0
Temple Crag 9 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 9 / 9
Thunderbolt Peak 6 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 6 / 6
Two Eagle Peak 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 1 / 1
Elevation: 7,636 ft
GPS: 37.128, -118.427 Google Map · Climbing Map
Page Views: 110,745 total, 3,575/month
Shared By: Justin Johnsen on May 22, 2015
Admins: Chris Owen, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

Description

The Sierra Nevada's Palisades are loved by California mountaineers for their wild alpine character, and a jagged ridge line featuring a concentration of some of the highest summits in the state. Some of the largest remaining glaciers of the range hide in north facing cwms. This is an area where some early technical leaps forward took place in the history of California climbing. But looking out on it firsthand, you will feel ready to make some of your own!

Surprisingly the Palisades ridge runs east to west here, allow a small series of glaciers to form below the shaded north side of the ridge. They are remnants of the Little Ice Age and how much longer they will last is open to debate.

Getting There

Eastern Approaches
For the Eastside approaches, Big Pine is the nearest town with services, and most trips start there. From highway 395 in the center of town, take West Crocker Avenue west. It soon curves and is renamed Glacier Lodge Road.

Follow it 10 miles to a large free trailhead parking area (Upper Sage Flats) on the right, there is a toilet here.

Middle Palisade and Norman Clyde Peak are accessible from Finger Lake or thereabouts, this area is reached by hiking the South Fork of Big Pine Creek Trail, although parking is at Upper Sage Flat, it's a good strategy to drive your packs down to the end of the road.

Temple Crag, Mount Sill, North Pal and its glacier are accessible from the North Fork of Big Pine Creek, which starts at the sign by the parking area toilet and crosses the brushy slope above the road up and around to the right and eventually the first falls, then onwards. A very popular trail, early reservations are recommended.

Western Approaches
For the western approaches Bishop is the nearest town with services. The Bishop Pass Trail is used to access Dusy and Palisade Basins, so you'll need to drive up to the South Lake Trailhead - this is a very popular trail so early reservations are recommended. Approaches from the west are extremely long and not used for climbing in this area.

Permits
These can be obtained here. Or you can wait in line the morning of the hike, something which I have only done twice in 30 years.

47 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at 09 - Palisades and Surrounding Peaks

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
3rd 1- 1 I 1 M 1a
East Arete
Trad, Alpine
3rd 1- 1 I 1 M 1a
Northeast Face
Trad, Alpine
4th 1 2 I 2 M 1b X
St Jeans Couloir
Trad, Alpine
4th 1 2 I 2 M 1b
North Couloir
Trad, Alpine
Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c WI3
V-Notch Couloir
Trad, Ice, Alpine 12 pitches
Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c
Southwest Chute 1
Trad, Alpine
5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b WI2 M1 Mod. Snow
U-Notch Couloir
Trad, Mixed, Ice, Snow, Alpine
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Swiss Arete
Trad, Alpine 6 pitches
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Venusian Blind
Trad, Alpine 13 pitches
5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b
Temple, Galey, Sill Traverse
Trad, Alpine
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Moon Goddess Arete
Trad, Alpine 18 pitches
5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c
Twilight Pillar
Trad, Alpine 12 pitches
5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Easy Snow
Thunderbolt to Sill Traverse
Trad, Snow, Alpine
5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Sun Ribbon Arete
Trad, Alpine 22 pitches
5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Dark Star
Trad, Alpine 16 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
East Arete Mt. Winchell 3rd 1- 1 I 1 M 1a Trad, Alpine
Northeast Face Middle Palisade 3rd 1- 1 I 1 M 1a Trad, Alpine
St Jeans Couloir Split Mtn 4th 1 2 I 2 M 1b X Trad, Alpine
North Couloir Mt. Sill 4th 1 2 I 2 M 1b Trad, Alpine
V-Notch Couloir Polemonium Peak Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c WI3 Trad, Ice, Alpine 12 pitches
Southwest Chute 1 Thunderbolt Peak Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c Trad, Alpine
U-Notch Couloir N Palisade 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b WI2 M1 Mod. Snow Trad, Mixed, Ice, Snow, Alpine
Swiss Arete Mt. Sill 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, Alpine 6 pitches
Venusian Blind Temple Crag 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, Alpine 13 pitches
Temple, Galey, Sill Traverse Temple Crag 5.7+ 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Trad, Alpine
Moon Goddess Arete Temple Crag 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, Alpine 18 pitches
Twilight Pillar Norman Clyde Peak 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c Trad, Alpine 12 pitches
Thunderbolt to Sill Traverse Thunderbolt Peak 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a Easy Snow Trad, Snow, Alpine
Sun Ribbon Arete Temple Crag 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a Trad, Alpine 22 pitches
Dark Star Temple Crag 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b Trad, Alpine 16 pitches
More Classic Climbs in 09 - Palisades and Surrounding Peaks »

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