There is no other fourteen thousand foot peak in the Sierra with a better ridge route to the summit. This route is certainly not hiking, but then the difficulties are not so great as to require technical climbing skills. Mt. Russell is Mt. Whitney’s often forgotten neighbor to the north, and offers stunning views of Mt. Whitney and the surrounding scenery as we ascend a gradual but narrow ridge to an exciting summit crest between the east and, slightly higher, west summits. You’ll also see the highest-named lake in the country, Tulainyo Lake, straddling the border between Inyo and Tulare counties.

If you want to combine two peaks in one trip, then pair up the Mountaineers Route on Mount Whitney along with the East Ridge. You’ll experience two summits in four days for a perfect moderate mountaineering outing.


high-sierra-climbing-super-topo good-great-awesoeThe best guidebooks are Supertopo’s “High Sierra Climbing” by Chris McNamara and Peter Croft’s “The Good, The Great, and the Awesome”.

Get them from Maximus Press.

We highly recommend that you spend at least one night at moderate altitude (higher than 8,000′) just prior to the trip. Spending a night at Whitney Portal or the Cottonwood Campground would do the trick.

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