Its been a fantastic October for Sierra climbing this year and I had Mt Conness in my sights. Mt Conness East Ridge/Buttress Route Overview By most accounts, the East Ridge/Buttress is the shortest route up Mt Conness. There is a class 3 rock slide before getting to the base. The West Ridge of Mt. If I did it again, I would stick with an out-and-back climb of the East Buttress. Mt Conness, east ridge trip report including a side climb of White Peak on the Sierra Crest. After popping out on top of the ridgeline, I carefully dropped a few waypoints ensuring a clear path of return (in the end, I didn't take that route because I decided on climbing White Peak). Bill walks on the well-worn use trail. There seemed to be a lot of snow for this time of year, but generally we were able to avoid snow travel. From here you can climb the class 3 East Buttress itself for excellent views of North Peak and Mount Conness or skip the buttress by heading northwest to gain the East Ridge more gradually. After this ~20'x20' notch you can easily walk along the ridge crest itself that will take you to the base of the class 2 climb to the summit plateau. Nobody had signed the register in almost 2 months! I found a better route down. The technically easiest route approaches from the South near Tuolumne Meadows, via Young Lakes. Here's some more photos-, At about 11,100', there's a nice, flat section and the main ridgeline becomes visible. Photo courtesy of Frank Paysen. There is a class 3 rock slide before getting to the base. Conness - East Ridge Route Trailhead: Sawmill Campground - marked Distance: 9 miles – up and back Elevation gain: 2,900 feet Elevation peak: 12,590 feet Time: 6 to 8 hours Difficulty: 4 Danger level: 3 Class: 3 – a few spots How easy to follow: 3 Children: No Map: See Page 6 Fees/Permits: None Waypoints (WGS 84): See Page 5 I actually had fun with it. Follow either of these until you get to the "notch in the east ridge" which affords excellent views of the Conness Glacier to the north. 3:20. Conness. It was a 40 minute climb for me. I followed the trail through the campground and easily picked up the use trail that heads towards Lee Vining Creek. White Peak's summit was interesting- there's a yogurt container that serves as a register. Conness, from near Cockscomb. After roughly 1.2 miles of easy hiking, I crossed by the Carnegie Institute Experimental Station, marked by a sign and a very decrepit cabin. I took the path of least resistance involving a steep but clear route up to the next flat "bench" at about 11,800' -. The prominent pinnacle above is the East Buttress and the ridgeline extending to the left in the photo connects with Mt Conness. That said, there were some amazing sections of exposure climbing along the upper ridge. Guarded by sheer granite walls, its lofty pyramid is a dominating sight from all sides, boasting a tremendous view over Yosemite National Park. Adventure is out there! Summited in a couple more hours, quickly signed the register and made my way down the East Ridge. Hiking Into East Ridge Saddle On Mt Conness Beyond the weather station saddle, the east ridge becomes sharper and more dramatic. Conness (12,590 ft) from the east ridge, looking west across the Conness glacier; north eastern edge of Yosemite National Park, California. Daddy play day this year aptly came on Independence Day. As we near the pass the route steepens and becomes loose and sandy. Mount Conness via the North Ridge. Other routes exist including the infamously scenic North and West Ridges. A rabbit crossed the road in front of me and I saw 4 deer before turning north on the Saddlebag Lake Road. I hiked another 1.3 miles on the well-traveled use path leading towards the summits. The crux of the route involves the final climb up the East Ridgeline. Timeline: September 5, 2020. There are multiple routes along the south side of the East Ridge with some class 2 routes lower on the ridge and a class 3 route higher up but still below the actual crest. Stella walks across the dam catwalk. It's more of a scramble most of the way and probably more enjoyable in sneakers than in climbing shoes. 2021 Dates. The route up White Peak clearly received less traffic than anything up Mt Conness. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. It was only when I reached the saddle that a comfortable route appeared. This is a blog for people of all levels and experience and is not limited to any state, province or sport. All things considered, Mt Conness and the East Buttress were exceptional. You can also summit the East Buttress by taking a class 2 route up to the ridge crest just west of the buttress and then hiking up the back side (good descent route). The crest of the knife-edged arete section is definitely more than class-3 (probably class-4 or 5 in spots), but with a bit of routefinding off of the crest, you can stick to class-3 terrain. However I was never far from a good handhold or foot hold. Caption: View of the north face (left) and north ridge (center) of Mt. 3 reviews of Mount Conness "The vast majority of people that visit Saddlebag Lake never get more than a mile or two beyond its shores, but if you're willing to put in some extra effort you can reach the summit of 12,590 ft Mt Conness. NAVD88 Elevation : 12,595 ft / 3839 m. Subpeaks. Descending from the notch back to the original use trail I took in the first place was dicier than I expected. July 11 August 1 September 12. "One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important." A few minutes later I was standing on the 12,590-foot summit of Mt Conness. Conness is perhaps the best moderate alpine climb in Tuolumne. Brett scrabbling up the NOrth Ridge 3. Though not a 13er like Mt Lyell (the tallest), its more isolated and sports some incredible high altitude routes. In fact, moments before summiting, I lost my brand new Arc'teryx hat. At times, I really had to focus on what I was doing rather than take in the views. © 2006-2020 SummitPost.org. Conness. Credit: rhyang. I met Jim at his hotel in Lee Vining at 5am. As expected, all of the campgrounds were full, so we just found a dirt spot 100 feet off the road and deployed the roof tent. East ridge of Mount Conness Conness is a training ground for alpine climbing since it utilizes all aspects of mountaineering: trails, scrambling, and glacier trekking; all at a high altitude for California. The trail is primarily used for hiking, rock climbing, and bird watching and is best used from June until September. Mount Conness (Yosemite, CA) by East Ridge. Start from Sawmill Creek Campground on the way to Saddlebag Lake. Its standard class III climbing with a mercifully minimal amount of scree and boulder fields. I retraced by steps down the thread of rocks and back to the large bowl below the main summit. With an alpine start, I began a lovely hike from the Sawmill Campground, just off the Saddlebag Lake Road. I found myself pondering the idea of beauty while I was on that ridge. Description Itinerary ... We continue past small lakes and tarns, steadily climbing towards a pass between Mt Conness and North Peak. Hiking Saddlebag Lake to Conness Lakes, East of Yosemite - Duration: 3:20. Clearly nobody cares about this summit which is just as well. Please let me know if there is one :-). The North Ridge of Mount Conness! The route was very clear and the exposure was minimal. However, I hit an ice field or unnammed glacier. August 6 ... Wes and I left from Riverside on Friday afternoon and got to the east side of Yosemite by early evening. Conness via Sawmill Meadows, Alpine Lake, and the east ridge is a Class 2-3 scramble that can be done in a long day. Soon after, we reach the pass and are at the start of the ridge. From the base or summit of the East Buttress, your immediate objective is the ridge junction heading west on the East Ridge which leads to the summit plateau. In Trip Reports by Howie Schwartz September 10, 2011 Leave a Comment. Mount Conness is a 7.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lee Vining, California that features a lake and is rated as difficult. Hiking southeast from here will get you into the vicinity of the West Ridge of Conness. Conness (North Ridge) and Tresidder Peak. Descent via class 2/3 East Ridge Trip Report GPS Track Frank and Stella get ready to go. My heart dropped a few times with some of the exposed sections. So, my final thoughts on Mt Conness via the east ridge: first and last thousand feet up loose scree sucks, but other than that, climbing and walking is good. We parked on the west shoulder of Saddlebag Road/Forest Road 1n01, 1.6mi from 120. Being the highest peak in the area, the view was unobstructed in all directions. PhotoDescr: Mt. Peaks: Mt Conness (sorted/filed as Conness) ; Place: California Difficulty: glaciers, skis . Ascent via class 2 east chute between Conness and White. Armed with a favorable snow report from the guys at telemarktips.com, I made plans to head back to the backcountry skiing mecca of Tioga Pass -- specifically, to climb Mount Conness and ski the chutes and bowls on its east ridge. Rated at 5.6 or less, the climbing on Mount Conness was quite easy. I was glad I brought traction for my boots and an ice axe. Again, I went back and fourth whether I should do it. Of course, its essentially unavoidable if climbing White Peak. There's one section of particularly significant exposure, however the rock and route quality remain consistently good. Given this was my first foray into this part of Yosemite, I settled on climbing the easiest and most traditional route- the East Ridge/East Buttress. Drove up to Tioga Pass and out of Yosemite NP powering down some fruit and the coffee I'd brewed the night prior, still hot in the thermos. Follow the obvious trail/road through the campgrounds, past the Carnegie Institute storage shed, and up to the foot of the East Buttress*. It can be avoided but it was preferable to endless boulder fields. (30), Climber's Log Entries Its standard class III climbing with a mercifully minimal amount of scree and boulder fields. Everyone who's climbed Mt Conness remarks about this final section. Once you gain the summit plateau, the class 3 route to the summit is obvious.Note: You won't see Alpine Lake until you reach the "notch in the east ridge." 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