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Incredible Hulk

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Airstream T 
Astrohulk T 
Beeline T 
Blowhard T 
Escape from Poland T 
Eye of the Storm T 
Lenticular Gyrations T 
Lost in the Sun T 
Polish Route, The T 
Positive Vibrations T 
Red Dihedral (aka "Yggdrasil") T 
Solar Burn T 
Solar Flare T 
Sunspot Dihedral T 
Tradewinds T 
Venturi Effect, The T 
Wind Shear T 

Incredible Hulk Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 11,040'
Location: 38.12188, -119.41522 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 177,724
Administrators: Chris Owen, M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Chris Owen on Aug 22, 2006  with updates from christamcooper

53° | 32°

54° | 31°

47° | 29°

40° | 23°

48° | 27°

54° | 29°
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This crag in the Sawtooth Range can honestly lay claim to being one of the biggest granite walls in the High Sierra. Essentially the culmination of the north ridge of Eocene Peak. It is separated from the towers to the south by a significant notch, which forms part of the standard descent route (see below).

Getting There 

The trailhead is at Twin Lakes/Mono Village, to park at the Marina you must pay $10.00.

Hike west along the Robinson Creek Trail to Little Slide Canyon. Negotiate boggy terrain and a couple of tributaries (sandals recommended, cache on other side) to the south bank of Robinson Creek, go right (west) and pick up "The Switchbacks" which are steep but short. Continue to follow the trail on less steep ground to the talus. Stay left of the creek; follow cairns up to a ramp with trees which passes beneath a waterfall. Here the trail is less obvious, but cairns do mark a way up over granite benches, and ledges to a flat area west of the Hulk and east of Maltby Lake.

Some people mountain bike to the wilderness sign, some people do the Hulk in one long day, some people camp beneath the climbs - it's up to you, and how you view the mountains.

Descent from the Routes
From the summit, and after paying homage to the Superball - make a steep and exposed Class 3 descent (nervous soloists need not apply) of the south ridge, about 300', near its terminus go left and descend down to the rappel anchor, where a single rope rappel will deposit you in the notch mentioned above. Go right (west) and descend steep and loose scree to a small tower and a branch. Take the left branch and Class 5 down climb the overhanging chockstone - very worrying. A little further you'll reach the main gully beneath the Incredible Hulk's wall - stagger and stumble down some of the worst scree I've ever seen back to the start of the climbs, and then down the final scree fan. Some may take 45 minutes to do this, I've seen it written up as "trivial" - IMHO it's more than both of these.

Climbing Season

Weather station 13.9 miles from here

17 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',11],['3 Stars',6],['2 Stars',0],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Incredible Hulk

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Incredible Hulk:
Beeline   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, Alpine, 7 pitches, 1100'   
Red Dihedral (aka "Yggdrasil")   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, Alpine, 12 pitches, 1500'   
The Polish Route   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b     Trad, Alpine, 6 pitches, 900'   
Escape from Poland   5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b     Trad, Alpine, 2 pitches, 400'   
Positive Vibrations   5.11a 6c 22 VII+ 22 E3 5c     Trad, Alpine, 12 pitches, 1200'   
Sunspot Dihedral   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Trad, Alpine, 9 pitches, 1200'   
Astrohulk   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Trad, Alpine, 9 pitches, 1200'   
Tradewinds   5.11d 7a 24 VIII 25 E5 6a     Trad, Alpine, 9 pitches, 1200'   
Lost in the Sun   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, Alpine, 6 pitches, 700'   
The Venturi Effect   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b     Trad, Alpine, 10 pitches, 1200'   
Solar Burn   5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b     Trad, Alpine, 5 pitches, 600'   
Solar Flare   5.12+ 7c 28 IX 27 E6 6b     Trad, Alpine, 9 pitches, 1000'   
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Incredible Hulk

Featured Route For Incredible Hulk
Rock Climbing Photo: Solar Burn (Green) and Solar Flare (Red) Topo

Solar Burn 5.12 7b+ 27 VIII+ 26 E6 6b  California : High Sierra : ... : Incredible Hulk
Solar Burn, aka Sun Burn, is a right start to Solar Flare that climbs exciting splitters before traversing left into that route. Start by climbing the first two pitches of Airstream, as described below.P1 - 5.10b - 190 feetStart up the crack system just to the right of the P1 corner on the Polish route. This is also the start for Airstream. Climb up forty feet and then traverse right at a bush. Keep going right until you find thin cracks that lead up to a nice stance where you can build a...[more]   Browse More Classics in California

Photos of Incredible Hulk Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The top 2/3 of Incredible Hulk, as seen near the e...
The top 2/3 of Incredible Hulk, as seen near the e...
Rock Climbing Photo: Not a picture of the Incredible Hulk, but a crazy,...
Not a picture of the Incredible Hulk, but a crazy,...
Rock Climbing Photo: My friend Patrick Price goofing at the base of Inc...
My friend Patrick Price goofing at the base of Inc...
Rock Climbing Photo: Incredible Hulk, seen during the approach.
Incredible Hulk, seen during the approach.
Rock Climbing Photo: looks like something on Saturn
looks like something on Saturn
Rock Climbing Photo: Sunset at Incredible Hulk. Summer '05.
Sunset at Incredible Hulk. Summer '05.
Rock Climbing Photo: A topo overlay for some of the upper pitches on th...
BETA PHOTO: A topo overlay for some of the upper pitches on th...
Rock Climbing Photo: Incredible Hulk, August 2005.
Incredible Hulk, August 2005.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Hulk after an early storm.
The Hulk after an early storm.
Rock Climbing Photo: Back off- these are my smokes!
Back off- these are my smokes!
Rock Climbing Photo: Starry skies and shining granite!
Starry skies and shining granite!
Rock Climbing Photo: Incredible Hulk, Sierra
Incredible Hulk, Sierra
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbers on Positive Vibrations (IV 5.11c)
Climbers on Positive Vibrations (IV 5.11c)
Rock Climbing Photo: Mike Newheart barefoots it on the hike out - Robin...
Mike Newheart barefoots it on the hike out - Robin...
Rock Climbing Photo: Just before turning off - view up Little Slide Can...
Just before turning off - view up Little Slide Can...
Rock Climbing Photo: A cragging guide to the first few pitches of route...
BETA PHOTO: A cragging guide to the first few pitches of route...
Rock Climbing Photo: This is a bit of a work in progress. I'd love to g...
BETA PHOTO: This is a bit of a work in progress. I'd love to g...
Rock Climbing Photo: DREAMING!
Rock Climbing Photo: Alpenglow
Rock Climbing Photo: The Incredible Hulk, Sawtooth Range, High Sierra
The Incredible Hulk, Sawtooth Range, High Sierra
Rock Climbing Photo: HULK
Rock Climbing Photo: Sunset
Rock Climbing Photo: Excellent campsites below Incredible Hulk
Excellent campsites below Incredible Hulk
Rock Climbing Photo: Meeting the Hulk face-to-face for the first time
Meeting the Hulk face-to-face for the first time

Show All 34 Photos

Only the first 24 are shown above.

Comments on Incredible Hulk Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 14, 2017
By C Miller
From: CA
Jul 24, 2009
Video of Solar Flare (5.12+) on Vimeo
By Scott Bennett
Jul 26, 2009
The wilderness sign mentioned here and in the supertopo is no longer there. To find the right spot to turn off the main trail (Barney Lake Trail), look for Little Slide Canyon on the left, it's the first major side canyon you'll see. Just before you reach it, there'll be a large open meadow on your left, bordered on its west by a dense grove of aspen. Walk across the meadow, find the downed logs to cross Robinson Creek (it's easy to stay dry), and then work your way into the mouth of Little Slide Canyon.

Climb Safe,

Edit: Apparently these directions might lead you astray, since there are multiple "meadows bordered by aspen" along the Robinson creek trail. Here's another landmark to make sure you turn off the main trail at the right spot: Make sure that you can see the distinct spires (Outgard Spire, Totem, Duck, and Reggae Poles) high on the West side of Little Slide Canyon before leaving the main trail.

There is one earlier "meadow bordered by dense aspen", and then you actually walk through an aspen grove (on the trail), and then enter the correct meadow, from which you can see the spires. Here, leave the main trail, cross the meadow, and cross the creek. Once across, stay just on the South side of the creek for a few hundred yards. You make an unlikely 3rd class traverse on a rocky section about 6 inches above the water, and then enter Little Slide Canyon in a grove of pine trees.

Hope this helps,
By Luke Stefurak
From: Seattle, WA
Aug 11, 2009
There are some photos of the meadow Scott describes and some additional approach beta in this post:

Here is a consolidated post with all the beta you could possibly want about the Hulk:

Some more "older" beta and history:

By ccmski body
From: Seattle, WA
Dec 3, 2009
Thanks for the video- always inspiring to watch people climb gracefully in the alpine
By jmorse
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Dec 6, 2009
Thanks for posting the video, C.
The Incredible Hulk - Solar Flare was chosen to receive the John Muir Gold Award at the 2009 Yosemite Film Festival. In case you didn't know, it features climbing legends, Peter Croft and Conrad Anker. Cinematography by Jim Surette. Stills by Jimmy Chin.
By Dmitriy Litvak
From: Pacifica, CA
May 10, 2010
What is the season for the Hulk?
Is it climbable around Memorial Day ever?
By snowhazed
From: Oakland, Ca
Aug 24, 2010
More and more people are going to the Hulk and are defecating all over Little Slide Canyon- please please please do what you can to reduce your impact- keep it well away from the water, or even better bring a wag bag.
By Neil Kauffman
Sep 8, 2010
NO fires at the Hulk! The bivy area is above the fire elevation limit for the National Forest.
By Christopher Barlow
May 11, 2011
It sounds like this year has been a pretty heavy snow season. Does it look like the Hulk will be climbable in late June? We'd be happy to travel over and camp on snow, but we want to climb dry, relatively warm rock. What are the chances of this being the case?
By PumpkinEater
From: Sacramento
Jun 21, 2011
I second the previous remark. The Hulk good to go? I'm mainly wondering about the descent.
By Luke Stefurak
From: Seattle, WA
Jul 15, 2011

We used the lower of the two stream crossings. This takes a newer trail up the steep hill instead of going through the marsh and up switch backs in the trees.

The newer trail can be hard to follow in spots but is faster.

- Luke
By Andy Bennett
From: Tucson, AZ
Sep 1, 2011
(Nearly) Infallible approach beta:

There's been a lot of helpful but sometimes contradictory approach beta posted up here. Let me save you some time and effort, and nature a lot of erosion and social trails.

1) A brand new wilderness sign is definitely present, but it's nowhere near the turnoff, standing at least a good 3/4-1mi before it. Keep hiking past the sign for 15-30min (depending on your load and your legs). You'll soon see Little Slide Canyon reigning above on your left.

2) Keep hiking through a nice long stretch of healthy aspens. Exit this stand and round some curves uphill until you come upon the most prominent pine tree around. There's a lot of cleared earth here around the tree. The correct trail will be obvious on your left. Take it across the creek at the lower (left) set of logs. Huff it uphill.

3) Once you've gained the boulder field, follow the cairns and remain well right (west) of the cliff band for the easiest path.

By Crotch Robbins
Jun 12, 2012
The 3rd class traverse across the ridge and the final two pitches can hold frozen water in various forms when the Southwest Face is completely snow free making for an unexpected and excitingly alpine final three pitches to the summit.
By Kat A
From: Bart and Lisa Ville, CO
Aug 21, 2012
Some additional beta:

Camping: 8 permits are granted each day for departing the Robinson Creek trailhead, 4 of which can be reserved in advance. Applications must be sent via snail mail to the Bridgeport Ranger station at least 2 weeks in advance (they prefer 3 weeks or more) with a check enclosed, Permits are picked up at the station the day before or the day of (no later than 10 am or they may give it away). As of April 2012, bear cans are required in all of the Hoover Wilderness, yes, even above 10,000 feet. There was a ranger at the Hulk base when we were there in August 2012.

Approach: When you enter the RV park/campground, take the 2nd "road" from the right, signed with yellow tags on the trees, passing the "B" campsites until you reach a meadow with a "Do Not Enter" sign and a cable strung across the dirt road. This does not have the appearance of a regular trailhead, though after you follow this dirt road a bit you'll reach the National Forest sign then later the wilderness sign. Luke Stefurak posted a great photo of the large rock and pine tree on his dreaminvertical site, which clearly shows where to turn off the main trail to head towards the Hulk. The entire trail to the Hulk was dry in mid-August 2012. Cross the stream, head up the canyon on the left side of the creek, then eventually cross the creek at a narrow point (log bridge) and continue up the canyon on the right side of the creek. There was a decent trail and cairns for most of the approach.

Venturi/Positive Vibrations rap beta: You need a FULL 70m rope. We didn't do the first rap due to a lightening/rain storm (we escaped from pitch 8 of PV to a 2-stopper anchor), but general info for the rest of the raps is as follows. The raps are either straight down or veer to the climber's left, and we found them all without too much difficulty (easier than finding the raps on the Diamond). Tie knots when rapping down the clean Venturi bolted face - this has the big rope stretcher (80m would be nice). To help pull the rope cleanly near the PV chimney, we did an extra 30 foot rap from where the Venturi/PV line meets (a ledge which previously had one bolt, now it has 2 bolts, one with a rap ring). Two of the raps require pedulums - one one the Venturi face, the other to reach the last rap station before the ground.
By danielwhore
Sep 4, 2012
Does anybody know if there is still water running up near the base of the Hulk? Or do you have to bring water up with you.. thanks!!
By safetyfourth
May 10, 2013
I feel like if it takes you 6 hours, even with packs to get to the base, you are a crippled infant. The trail is 3 miles and gains 2,500 elevation.
By TeleRoss
From: San Diego, CA
May 13, 2013
Anybody been up there this spring? Or have recent snow conditions?
By Jimmy Burckhard
From: Fort Collins, CO
Jul 20, 2013
We lost two #1 Red C4s and one #2 Yellow Link Cam on the Red Dihedral of The Incredible Hulk on Friday July 19th. If anyone could assist in getting these back, I would be very appreciative!! The biners on one of the C4s and the link are marked with green tape and the other C4 had blue tape on the actual cam.

Thanks so much,

Jimmy Burckhard
By Chris Owen
From: Big Bear Lake
Mar 10, 2014
safetyfourth - while I have the power to edit your comment, and make you seem to say practically anything, I will refrain -- I could make you sound like an insensitive oaf, but you've already done that, I will say that I take exception to being called a crippled infant, I am a crippled old man, which is quite different.
By Gargano
From: Oakland, CA
Jun 13, 2014
Due to marauding bears in Twin Lakes/Mono Village you can no longer store food in the ice house. Consider only bringing food you need for the hike in, or appealing to a RV resident to cache your goods until you come back out.
By ErichPurpur
Jun 24, 2014
Hey everyone-

On 6/21/14 I lost my sleeping bag on the descent hike. I thought I had strapped it down pretty well but apparently not. I know it is a long shot but if anyone finds it, let me know.

Erich Purpur
828 773 7140
By Wally
From: Denver
Jul 12, 2014
Is there a reliable water source for camping near the base of the Hulk in August?
By Vlad S
Jul 14, 2014
Yes. However, by August the little stream that runs though the campsites usually turns to a trickle. It's best to get water in the evening as the snow melt slows down by the morning. If it's bad you might have to walk 100 feet down to get water. I haven't had to do more than that in prior Augusts so far.
Aug 4, 2014
Lost a pair of Black Diamond leather belay gloves size large at camp or base of positive vibrations. Let me know if found. Thanks!
By Jan Tarculas
From: Riverside, Ca
Aug 31, 2014
Went up there August 27-29. Vlad is right, there was a small stream/water hole about 100 feet below the camp site for good water.

Climbed Sunspot Dihedral August 28 and saw Peter Croft, David Nettle and another guy putting up a new Route to the Right of Sunspot. It was my first trip up there and Peter Croft was the one that inspired me to go there. I can't believe I was climbing right underneath him and had Nettle rapping next to me while watching me climb his route. Anyways, look out for another excellent route up there by these guys.
By Jay Schenk
Oct 18, 2014
looking for high sierra partner! down for anything red dihedral, sunspot, positive vibrations, i lead 5.11. lets climb! email me.
By MOConnor
May 17, 2015
Anyone been out there recently?? Looking for a conditions report on approach and how much snow is still out there since these last two storms rolled through. Trying to climb out there early June.
By Stas Yurkevich
From: San Francisco, California
Jul 5, 2016
There is Buckeye hot springs very close to Bridgeport. Highly recommend to soak after the climb.
By Sara Aranda
Oct 25, 2016
This past July I got married on top! First wedding up there? An absolutely beautiful and exciting place to be. Climbed the Red Dihedral. Filmed by Cheyne Lempe, officiated by Drew Smith.

By Tomko
Jul 9, 2017
The MP beta for the descent is spot on, but it also does not adequately convey the fact that the descent is scary, sketchy, and can take a good long time. The 300' scramble down is a little tricky to find and is quite intimidating with loose rock and potential long falls. The gullies, if filled with snow and you lack good shoes for it, can be scary and slow going.

CONDITION REPORT: As of July 4th week this year if you've not done the approach before it is easy to get lost right now due to the large amount of snow covering most of the trail. Also, with the final gully full of snow the descent took me 3 hours.
By snowhazed
From: Oakland, Ca
Jul 12, 2017
Snow in the descent gully makes the descent go way faster assuming it's late in the day and the snow is soft. in 2011 we skied down in our guide tennies, took 25 min, instead of the usual 45-60 of scree ramblin'.

If you can climb the Hulk, this descent should not be a problem, although I have bootied gear there, so ymmv.
By benkraft Kraft
From: San Francisco, California
Jul 19, 2017
We lost a set of big agnes tent poles hiking out on 7/17 -- pm if found.

Also, re: walkoff: If there's snow that's too hard to "ski", I've found downclimbing the snow with sharp rocks in hand works well. tcpros are stiff enough to kick steps. I've also cleaned anchors from the gully.
By Aaron Formella
From: Atascadero, CA
Aug 14, 2017
Working link to information page on The Incredible Hulk from Dream In Vertical blog:

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